Articles

Staff of Kings... Reviewed 14 Jun, 2009, 22:21 / 32 comments

In amongst all the jizz and hoo-har of Monkey Island fever, you might have forgotten that Indiana Jones has got a new game coming out as well. It's called "Fate of Atlantis Wii Port" and it has a free "Staff of Kings" game bundled with it as well.

Actually, I tell a lie: Staff of Kings is the main game, and apparently it's rather good.

Comments

  • Lagomorph on 15 Jun, 2009, 22:05…
    Does anyone agree that using the term "Germans" is actually more offending to some people than "Nazis"?

    I mean Nazi's are commonly considered as badguys. Germans are just the people from Germany, and Indy's just constantly picking on them.
  • JohnGreenArt on 16 Jun, 2009, 03:01…
    Yeah, Indy saying "Germans! Why'd it have to be Germans!" is rather insulting.
  • The Tingler on 16 Jun, 2009, 08:10…
    I agree, we chatted about this in our E3 podcast. I also hate the way LucasArts rub it in our faces by having Indy's first word in the game be "Germans!"

    Interestingly enough though, the PSP version does call them Nazis.
  • The_Petrified_Monkey on 16 Jun, 2009, 08:24…
    What with that and the inclusion of the SATCHEL!!, it would appear that the PSP version is superior to the Wii/PS2 version in general.

    I'm interested to see what your review comes up with :o)

    Oh, and for the record, I hated the ending...
  • The Tingler on 16 Jun, 2009, 17:53…
    I'll be lucky if I get to the ending without smashing my Wiimote through my TV. I'm on the piano level, and it's p***ing me off.
  • The_Petrified_Monkey on 16 Jun, 2009, 18:25…
    Hehe, doesn't surprise me! Took me a fair few attempts. Bloody motion controls...

    The relief after finishing that is incredible :o)
  • The Tingler on 17 Jun, 2009, 15:06…
    DONE IT. Phew. Never again.
  • johngreenart2 on 15 Jun, 2009, 15:50…
    I generally agree with this review, having completed the game this weekend. I too found the lack of the line-across-a-map imagery disappointing and confusing. There were times a new scene started and I didn't really know why I was there. During loading screens, you're shown an image of concept art with a random game tip. Though it's a static image, instead I think just showing a static image of the map where Indy's heading, plus text saying what's lead him there, would be helpful. Certain transitions occur that make you think a cut scene is actually missing, as if it was removed for disc space. Actually, if there were supposed to be cut scenes, I think a more likely culprit was that they were never completed so A2M didn't have them to port over. Anyway, as the game relied so heavily on the narrative it makes these jumps in story a little more jarring.

    That said, I thoroughly enjoyed it. It is a very *casual* game, but that's not in itself a negative. The shooting gallery bits were satisfying, though just the sound of Indy's revolver probably made them so. It would have been nice if there was more to collect, and more to do, that wasn't part of each level's quest. Fighting was mostly a lot of fun, though I found it hard to take advantage of the environments because at times enemies would gang up and throw things from afar. But frequent check points and the ability to replay any part of the game at least gives the opportunity to figure out a level or strategy, then go back and do it over. Generally the motion controls worked, and the plane level early on was pretty neat. The piano level was a little frustrating and silly, and the motorcycle controls at the end weren't all that great. But snaring a bad guy with the whip, then wailing on him with the nunchuk was great.
    I thought John Armstrong's voice was pretty good. Certain phrases sounded exactly like Harrison Ford, though I'd say it was a better impression of the theatrical Blade Runner voiceover than Indy. His dedication seems to wane as the game progresses, so he sounds less like Indy by the end. As for the Henry Sr. voice actor, I didn't play much of the co-op journey, but I kept expecting him to say "Suck it, Trebeck!"

    I admit, it was very "Tomb Raider Lite", but I was engrossed and had a blast. Mostly I just wish it had been a longer game. I don't need an Indy game to be a hardcore experience like "Grand Theft Indy" or anything, but incorporating just a little bit more replay value would be nice. I liked that the LEGO games had things in levels that you couldn't accomplish on first play through. Adding that sort of element (extra abilities? locating artifacts that unlock passageways in previous levels?) would have been a great enhancement.

    Oh, as for the extra game modes, it's odd they didn't include a shooting gallery mode. As simple as the shooting scenes are, they were fun, and having challenge modes for those levels would've been another good addition.

    I don't have a PS3 or 360, but I'd love to see what the high-end version of the game was going to be. There's a PS3 in the office I work at, and we have Force Unleashed, and one day I might pick up the Wii version to compare the two. As I implied, I have no preference over a hardcore game vs. a casual game, it's really just about how much fun I have during the experience.

    Now if only they'll release Infernal Machine for Virtual Console and a new patch to get Emperor's Tomb working on my Mac...


  • Udvarnoky on 15 Jun, 2009, 15:59…
    I agree with your impression that entire cutscenes may have actually been cut from the game for time purposes.

    Also, for a glimpse of what the 360/PS3 version might have looked like by comparison, check out these two environment renders.
  • johngreenart2 on 15 Jun, 2009, 18:48…
    I remember seeing these screen grabs. Was there video released? I thought there was.

    I noticed these shots show a fight on top the San Francisco trolley. When I played the Wii version, I shot out all the tires before any cars got along side the trolley. Will bad guys jump on board if the cars get closer? Maybe I'll replay that level to find out.

    I think I'm wondering most about how different the game would play. Would environments be more open? Would there be more fluidity between exploring/fighting/shooting parts? It's obvious the PS3/360 versions would've looked better and controlled differently, but would the game itself actually have been all that different?

  • The Tingler on 16 Jun, 2009, 08:12…
    No, they don't. In fact, the only version with the proper cable car fight is the DS version. The PSP has both combined, but the fighting is all Quicktime Event button mashing.
  • Udvarnoky on 15 Jun, 2009, 22:22…
    It wouldn't surprise me if it was that different.
  • The Tingler on 15 Jun, 2009, 18:04…
    Yeah, I've been thinking that too. I think the cutscenes were going to be done for the 360/PS3 version and then ported to all the other versions, but with that canned they obviously couldn't be bothered.
  • johngreenart2 on 16 Jun, 2009, 15:47…
    I noticed under the extras for "Concept Art" the last thing you can unlock (in the entire game, I think, needing every collectable) is "Cutting Room Floor." Not sure what we'll see, but even if it's just more concept art it might be additional insight to what the PS3/360 version would've been.

    Anyone know of any codes, other than the one for Fate of Atlantis? It's a little silly that code even exists when you only needed to find one collectable to unlock the game.

  • ThunderPeel2001 on 15 Jun, 2009, 14:05…
    Nice review, but... "golden monkey"?

  • Udvarnoky on 15 Jun, 2009, 15:11…
    "Golden monkey idol," which I turned into simply "idol" because I couldn't remember what the counterpart was in Staff.
  • neon_git on 15 Jun, 2009, 11:23…
    Seriously though, A2M? A2M? I know I've said this before but ... A2M? Who the fuck thought that was a good name?
  • The Tingler on 15 Jun, 2009, 13:02…
    It's short for the infinitely less-snappy Artificial Mind and Movement.
  • neon_git on 15 Jun, 2009, 13:42…
    Oh I see, so it's an STFU style in-joke. That is bold.
  • The Tingler on 15 Jun, 2009, 15:26…
    If it is, it's their own!
  • Zaarin on 15 Jun, 2009, 13:28…
    Or A2M.
  • Gungankiller on 15 Jun, 2009, 09:09…
    It´s obvious that mix´nmojo has been paid by Lucasarts. What a shame : (
  • Kroms on 15 Jun, 2009, 10:05…
    Yeah, I won't lie. I'm finding this review a total headscratcher myself.
  • Udvarnoky on 15 Jun, 2009, 15:14…
    Eh, the score might be charitable, but the game was fine for what it was.
  • The Tingler on 16 Jun, 2009, 17:55…
    Did you get to the piano level?
  • Udvarnoky on 17 Jun, 2009, 00:38…
    ...I completed the game to write the review.

    If you were being sarcastic - yeah, that level was frustrating, but only until I figured out what I was actually supposed to be doing.
  • The Tingler on 17 Jun, 2009, 15:11…
    Slightly sarcastic as I'm sure you said you'd completed it somewhere, but you didn't necessarily have to complete the game to write the review. Most reviewers don't.

    God I hated that bit. Fortunately I can put it behind me now. It's strange, some people can do it quite quickly, others are ready to throw their TVs through the window.
  • The Tingler on 15 Jun, 2009, 08:20…
    After you get through the first few extremely bad levels the game picks up tremendously.

    The only thing I have to add with that review is with Fate of Atlantis - for some inexplicable reason, you can neither turn off subtitles nor even quit the game.

    Having subtitles forced slows up the dialogue as the speech is usually finished long before the text is.

    Not being able to quit though is odd, and suggests that A2M didn't think you'd want to go back to their game once you'd started playing!
  • The_Petrified_Monkey on 15 Jun, 2009, 06:49…
    Nice review! Pretty much sums up my sentiments about this game, although 4 skulls is a bit generous IMO.

    Definitely makes for a better read than the Eurogamer review I just finished reading.

    Curb your enthusiasm and this game really does begin to shine :o)
  • Melancholick on 15 Jun, 2009, 00:33…
    The jizz? I'm NOT mopping that up this time, Gabe.
  • Udvarnoky on 14 Jun, 2009, 22:51…
    Pretty ironic that Mojo's review of the game will likely be among the most positive.

    (Also, thanks to TheRaider.net for the stolen borrowed DVD caps from Temple of Doom and Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.)
  • clone2727 on 14 Jun, 2009, 23:23…
    Well, considering the events of the last couple weeks, Mojo's opinion of LucasArts has really changed :P