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The Grinch

Score: 45%
ESRB: Everyone
Publisher: Konami
Developer: Universal Studios
Media: CD/1
Players: 1
Genre: Adventure

Graphics & Sound:

Okay, it’s The Grinch, as in The Grinch Who Stole Christmas. What should you expect for graphics? Cartoony, bright colors, goofy dialog, and simple looks. Well, you won’t be disappointed because that’s exactly what you get. The GL rendered graphics are ‘cartoon-like’ with boxy characters, bright ‘happy’ and ‘dull’ colors, and simple, simple texturing and rendering. Normally, I might complain over graphics such as this, but this is no TOP 10 adventure game for mature audiences only. The Grinch is a game that anyone can play, and is coded accordingly. If you are expecting groundbreaking graphics, you’ll be disappointed. What you do get is good graphics with only a few clipping issues and a few ‘white screen’ flashes. Most of the problems have to do with OpenGL and can be easily fixed by simply playing in software mode. All in all, I would have to say that the graphics are good. Really, they are not as simple as you might think; the graphics are actually the best thing about the game. Of course, I have to give big props on the sound as well. The fact alone that Jim Carrey is nowhere to be found in the dialog is worth a perfect 10 in the sound department. Honestly though, I did like the dialog, voice-overs, and sound effects. They really fit and complimented the game.


At first thought, if there is any game fitting to me, it’s The Grinch. Many, many times I have been called a ‘grinch.’ Of course, it’s the perfect game for a person with a heart the size of a pea and as hard as a rock. Hey, maybe the game will even cause my heart to grow in size. After all, who can resist the Who’s? Unfortunately, all of these ideas faded away as I played the game. I hate to be hard on this, but the game was just no fun for me. It’s not Konami’s fault; the game just has all the elements that I don’t like in games. The game is simple, short, and just no fun. The controls are bad, the camera angles take a lot of getting used to, and the appeal is nonexistent.

Basically, you play as the Grinch (and his dog). Christmas is on the way. The Grinch has lots of gadgets he can use to ruin the festive holiday for the Who’s. Unfortunately, all of the plans for the gadgets have been scattered all throughout Whoville. You get to find the plans, put them together, and create the gadgets. The Grinch offers four levels of 3D adventure. You have set objectives for each level.

The game consist of sitting on Christmas presents, running away from kids, and finding the scattered pieces of paper. Once you complete a gadget, you can use it, which does offer some excitement. Not enough – the game is still no fun. The only functions that you really have are move, jump, ‘pancake’ (sit on stuff), bad breath, and using gadgets. Later on, you can use costumes and stuff, but in all, there’s not a lot to it. You lose the game when your ‘annoy’ meter fills up. I can respect that; who wouldn’t get annoyed to death by the Who’s and the ever rhyming narrator?

The game has a ‘Tomb Raider’ style control. There is also a revolving camera. These two items in conjunction make the game very difficult to control. Using a joystick helps, but it still takes some getting used to. The game is reminescent of a 2D platform in 3D. It’s kinda like the old Toejam and Earl game, minus the fun.


To be quite candid, the game is too simple. I mean it plays simple, it is not very involved, and it is easy to beat. There are only four levels, and there’s not a tremendous amount to what is there. However, it is plainly obvious that the The Grinch is designed for a younger or newbie audience, so the difficulty might just fit the game style – a style that is not for me. A seasoned adventurer would beat the game in no time, if he actually played through it.

Game Mechanics:

I hated the The Grinch’s mechanics. The control style and camera views, combined with third person action just fought against me. Also, there just wasn’t a lot to the game. On the up side, the game ran great. It was smooth, fast, and right to the point. That’s about the only up side. Limited offense, almost no defense, and diminutive gameplay doesn’t really give you much adventure. I guess the game is just too simple for me. There just wasn’t enough of a valid ‘point’ to it. Will everyone hate The Grinch? Absolutely not. The Grinch is a great game for the young and the newbies to computer games. It just turns out that The Grinch didn’t do it for me.

-Storm, GameVortex Communications
AKA Jeremy Kelso

Minimum System Requirements:

Hardware – Processor: 233, RAM: 32 MB, Video: 8 MB video card, CD-ROM: 8X, OS: Win 9X
Software - Processor: 500, RAM: 64 MB, CD-ROM: 8X, OS: Win 9X

Test System:

Pentium III 600 MHz, 64 MB RAM, 8X DVD ROM, 8 MB Rage Mobility Pro video card, ESS Allegro sound / JBL Pro, Windows Millenium

Windows 767 Pilot in Command GameBoy Color/Pocket Road Champs: BXS Stunt Biking

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