Universal Studios Theme Parks Adventure User Review
- Very Easy
- Learning Curve:
- 0 to 30 Minutes
- Time Spent:
- 10 Hours or Less
- The Bottom Line:
- "Waste of time"
In the very very early days of 6th Generation gaming, even before Super Smash Bros. Melee was released, the Nintendo Gamecube had a lackluster list of games available. At the age of 9, in an attempt to build up on my library of Gamecube games, I took a trip to the ol' Wal-Mart to see what game I was gonna get next. Finally, I decided on one that I thought was going to be...okay: Universal Studios Theme Park Adventure. I had never actually been to Universal Studios Theme Park before, but I had heard a lot about it and thought the game would be fun, like actually going through the park itself. Well, it turns out that the entire game is a giant maze through Universal Studios Theme Park, as expected. However, the things you have to do in the game are so ridiculous that I lost liking in the game more and more as I continued. By the time the unbelievably boring ending came, I took the game out of the console in complete disbelief, placed it in its case and left it there to collect dust. I have not played it since.
Universal Studios Theme Park Adventure is an incredibly stupid game that should not be purchased at all, for your benefit. The game overview is also simple: first choose a difficulty level, then choose one of 6 happy-go-lucky kid tourists with relatively similar features and move them around the people-infested park of Universal Studios. Universal's oldest cartoon creation, Woody Woodpecker, is your guide throughout the game. However, he only shows up at the entrance to the park and in various attractions in the park (more on that later). Plus, he has THE most annoying voice I have ever heard in my life.
In the beginning of the game, Woody Woodpecker hands you a stamp card which can be shown on the Start Menu. Your objective in the game is to fill your entire stamp card with stamps and then attend the magic show in the park and that's it. Yep. Well, now, how do you get stamps then? Stamps are put on your stamp card by completing each of the 6 "attractions" found around the park that are based on various Universal movies, by completing a quiz also based on movies and collecting all of the "golden letters" found in various places around the park. The letters spell "UNIVERSAL STUDIOS", as figured.
The 6 attractions found in the park are Jaws, Back to the Future, Jurassic Park, The Wild, Wild West, Backdraft and E.T: The Extra-Terrestrial. In each attraction, you must do a very simple, boring task to complete the attraction and get a stamp. Depending on how well you completed the attraction or how fast you did it, you are awarded a red stamp or a blue stamp, which have no meaning in themselves. You can't even get red stamps in Easy Mode. At first, all attraction lines are nonexistent, allowing you to enter any attraction you want and get a stamp. After that, though, all attractions will be flooded with tourists and there will be no way for you to enter. How then, do you complete the game?
You must now begin your tedious quest to collect points to trade in with Woody Woodpecker for different hats, which you can wear at any time, either for fashion or to enter a specific attraction at any time (i.e. the cowboy hat gets you into the Wild Wild West game). How do you collect points, though? There are various ways to do this, like shaking hands with people in costumes (!?), collecting the golden letters, completing the quiz, and picking up pieces of garbage all over the park and disposing of them in trash cans (10 points per piece).
Once all hats are collected and all stamps are collected, you must now go to the Magic Show area, where Woody Woodpecker will greet you. As a reward for completing the game, you get to sit and a minute-long cheesy fireworks show that has nothing to do with magic at all. Congratulations!! You just wasted 3 hours of your life!!! There isn't much replay value, if any at all. Now you can play your "favorite" attractions over and over and over and over and over and over again. Or, if you're feeling superbly masochistic, you can take a friend through some of these miserable games. And that's it.
As you can see, the gameplay of this...thing is completely dead and buried and there is no chance of resurrection. Who would want to run around a giant park doing much of nothing? It's like taking a walk to the mall and forgetting why you're taking a walk to the mall. Actually, there are supposed to be 7 attractions, but I said 6 because the 7th isn't even worth going to except to collect the points (one time only). This attraction features the movie "Waterworld" and you get to sit in five different places and watch the plane crash scene. I've never seen so much fun in my life!
The graphics are also pretty bad considered what the Gamecube can do today. Blocky, featureless characters are placed in a drawn version of the park in which you can't escape. The tourists themselves aren't even recognized, as their faces are mostly not shown. Plus, many characters are shown far away, so it is hard to distinguish people in some scenes. Also, since the place is so crowded, it makes it near impossible to find the puny golden letters inside the park. Many times, you'll mistake pieces of garbage for letters and become very frustrated at the game. However, the areas for some attractions are quite detailed and realistic, saving it short.
The sound in this game isn't good, but it is the game's redeeming quality compared to everything else. Some tracks tend to loop a little too often and aren't memorable at all, but some attraction music is played very well and matches the movie's music identically. Other than that, the annoying "Bling!" heard every time you collect something starts to hurt your ears after a while and there is lots of garbage to collect out there (no pun intended) which means you'll be hearing the noise more than often.
Other than replaying the attractions or taking the quiz again, or doing an irrelevant slider and memory match puzzle, there is absolutely no replay value found on this game. Start the main mission, go through it for three hours and then forget about it for the rest of your life, because that's the best way to handle this piece of junk. Or, if you're the creative type, you can find some other use for this game. You could:
Use it as a Frisbee!
Make a pizza-cutter out of it!
Make a nifty ceiling decoration!
Create booby traps out of it!
Or, torture your little brother for stealing all the cookies!
Universal Studios Theme Park Adventure today is something that can be fuond stacked on shelves of old games at E.B. or can be found in the middle of the bargain bin, if not at the bottom. Personally, production of this game was a waste of cellophane and brainpower. I can't imagine who would bother enjoying this game. I now regret ever owning this abomination. Stay away from at all costs.
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