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game: Tak
three star
posted by: GF! Back Catalogue 10/2004 => 1995
publisher: THQ
date posted: 12:00 AM Sun Jan 11th, 2004
last revision: 12:00 AM Sun Jan 11th, 2004

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Now I enjoy a side scrolling platformer as much as the next person, but there really has to be something new to the experience for me to really get excited. Playing this game had all of the excitement of watching reruns. Even when it's a good rerun, you know how it's going to end and you feel like you can turn it off at any point without really missing anything. There was no sense of urgency,no real reason to complete the game.

The plot is the same as the console version which is a shame. The Pupanunu people's beloved Moon Juju has tragically fallen and it is up to you with the aid of the village shaman to battle the evil Tlaloc and restore the Moon Juju to her proper place. To make matters worse everyone in the village has been turned into benign sheep. They could have used the handheld version to expand upon the characters and the story. I found that I actually enjoyed the world that was envisioned in the console version, and instead of a new experience, I got the same experience-- only watered down and two dimensional.

Not as charming as its Gamecube counterpart, the game was nevertheless entertaining in some spots. There were a few frustrating aspects to the side scrolling action. There are dangerous plants that you have to avoid, but they blend into the background so well that it makes it hard for you to see them. The blowgun weapon can be a little tricky to aim, but for the most part you seem to get around just fine. If you have younger children, they may find this game a little frustrating which is a little ironic considering that it's obviously aimed at the younger set.

It seems easy to get hurt while playing the game which can be somewhat frustrating, but there are so many health feathers peppered throughout the game that you manage to make do. You're supposed to collect sheep on each level. There's a counter up at the top of the screen to check off all of the livestock you've found, but as far as I can tell, there is no discernable reward for doing so. Unless the warm fuzzy feeling you get from rescuing mutton is its own reward.

Reading the above, it seems that I didn't like the game at all. Actually, there was a lot that I did like about the game. The graphics are bright and detailed, and when I first turned on the game, I was filled with a sincere sense of hope that the game would be fun and entertaining. There is a little strategy involved, and I have to admit that I enjoyed the chicken suit (however, it was more entertaining in the console version)

It is not a bad game. Some parts were actually quite fun, and I know it's not fair comparing the console version to its handheld counterpart, but it was just so unsatisfying. They were obviously under pressure to complete the game in time for the release of the console version, which is too bad. There's really nothing about this game that sets it apart. So, if you have no intention of investing in the more elaborate version of Tak, this game should suit most platformer fans just fine.