Today, I’m taking a look at yet another licensed game, and considering the horrors that I endured yesterday, my expectations are rather low. What game AM I reviewing, you may ask? It’s none other than The Flintstones.
Based off of the classic Hanna-Barbera cartoon and developed by Taito, most known for the 1978 arcade classic Space Invaders, this 1993 Sega Genesis title aimed to cash in on whatever popularity the show still had…and considering the massive lack of fanfare it gets compared to other licensed games such as DuckTales or Turtles in Time, it’s safe to say that it didn’t work out. But regardless, will this game have me going “YABBA-DABBA DOO!” over it? Let’s find out, shall we?
THE LOOKS – The graphics are..alright, for the most part. The character sprites look enough like the show, and the backgrounds are fairly well done and brightly detailed. But there’s just one problem – it’s GENERIC. I’m dead serious, this fits the “Unexceptional Platformer Level Themes” bill in every way possible! Grass level? Check. Water level? Check. Desert level? Checkity-check-check. Okay, truth be told nobody expects anything grand for a game based off of The Flintstones, but come on, at LEAST give us something interesting to look at!
THE SOUND – Well…it’s not as bad as yesterday’s game, but that’s not to say it’s good. The music just sounds like very little effort was put into it, with a rather sloppily composed 16-bit variation of “Meet The Flintstones” serving as the title theme. The rest of the music doesn’t fare any better either, varying from bland at best to downright annoying at worst. Once again, it isn’t “ear-piercingly” bad like yesterday’s game, but there’s something about the sound that just screams laziness.
Ah yes, who could forget the episode where Fred got mauled by what would happen if Spyro the Dragon puked out Rambi from Donkey Kong Country?
THE GAMEPLAY – Well, before I get into ripping the gameplay apart, I might as well look at the positives..or the small handful that there are, at least. Fred controls pretty decently, responding to button inputs fairly well and making platforming a cakewalk. But then there’s the level design…where do I begin? Not only does it feel lazily put together with a somewhat hazy structure and an overall lack of coherency, but sometimes it just gets downright BORING! I should also probably mention that the game likes to throw gimmicks at you in the hopes that it’ll spice up the gameplay. A lot. But none of them really work or are even fun for that matter, and just end up making you go “What the heck just happened?”. The hit detection is also pretty bad, with enemies sometimes taking off one of your hearts even if you clearly hit them with your club! Although it isn’t horrible, there’s still a massive amount of adjustments that need to be made here!
THE BOTTOM LINE – With poor level design, annoying music, and complete and utter unoriginality, The Flintstones is a rightfully forgotten below-average platformer that doesn’t do the modern stone age family justice. Do yourself a favor and just skip this one out – there are dozens of far more creative, well-thought out, greatly designed and overall superior platformers out there. And if you REALLY want to scratch that Flintstones itch so badly…just stick with the cartoon.
Ugh, next time can I review something that’s actually good?
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