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TheRaider.net Research Video Games Fate of Atlantis - Action Game
 

Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis:
The Action Game

 
Box Cover

Developer: Attention to Detail Limited
Publisher: LucasArts

Release date:
1992

Story by: Hal Barwood
ST & Amiga versions by: Jon Steele
Music & Sound Effects by: Martin Walker
Production & design by: Jon Dean
Cartoon Sequence by: Nick Cook

Technical Info:
Platforms: Commodore 64, Sinclaire ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC,
PC DOS, Atari ST

Genre: Action Game

Mode(s): Single-player

 

As with LucasArts' 1989 release of the Last Crusade games, the 1991 release of Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis was also marked with two versions, one an action oriented game and the other a graphic adventure. And as with the Last Crusade games, the graphic adventure of the pair remains as endearing today as it did over a decade ago whilst the action game for Fate of Atlantis has fallen into obscurity. Why? Well, there are many reasons that Fate of Atlantis: The Action Game suffered the same fate is its Last Crusade counterpart.

 
 

Story and Gameplay

click to enlarge
Sega Mega Drive/Genesis

The game was based around five levels and the same general plot as the legendary graphic adventure. Indiana Jones and Sophia Hapgood must race the Nazis to the lost city of Atlantis before they can harness its powers. Unlike the graphic adventure, this action game was geared to appeal to the gamer who liked a faster, more "real time" feel. As such, the entire game was presented from a ¾ perspective similar to games like Diablo. You control Indy through five levels with Sophia in tow to find Atlantis. The game takes you through locations like Monte Carlo, a nazi submarine, exotic islands, and Atlantis itself.

 
 

Conclusion

This game is essentially the "dumbed down" version of the graphic adventure and it is not very enjoyable to play for quite a number of reasons. For one, it is amazing to think that Fate of Atlantis: The Action Game and the graphic adventure were released at the same time because the difference in the graphics is so great. The graphic adventure has beautiful graphics with well rendered detail, color, and fluid animation. This action game looks a little better than an average Nintendo game with very poor detail and even less coloring. Indiana Jones' pants are black and the rest of his body is brown, if that gives you any idea of the detail I am talking about. The play control is choppy and stilted and the scenery scrolling is very difficult on the eye. As with the Last Crusade action game, this game too found its way to multiple platforms after initially landing on the PC. The Amstrad CPC, Sinclaire Spectrum, Atari ST, and Commodore 64 all received nice inferior editions of this game.

The game is a combination of real time combat with some puzzle solving thrown in what I assume is an attempt to keep the game interesting. The item and status menus are poorly interfaced with the game and, for all intents and purposes, are just plain awkward to navigate. Indy's main weapons are his whip and fists, much like in the Last Crusade action games. Unfortunately, unlike the Last Crusade action game, a bullwhip and fists are hardly enough because they do not eliminate any enemy permanently. This becomes very frustrating very quickly. For example, in the first level at the Monte Carlo casino, you are looking for Sophia (who you can control separately in certain sections of the game). However, there are these crazy characters that look like bellboys who will run you down and begin pummeling you should you walk through the wrong door. So, naturally Indy should be able to whip them and make them go away but instead they just bend over for a second and then get up and begin attacking you again.

click to enlargeclick to enlargeclick to enlarge
Indy & Sophia finding the way into the heart of Atlantis.

All in all, the game is unendingly frustrating with poor play control and even poorer graphics. It is no wonder that this game has fallen into what I have dubbed "LucasArts' Museum of Oddities" which also includes Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade: The Action Game and Afterlife. I beg you, leave this game in the past. Play the real Fate of Atlantis, the graphic adventure we all know and love. In regard to Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis: The Action Game, I quote the immortal words of Dr. Henry Jones Sr. "Indiana…Let it go." (MF)

 

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