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JadeDragon's reviews and playing tips: Palm OS games

Jack or 100 Ways to Barbecue by iNDUSTRY  Entertainment, Price $14.95
Reviewed January, 2004

Playing platform games on the Zodiac will make you realize why Tapwave made this device for PDA gaming. It's the perfect device for moving your character around the screen, jumping and fighting. A perfect game to go with this perfect device is the newest title from iNDUSTRY Entertainment, Jack or 100 Ways to Barbecue! In a maze that consists of hundreds of little rooms, Jack works his way through a LodeRunner like environment, climbing ladders, jumping over fire and collecting keys and treasures. A cute character combined with a dungeon maze that has a comic touch gives gamers a good run for their money.

Though Jack has his own detailed story on iNDUSTRY's web site, veteran gamers will recognize and feel right at home with the maze even without that story. It looks like a LodeRunner maze with ladders connecting the platforms and treasures scattered around the platforms. The difference in Jack is that these rooms seem all connected with ladders and doors. Your character, Jack, can freely go anywhere he wishes as long as there is a ladder leading him there, or he has a key to the door. Jack is also a very agile. He can jump over fire or water, jump past monsters, climb ropes and poles, and more. You do need be careful not let him fall too far, or he will plummet to his death. The game play also includes shooting the monsters with the weapons you find while exploring the maze.

The adorable Jack character along with the dungeon design makes this game easy to pick up and play. The maze layout keeps the exploration interesting. Having treasure objects such as Palm PDAs, floppy disks along with apples and melons give the dungeon crawl comic relief.

Walking in the dark rooms with a torch lighting your way is a unique experience. Most Palm gamers should find a display mode that fits their screen. On the Zodiac, you can display it in high res and high res plus modes, with a single button switch (the function button on the left side of the Zodiac). The graphics look sharp in both display modes.

The techno style music tracks in Jack fit the game well with a mysterious mood that hints that something surprising will happen around the corner. You can turn it on or off by tapping on the menu button on the silk screen. Jack runs on any Palm OS devices that has 3.5 version or newer. The game plays flawlessly on the Zodiac.

Playing Hints and Tips

Collecting Palm PDAs is very rewarding as each of them gives you critial information about the rooms nearby. Always stock up on keys and be selective as to which doors you open. If you see ladders leading up or down to rooms, use those before using your keys to open doors. In dangerous areas, keep Jack jumping. For more details on the items you can collect and monstors you will face, visit this page on Jack's web site: www.indus3.org/jack/instructions.html

 

 

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Ratings (scale of 1 to 5):

Graphics

The sharp graphics and Jack's smooth movement make the game fun to play. The humor shines through the character and level design.

Sound

Good music tracks that fit the game play. You can turn the music on or off, but there isn't in-game adjustment for the volume.

Fun Meter

Platform games are fun because they offer a good amount of action yet are easy to pick up and play. Jack offers just that. The Zodiac's joystick and action buttons make this game even more enjoyable

Addictivity

You will likely only play the game once, but with hundreds of rooms in a large maze design, it will take you a while to trek through the entire game.



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