I feel very privileged to be in a position where people will send me a game to review. When I got offered a code for a game with a rampaging dinosaur, I figured that it’s the sort of thing my little boy would love. I downloaded it with such high hopes. My son would be so happy and I would be the best dad around. Unfortunately, this anticipation quickly vanished once I started the game up. So, what is wrong with Roarr! Jurassic Edition?
Well, let’s start with that name. While I can easily get past the extra ‘r’ in Roarr, the game can’t actually decide what to call itself. The eShop has the game as Roarr! Jurassic Edition, but the in-game menu calls itself Roarr! The Adventures of Rampage Rex. So what if a PR rep may have chosen to list the game differently on the eShop, I hear you say. The confusion doesn’t end there, though. What do you think is the name of the dinosaur in Roarr! The Adventures of Rampage Rex? All of you who answered “Rampage Rex,” please mark your answers with a cross. The correct answer is of course “Sue.”
So, the marketing and decisions in the game may be a little confused, but how is the actual game? Well, I will give it to the team at Born Lucky Games (who claim on their website to make “the best games ever, seriously”) — they did at least make a sort-of adventure with a rampaging Tyrannosaurus rex. It plays like some sort of Godzilla-type game with you playing as a T-Rex trying to wipe out the marauding aliens that have landed on Earth. Now if you can ignore the fact that the scale of your dinosaur and the aliens makes them about the same size as the Burj Khalifa (the tallest building in the world), the world just feels empty, and the characters are janky. The forested areas have trees that are planted approximately two football fields apart. The populated areas will have around eight office blocks/skyscrapers and then only about five houses.
All of this would be forgivable for a $10 game if the gameplay were good. Unfortunately, Roarr! isn’t much better on this front. Apart from the fact that the camera occasionally has a mind of its own, the movement of your dinosaur is awkward. This is exacerbated when the game introduces slopes. I once went up a slope and then tried to come back down it, and my character was just floating in mid-air. The hit detection on your attacks is quite often off. The animations of your attacks are pretty jerky. There’s one end-of-level boss whose animation is really off. He’ll attack you, and when he finishes he will instantly be facing wherever you are. Even if you’re in completely the opposite direction, he will suddenly be facing you with no transition animation at all.
There are (mercifully) only six levels to the game. The last level, however, will see you facing off against all the bosses from the previous five levels and one ultimate boss. This level is so much harder than the previous ones. There are fewer objects to charge your special move and the enemies drop less health. What’s more, the arenas are so much smaller, making it tough to get some space and regroup. Special mention also has to go to the music. It’s not bad in and of itself, but it feels like there’s only around 60 seconds of music that is replayed incessantly all the way through the game.
I wanted to like Roarr!. I really did. It just fails on so many levels. While the game engine worked without any issues, everything added to it falls somewhat short. I know this is only a $10 purchase, but I would much rather the developer had spent a little more time and upped the price. As it is, I just can’t recommend Roarr!: Jurassic Edition, not even to dinosaur-obsessed little boys.
A review code was provided by the publisher.