|System: PC, PS3, Xbox 360|
|Dev: Ubisoft Montpellier|
|Release: December 6, 2011|
|Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p||Cartoon Violence|
Further, while the primary gameplay is appropriately polished, the interspersed minigame levels are too simplistic to be of any real interest or value. Whether flying a plane, riding in a motorcycle and sidecar, or battling pirates as they board your ship, the action is one-note and dull. Luckily, these segments are fairly short. They're available as timed challenges from the main menu, too, but it doesn't feel as though there's much of a reason to play them. They also come in a motion-enhanced flavor, though the Kinect, at least, did little to make them any more engaging, instead forcing even greater simplification on an already barren framework. There are also moments in the story in which players move around through 3D environments. This is rarely used for more than a bit of investigative work and getting from point A to point B. While it does serve to add necessary links to the story chain, these moments could just as easily have been handled with cutscenes.
The main story of The Adventures of Tintin takes mere hours to complete. Under five, in my experience. There is more to do, though, and not just the minigame challenges, but a full-fledged second platforming mode. The aforementioned "Tin Tin and Haddock" game mode takes place after the events of the story, inside an unconscious Captain Haddock's head. The gameplay is very similar to that of the main game, but is expanded with additional characters, each of whom has their own special abilities, and optional co-op. Those playing alone, however, can switch between characters (as well as change their costumes) on the fly, allowing them to freely navigate the levels as long as they've unlocked the necessary individuals to do so. It's an expansive gameplay mode that builds on what was done well in the story, increasing the challenge and providing, in sum, more entertainment than the actual campaign. It is, by far, the best part of the game, with tons of unlockable costumes and bonus levels. The surreal nature of the experience also allows the developers to go nuts with their design elements, including such things as a giant Tintin in the background and a boss battle with Castafiore's high-pitched head.
The Adventures of Tintin: The Game is far from perfect, and its simple gameplay and (mostly) shallow puzzles aren't going to entertain one for long. Still, it's an extremely solid movie tie-in and a mostly seamless platforming experience, with polish where it counts. It smartly sidesteps the pitfalls of excessive frustration and disjointed storytelling, opting to provide a short, enjoyable experience rather than an extended and repetitive one. For that, and the production values it displays, it deserves praise. The low-fidelity video, however, is inexcusable in a movie-licensed property and the minigames are generally unnecessary, simply taking time away from what was otherwise an enjoyable sidescrolling experience.
CCC Contributing Writer