Game Boy Advance Month Recap Capcom Month Recap Konami Month Recap Like us on Facebook! Subscribe to us on Twitter!
CONSOLE: PC DEVELOPER: VIS Entertainment PUBLISHER: Rockstar Games
RELEASE DATE (NA): June 29, 2000 GENRE: Platformer
// review by Meow

Grand Theft Ego.

There have been some disastrous shifts in the game industry, and one of the most notable shifts was the shift to 3D. We've since learned that maybe not all games fair well being shifted to a 3D format, but back in that time period it was idiotic to NOT be a 3D game with the best graphics one could muster. And sadly, that meant that even our beloved cartoon worm had to make that shift, but not before shifting hands...

History aside, we have a product of the time, Earthworm Jim 3D! The story is so: Earthworm Jim had a cow dropped on his head, and he's lost his marbles, and it's up to Jim's Super-Ego to scour the corners of his 4 worm brains to gather his marbles all back and fix this situation lest he becomes a drooling vegetable. Conveniently also the third game in the series, EWJ3D is a collect-a-thon 3D platformer in the vein of Banjo-Kazooie, having an arbitrary golden collectible of the day (udders, in this case) and 100 minor collectibles (marbles) that open up new stages. And in the vein of specifically Banjo-Kazooie, you better nab all 100 o' them marbles in a single shot or you're going to have a bad time. The game only accumulates more marbles after you've cleared your top marble count, but thankfully you only need 950 of the 1000 marbles, so you can give the last 50 a miss if you're not interested. However, all 73 golden udders are a must, as the final boss door will not reveal itself until you've acquired them all.

What happened to our poor worm friend?

The game equips Jim with his trusty ol' blaster that is... actually rather worthless in this game, leaving his head-whipping to be his hands-down best method of assaulting the many foes in this game. The game also features a myriad of other guns such as a gnoming-missile launcher and a funky disco-blaster that all have their uses, usually the use being that it's by far stronger than your standard blaster and has a cursor you can aim in first-person for things you want to snipe. In addition to weapons and, of course, jumping, Jim also has an incredible ability to crouch and dodge-roll. Crouching renders Jim immune to any and all ranged attacks from foes, pretty much giving you a safe spot as long as you're not moving (or temporarily if you decide to roll, which stands you back up after completing). You will need to master this if you want to have any shot of completing this game. EWJ3D is by far less forgiving than the previous entries, especially since fall-damage is a thing, and there are some TALL areas. Seriously, good as I am at games, this thing has had my heart seriously pounding... and not only because it's hard...

This particular version of the game that I'm reviewing is the Steam port of the game. This version has some serious flaws: the game's music is completely missing, and the game's old anti-piracy measures will kick in at random. Thankfully, there's a fan patch for the missing music, but there's nary a thing one can do for the anti-piracy stuff. And since you have to collect all the marbles in one go, this makes some of the longer and more difficult levels a real heart-pounder.

And speaking of the music, it's great. Or it would be if it was actually included, which is why this review won't be taking it into consideration. That aside, here's a few tracks I feel you should take an earful of:

Bleeding shame.

This game features mostly unusual themes for levels, such as starting you out in a War Zone for world 1, and a fast-food themed world for world 2. Though, I'd argue that World 3, the Horror-themed world is probably the most commonly used theme in games even unto this day. Unfortunately for kids, they'll most likely not get past World 1 since the bosses guarding these worlds do not pull punches, ensuring that poor little Timmy is stuck contending with Psycrow until he's gud enough to win. And then he has Fatty Roswell to contend with for World 2, who is, in my opinion, the absolute hardest of all the bosses.

If you manage to beat this game and all its bosses and collect all 1000 marbles, though, you can enter a door in the fear center of your brain to embrace a reward worthy of you: playing the game again as the final boss in hard mode. Yeah, in this mode enemies do double damage, you do half damage, and atomic health restores 2% of your health gauge instead of 5%. And marbles no longer give any health at all. Hope you mastered dodging...

To bring this saga to an end, I do have to note that the images on Steam for this game are by far the most misleading. If you know this game already and take a look, you'll see some odd screenshots of areas you've never seen before that are crisp and clear, and there are images of places you've had burned into your nightmares that are in potato-quality jpeg. Those crappy pictures are real and the crisp pictures are beta footage they've uploaded. Yep. They lied big time this time. This game really is a passed up... I wouldn't call it a gem, but more like a shiny pebble of the late 90s 3D platformer fiesta that was passed up for the more polished by many. Between the versions of the game, though, I do oddly recommend this one the most if you apply the music patch which adds the game's music files and a driver to run them, as well as a new .EXE file to tell the game to use this new driver. If you spot this collection for dirt-cheap and don't mind being ripped off a tad for a classic experience, give it a nab. This game with music would fetch a 6.5 easy, but with music missing, this game gets...

Widget is loading comments...
Random.access and its contents are © 2005-2019.