Jurassic Park: The Game 1 HD


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News

Tuesday Twitter Giveaway: Win the Entire Jurassic Park Series for iPad 2 and 3

Today we have a giveaway 65 million years in the making… although really, it’s just been a few months since the Jurassic Park series came out on iPad 2 and 3. Since only high-end iPads will run the game, we will have more iPhone game codes for you to redeem on our Facebook page today as well. Read on to learn how to win the complete Jurassic Park series on iPad!

Win Jurassic Park, and learn how genetic engineering can go terribly wrong.

This week, two lucky winners will receive all four episodes of Jurassic Park: The Game, while one runner-up will receive just the first episode. The game only runs on iPad 2 and 3, so don’t enter if you don’t have one of those devices. Instead, visit our Facebook page for some free iPhone game codes.

To win the JP games, first follow us on Twitter. Then, tweet a response to this question:

What’s your favorite moment in any Jurassic Park movie, novel, or game?

Make sure you include @slidetoplay and the URL http://bit.ly/KUyEA2 in your response. Limit your responses to one per person. You must be following us on Twitter to win.

We’ll pick two winners at random this week to win the full set of games, and one runner-up to receive just the first episode. A sample tweet looks like this:

My favorite moment is the line “Dinosaurs eat man, women inherits the Earth.” @slidetoplay http://bit.ly/KUyEA2

Remember, you have to provide your own response– don’t just copy the sample. Good luck!

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Reviews

Jurassic Park: The Game 1 HD iPad 2 Review

Jurassic Park, both the 1990 book and 1993 film, is about the overreach of science, and man’s misguided attempt to resurrect long-extinct creatures. We’re not going to say that Telltale’s first episode in a new Jurassic Park adventure series is an abomination against nature, but it does bring back to life a gameplay mechanic– quick-time events– that are about as old and dead as the dinosaurs themselves.

First of all, Jurassic Park: The Game 1 HD only runs on the iPad 2; it won’t run on the first-generation iPad or any iPhone or iPod Touch. Even with the top-line hardware requirement, Jurassic Park still has a crop of audio glitches and stutters, which we’ve seen frequently in other Telltale games like Back To The Future. Restarting your iPad 2 or closing other apps doesn’t completely solve the problem, either.

Are those heavy? Then they’re expensive, put them back.

These glitches are especially painful because they get in the way of a highly cinematic storyline. The plot of Jurassic Park: The Game runs concurrent to the events of the first movie. None of the characters from the movie are depicted in this episode, except for Dennis Nedry’s bloated, venom-soaked corpse in the front of a Jeep. Instead, the game introduces a new cast: a pair of corporate saboteurs working to recover Nedry’s missing Barbasol canister, and a kind-but-distant park ranger whose teenage daughter has unwisely joined him on Isla Nublar.

You’ll switch between two groups– the saboteurs and the park ranger– at various points in the story, but even though the game’s plot is intriguing, the gameplay you’re presented with is not. Most of Jurassic Park: The Game 1 consists of quick-time events, those annoyingly urgent prompts that tell you to swipe, press, or scribble on the screen to continue a cutscene. Nearly everything, from opening doors to running from dinosaurs, requires a timed button press or swipe, rendering all these actions meaningless. By the end of the game, you won’t know if you’re swiping to cause a particular action, or just to avoid dying.

Nuh uh uh, you should have said the magic word.

The death sequences in Jurassic Park: The Game represent an interesting departure for Telltale, whose main protagonists almost never face death. However, the delight of seeing dinosaurs eat the main characters is quickly diminished when you’re forced to repeat the quick-time events that immediately preceded it. We like that the main characters face actual danger on Isla Nublar, but any direct control the player has over their fate has been wrested away by the weak gameplay.

Fortunately, it’s not all quick-time events. There are a few standout investigative scenes where you have to solve puzzles by searching the environment. Our favorite takes place on the mud-soaked hill where Nedry got his car stuck and met his fate. This alternate view of a famous movie scene is a nice reward for JP fans, even if the scene itself is easily solved by tapping on highlighted prompts.

We’ve found Nedry’s missing magnifying glass.

Based on the first episode, we’re not too excited for the rest of Telltale’s Jurassic Park series. Instead of designing a movie-based game with highly interactive characters, like in Gameloft’s upcoming Tintin game, Telltale took the opposite approach and made most of Jurassic Park: The Game an extended cutscene. While the animation, direction, and sound design are all top-notch, Jurassic Park sacrifices the interaction that separates games from movies. The balancing act of Telltale’s Back To The Future series, which combined classic characters and traditional adventure game design, is nowhere to be found.

If you’re eager to continue the story of Isla Nublar, Telltale’s new characters and scenarios shed some new light on the movie’s most famous scenes, with hopefully more to come. But as a game, this episode is a failure, with dull, reflexive activity required to keep the storyline moving. Like the scientists at Jurassic Park, the gamesmiths at Telltale were so preoccupied with whether they could that they didn’t stop to think if they should.

News

Two Telltale Employees Accused of Abusing User Reviews

Upon seeing several suspiciously positive user reviews on Metacritic.com for the Xbox 360 version of Jurassic Park: The Game yesterday, Gamespot did some Googling. They discovered that at least two of the user reviews were written and posted by employees of Telltale Games, the company that developed the title.

The game also came out for the iPad 2 a couple of days ago, and because iTunes has its own user reviews, we cross referenced them with the suspicious Metacritic ones. Sure enough, we found that one of the suspected Telltale employees also posted a glowing five-star review in iTunes.

The Metacritic user review, written under the handle KillerIri5h, can be found here. On iTunes, KILLERIRI5H posted the following:

We’ve reached out to Telltale for comment but haven’t gotten a reply yet. However, GameSpot spoke with a representative from the company and received the following statement:

Telltale Games do not censor or muzzle its employees in what they post on the internet. However, it is being communicated internally that anyone who posts in an industry forum will acknowledge that they are a Telltale employee. In this instance, two people who were proud of the game they worked on, posted positively on Metacritic under recognizable online forum and XBLA account names.

It doesn’t take an ethicist to realize that representing yourself as a regular customer when you’re employed by the company that made the game is disingenuous and wrong. But because posting user reviews is so easy to do on the App Store, Metacritc, and similar platforms, we’re sure this is far from the only instance of this happening.

Our proposed solution? Turn to the pros. All professional game review websites worth their salt actively try to maintain a critical distance from the games they review. Click here to see how seriously we take this mission. We haven’t reviewed Jurassic Park: The Game for iPad yet, but several other sites have found it to be buggy and mediocre.

What do you think? Is this an egregious breach of trust, or just a couple of employees who are proud of their work, trying to rally support in a public forum?

[Via GameSpot]

News

Jurassic Park: The Game 1 HD Released for iPad 2

Telltale Games, the makers of the Back to the Future and Hector series of games, have just released an adventure game based on Jurassic Park. There’s a big “but” coming, however. Don’t bother downloading the game unless you have an iPad 2, as that’s the only device it will run on. But if you’re a fan of Crichton’s classic and you have the proper technology, you can buy the game here for $6.99.

The game is set during the events of the first movie, but it stars characters that we either don’t see onscreen in the film, or are only shown briefly. Like most of Telltale’s titles on iPad, the story in Jurassic Park will be told in episodes, so prepare to buy more of these apps in the future if you enjoy the story and gameplay.

If you recall from our preview article earlier this year, Telltale has a number of other adventure franchises in the works, including King’s Quest, Fables, and The Walking Dead. We’ll have a full review of Jurassic Park: The Game 1 HD as soon as possible.