Journey to the Center of the Earth Review


Journey to the Center of the Earth is the kind of game that is responsible for giving movie-based games such a bad reputation.  Granted the source material is far from being Oscar-caliber material, but the movie itself is basically one videogame style sequence after another so you'd think that it wouldn't be too hard to make a decent game out of the film.  However, the game can only manage to deliver a collection of mediocre mini games tied together by just plain poor platforming sequences.

Even if the mini games were a lot of fun, most people would give up on the game before playing them at all.  That's because the platforming sequences are so lame and frustrating that most gamers will give up on the game pretty early on.  I'm not sure why platform jumping became pretty much the de facto standard for movie-licensed games because very few movies feature characters that spend the majority of the film jumping over one gap after another.  Whatever the reason, you spend a lot of time jumping over bottomless pits in Journey to the Center of the Earth.  All of this jumping is made more difficult than it should be by the game's attempt to force a pseudo 3D environment onto its platform levels.  It's often very hard to discern areas on the path that require shimmying or wall-hugging, or when you must turn a corner to avoid running off of a ledge.  Control is a little shoddy and in the underwater swimming sequences it's just plain frustrating.  There are also occasional obstacles that can only be passed by switching to the correct character.  X can blow up boulder obstructions, Y can swing a grappling hook across a gap, and Z can free climb up walls, among other things.  The game tells you exactly when you need to us a character's particular talents, and selecting the required character and then pressing X will launch you into some invariably lame mini game that must be played to get you passed the obstacle.  There are other mini game sequences sprinkle throughout the game but none of them are really compelling or enjoyable.  Sliding down a slope, riding in a mine car, and using the stylus to mine cave walls for fossils and minerals are some of the exercises you can look forward to in the game.

Journey to the Center of the Earth is long on frustration and short on fun.  Not even the film's most diehard fans should torture themselves with this one.

In The End, This Game Hath Been Rated: 30%. This game is on a journey to the center of the bargain bin.