Reviewed by Dr. Mabuse
The majority of video games made after movies suck. They
are designed not to introduce anything that wasn't seen in
the movie, so that you're supposed to get the feeling you're
playing the movie itself. That's why I was surprised when I
played Jurassic Park. It has almost nothing to do with the movie.
Jurassic Park is an overhead view game where you run around
and fry dinosaurs. It also has a number of first-person scenes
similar to early first-person games like Wolfenstein. The game
has multiple objectives: first you have to restore power, then
you can travel over most of the island. You have to find security
cards in order to get computer clearance, you have to exterminate
a raptor nest, and you have to collect eggs all over the island.
It has the feel of the book more than the movie, and it gives you
a better understanding of both. That, and it's got some freaky dinosaurs.
Graphics 8 out of 10
The graphics were pretty good. For most of the game you are
looking down on your player character from above. Games like
this don't require a huge load of graphics to be effective, as has
been proven by games such as Zelda. Still, Jurassic Park does have
a lot to offer. The layout of the island is fun to explore, and is logical
in its construction. It actually feels like you're walking around the
real island, and not just a video game interpretation of it.
The dinosaurs themselves are impressive. The programmers
combine animation, sound effects, and surprise to give you a
scare. If you have the misfortune of running into a tyrannosaur,
it will get your heart pounding.
When you're inside the buildings and have the first person view,
the graphics quality is significantly reduced in exchange for a 3-d
landscape. The dinosaurs look a bit less real, but the effects are
still impressive. Darkness is used effectively, and there are certain
places where you need to wear night vision goggles, or you'll find
yourself in pitch blackness.
Also, if you leave the game paused long enough, weird things
start to happen.
Music and Sound 9 out of 10
The music is very eerie. It contributes to the mood of the game
very well, and makes you keep a wary eye open at all times. The
sound effects are good. Each dinosaur has its own sound effect,
as does each weapon you use. And when the tyrannosaurus attacks,
you can hear the rumble of its footsteps before it appears and
scoops you up.
Game Challenge 8 out of 10
This game does not have a save function, which it desperately needs.
Overall, it is a hard game because you have to go through all these
ordeals before you can escape. The psychological factor takes its
toll, and sometimes this game is a little too much on the nerves,
where it would otherwise be a fairly easy game.
Game Play-Fun 7 out of 10
To be honest, this game could be a little more fun. Some parts
are a little tedious, and sometimes it's a little difficult to figure
out what you're supposed to do. But as I said, it's one of the most
psychologically challenging games I've seen, and it ranks up there
with the NES game Faxanadu for freakiness.
It is a one-player game, but sometimes it can be fun to watch.
I was only frustrated with certain parts, where it's hard to figure
out how you're supposed to do something. Sometimes computer
consoles are too well camouflaged, other times you can't figure
out how to get security clearance, and in the raptor cave, it's
hard to figure out how to set the bomb.
Replayability 6 out of 10
This is the kind of game that, once you pass it, there's really
no need to play it again. You can just put a notch on your belt
and go on to the next one.
Game Value 7 out of 10
I guess I've seen some pretty good deals on Super Nintendo
games, but it's tough to say how much is a fair price for
something that isn't considered vintage, or fashionably out of date.
Dinosaurs 10 out of 10
The dinosaurs are graphically and behaviorally interesting.
Some behave much like real life. Hypsilophodons hang out in
open areas, and if you get too close, they start a stampede,
creating the best shooting gallery you can find outside of Duck
Hunt. Pachycephalosaurs charge at you when you get too close,
and velociraptors jump out of the undergrowth, and if you don't
shoot them with something heavy, you're ground beef. The game
affects you in a very psychological way, particularly with the
tyrannosaurs. If you're not prepared, you may get a shock when
the ground starts shaking, and then a T-Rex bursts out of no where
and eats you. There are actually only two places where the T-Rex
will attack, and if you are careful not to go down these two paths,
you'll never have to worry. But if you don't know that, you'll walk
through the entire game in fear that it's going to come and eat you.
Overall 7 out of 10
Is it just me, or was Jurassic Park a really terrifying movie? I went
to see it in the movie theaters, and yes, I was alone, but even when
I watch it now it gives me the creeps. The video game has the same
effect, surprisingly. It gives you a story to follow, and it has
monsters that do a little more for me than the Blargs in Super
Mario World. The only reason I don't give this game a higher
rating is because it can get so intense you just have to turn it
off. And because I hate what the success of Jurassic Park did
to Michael Crichton.