Saturday, 26 November 2011

Jurassic Park Review


Telltale known for making games like the Sam and Max games, have taken on the task of making some of the most beloved movies ever made and making them into video games. First of was Back to the Future, which in fact turned out to be a good however a easy game. Now telltale takes on the task of Jurassic Park. Well is this game any good or should we get a hole ready in nevada?

The story revolves around a canister filled with dinosaur embryos. If you remember in the movie, the character Dennis Nedry takes a bunch of dinosaur embryos in a canister of Shaving Cream for a competing company of INgen (Jurassic Park). Nedry meets a sticky end when he crashes his car and gets eaten by a dinosaur. The game continues this side plot with a bunch of new characters, there a vet and his daughter, a mysterious man and woman looking for the canister, a group of scientists and a group of soldiers and maybe a few more. These characters have average/generic personalities, for example the vet isn't getting on that well with his daughter at parts but are brought closer due to the dinosaurs (and maybe something else). It's average movie stuff. The story all together is OK, however like in the movie it's just away to show how awesome dinosaurs are.

Gameplay is, well, not very good. In short it's a point and click game with no puzzles and little challenge. What makes a point and click game fun? Well for me anyway it's the puzzles, for example if we go back to one of the old Sam and Max games the slap stick humour mixed with the fun and challenging puzzles made them great. The problem with Jurassic Park is that almost everything needed in what you could call puzzles is highlighted with arrows. I blame this with bad design, this sort of thing would of been fine if this was on a easy difficulty, where all the puzzle elements where highlighted. Then if you had a "normal" difficulty option that would remove all the hints when doing the puzzles. Then this would make people like me who like a challenge happy and keep everyone else happy with the easy difficulty.

Movement between areas is better than in past 3D point and click games. No longer do you haft to click and slowly watch your character walk across the map, and clicking every time something new comes into the screen. Now you have this type of multiple camera view showing all the areas you can go. This lowers frustration while adding to the feel that your a director.

Now apart from Puzzles there's a Dragon's lair type set peaces, where pressing keys in the right order or rapidly pressing one. These set peaces are used to show of the dinosaurs, the problem is that these set peaces are fun to watch but not really much fun to play. Not being a fan of the Dragon's Lair games I didn't much like these parts. I wouldn't much mind these parts of the game, but the problem is that you haft to use this mechanic for everything, for example there's parts where you go and open a door by rapidly pressing one of the arrow keys. It's unneeded and not fun.

One big problem is that the game feels rushed. Some textures look good while others look like place holders. Also transitions between areas in cutscenes are clunky as the game stops for a second or two, also some facial expressions aren't the best, sometimes out of sync or just random expressions.

All in all I didn't find this game fun, I found it too easy and I didn't like the hole Dragon's Lair mechanic. However if you find point and clicks too hard and you like Dragon's Lair I would think about it, if you can get over the technical flows.

Liam Hackett


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