Game Review

Ben 10 Alien Force: The Rise of Hex Review

USA USA Version

Posted by James Newton

Even Steven

The idea of a boy capable of transforming into wildly different forms, each with special abilities, is ideal fodder for game design: Kid Chameleon did it nearly twenty years ago, but Ben 10 Alien Force: Rise of Hex revives the template with a few welcome tweaks.

In case you’re unfamiliar with the titular hero, Ben Tennyson possesses a magical device known as the Omnitrix that allows him to transform into different aliens, a power he uses to defeat his sworn enemy Hex. Predictably you don’t need to follow the series to keep up with the game’s storyline or characters, as everything is explained pretty clearly in still image cutscenes.

At first Ben can only access two of his aliens, with each subsequent level introducing another available transformation and its abilities. It eases you into the game nicely, with body-swapping done via a simple radial menu and three buttons used for various powers, and clear design means you’re rarely at a loss for which form to use in which situation. With powers ranging from flight to climbing and brute strength to growing vines, there’s ample opportunity for varied gameplay, which is why it disappoints when that promise isn’t fulfilled.

Despite introducing a new form every level, most of the level structure comes down to switch puzzles: activating them in the right order to move platforms or open barriers is a huge part of the gameplay, with some forms having their own individual switch types. It’s not that the puzzles are poorly designed, but after a few levels you’ll likely tire of facing another level full of switches.

In the graphical stakes it’s clear and mostly well-animated, with only the repetitive stage settings bringing it down: the first half-dozen levels are the same factory, for example. There’s no lack of detail, and overall the graphics are decent, which is more than you can say for the music: repetitive, tuneless dirges that you’ll want to switch off. Thankfully the sound effects are far better, with characters proudly declaring their victories through a smattering of voice samples; not enough to grate, but enough to add some personality to proceedings.

Experienced gamers shouldn’t have many difficulties finishing the main Story mode in a couple of hours, but after that there’s Time Attack and Survival modes; welcome bonuses in an otherwise strictly linear game.


If you’re a fan of Ben 10 and don’t mind an imbalanced switch puzzle-to-platforming ratio, you could do a lot worse than download Rise of Hex. The variety of transformations papers over a lot of the game’s more repetitive elements, and although the story mode is over in a few hours the Survival and Time Attack additions extend its lifespan. You’re left with a competent puzzle platformer that tends to satisfy rather than entertain.

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User Comments (19)



SherlockHolmes said:

My nephew would love this as he loves alien force. I'm not so keen on it anymore. But I was when I was younger.



AVahne said:

didn't expect a licensed downloadable game to get a score this high



bro2dragons said:

is this the first licensed WiiWare game? not too bad... probably not one i'll be looking to get any time soon... but not too bad.



accc said:

That seemed like a pretty "meh" review for the game to be given a 7, I was expecting a 5 or a 6 while reading.



JakobG said:

Yet another "Meh."-game.
I guess it'll be a seller, since it's a popular show and not complete shovelware.



WAM2 said:

The Omnitrix isn't magic! And the banner at the top is from the old series!

But sewiously, now. Hmm, okay. Sounds like a decent game. Might pick it up sometime.




Sounds like the same standard as all the DS games that me and my lad have played through. Insta-download when it comes over here.

The series is a set of surprisingly competent platformers. Doesn't pull up any trees, but certainly competent.



Chris720 said:

I remember this show... Forget when I last watched it... Sounds like an alright game. But platform puzzle isn't my thing and Ben 10 is boring to me...

However, for the young ones, this would keep a smile on their face for a while. Nice review!



RadioShadow said:

"clearly in still image cutscenes."

That's just lazy. Pure laziness. We have better technology and they result to that.



Xkhaoz said:

Hmmm. My friend will like this. But that header image doesn't work. That's from the original Ben 10, while this game is based on Ben 10 Alien Force.



YoshiSage said:

I came here expecting a low score (it is, after all, a licensed game, most of which are garbage), but wow. I don't care for Ben 10, but I may pick this up sometime.

(oh yes, the banner is from the old series. As in when Ben had more of a personality.)



BrazCanaMan said:

Pretty high score, most sites rated this one a 5. Anyways, didn't get it for XBLA, and I most likely not get it for WiiWare.



iAmThetot said:

I got this for my little brother and he likes it but it's not his favourite. I guess a 7/10 does it justice.



Capt_N said:

Not a 10 fan, but just wanted to point out:

We may see more licensed stuff on WW, particularly WB, as CN(Cartoon Network), is owned by WB.

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