Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures

Written by Joe Martin

June 12, 2008 | 15:26

Tags: #casual #games-for-windows #indiana-jones #indy #spielberg

Companies: #lego #lucasarts

Block Breaker

Thankfully though, even if you aren’t a massive completionist like me and you don’t relish a chance to replay your games over and over, then there’s still a lot to do. All of this stuff can essentially be disregarded if you want and you can enjoy the game as just a puzzle-platformer of the cutest calibre.

The puzzles themselves, it has to be said, do tread a fine line and are occasionally made a little hard to judge because of the games presentation. It’s not that the puzzles themselves are hard—it’s usually just a case of wearing the right hat to fool a guard or getting both players stood on different buttons—but they may trouble the audience nonetheless.

This is a core problem for Lego Indy unfortunately. On the one hand, the game is clearly aimed at the midcore and hardcore gaming audiences – but at the same time the streamlined interface and presentation of the game as a cute, silent-film made of Lego means that it’s naturally going to appeal to children more than anything else.

Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures Brick Breaker

This makes the puzzles a bit of a problem from time to time – puzzles that are well aimed for children are insultingly easy for adults. Puzzles that barely register as such to adults will leave children sobbing like the spoiled, ASBOed brats they probably are.

In this regard, some acts are better than others. Raiders of The Lost Ark is the first in the trilogy and is marvellously put together, but Temple of Doom on the other hand is made pretty annoying by dealing with character phobias and poorly constructed puzzles.

The addition of phobias is a clever addition to game and fits in perfectly with the subject matter. Indy’s fear of snakes, which he’s had ever since that event on the circus train in the prologue to The Last Crusade, is well known by fans and is manifested in the game as an inability for the character to move when near snakes. Instead, the player must switch to another character and find a way to clear the path so that Indy may follow.

Inventive. Clever. Good. Also, very annoying when you have two characters with phobias and can’t walk three paces (even on stumpy Lego legs) without having to switch over and tackle another pointless puzzle. This is especially problematic in Temple of Doom, where you’ll mostly be playing as Indy and Willie, who’s scared of spiders.

Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures Brick Breaker

Sadly, the game does have a few more flaws and the vehicles especially stood out as being a hugely disappointing aspect of the game in certain sections and were a far cry from the wonderful space-based dogfights of Lego Star Wars.

The good news is that the array of vehicles has been massively expanded – rafts, boats, cars, bicycles, motorbikes, camels, llamas – the list goes on. The bad news is that the larger and more fun the vehicle should be, the poorer it inevitably ends up being.

Bikes are great, for instance. Zippy, fast-cornering little things that manage to be at least mildly useful in the predominantly narrow and blocky levels. Animals are good too, though it’s awfully annoying when you get shot off of one.

Cars on the other hand turned out to be one of the most disappointing aspects of Lego Indy and are huge, unwieldy behemoths with laughable zero-turning circles and an engine full of clipping problems. Driving one feels like trying to steer a Stegosaurus with its arse on fire through a car park full of marshmallows.

What makes the cars especially irritating though is that, except for the function in ramming down gates and completing one or two puzzles the larger transports are pretty useless and you’ll use them to go only a couple of feet at most. In short, they could have been cut out altogether and mostly pretty extraneous. And I say extraneous just to make it clear which audience we’re writing for.
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