Review: Indiana Jones and the Lost Puzzles (iPhone)
If you’re still fuming with anger over the most recent Indiana Jones film, then you might have missed Indiana Jones and the Lost Puzzles (THQ Wireless Inc.) for the iPhone. But, If you’re ready for more adventuring with “the man in the hat,” and are partial to puzzle games, then you might just be interested in picking up this game.
Indiana Jones and Lost Puzzles comes offers players three gameplay modes: Classic Puzzle, Advanced Puzzle and Ruins of Adventure.
Classic puzzle mode has the ophidiophobic (what? I looked it up) Doctor Jones jumping and swinging across a tile-laden platform, chaining together same-color tiles while avoiding spikes, disappearing tiles, and, of course, the occasional snake. Levels are cleared by eliminating a certain amount of tiles before time runs out. As the levels progress, players will find themselves on bigger tile platforms.
The game rewards long tile chains with treasures that Indiana Jones fans will immediately recognize. The Ark of the Covenant, the Holy Grail, and the Stones of Sankara all make an appearance as treasures that add precious time to the perpetually diminishing clock.
In Advanced Puzzle mode the level goals change on a per-level basis. Players must complete goals such as assembling a tile chain of a certain length, avoiding certain tiles, or utilizing a specially numbered tile at a certain spot on the chain--just to name a few.
Ruins of Adventure challenges the player to earn jewels by completing goals. Players must choose between two jewels and their respective goals. Earned Jewels are used to fill out a tablet. Once the tablet is full the game ends, and the jewels are translated into points.
Controlling Indiana Jones couldn’t be simpler. If a tile can be landed on, then it will light up and become animated. The controls work pretty well, but tapping sometimes fails to register-- especially when the tile you’re trying to get to is behind Indy. Overall, the addition of an optional swipe-based control system would have helped.
The 2D graphics in Indiana Jones and the Lost Puzzles are a bit lackluster. While playing the game, I had the distinct feeling that this game was most likely a port from an older mobile platform. While the use 2D graphics in a puzzle isn’t surprising, Indiana Jones and Lost Puzzle lacks the graphical punch of other puzzles one might find in Apple’s App Store. Admittedly, the game doesn’t pretend to push the iPhone’s graphical capacity, but it definitely stands out as an older-looking game.
The Indy character model looks like Indy, but the animation is very choppy and unpolished. Also, the iPhone’s ample screen is misused, leaving a third of the display unused.
What would any Indiana Jones game be without that distinctive theme from composer John Williams? Thankfully, the theme is present at the start screen and mode selection menu--but that’s it. Sure the theme’s hook makes a brief auditory appearance when the player creates a chain, but the in-game music that plays during gameplay doesn’t sound anything like that iconic theme we all know and love. Instead, the player is given an unmemorable MIDI track that fails to convey the Indiana Jones sense of adventure.
The game is pretty stable and did not crash. Load times are minimal and did not significantly interfere with gameplay.
Indiana Jones and the Lost Puzzles is an entertaining game that most puzzle fans will enjoy. The Indiana Jones franchise translates well into a puzzle game in which booby-trapped tiles and treasure collecting is featured. In fact, combining the Indiana Jones movie franchise with a puzzle game is a blatantly good idea that was just waiting to happen.
At the time of this writing, Indiana Jones and the Lost Puzzles is available for 99 cents on the iTunes store.
Recommend Buy Price: 99 cents
Current MSRP: 99 cents
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