Although perhaps not the most critically acclaimed CGI movie series, Ice Age has become one of the most successful. The last one netted itself more than $500million worldwide, so it’s no surprise that the now-extinct creatures from the series have found themselves in peril once more in a new adventure.
It’s a top-down affair where you use your keypad to roam about the pre-historic environment, collecting eggs to save the unborn dinos from an unthinkable fate. Ok, so it’s only unthinkable because this is a family film adaptation rather than a David Attenborough-style documentary.
You get to play as key characters from the film, such as Sid and Buck, although the film’s plot has little effect on the gameplay itself. It’s predominantly a run-of-the-mill mobile adventure, with plenty of hopping over lava takes and avoiding of airborne pterodactyls, there’s a decent amount of variety between the levels. You even get to take to the skies yourself atop a friendly flying dino.
However, accessible as it may seem, Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs is let down by its controls whenever it tries to turn up the heat. They perform just fine whenever you’re roaming around, but when you’ve got a T-Rex chasing you or are trying to protect a nest from a gang of predators, it all just gets a bit too frustrating as you trip you and are forced to re-play the level for the tenth time.
Yep, the save points really aren’t all that generous in Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, even though the film’s core demographic barely has an age that breaks into double figures. So, when the clumsiness of the controls sees you fail in some vital task, you’ll generally have to replay a reasonably chunk of the game too.
In other respects, Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs is a decent film tie-in. It looks just fine, it’s got the characters a true Ice Age fan would expect and, at least to start with, is simple enough to play to keep even younglings engaged. Unfortunately, the derailing limitations of the controls turn the game’s stumbles into a show-stopping car crash that’s likely to see you throwing your phone across the room rather that continuing at a few key points.
Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs info
Website/Demo: Glu’s website