reviews\ Nov 15, 2009 at 7:00 pm

LEGO Indiana Jones 2: The Adventure Continues - 360 - Review

I have to admit that I was a bit skeptical when I heard they were going to give the LEGO treatment to some of my favorite franchises like Star Wars, Indiana Jones and even Batman but it turns out that these games were not only delightfully humorous but also unexpectedly fun for gamers of all ages. While Indiana Jones has gotten the LEGO treatment before, LEGO Indiana Jones 2: The Adventure Continues for the Xbox 360 is Doctor Jones’ best adventure yet.

We named the dog Indiana 

Like the first LEGO Indiana Jones game, this sequel takes us through many of the more memorable events of all four Indiana Jones movies with more emphasis on the fourth film, Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, seeing as it makes up the Story Mode’s first levels. However, you do get to unlock the levels pertaining to the first three films starting with Raiders of the Lost Ark, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom and finally Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Oh, but these aren’t the same levels from the first game but rather they’re bigger and better and there are even levels left out the first time around (but more on that a bit later).

The good news is that you can play the first few levels of the Crystal Skull story and quickly unlock Raiders so you can go back to playing the true Indy classics. Once all the chapters are unlocked, the game gives you the chance to play through the story levels of the other chapters at any chapter or level that catches your fancy. You can even go back to a favorite level with any new character you unlocked in Treasure Mode or even Free Play mode.

If you haven’t played a LEGO Indiana Jones game before, the chapters retell the story from each film in its own cute and often funny manner. Sure, you’ll recognize the scenes but they - naturally - leave the violence out such in famous scenes like the face melting scene in Raiders or the cult leader ripping out hearts with his bare hand in Temple of Doom and replace them with slapstick comedy. As I mentioned, there are even new levels with new scenes left out in the first game. Missed the car chase scene with Short Round in Temple of Doom? Then you will be happy with this sequel.

The game’s sequel has bigger environments this time around and that means more ground to cover and more puzzles to solve. Once again, many of the puzzles you solve in the game requires different characters with their own unique abilities and skills. Marion and Willie, for example, have the ability to jump really high and can reach places the men cannot. Indy, of course, has his whip while Short Round has a wrench for the mechanical-based puzzles. Need to dig something up? Then Sallah is your man. Some characters even have phobias that get in the way of solving puzzles. For example, Indiana is afraid of snakes and his father, Doctor Henry Jones, is scared of rats.

Nazis, I hate those guys 

Aside from fun and often challenging puzzles, the game features plenty of fights - whether it’s going up against LEGO Nazis, cultists, gangsters or Russian soldiers just to name a few of the foes you’ll be facing. There are also boss battles, many of which are actually quite inventive and fun seeing as they take more than just brawling skills to defeat those bosses. Indy has a few new moves up his sleeve like the ability to whip tie somebody or whip tie them and then pick them up over his shoulder to toss somewhere. There are also vehicles in the game, many of which are used in combat (knocking other vehicles out) races and some of them are used to solve puzzles.

There are plenty of unlockable extras in the game such as the ability to purchase new vehicles and extra characters that you can use for the other game modes such as Free Play or Treasure Mode. This adds to the replay value. You can still have a friend drop in and out of the game offline as well as via Xbox Live but the best feature just happens to be the Build Your Level mode that allows you to create your own level complete with objects, vehicles and just about anything else you might want to add to your player-created level. Then you can share them with a friend and add your created level to any chapter. The best part is that even younger gamers will be able to create levels without problems.

Fortune and glory 

The game’s visuals are actually quite impressive despite the fact that everything is made out of LEGOs. The characters don’t always resemble the people from the movies but you’ll know who is who and boy, do they look shiny during the cut scenes. The environments actually do stand out beautifully and you just have to love the animated re-enactment of various scenes from the movies. If the Crystal Skull story was just entertaining as the story told here then Indy fans would have been happier. 

Interestingly enough, this is the first game where I don’t mind the total absence of voice work. The gags in the game are purely sight gags and that works well enough this way but we would have loved more sound effects. Still, the soundtrack more than makes up for this mainly because it’s composed of John Williams’ score from all four movies so you just don’t hear the same classic “Raiders’ March” theme … although it never gets old.

Spanning all four films and adding a number of juicy building block extras, LEGO Indiana Jones 2: The Adventure Continues for the Xbox 360 is not just another fun romp with everyone’s favorite archeologist but it’s also the best LEGO Indiana Jones game yet. Sure, the first game was great but this one has enough content to make for a purchase and even more so if you missed it the first time around.

Review Scoring Details for LEGO Indiana Jones 2: The Adventure Continues

Gameplay: 9.0
Fortunately, many of the more exciting moments from all four Indy movies that were left out of the first game do show up in this sequel. There are plenty of levels with more characters to unlock, vehicles to use (including animals to ride, like horses and camels) and fun boss fights and puzzles. You can even build your own level via a level editor.

Graphics: 9.0
Sure, the characters and objects are made out of LEGO but on the Xbox 360 they look downright amazing. The scenes are actually quite funny at times and downright hilarious in other times.

Sound: 8.5
There’s no dialogue and that’s fine seeing as the characters are a lot funnier communicating via grunts. What makes up for the minimal sound effects and lack of voice acting is the unforgettable John Williams score that plays throughout the game.

Difficulty: Medium
Some of the puzzles in the game will actually have you wondering what to do next no matter how old you are while others are easy to figure out. Combat can also be a bit challenging as well if you don’t watch your health, and some boss battles will keep you very busy.

Concept: 9.0
All four Indiana Jones movies are well represented in this game and you’ll be able to unlock more characters with their own unique abilities and phobias to use in the Free Play mode. There are a number of vehicles to unlock and use in the levels. We love co-op play but we love the Build Your Level mode even better.

Multiplayer: 9.0
Once again, a friend can drop in and out whenever they feel like it throughout the game’s various story levels as well as the Build Your Level mode. The best part is that you can share your created levels online with other players via Xbox Live.

Overall: 9.0
LEGO Indiana Jones 2: The Adventure Continues is a far superior sequel and a truly enjoyable LEGO title that gamers of all ages will relish on their Xbox 360. Thanks to the new level editor and loads of levels that span the four Indy films, this is the LEGO Indiana Jones game you will definitely want to buy.


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