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Based on the world famous Dr Suess children\'\'s books and with Jim Carrey cast as the lead role in the current smash movie, The Grinch attempts to cash in over the holiday period by now tying in with a video game. Danger! Danger! Warning! Warning! Surely Konami are aware that movie tie-ins just don\'\'t work… at least not until now. The style of gameplay is a platform adventure set in a 3D world. Think Spyro with rough edges.
The player controls the Grinch and a mighty strange looking beast he most certainly is. Sickly green body fur, lifeless floppy ears and a crazy highly featured face. In fact his appearance is so shabby he reminded me of an old, discarded mouldy teddy bear that has perhaps been uncovered from a dusty attic. At any time during the game the player can switch control to Max, the Grinch\'\'s trusty dog. Max can squeeze into small holes and tight places to reach hidden locations.
The scenery graphics are hardly groundbreaking, more functional, but I did warm to them as the game progressed. Even the pop-up soon stopped bothering me as I had too much on my mind working out what on earth to do next. All through the game you are aware of the background music, but it doesn\'\'t intrude on your concentration. It has sort of a foot tapping bluesy feel to it (reminded me of the Pink Panther) and works well alongside the adequate sound effects.
The Grinch has a fine repertoire of moves. He is capable of performing a standard jump, or pancake flop, push and pull items, swing, sneak, walk, run, flick switches, climb walls and drive subs and helicopters. Eat your heart out Lara Croft! He begins the game unarmed apart from his smelly bad breath and must seek out torn pieces of blueprint littered across various worlds. Once all sections of a particular plan has been found a gadget may be assembled to help his quest. These include crazy weapons such as a Rotten Egg Launcher, or a Slime Shooter. Some of the gadgets are essential to progress as higher platforms cannot be reached until the Rocket Springs have been constructed, therefore most levels must be revisited several times.
What I found so refreshing with the Grinch was the sheer amount of thought that had gone into the gameplay. Rather than have enemies simply run up and attack, they each had their own individual style. Small boys ran up to the Grinch and held tight onto his legs. Only a stern shake with the directional button could force them off. Older kids just stand their ground and throw snowballs, which is actually more of a nuisance than you would first think (try making a tricky jump while being pelted). Some cops could be sneaked past while they were asleep, others required the Grinch to find and wear a disguise. Even the security guys in the museum had their own punishment when catching you sneaking around. I\'\'d never been evicted out of a level before! The entire game is jam-packed with these wonderful character ideas. Wait until you see the weeping Eskimo\'\'s.
Be warned! Some of the puzzles are really tough to crack and on occasions will lead to a few blood vessels being burst. This is because the Grinch has so many possible permutations to get a reaction out of something that you simply forget that it may take a simple pancake flop, or a push/pull action to solve the problem. I\'\'m sure you will put the game down and walk away many, many times, but it leaves you constantly thinking about the current predicament. Suddenly a fresh idea pops into your head and you will be racing towards the Playstation to try out your new plan. Let\'\'s be honest… all the best platformers have you pulling your hair out at some stage.
· Based on the hit movie starring Jim Carrey
· Boisterous 3D action, tricky puzzles and magical adventure.
· 4 main playing areas, Who-Ville, Who-Forest, The Dump and Who-Lake
· Use the Grinch\'\'s fantastic inventions to assist your progress
· Switch between the games main character and Max the dog
· Collect blueprints to construct gadgets
· Splat your adversaries with the Rotten Egg Launcher or fly high in the Grinch Copter
1 Block required on Memory card per save (min)
Up to 1 Players (without Multi-tap)
Uses Dual Shock Pad Buttons
Uses Dual Shock Pad Analog Sticks
Uses Dual Shock Pad Vibration facility
REVIEW SCORE GUIDE:
We promise that we have fully played 'The Grinch' before writing this review. The scores given above are our honest opinion and were not influenced in any way by the manufacturer or distributor of the game.
SUMMARY OF FINAL RATING (%)
00 - 59 This makes your console seem like an older machine. It utilises little or none of the PSone power.
60 - 69 This game is little more than average and we advise renting or play-testing before considering a purchase.
70 - 79 This is a good solid title that should still appeal to those who like this type of game.
80 - 89 This is a fantastic game that we think you will enjoy playing for quite some time.
90 - 100 This game either pushes the boundaries of it's genre further than ever before on this system, or creates a completely new gaming experience. Either way, it should not be missed and is an essential purchase in our opinion.
IMPORTANT - PLEASE READ:
It is very important that you are aware that the criteria we use to obtain review scores on the PS2 is very different to that used for games on the original Playstation (PSone). The Processing and Graphical power of the two consoles are vastly different and as our reviews are graded against what we estimate is the achievable potential of each system, it does not mean in any way that a game scoring 80 percent on PS2 is worse than a Playstation (PSone) equivalent which scores 95.
A more detailed breakdown of this guide can be read here.
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