Gigantosaurus: The Game (Xbox One) Review

Gigantosaurus: The Game might take its inspiration from Nintendo’s Super Mario Odyssey but winds up being a barren, time absorbing collect-a-thon. Although still serviceable when played in short bursts, this is ultimately is another licensed kid cash-in release.

The meat of the game takes place in large open environments, tasking the player to collect hundreds of things. While this worked well in classics such as Mario 64 or the Banjo titles, it lacks soul here in this dino-based adventure game. Platforming is basic at best, lacking any noteworthy set pieces, and everything in the environment is spaced by vast distances. See that clump of purple icons over there? Go ahead and walk the thirty seconds to get there. Don’t know where that dinosaur egg is? Just follow the colored dust trail then double back across the entire stage to drop it off in the nest. Do that enough times and be rewarded with a short racing segment that plays like a terrible Mario Kart clone before doing it all again in the next world. The worst part of navigating the large open worlds is the lack of camera control. Instead of freely controlling the camera with the right analog stick, the game essentially follows each dinosaur with preset, wildly swinging camera angles.  Maybe the devs thought controlling the camera would be too difficult for the young target audience but wind up being more difficult, annoying, and nauseating than it needs to be.

There is an attempt at being cute thanks to the rhyming narrator who introduces each stage but the comic book cutscenes scream low budget. The soundtrack also loops the same track repeatedly which is enough to drive the player mad when trying to collect all seeds, eggs, and secrets in each stage, a task that can take an hour or two per level. When playing solo, the player is free to change playable dinosaurs at the press of a button but they are all the same minus the rare contextual B button activation pads. One dinosaur can ram walls to open new paths whereas another dino can create a lever to turn a platform into an elevator, for example.  Ideally, each stage is best played in co-op mode so the massive amount of collecting can be divided among the group but the local-only setting is limiting.

Since this is a licensed title, the full retail release purchase price becomes difficult to swallow when there are better options on the market for essentially a similar price – players are paying to play as this Disney property.  Gigantosaurus isn’t a bad game, it is just empty, basic, and uninspired. At the same time, there is a surprising lack of dinosaur-based video games on the market, a subject that would seemingly fit well with elementary children.  If you have a couple of young gamers under the age of 9 that want to play co-op though, there is some value here.

Also available on PS4, Switch, and PC.

SCORE: 5/10

Also Try: Ugly Dolls: An Imperfect Adventure
Don’t Forget About: the re-release of Spongebob: Battle for Bikini Bottom  
Play It Instead: the Banjo tiles found on Rare Replay (Xbox One)  

By: Zachary Gasiorowski, Editor in Chief
Twitter: @ZackGaz

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