Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs Review
Xbox 360 | PS3 | PC | Wii | DS
Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs box art
System: DS, X360, PS3, PC, Wii, PS2 Review Rating Legend
Dev: A2M 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: Activision 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: June 30, 2009 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Everyone 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

Even with this particular mini-game shoehorned several times into the adventure, you’ll be done with the game in about two hours. Admittedly, there is some fun to be had here, in spite of the game’s flaws. However, $30 is pretty steep for a game that will offer you relatively the same amount of entertainment as the movie, minus the polish and presentation. The game’s collectibles might be incentive to run through levels one or two more times, but the mini-games on offer here are pretty much a bust.

Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs screenshot

The visual production is fairly easy on the eyes. The game’s 3D graphics are surprisingly attractive at times, and everything runs smoothly. There’s a decent variety of plants and critters in each level, though there’s also some obvious recycling. Dinosaur bosses and the layout of levels, though, are a real treat that young fans of the movie are sure to enjoy.

You’ll also be treated to a smattering of voice work during cutscenes. Unfortunately, the humor from the movie doesn’t really come across here, but cutscenes don’t take anything away from the experience, either. The in-game music works fairly well, and the game has a playful vibe fitting for the audience it’s aimed at. Sound effects get the job done, though they’re unremarkable and occasionally out of sync with the visual cues onscreen.

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Activision got some things right this time around, and there are some truly fun elements present in Ice Age 3 DS. That said, the package feels more like an extended demo that hasn’t quite hit the beta stage of development. The levels have a mostly solid design, but poor mechanics and collision detection hamper the experience. An excruciatingly asinine mini-game that makes repeat visits throughout the story throws an additional road block up, and its only shameless function is to pad the length of a game that is over in about two hours. Your $30 is likely better spent seeing the actual movie with a huge bucket of popcorn and a biggie drink; pocket the change and enjoy the memories.

By Tony Capri
CCC Freelance Writer

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
3.7
Graphics
It’s a mostly attractive game, though issues with the level design can often be unsightly as well as cause real problems with the gameplay.
3.4
Control
There’s a decent platformer here, but poor collision detection and mechanics often tug you away from the fun.
3.4
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
Decent though unremarkable music and sound effects.
2.3

Play Value
Clocking in at roughly the same amount of playtime as the movie, this game is no bargain, especially when that time is padded by frustrating mini-games.

2.5
Overall Rating - Average
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Game Features:

  • Three playable characters.
  • More than a dozen levels and a collection of bonus mini-games.
  • Players will use the Touch Screen to fight against carnivorous plant enemies, swing through the jungle with a lasso, activate camouflage to safely move through areas where they're outnumbered, shoot approaching enemies and more.


  • Screenshots / Images

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