|LEGO Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures|
November 29, 2008 | Marcus Albers
Back in 2005, an unlikely combination of licenses lead to one of the most well-received and popular games of that year. The game was LEGO Star Wars. LucasArts and Traveller's Tales teamed up to bring two very popular franchises together to make something that became so much better than the sum of its parts. Using simple gameplay mechanics combined with humorous animations and cut-scenes, and a cast of characters that would make any fanboy shed a tear, LEGO Star Wars struck a chord with nearly every demographic. Since then, the series has spawned a second game that followed the storyline of the original trilogy, as well as a "Complete Saga" edition for the gaming consoles. So, what would be next for the series? The LEGO company had already released a number of sets based on the Indiana Jones license in anticipation of the release of The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, the long-awaited fourth installment of the Indiana Jones franchise. It seemed only natural to bring this concept to the video game world. And so was born LEGO Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures.
Released for consoles and the PC in June of 2008, LEGO Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures (presumably named in order to separate this game from another possible game dealing with the fourth and future installments) follows Indy and his many companions and enemies through the story lines of the first three Indiana Jones movies, namely Raiders of the Lost Ark, The Temple of Doom, and The Last Crusade. And, while some artistic license has been taken to either make the scenes portrayed more family friendly, or to better adapt them to the LEGO style of gameplay, the games stays remarkably true to the original stories, as long as you can accept that Indy didn't do nearly as much jumping and collecting in the movies as he does here. You will find many familiar environments and scenes here, from the boulder escape in the first movie to the Shanghai night club in the second movie to the library from the third movie.
Game mechanics are virtually identical to the second LEGO Star Wars game. Your goal is to collect as many LEGO studs scattered throughout the level as you can. You'll not only find these lying around in the open, but you will also be able to produce them by destroying objects and be defeating enemies. In the LEGO world, these studs allow you to purchase characters, abilities, and artifacts as you unlock them in the game. Collect enough studs on each level (usually around 40,000-50,000) and you will be declared a "True Adventurer" and will win bonus studs at the completion of the level. While this part can be tedious, completionists will find hours of gameplay to be had in this goal alone. Also scattered among the levels are various treasure chests. Collecting these will allow you to unlock pieces of artifacts for each of the levels, similar to the mini-kit ships in the LEGO Star Wars games.