Top critical review
18 people found this helpful
More Crystal Skull than Raiders of the Lost Ark - if you know what i mean................
on 30 December 2009
This is the follow up to Lego Indiana Jones : The Original Adventures and although the developers have tried to change/update some of the ideas in their previous Lego games (Star Wars - both trilogies, the original Indiana Jones and Lego Batman) they don't necessarily improve on what has gone before.
Firstly, the hub areas have changed dramatically. They are vast areas that have the main storyline levels within them, but also mini levels within them which can only be unlocked by purchasing extra characters that have the means to open these levels up i.e. if you need a shovel character, you are going to have to buy this character from another area/ level. This sounds okay so far, but unlike the other Lego games, the free play function has been removed, so you have to physically locate the character you need to use. On the new, sprawling hub set up this is a real pain after a while, especially when you need two specialist characters to complete a level. You end up having to remember where each character originates, go and collect them and then go and find the other. After a while, this grates quite a bit, and i can see some of the younger gamers finding this too difficult, or just too awkward to do.
If this sounds annoying, then there is worse to come. The actual levels are really short. The main storyline levels for each hubs are all quite short, and the bonus levels are basically contained within a single room and are even shorter! The Crystal Skull film has three hubs, the Raiders of the Lost Ark has another, Temple of Doom has one too, and so does the Last Crusade. And a final hub contains the level creator. But comparing this to the other games that have followed it, this game is really short, and if you were playing the main storylines of each hub you would be looking at a really short playing time. Even if you want to complete everything and get all the Xbox 360 achievements, then it won't take you long at all.
Other irritants include the removal of the mini-kits within the levels, to be replaced by hunting for 10 each of three different coloured bricks (red, blue and green) which unlocks the extras to give you invincibility, stud multipliers etc....
There are now golden chests that have to be collected within the mini-levels within the hubs. Once these ten chests have been collected, they unlock a Lego City (like in the previous games) but again these City levels are really bland and not at all challenging, unlike their previous incarnations.
There seem to be more glitches and bugs in this game too. Invisible walls are pretty common, and the worst one i came across was unlocking a treasure chest in a mini level - i had to go online to find out why this unlocked treasure chest wasn't being accessed in the area where i was trying to access the Lego City for that hub. And there was no real reason for it!! That was really annoying.
Finally, the level creator.... it is okay as far as it goes, but i didn't spend much time in it, and because the main game was so short, i didn't really feel obliged to spend any more effort on it. I just wanted to finish the stories, and achievements and move on to my next game!
Oh, and the driving levels are just too long and too similar to each other. Every time i had to play a level to get all the extras i could feel my life draining away - Indiana Jones should be more about puzzles than driving!
It doesn't sound too great does it? But it does have a few saving graces. The humour is still there, the puzzles are still there (though some are so simple it is almost insulting!), the characters are all there to be earnt (there are some nice hidden ones too) and of course the music is still great! And the issue of the hub levels is something i got into more as the game went on, and as i got my head around what the developers were trying to do. I think the idea is a good one, but needs a bit more thought and development.
But the biggest fault is the length of the levels, and i wouldn't buy this game at full price - it feels like a bolt on to the original game, rather than a game in it's own right.
There is the next Lego game out in 2010 based on the Harry Potter books, and i hope that game will improve on this one in a more substantial way. Normally, i would immediately go out and buy a Lego game, but this time i will be less confident of what i am getting and that is such a shame as i really loved all the previous games: particularly the Batman game. Comparing that game with this one, definitely shows a slip in quality.
It isn't a dreadful game by any means, but is not a patch on the other entries in the series, and unlike the other games, i was glad to finish this and move on to another game.
Who would i recommend this to? Well, anyone who loved the other games, will like this, and obviously it is good for a younger audience (the endless traipsing through the hubs to find a character may put them off ) but if you are a newcomer - don't buy this! Start with the Batman or Star Wars Lego games.
I was disappointed with this game, and it is merely average compared to the other games. I would try and rent this before buying if you haven't played a Lego game before.