This charming adventure has its pitfalls, but it's still a lot of fun.
- Lots of unlockables
- Some very clever puzzles
- Cutscenes are funny
- Co-op makes the game even better.
- Environments lack variety
- Most puzzles are too easy
- Repetitive combat.
Now that Traveller's Tales has conquered a galaxy far, far away, it has its sights set on giving a Lego makeover to a more terrestrial franchise. Lego Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures lets you reenact the key scenes from the first three Indiana Jones movies with a blocky twist that only Lego can provide. The idea of children's building toys pasted atop action-packed adventures may seem strange--and seeing a Lego monkey is rather unnerving--but the enduring charm of the movies is the perfect foundation for some small-scale archaeology. The surprise is that, even without a nostalgia-powered handcuff fastening you to these stories, the whip-cracking action and humorous cutscenes should be enough to draw even the Indy ignorant into the experience.
The Nintendo DS version is completely different from the other six versions of the game. Though puzzle-solving still plays a large part of the adventure, combat and platforming are emphasized more strongly here than in the console counterparts. Enemies can no longer be disposed of with one punch; you'll have to land three or four blows before they'll burst into Lego parts. Your repertoire is still limited to a handful of moves, but the more persistent enemies swing the focus squarely to the action side. Also tossed in are a few dual-screen vehicle missions. They aren't the most exciting diversions (they're glorified bolt-collecting minigames), but they do add a little variety when your miniature knuckles get sore from constantly beating on foes. The puzzles are integrated well within levels, and though they tend to be fairly easy, a few doozies have been mixed in to keep you on your toes.
Although you're given a few tools to help you on your quest, none play a larger part than Indy's whip. If you're ever stuck, there's a good chance that you'll be able to use it as a way to climb to a higher ledge, or to knock down statues to form a temporary bridge. During certain portions of the game, when it seems as if every solution has been attempted and failed, the whip serves as the heroic key to advancement. For example, did you know that by swinging your trusty weapon you can move a jeep stuck in the middle of a road? It's ridiculous that so many puzzles boil down to your rather adept leather friend, but the sheer variety of uses has to be admired.
The smooth integration of action and puzzles is the shining point of Lego Indy, but the game is also quite funny at times. The silent cutscenes take you through the journey in a much sillier manner than Steven Spielberg originally envisioned. The same cutscenes from the console versions are present here, albeit in slightly condensed form. For instance, a scene in which Belloq confronts Indy is chopped off before he can walk around like a stiff-legged robot, mocking C-3PO. However, the majority of the scenes remain intact. Outside of the cutscenes, the humorous aspects aren't as plentiful as they were in the console versions. The silly touches that previously littered levels have seemingly been lost in translation.
Like the Lego Star Wars games before it, the levels in Indiana Jones are jam-packed with hidden goodies that require multiple play-throughs to unlock. Unfortunately, given that the puzzles are generally easy, it's not too exciting to play levels over again simply to unlock secrets. And though the muddy graphics do a respectable job of replicating the simple Lego aesthetic, the environments are a little too repetitive. You're generally treated to either a light brown (outdoor) or dark brown (indoor) background, which can numb the mind after a while.
There is one excruciating obstacle that will throw a wrench into your enjoyment: Your obstinate AI companion will ultimately do more harm than good. There are sections in which the AI simply doesn't follow you at all. You have to be right next to one another to switch characters, and consequently these sections can become very annoying because the switches have to be done to progress through the level. The option to play cooperatively with a friend offers some respite from the embarrassing AI, but the experience is marred by the baffling manner in which it is integrated. Instead of having co-op as a readily accessible mode in the menu, you'll have to search through rooms in the museum-hub world just to find the option to initiate friendly play. As long as you can find the option and own two copies of the game, playing cooperatively removes most of the frustrations from the single-player adventure.
Lego Indiana Jones serves as the expected progression from the Lego Star Wars games. The action-focused journey mixed with a sprinkling of puzzles makes this a fun Lego game that you can take on the road.
- Player Reviews: 20
- Game Universe:
- LEGO Rock Raiders (PC, PS),
- LEGO Stunt Rally (GBC, PS, PC),
- LEGO Racers (PC, N64, PS, GBC),
- LEGO Racers 2 (PC, PS2, GBA),
- Drome Racers (PS2, PC, GBA, GC, XBOX),
- LEGO Soccer Mania (PS2, GBA, PC),
- Bionicle (PC, PS2, XBOX, GC, MAC),
- LEGO Star Wars (PS2, XBOX, PC, GBA, GC, MAC),
- Island Xtreme Stunts (PS2, GBA),
- LEGO Island 2: The Brickster's Revenge (GBA, GBC, PS, PC)
- Offline Modes:
- Number of Players: