San Diego Comic-Con 2011: Dread Central’s Exclusive Look at the Upcoming Jurassic Park: The Game and Interview with Telltale’s Richard Iggo
Telltale Games have made a name for themselves in the video game industry by resurrecting a genre that was thought to be defunct - the point and click adventure.
From Sam and Max and Tales of Monkey Island to the more recent Back to the Future, they’ve proven themselves to have a certain affinity for mixing great storytelling with fantastic game play. Their newest release, Jurassic Park: The Game, seems to be straying a little from their tried and true formula. But hey; you need to evolve to survive, right?
Telltale’s Jurassic Park: The Game takes place during and after the events of the original film and finally answers the question of what exactly happened to Dennis Nedry’s shaving cream can filled with dinosaur embryos. You primarily play as Gerry Harding, chief veterinarian of Jurassic Park. You may remember this character from the scene in the film where they come across the sick Triceratops. What, you don’t? Okay good, I thought it was just me.
Unfortunately, since the primary cast of the film has left Isla Nubar by time the game gets into gear, none of the original cast will be lending their voices. Come on, Telltale, Jeff Goldblum has gotta eat too! On the other hand there is some good news for fans of the feature film. The game will feature John Williams’ classic score along with some new music as well so be ready to have the main theme stuck in your head for weeks once again.
From what I’ve seen, there seems to be two distinct styles of game play. The action bits are very heavily influenced by Heavy Rain so basically you’re watching the action unfold on-screen and hitting button prompts or holding the stick in a certain direction so as to not let your character die. Unlike previous Telltale offerings, dying is a very real possibility so if you’re a little late on an action you’ll definitely end up as dinosaur food. And even though they’re not very graphic, the deaths are quite amusing to watch (think ‘lawyer sitting on an outhouse toilet’ type of funny).
The second (and far more interesting in my opinion) style of game play is the more puzzle-focused one. In this mode you can take control of multiple characters in order to solve problems. The example I was shown took place in the visitor center directly after the events at the end of the film. In this scene a female character, a mercenary dispatched to recover the shaving cream can, has been bitten by a venomous dinosaur. It’s up to Gerry Harding and his daughter Jess, who accompanied her father to the island to get a sneak peak of the park before it opened, to recover the antidote. The problem is that there’s an angry Tyrannosaurus Rex in between you and your goal so Jess volunteers to make a run for it while Gerry stays with the bite victim. Jess makes her way to the ground floor and gets behind a pillar to hide from the T-Rex.
At this point, a menu pops up on the screen allowing you to take control of either character. Using both characters you need to figure out how to distract the big guy long enough for Jess to get her hands on the antidote. This puzzle was fairly simple; all you needed to do was position Jess in a certain spot on the ground floor to allow Gerry to drop a box onto the dinosaur. But the promise of more complicated puzzles, including some that require the use of up to four characters, has me considerably intrigued.
Even though I’m a little apprehensive about the specifics of the game play, I can’t help but be excited about Jurassic Park: The Game. As a huge fan of the original film (and not being too into its sequels) it’s very exciting to finally be getting a story that takes place directly after the 1993 classic.
Hold on to your butts and get ready to return to Jurassic Park once again!
Jurassic Park: The Game will be launching on the PC, Mac, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and iOS devices in the fall of 2011. Check out Dread Central’s video interview with Telltale Games’ Senior Director of Marketing, Richard Iggo, below; and look for more soon!
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