Posted by Tim on July 8, 2009

Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs Review

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Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs
Developer: Eurocom/Activision
Copy Reviewed: PS3 Version

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First impressions don’t always ring true; that is the moral of the story for Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs. When I first opened the game and stuck it in my PlayStation 3, I thought ‘here we go, it’s a movie game (which almost all are bad) and on top of that, it’s a children’s movie game; not exactly my cup-o-tea.’ I was more excited to find out how bad Ice Age 3 was than how good it could be. To say it simply, my first impression of the game was not good. However, like any moral in a story, I soon found out the truth. Ice Age 3 is a good game. Don’t get me wrong, it is not a game everyone should play, but those who do will find a fairly entertaining game with a decent amount of replay value. The game capitalizes on simple, yet entertaining game play to deliver an overall good game. While it is certainly aimed towards a younger audience, almost anyone can find enjoyment in Ice Age 3

The game allows you to play as a variety of characters from the movies. You start off by playing as Sid (the facetious sloth), but there are missions that include Manny (the sarcastic mammoth), Diego (the obstinate tiger), Scrat (the tenacious squirrel), and a new character named Buck, who is a wily weasel. As the game progresses, the characters find themselves under the ice, where the weather is tropic and dinosaurs are abundant. This new world presents danger for the foreign mammals, and it is up to the wits of their new friend Buck to save them.

It’s a simple enough storyline, because in fact, everything about this game is simple. The controls are simple, the enemies are easy to defeat, the levels are simple to clear, and even the trophies are a synch to achieve. If you are looking for a dense and difficult game, stay far away from this one. Everything you need to do is either told you to by one of the other characters, shown to you in useful and visible instruction bubbles, or even directed for you by a wind that blows in the direction you are suppose to go. The controls are your basic move around, jump, and attack, with a small amount of motion control mixed in.

The game also uses simple platformer elements which make many of the levels pretty fun. While not overly difficult (in case you didn’t get that hint from above), the levels provide enough challenge so that it’s not completely boring, yet easier enough for any child to complete. And this game is very much intended for children.

But what makes this game fun for all is that it’s not just one platform level after another. Between the longer platformer levels, there are a variety of other levels which include arcade shooting, side-scrolling shooting, and other unique levels which mix up the game play reasonably well. There are levels where you ride a pterosaur and shoot at other pterosaurs like a dog fight. Also other levels where you run away from and try to dodge an attacking T-Rex. Simple? Absolutely, but fun nonetheless

Outside of the main missions, there are several multiplayer mini-games to play, as well as single player challenges which create a decent amount of replay value. The challenges are the shorter levels from the main story, and are all either time or points based to keep you coming back to set new records. While none of these game modes are very deep, they add a nice little touch to the game that will really keep younger kids playing this game.

One of the advantageous aspects to having a simple game is that there aren’t too many negatives that go along with it. Other than sometimes being too easy, or too simple, there are not many things wrong with the game. I experienced a little bit of frame-rate drop once, and minimal control issues, but outside of that no technical problems.

Sometimes, simpler is better, and in the case of Ice Age 3, this certainly is true. If you want a simple game with simple controls and an easy story to follow, then this game is right up your alley. Ice Age 3 is an overall decent platformer that will certainly entertain the kiddies. There are multi-player and single player challenges which add replay value. There is a good amount of variety in the type of levels, and most of them are pretty fun to complete. If you are the same as me, and your first impression of Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs is bad, give this game a chance, because behind the childish themes lies a very entertaining game.

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2 Responses to “Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs Review”

  1. John says:

    I actually look forward to getting this from gamefly!

  2. zeusplay says:

    The game was a lot of fun and easy to get the platinum trophy, some of the time trials were aactually chalenging but obtainable.

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