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Jimmy Neutron Boy Genius

Score: 70%
ESRB: Everyone
Publisher: THQ
Developer: EA Games
Media: CD/1
Players: 1
Genre: Adventure

Graphics & Sound:

One could hardly be pleased with the graphics in Jimmy Neutron. Blocky, grainy, and twitchy, the visual experience is downright appalling. It's not the fact that the game tries to come off as cartoony, which it does, and that's alright, but the actual quality of everything could use a lot of work. The game hardly tries to harness the power of any computer, and ends up looking more or less like an outdated PS One title.

As the game is based on a popular kids' movie, one can come to expect child-like music and sound effects. Again, this title is geared towards a younger audience (or anyone who might have liked the movie), and there is nothing wrong with that. But I'd be pretty upset if I was a kid. Less than stunning effects and bland music only help to slowly kill this game, forcing the player to listen to its ghastly death throes. Even for kids, this game has bad voice acting (I used to be a kid once, you know).


Jimmy Neutron isn't the most in depth of gaming experiences. You play Jimmy, the boy genius, who has to assemble a science fair project that will blow everything else out of the water. The only problem is that these pesky aliens show up and put a wrinkle in your plans. Your job is to finish the project and get rid of those aliens, solving little (very little) side quests along the way. Even with the help of some of Jimmy's crafty inventions and his pet robotic dog, the fun will inevitably slip away from this game like the life from a dying patient.

The story line is very linear, giving you a lot of small objectives to complete in quick succession. They usually run along the lines of 'get item A, bring it to location B'. More complicated ones include scooter races, navigating around little crevices, and even a little tactical espionage on alien ships. Nothing too complicated, but nothing too fun either. They played it safe.

Completing objectives and collecting items gives you points, which really is the ultimate goal of the game. Just about everything you do gives you points, and this is where those extra side quests come in. Almost every item you collect can be used to do something to gain points. Don't expect anything too in depth here, as most of the tasks are extremely simple, like putting flowers in a vase, or feeding your robotic dog. Occasionally you'll have to employ the use of some inventions, but nothing too mind boggling.


Jimmy Neutron is not a game you'll see on the wall of a Doom fan. It is simplistic in nature, thus appealing to the younger crowd. It is so simple, in fact, that a retarded child could master it in little under a day. No difficulty settings, no tumor-causing puzzles, this game is intrinsically easy, and many older people (or anyone who has come up against even the slightest challenge) will be turned off by this.

Game Mechanics:

At the heart of a lot of games is the control system. Some do it right, and some fail miserably. This is a case of the latter. By using the arrow keys and mouse, you run little Jimmy around the world in third person. Unable to remap the keys, you're forced to use this horrid and uncomfortable configuration, which could lead some to carpal tunnel syndrome. Thankfully, the physics aren't as flawed as everything else in the game. Very few glitches are present, which leaves your attention open for other more important things, like putting up with Jimmy's friends (uugggghhhhh.....)

Surprisingly, Jimmy Neutron held my attention for longer than I expected. Maybe it was a case of not wanting to be bested by this incredibly underdeveloped game, or maybe it was all those bright colors. Either way, in the end, I couldn't help but be disappointed. Maybe a good game for your kid brother, but definitely not one that will have you up all night.

-Snow Chainz, GameVortex Communications
AKA Andrew Horwitz

Minimum System Requirements:

Pentium II 300 MHz, Windows 95/98, 64 MB RAM, video card with 8 MB RAM, sound card, 8X CD-ROM

Test System:

Windows 98, 1.4GHz AMD Athlon, GeForce 2 mx 32MB video card, 40 gig hard drive, 56x CD-ROM, 256MB DDR Ram, Sound Blaster Live! sound card, T1 Internet connection

Windows Jazz and Faust Windows Joan of Arc

Game Vortex :: PSIllustrated