Hello all! Last week’s game was the third and probably last in a series that primarily took place in slow-motion.
Today’s game is based on a movie! We all know how those usually turn out, but this one ended up being really good.
*takes deep breath* Peter Jackson’s King Kong: The Official Game of the Movie is, ostensibly, based on the King Kong movie that Peter Jackson directed. That title should be clearer. Anyway, in the game you fight dinosaurs as Jack and you get to play as the 8th Wonder of the World himself, King Kong. Everyone knows the plot; the game extends it slightly, but it’s mostly a search for Ann, who Kong takes because giant apes find humans attractive instead of edible, apparently.
Peter Jackson’s King Kong: Movie Film For Gamers is a first-person shooter with a neat HUD-less display. I’m always an advocate for going HUD-less, but only if you can make it work. This game made it work primarily because of the simplicity which encompasses the entire game, which we’ll get to in a moment. You can check your gun’s ammo with the press of a button, which makes Jack (Adrien Brody) announce how many bullets he has remaining. It’s a bit of a silly setup, but it works pretty well. Also you can throw spears, of which you’ll find many. Seriously, it’s a lot. They’re everywhere.
But! You can also play as Kong, in the best parts of the game. These levels take place in third-person, pitting Kong against dinosaurs, and later against, um, cars. You have an extremely limited arsenal of moves at your disposal; Kong doesn’t do much outside of punching. And yet, these levels are a riot.
That’s because PJKK:TOGOTM absolutely thrives on simplicity. Jack can run and shoot, and that’s it. There’s no cover system, squad management, RPG elements, etc. And Kong has only a couple of moves at best; he can punch and grab. You can learn how to play the game in literal seconds.
It’s all in the presentation. I’ve talked before about how a game’s presentation could, done well, elevate an otherwise average game to new heights. That’s what Peter Jackson’s King Kong: The Title Is Too Damn Long does; Kong in particular may not have a God of War-style moveset, but you can feel the power in each strike. That kind of audiovisual feedback is important when playing as a character that’s supposed to be powerful, and it’s something that games sometimes lack. Not this one. When you wind up and punch a V-Rex (yep), Kong’s fist sends the dino reeling, sometimes crashing to the ground. Play this one with the volume up. It also helps that this was one of the best looking games of its day. Even better looking on Xbox 360 (I had the GameCube version.)
It’s a really short game, though; I joke about being able to finish the game faster than it takes to watch the movie. It’s a joke, but if you were really good at the game, it might actually be possible. Still, Peter Jackson’s King Kong: The Official Game of the Movie Based on the Other Movie But It’s Kinda Different and Stars Jack Black is still a fun romp; it’s one of those games you play on a Saturday on a lull between releases. It’s short, it’s easy, it’s simple. But it’s enormous amounts of fun while it lasts, and that’s what matters.
Thanks for reading my stuff! Especially this lengthy post. Leave comments and suggest games to cover! Tweet at me! And find more of my stuff (and the stuff of people more talented than me) at Current Digital! And stay tuned for something cool (or, again, follow me on Twitter—hint hint)
Next week will be my April Fools article, because why not. I’ve already done Superman 64 and the NES Ninja Turtles game. Send me suggestions!