Jumper: Griffin’s Story
Just as sports games are perennially mocked for being more of the same, film adaptions are often ridiculed for not living up to the material they’re based on. Yet with Jumper, the two are perfectly aligned. The movie was a horrendous mess, with a predictable and poorly written script, dire acting and more plot holes than you could shake a stick at. It’s fitting then, that the game is just as shoddy.
“The game is just as shoddy”Jumper: Griffin’s Story follows one of the film’s minor characters and the only one that had any depth whatsoever. Griffin is a jumper; someone with the power to teleport anywhere he can imagine. How he got this power is unexplained and so is the reason why a group called Paladins are out to kill him and his kind.
Just as the movie’s budget was seemingly spent entirely on transporting the crew to each of the exotic locations it features, the game’s resources appear to have been squandered on its cut scenes. Styled like the cartoon sections of Kill Bill, they do a decent job of telling the story, but do little to hide the hideous game lurking behind this thin veil of quality.
You’d think that being able to teleport would make for some intriguing gameplay, but as in the film, Griffin opts to zoom around and attack his assailants with bats and other blunt objects instead of just shooting them. Griffin’s Story maps each of the controller’s face buttons to a position around your enemies and all you have to do is hit the buttons until your foes fall limp on the floor. You get a penalty for striking a side of your opponent when the reticule below them is red and a bonus when it’s green, but aside from this, there’s little skill required to defeat the endless stream of idiotic enemies thrust in your way.
Each level is a linear journey through a copy and pasted world, with scarcely any variety worth mentioning. You’ll find a few items to collect and unlock a number of combos, but ultimately you’ll just want to progress, hoping that there’s some change for the better in sight. Predictably, you’ll be sorely disappointed.
“There’s little skill required to defeat the endless stream of idiotic enemies”The game’s visuals are perhaps even worse than its gameplay, with graphics that wouldn’t look acceptable on the original Xbox. There are frame rate issues, pop-up in abundance, appalling textures and comically poor lighting. The Paladins you face are based on perhaps five or six models and the number of animations available to them number in the in the same region. The camera also wanders off whenever it fancies, leaving you to fight multiple enemies whilst effectively blindfolded.
As you might expect, you’re not going to find any plausible reason to play through Griffin’s Story again, even if you somehow manage to put up with it all the way through to the end.
There are simply no redeeming features to justify recommending Griffin’s Story, even for people who are inexplicably fans of the movie. If you were on a quest to find a more pointless way to waste ninety minutes of your life than to watch Jumper, then you’d need look no further.