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Indiana Jack

Score: 80%
ESRB: Everyone
Publisher: Strategy First/Encore
Developer: Big City Games
Media: CD/1
Players: 1
Genre: Adventure

Graphics & Sound:

Graphically, Indiana Jack is a solid title. Each of the game's 12 levels look great and are very reminiscent of your typical Saturday morning cartoon. The foreground objects are big and colorful, and carry with them their own little particular style. Although it may look rather simple to most hardcore PC graphic fanatics, the simple look definitely works for the game. I particularly liked that instead of doing the typical thing and fogging out backgrounds/skyline, the designers added in a flat skyline that just looks fun. Big towering mountains, one windowed houses - like I said, it looks like a cartoon. The character designs are just as fun, and nicely animated. The more I played the game, the only negative I could find was that the characters were a little too angular and resembled something out of the five years ago then today.

The sound package is passable. Most of the sound effects are made up of simple squeaks and other animal noises, but work with the game's 'fun' nature. The music, on the other hand, comes off as cheesy and doesn't work.


Indiana Jack is your typical adventure game in the spirit of games like Spyro and Crash Bandicoot. You run around levels, bonking enemies, and collecting power-ups. Really, nothing new here. According to the back of the box, Indiana Jack is the tale of the 'bravest little monkey in the world'. After the ancient Evil Force casts a spell over all the animals on the planet that causes them to turn 'wild and dangerous', Jack must traverse 12 levels in search of the 10 artifacts to reverse the evil spell. Unlike most games in this genre, Jack must rely mostly on his wits rather than a supreme arsenal of weapons. As you can probably guess, the game is pretty non-violent as far as most adventure games go since Jack's primary weapons (his fists and bananas) merely stun enemies rather then kill them. Not that this is a bad thing since the game is still fun.


Since I'm not the game's target age range, I found Indiana Jack a tad too simple. However, using my best judgment, I would probably venture to say that the game would be a fun challenge for any kid. The only major gripe I found was that the game was a little too straightforward and doesn't allow for much exploration. There is only one path through every area, and doesn't seem like it would be much of a challenge to anyone. While I see the thinking that went into making the game this simple, it's also something of a pet peeve of mine since I would like to see a little more challenge and creative puzzle solving added to kid's games. Kids want to be treated as 'bigger', so why not challenge them that way? I'm not saying to make the games impossible, but you'd be surprised how much more kids will play a game if it's like one they see their older sibling playing.

Game Mechanics:

Although fun, the game does have its share of flaws. The game has an annoying tendency to lock up, especially during the game-loading screen. There were also a few instances where I had to hit a key to get the game running again after locking up. Another problem with Indiana Jack is that there is no control reference in the manual. There is the option to customize the controls, but it's still a hassle. In the end, Indiana Jack isn't the most original title and it doesn't quite have the challenge level I would like to see, but the game is still fun. Parents looking for a game for their younger kids, but don't wish to subject their kids to much of the violence or other 'features' of most current games couldn't go wrong with Indiana Jack. The game is fun, and makes for a good way to keep the kids out of your hair for a little while.

-Starscream, GameVortex Communications
AKA Ricky Tucker

Minimum System Requirements:

Windows 98/ME/2000/XP, 420MB Hard Drive Space, 100 percent Compatible Open GL Video Card w/ 16MB Video RAM, Soundcard, Mouse and Keyboard, Direct X 7.0, CD-ROM

Test System:

Windows XP, 128 MB RAM, Intel Pentium 4 1.8 GHz Processor, Integrated Intel 3D AGP Graphics Card, 40 Gig HDD, 16x DVD Rom

Nintendo GameCube Yu-Gi-Oh: Falsebound Kingdom Windows Jack the Ripper

Game Vortex :: PSIllustrated