Sure, the hype of 3D is exploding with Avatar, Train Your Dragon, Shrek, and probably another bunch of movies coming out in the next few years. 3D televisions are coming, and 3D gaming is coming, as well as a 3D hand-held Nintendo 3DS. Having grown up in the 70s and 80s, I remember 3D as a sometimes there's a movie on TV or one in the theatre that has you use those funky blue and red glasses to turn the blurry picture into a 3D funfest. Sometimes.
The last movie I had seen in this fashion, that I can recall, was Creature from the Black Lagoon in the 1980s, with our 7-Eleven WNEW 102.7 FREE 3D glasses at the ready for a 3D treat, that wasn't really there. They took an old movie and showed it to us, with the only thing looking 3D being the bullets zipping at the Creature as it swam underwater. Pretty neat, but not much to it.
Majesco's Attack of the Movies 3D takes those red-blue glasses and builds a game around them(which you can also play in 2D). It's a budget title, running around $30 for both the Wii and the XBox 360. The 360 version is the one that arrived in the mail from the crew at Majesco just a few days ago here at the Home Office in Fragville Junction, NY. And you know what? It's pretty good, if you can look past a few frustrating elements, or if you have a few friends with you to play a few rounds. It supports up to 4 players, and comes with 4 sets of red-blue glasses (and if you have a Wii, it supports the Wiimote lightgun).
The first thing you'll notice, no options. You can choose Easy, Normal, or Hard difficulty, you can choose 2D or 3D, you can look at the power-ups in the game, and you can look at the credits of who made the game. That's it, bare bones. That means you can't invert your sights (!) for the guns in the game, and you can't have the sights roam free- they snap back to the center when you let go of the mushroom controller. You can't even re-map the buttons to suit your control style!
Secondly, you'll notice as you play through, the difficulty is inconsistent in places, and you will encounter a few places on the East setting where you will die often. The most glaring level is Graveyard Gunfight 3D when you hit the crypts. If you don't blast the skeletons as soon as they climb out of the ground, your done. They will throw skulls and swarm you like there afterlife depends on it, which, well, it does. Wait, do undead fight for their lives or their afterlives? I'm confused.
Thirdly, the lack of checkpoints is controller-throwingly annoying. I don't want to play through a game for 15 to 20 minutes and die, then have to trudge through the same section again. I know it's a budget title, but that's one of those "must-haves!" in a game.
Did you make it past those frustrating elements? Good. The game's graphics are fairly simple, in a refined Virtua Cop way, this is most likely due to the budget title and it being a port of a Nintendo Wii game. The gameplay is on-rails, meaning the game will move for you, and it's up to you to destroy the enemies on-screen like an arcade shooting gallery. Instead of killing people, you'll be shooting through waves of bugs, skeletons, spaceships, stone statues, sharks, robots, and other assorted enemies. When you choose to play in 3D, the effects are nice, but the lack of color comes through in the games.
This game consists of 6 levels that are told in movies. The movies are: Insect Invasion, Cosmic Combat, Into the Emperor's Tomb, Robot Rebellion, Deep Sea Danger, and Graveyard Gunfight.
Cosmic Combat, plays very much like the awesome classic title Starblade, where you attack a fleet of spaceships, fight into the main base and destroy the main reactor, a-la Star Wars. The power core is impressive looking, reminding me of another movie, Event Horizon, and it's "special feature", including the deadly spikes, but minus all the other stuff. Essentially a big, overly dangerous, "who in the world would build such a thing?" final batle, surrounded by turrets, and lots of power up weapons and health. The battle will take awhile, but you should have no problem licking it. This title is also the best one to play from beginning to end with the 3D glasses on, as the ships and the lack of anything in outerspace feels really good.
Into the Emperor's Tomb gives you an Indiana Jones-like adventure, and even includes a mine cart section, which is quick but looks nice in either 2D or 3D. There are lots of stone statues that will attack you with fireballs, but they telegraph their attacks, and you can blow through this level very quickly. The boss battle is not too difficult, but the boss is gigantic. Think the warrior statues in the level grown to towering proportions! Thankfully, that annoying chick from Temple of Doom is nowhere to be found. If she were, I would be trying to off her and toss her into the pit.
Robot Rebellion is Majesco's take on the Terminator movies, something that is readily evident with the heavy black and red color to the stage. The robots don't really move around that much, and the attacking tanks are fairly slow, but fire lots of projectiles that require pin-point accuracy to dfeestroy them. The good thing is you will have to be hit by an awful lot of them to die, and there are health packs scattered all over. Deep Sea Danger is a take on movies from the ocean (minus Leo DiCapprio) with a 1960s B-Movie feel to it , and has elements of Deep Blue Sea and The Abyss. Killer sharks, electric eels, yellow submarines (minus the silly music and the trippy visuals), mines, depth charges, all tumbling, chasing, falling, or waiting for you to come near them, waiting to see how good your aim is.
Graveyard Gunfight and Insect Invasion are the two generic movies, one based on killing the undead, and one based on giant insects. To quote the movie Ed Wood: "Giant bugs, giant grasshoppers, giant spiders. Who would believe such nonsense?" They play well, but are fairly simple. Graveyard Gunfight actually annoys me when the difficulty ramps up, because it is so quick, you can't think about it, and when you die, the checkpoint is so far back you'd want to toss the controller out the window.
There are a few guns to pick up, represented by icons of a pistol, an AK47, and an uzi. The weird thing, if you are in outer space, under sea, or anywhere else in the game, these are your weapons! Projectile weapons in space, who thought that was a good idea? The icon doesn't change to a blaster or a spaceship or anything else. It does the job but, really?
Anyhow, if you're looking for a good party game, and are tired of the same old games being repeated over and over, you may want to check out Attack of the Movies 3D. It doesn't have the over-the-top camp of Earth Defense Force for the 360, but that title is a different beast altogether. Attack 3D is a simple game at a budget price, and if you like on-rails shooters or a good time killer, or are fascinated by what us old people thought was "state of the art 3D" in the 1980s, then give this title a shot. If you have all of these overly-complex games and are looking for a straight-forward arcade game with an interesting gimmick, by all means, check it out! A fair warning, though, this game isn't for everybody, and there is a possibility that you might really hate this game.
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