Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines Reviews (PlayStation 2)

ESRB Rating
Critic Score
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
User Score
5 point score based on user ratings.

User Reviews

The game is Ok, I guess. TwoDividedByZero (149) 1.71 Stars1.71 Stars1.71 Stars1.71 Stars1.71 Stars

Our Users Say

Category Description User Score
Acting The quality of the actors' performances in the game (including voice acting). 2.6
AI How smart (or dumb) you perceive the game's artificial intelligence to be 1.9
Gameplay How well the game mechanics work (player controls, game action, interface, etc.) 1.9
Graphics The quality of the art, or the quality/speed of the drawing routines 1.9
Personal Slant How much you personally like the game, regardless of other attributes 2.0
Sound / Music The quality of the sound effects and/or music composition 2.4
Story / Presentation The main creative ideas in the game and how well they're executed 1.9
Overall User Score (7 votes) 2.1

Critic Reviews

MobyRanks are listed below. You can read here for more information about MobyRank.
Gamezilla (Dec 15, 2003)
I found this game not to be too difficult which means that the hard core FPS players out there will probably hate it for being too easy. If you’re more of the casual player that just wants to blast things, this could be the game for you. The lack of multiplayer and linear gameplay don’t allow for much replay value. I would probably only recommend this game to either a hard core Terminator fan or to someone that complains about other FPS games being too difficult. If nothing else, this game is at least leaps and bounds better than Atari’s previous effort with Terminator: Dawn of Fate.
Play.tm (Jan 18, 2004)
While by no means the worst movie tie-in ever, it certainly is nowhere near the greatest. The game's flaws could have easily been avoided with a little more attention and would have improved the game immensely. The saddest thing, however, is that included on the disc is a demo for Terminator 3: Redemption. The one section of a level provided proves to be more entertaining in it's 10 minutes than the entire Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines game. A bit of an own goal really.
Hot off of the heels of Enter the Matrix’s success, Atari is giving Terminator 3 the royal treatment. With exclusive movie sequences that can only be found in the game, voice work by all of the key actors, and a story that better conveys the events leading up to the feature film, it has more than enough content to make fans convulse with excitement. In the greater gaming world, however, Terminator 3 isn’t as majestic. Its gameplay is well below today’s standard for console FPS. Horribly clunky hand-to-hand fighting also rears its ugly head. Much like Enter the Matrix, you really have to be a diehard fan to enjoy this game. It’s a gritty play, but it has some great content to it.
Lawrence (Nov 17, 2003)
The different locales are plenty but short, that is if you can decipher your whereabouts with confusing level design. The graphics hold their own but enemies don't inspire fear like terminators would in the movie. The sound is your average fare. Samples taken directly from the movie get the job done and shine as one of the better parts of the game. I have other games to review and play. It's a busy season. Nothing in T3 comes together particularly well and barring a keen interest in the extra movie scenes, don't even rent it.
Gamesmania.de (Feb 23, 2004)
Enter the Matrix war zweifellos der richtige Weg, doch was Atari mit Rise of the Machines verbrochen hat, ist nur die übliche Lizenzgurke: Nach den Ausgaben für Stars und Sternchen blieb wohl kein Budget für ein vernünftiges Entwicklerteam und mit dem DVD-Release des Films auch keine Zeit zur Nachbesserung. Somit hat BlackOps einen unterdurchschnittlichen Shooter dahingeschludert, der lediglich für Gelegenheitsspieler und absolute Filmfans in Frage kommt.
Worth Playing (Jan 31, 2003)
If this picks up after I get to the past, I apologize. I apologize, that is, for the fact that somebody has to play upwards of ten agonizing missions just to start playing the movie that the game was based on-something that someone buying this product might actually care about. Fighting the forces of Skynet could have been a great bonus, or a great way to extend the story; I don't disagree with this. But when the execution is this painful to experience… no. Just no.
Next Level Gaming (Nov 30, 2003)
This is a huge project gone very bad. Besides the fact that I should never be able to sit down and beat a game in my first sitting, there's absolutely nothing that makes me want to go back and play it again. The only cool thing about this game is that it has a demo on it for the next Terminator game called Redemption. Since I don't recommend you get this game at all, we'll bring you a hands-on preview of the demo next week.
Jeuxvideo.com (Dec 16, 2003)
Terminator 3 : Le Soulèvement Des Machines, est l'archétype du jeu garantissant une ambiance extrêmement immersive, mais retournant la situation à son désavantage, par l'accumulation de lacunes dont il fait les frais. Il n'en demeure pas moins que ce titre à l'intérêt limité, n'offre pas assez de prises à votre imagination ou à votre détermination pour espérer se détacher du petit monde des FPS. Et ce n'est pas son moteur vaguement inspiré de celui de Red Faction, qui parviendra à le sauver. Transmission terminée.
Game Chronicles (Dec 19, 2003)
If the game developers had improved the overall graphics, added multiplayer or online multiplayer game modes, AND rewrote the entire script, then I might suggest renting this game. Sadly though, I must tell you to avoid it at all costs. If first person shooters are your thing, buy a game like Return to Castle Wolfenstein or even the original Red Faction. Both are cheaper and either would blow this game out of the water. Better luck next time Atari.
It would seem the Terminator franchise is cursed when it comes to video games. While this is the first one to use Arnold's voice and likeness, it doesn't seem like it was enough to stave off the inevitable suckiness that comes with every Terminator game.
Thunderbolt Games (Dec 27, 2003)
And ultimately the game feels as if it is all in bits, rather than a cohesive whole. You never really get involved because the mission objectives and rushed, non-sensical and repetitive, and they get lazier (If more varied) as the game goes on). I still couldn’t say it was awful, as I enjoyed it to a certain extent, but I would still only recommend this to die-hard terminator fans as its aging and irritatingly counter-productive mechanics don’t do anything to hide it’s unimaginative design. Not what you’d expect from a game with seven pages of credits in the instruction booklet.
GameZone (Nov 23, 2003)
Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines is the reason why gamers are afraid to see publishers pick up a movie license. A lot of good can be done with it – The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King proved that. But a lot of bad can be done with it as well. If a no-name game stinks, it'll be forgotten quickly. But a movie-based game has a lot attached to it, especially if the film is successful.
4Players.de (Dec 18, 2003)
Gründe, sich Terminator 3 Rebellion der Maschinen zuzulegen, gibt es einige. Bedauerlicherweise liegen die jedoch im Bonus-Umfeld und nicht in der spielerischen Klasse. Denn was euch hier geboten wird, ist ein stinknormaler Shooter mit teilweise grottenschlechter Grafik, der durch unzureichend umgesetzte Kampfsequenzen leider nicht die erwünschte Abwechslung erfährt und auf Dauer nur noch anödet. Die in einigen Abschnitten auftretenden Soundbugs reihen sich nahtlos in die Misere ein. Überhaupt ist die Akustik –insofern sie mal vollkommen funktioniert- ein merkwürdiger Mix, aus dem nur Arnies Stimme einigermaßen herausragen kann. Das freispielbare Bonus-Material hingegen kann sich sehen lassen: Fotos, diverse Making-Of-Videos und Dokus von den Dreharbeiten sind eine nette Ergänzung für Fans des Filmes und wesentlich unterhaltsamer als das Spiel an sich.
GameSpot (Nov 18, 2003)
The only remaining thing that could appeal to anyone is the significant amount of film footage and random behind-the-scenes featurettes contained on the disc, but nearly all of this can be found on the recently released Terminator 3 DVD, which also has this footage in significantly better quality and doesn't require you to play through this mess of a game to unlock it all. If you want Terminator 3, watch the movie and pretend this game doesn't exist. You'll be infinitely better off.
Futuregamez.net (Dec 20, 2003)
The one game I am looking for the most, and it turns out to be the biggest disappointment. This is nowhere near the quality of the movie and is truly a waste of your money. Even I, probably one of the biggest Arnie fans in Australia, struggled to enjoy this title. Leave it well alone.
IGN (Dec 05, 2003)
I wrote this game off as just weak for the first bits I played -- mass-market entertainment with little challenge and not much technical finesse or polish -- but it wasn't until I played it all the way through and suffered the woefully lacking and unbalanced second half of the game, after I encountered stages as short as a few minutes and a final few rounds with fewer enemies and less challenge than any moment of the game's opening level, that I recognized this game as having eclipsed Fugitive Hunter as the least enjoyable console shooter of the year.
Gaming Target (Jan 14, 2004)
How the combined efforts between Black Ops Entertainment, Shiny, and several Atari development houses could create this is inconceivable. It's a sad day when the one level demo for Terminator 3: Redemption that is included with Rise of the Machines is better than the full game Atari expects people to buy. When video game release dates are made to coincide with DVD release dates, that is a sign the game is going to be worthless. Stay far far away from this piece of crap, it gives new meaning to the "licensed game curse."
TotalPlayStation (Nov 30, 2003)
It might be worth renting if you'd like to check out some of the extras on the DVD (there's actually a demo of the infinitely more enjoyable Paradigm T3 game on disc, as well as unlockable demos of Centipede and Missile Command for those looking for more game), but otherwise, there's no reason to even give this game more than a passing glance. Terminator fans deserved much better.
1UP (2003)
Except for missions that deviate from the flick's main events—such as playing out the scene where one of Arnold's kind kills John Connor—even the most devout Terminator followers will find few enticing elements in this four-hour trek. And don't expect much in terms of cool bonus material. Only one unlockable cut-scene—where you learn how Terminators adopted Mr. Schwarzenegger's physical appearance—is exclusive movie footage. You're better off sayin' "Hasta la vista, baby" to the game and picking up the T3 DVD.
GameSpy (Nov 29, 2003)
Arnold Schwarzenegger is nothing if not successful. This game reeks of what has brought him all the way to leadership of the Fifth Largest Economy in the World: so much presentation and bulked up features, with nothing of substance underneath. One can only hope that people will not elect to purchase this title, as they'll find themselves duped again by this country's best salesman. Even with the relatively thin field of first person shooter experiences on the PS2, it's hard to see the appeal of this title beyond its franchise namesake.
Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines is easily the worst game that has been released this year. It contains all of the elements that made games based on movies licenses notorious during the 1990's - bad graphics, sloppy game mechanics and feeling like the game is unfinished - rushed out for Christmas. The lack of quality is amazing, considering half a dozen talented development teams worked on the game. Send a message to Atari, and don't even so much as pick up the game's box to look at the pictures on the back of it. Don't forget to pray to your religion's resident deity in order to avoid receiving this game as a gift from family this Christmas (or Hanukkah/Kwanzaa/Festivus/Whatever holiday your religion celebrates).
There is little more to say. The words just aren’t there to express how bad this game really is. I wish they were. The thing is, the Terminator films all came across as being really sci-fi and futuristic, so I never really expected the game to be worse than the worst of the bad PSone FPS games that we’d all played so many years ago. All I know is that a lot of publications have either refused to cover this game or are still in shock. Either way, where is your bottle’ This is our job. To tell you the truth, we don’t give zero scores here, but I’m kind of reconsidering that policy in case this happens again in the future, or the past. Whatever.
Eurogamer.net (UK) (Mar 12, 2003)
Alternatively, have some fun by asking your friendly local sales assistant to give you a demo of it (make sure it's a well known chain for extra comedy value), and watch with amusement as they try and sell the game to you. If you're really good you can play along with the charade for maybe ten minutes or more before bursting into laughter and spitting out the immortal words... "I'll be back". Do anything, watch the movie, buy the DVD, just do anything but buy this comical exercise in interactive merchandising.
The Video Game Critic (Apr 20, 2008)
Terminator 3 incorporates both real movie footage and CGI cut-scenes, but the footage makes the CGI work look awful. The voice samples (provided by the actors) are repetitive to the extreme, with Arnold saying "lock and load" about every ten seconds. I heard one soldier exclaim "let's kick some ass" five times in a row! That's some quality programming right there. The audio is also plagued with some obnoxiously loud sound effects. It's amazing how bad Terminator 3 turned out, considering that the movie studio provided the actors and plenty of movie-related bonus material. But make no mistake - this is an abysmal helicopter-wreck of a game.
Game Revolution (Dec, 2003)
But the saddest part has to be the staggering number of people who worked on this thing, including some well-respected developers. Just check the credits from the manual. I'm not counting them all, but that's about 400 names. I imagine one of these people, just one, went up to their manager and said, "This is a bad game. It would be embarrassing if we sold it to people." I'm sure they were immediately fired. If it had been my name in those credits, I would have changed it to Alan Smithee.