Cheap Game of the Week: Turok

Overview: Call of Duty meets Aliens meets Jurassic Park. Should be a winner, AMIRITE!?

Looks more exciting than it is

Looks more exciting than it is

Pricing: Turok can commonly be found used for $10 to $15 and a new copy will usually run about $20. The market is pretty saturated with used copies though, so it can be found cheap. So far the cheapest I’ve seen it was $5, but only on a couple of occassions.

Rip-Off Warning: You can easily find it for $30 new, which is ridiculous considering how cheap it is used.

Platform: XBox 360 (Reviewed), Playstation 3, Windows

Is it worth it?: When Zero Punctuation decided to cover Turok, Yahtzee instead crucified standard poor design decisions commonly found in First Person Shooters. The reason why he chose to do it in his Turok review is because it was indeed the epitomy of poor design. Sadly, it didn’t have to be that way. A current console generation reboot of a long-running franchise, this could have been a fairly decent game without trying very hard.

There were some neat ideas, but the execution makes the game needlessly tedious. Close combat looks awesome, but when every knife kill is a cinematic where you are vulnerable to other enemies it can quickly end in your death. The perspective switches to third-person everytime Turok does an action like climb a ladder or stabs an enemy, and you’re constantly zooming back into first-person for everything else. Weapons are generic, the settings repetitive and surprisingly bland, and the attempts to make the game suspenseful often fall flat, are frustrating, or oddly generic despite the regular dinosaur adversaries.

I suppose I could cover something about the needless rip-off of Aliens and the slavish following of space marine conventions in first-person shooters, but we don’t really play these games for the story so if the gameplay is bad does it really matter how derivative the plot is?

Did I mention the game features quick-time events for struggling with dinosaurs that pounce on you? While they are not terribly difficult, they just add to the tedium. I’m not a fan of quick-time events in general, but these might have been somewhat logical had the rest of the game been better. Instead it just adds another layer of busy work into a game that already has several layers.

It doesn't get more generic than this!

It doesn't get more generic than this!

Final Judgement: Pass or purchase? I’d say this is a solid “Pass”. Over two hours into the game I found myself more bored than engaged with only a couple of set pieces featuring dinosaur standoffs that really interested me. The game personally set me back only $10.00, so I’m not upset with the value of the game so much as it has proven to be a poor investment of my gaming time. There are plenty of other generic bargain bin shooters available that would be a much better way to spend your time.

Comments

  1. Haha.

    Thanks for saving us the money.

    I don’t think I’ve ever been impressed by any of the Turok games.

  2. For some reason, my friends and I played Turok Evolution to death on the Gamecube. It was a terrible game, but we loved its multiplayer nonetheless. We always hoped that a next-gen Turok would have good multiplayer.

    Does this game even have multiplayer? Was it so bad you didn’t even try it out?

  3. Jason O says:

    It does indeed have multiplayer, but the game wasn’t exactly a smash success so your options may be limited.

    There are some interesting features that do make good use of the setting. For example, you can initiate dinosaur attacks but since they’ll attack anyone that can work for or against you.

  4. Unleashing the dinosaurs sounds interesting. Do they fight with each other?

    The weapons were what we loved about multiplayer. The darkmatter cube caused us many disputations and unkind words.

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