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1 Player

Game Type


Mem. Card

Review Date

Dec 1996

Setting the Scene

The story behind the game is strange, so I'll explain briefly. After losing his job, Jim heads for the Planet of Monsters, where his friend Peter Puppy is the proud parent of six hundred puppies and they are all being turned into monsters by the evil space bird, Psycrow. Jim must save them before their transformation.


Earthworm Jim was the super hero of the 16 bit, 2 D scrolling platforms of the past. Similar to other platforms, the objective is to work your way across the level, collecting weapons and power ups, blasting all enemies that cross your path, while negotiating various obstacles set in your way. But as you progress you realise that E.Jim provides more than the average platformer, as you are treated to shoot ups, skill tests, quizzes, and some slick humor.

So does Earthworm Jim scale up to the highest platform, or will he wriggle deep into the soil and only pop out when it rains?


My first impressions of the graphical content, were that Earthworm Jim was a journey back in time to the roughly drawn platformers of old. Saying that, I said the same thing about Worms, then the gameplay turned out to be excellent and it was duly forgiven. But as you progress, the graphics cease to be boring, as alternative levels treat you to a feast of colorful animations of a high standard. Earthworm Jim does not possess the smoothness of Rayman, but then again it is definitely not a repetitive Gex.

Sounds and Effects

The sound effects are the usual crash, bang, wallop associated with the cartoon version of Earthworm Jim. Following each successful section of a level, you are offered to mark your spot with a continue, and this is usually accompanied by Jim proclaiming "Way Cool". If it's not his catch phrase now, it soon will be, as there are a lot of opportunities to save your progress, meaning a hell of a lot of "way cools".

The music on the other hand is of the highest standard, with each of the level themes, accompanied by a suitable tune to match the mood of whatever is going on at the time. In the slow underwater scenes, you are treated to a smoothing classical rendition as you gracefully float past the obstacles. While in the frantic bouncing puppies level, the music is a foot tapping jig which complements the action perfectly.


You are confronted by 10 levels and a top secret bonus area, each having its own theme and gameplay. The options are straightforward enough, allowing a choice from 4 different difficulty setting, controller configuration, and the entry via a password which uses icons rather than digits.

Straight into the first level, which is a platform standard. The controller allows you to perform jumps, the use of a weird snott parachute, select and fire a weapon, the unbelievable whip weapon, that actually uses Jims head as the whip, and the even stranger snott lasso, used for swinging over hazards. On each level you must keep an eye out for the save icons, which must be collected in a certain order, also watch out for the hidden sub-games.

The next level switches to Jim buried deep underground, armed with a drill gun. You must dig through the earth, allowing you to construct your own platforms to reach the hidden clocks, that will extend your time. It's a nice idea, that allows you to move in all directions and as you drill above your head, the loose earth falls below your feet and raises the ground below you, which might just be enough to let you reach that ledge up above. Reaching the end of this level you are faced with a giant maggot to defeat. When a level is completed, E.Jim throws a heavy weight in the air, which usually lands on the opposite side of a plank of wood he is standing on, which catapults him out of that level. At the end of this level, the wood breaks in two, so Jim hails a cab to leave the level. Nice touch.

Puppy Love makes a regular appearance throughout the game, increasing in difficulty with each visit. Once again leaving the platform format, Jim stands on a bridge with Psycrow at one end, throwing the new born pups from a window to their demise. Jim must catch the falling pups on a giant marshmallow and bounce them across the bridge to the safety of Peter Puppy. Save the pups and you will be rewarded with a bomb to blow up Psycrow. Allow too many pups to be killed and an angry Peter transforms into a rabid rottweiler and gives you a good seeing to. Hilarious.

Further into the game, the mood slows down when you must guide your way underwater past various hazards. If successful you will take part in a quiz show with a difference. Try answering wacky questions such as, What flavor is a cow? and Does Jims mother approve of his girlfriends? or What is Jims favorite magazine? I replied that it was Absolute Playstation, only to be informed that the answer was Playworm.

With further levels involving paper mazes, cow carrying(?), balloon pushing, pea shooting cats(??), flying sumo centurions, mutant penguins........God, this game is strange........but I like it. If you love platform games, then Earthworm Jim is for you, but if sick off the same repetitive gameplay that recent platforms have offered, like myself, then give Earthworm Jim a try, you might just enjoy it.

Value for Money

A platform consisting of shoot ups, skills and quizzes. Standard graphics mixed with some excellent animations. The music is of the highest standard. The gameplay features so many variations that you will always want to see what is around the next corner.





I came across one or two frustrating levels, but these were long forgotten when I returned to the Puppy Love levels throughout the game.











Its a long time since I laughed as much as I did while playing this game. Each of the levels is slick and well thought out and there is enough variety in this game to make you want to keep playing until you have completed it.








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