The Mummy Returns
Game Info
Platform(s)
Playstation 2
Publisher
Universal Interactive
Developer
Blitz Games
Genre
Action/Adventure
ESRB Rating
Violence
Grade
The Good

• Two storylines to play
• Simple controls with HUD aid
• You get to suck souls as Imhotep

The Bad

• Graphically underdeveloped
• Too short
• Too easy
• The camera is definently one of your greatest challenges

 
Grade
D+

The Mummy Returns follows a long line of videogames based on movies. While the history of these games has been littered with some real bad games (Crow: City of Angels, Batman & Robin), I still hoped that this game would prove me wrong. For those who don't know, the movie details the adventures of Rick and Evy O'Connell as the evil Imhotep is raised once again from the dead and kidnaps their son so he can defeat the Scorpion King and take command of Anubis' Army. The game takes this basic plot and utilizes it in the cut-scenes.

One of the nice features of the game is choosing whether to be O'Connell or Imhotep, each with their own story line and abilites/weapons. If you choose to be O'Connell, you follow his story as his son is kidnapped and he must travel to Cairo, the Oasis and into the Netherworld to save him. In this trip, Rick uses guns and swords to hack and slash his way to locales to solve simple puzzles and then move on to the next area. On the other hand, you can play as Imhotep, who makes a similar trip, by way of Karnak, to defeat the Scorpion King. Imhotep has the ability to absorb life energy from foes and spends his time looking for magical keys and jars.

Controls are basic and uncomplicated. An HUD in the top-right corner will tell you what buttons and options you have available to you. Often, this is the only way a player can know what they can do in an area. Turning off the HUD on the first play-through may lead to a lot of time wandering around aimlessly. There is no auto-aim for the guns, but since there doesn't seem to be a lot of ammo around, you'll most likely be using melee weapons to finish this game.

Graphically, The Mummy Returns really suffers. I doubt this is what Sony had in mind when it imagines an impressive PS2 game. The environments are only moderately detailed and the textures are for the most part lack-luster. Lighting effects seem poorly used and the character models seem to be fairly low on detail. The animations are jerky and reminiscent of early PSone games. In fact, I've seen a number of PSone titles that managed to look better than this.

On the sound front, I will say that the soundtrack is decent, even though it may not be varied enough. That really isn't the fault of the soundtrack itself. There just aren't enough locales to provide the needed variety. Sound effects are weak in that the same effects are used so often that they actually become annoying. The voice acting is another adventure all unto itself. Since the real actors weren't available, the voices are done by people trying to sound like the real McCoys. Unfortunately, though, they only manage to sound like campy knock-offs. The lame scripting doesn't help, either.

Ignoring the weakenesses in the graphics and sound department, The Mummy Returns comes across as a fairly simple action game that's both easy and short. If you don't want to be mentally challenged, you can play this for a few hours (2-3 per story) and feel wonderful at beating it in one sitting. Those who want something more will walk away angry. If you're at all interested, rent it. There are far better things to pay $50 on.

- - Vane

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