Earthworm Jim 3D is an entirely 'unique' experience, to say the least. Though not as technically sound as its predecessors, this game is fun, addictive, and all-around mind boggling.
Earthworm Jim's legacy was quite well-established long before this game was released. He had two classic platformers, a line of great action figures, and two seasons of his own Saturday morning cartoon show to his credit. So, why bother bringing him to 3D in 1999, years after the peak in popularity? I've found myself asking this question since I first bought the game, but I've also been so excited about playing it, that I haven't really had time to find out the answer.
Here's the nitty-gritty on this game: The visuals are great, it's all about surreal cartoon imagery, and the things you see here will stick with you. The characters are blocky, but it never deters you from wanting to watch what they do next.
The gameplay is fun, albeit mildly repetitive. I've never been turned off from playing a level twice in this game.
The sound is great, except for the music. The individual sounds are all strange and memorable-- chickens, eggs, cows, pigs, whips, gunfire, and all the like have unique and suitable effects. The music tracks are just looped guitar solos that change only in intensity, and are largely fun-sounding at first... just boring after about 45 minutes.
The controls/camera are where this game falls apart. Sometimes, your ability to aim or move in 3d is hindered by the fact that you can't always see what you're trying to shoot, and you can't always land the character where you expect him to land. That's pretty important in a game that is essentially still a platformer.
All-in-all, if you're a big fan of Earthworm Jim's comics and cartoons, then buy this game and give it a try, I think you'll appreciate spending a little more time in his world. If you're more a fan of his original platformers, you may want to hide from this title, because the controls, sound, and level design will not satisfy you.
I've always loved this game, and I still play it constantly. It has not grown stale for me over the last 6 or 7 years, and I doubt it ever will.
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