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Q2 2008



- Mini-games are okay



- Tons of micromanagement

- Characters totally lack initiative when on their own

- This series is getting repetitive



Review: Brain Age 2 (DS)

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Lost in Blue 3

Score: 5.0 / 10


Early in the DSí life, there were plenty of games coming out on it that had players thinking, ďWow! I can scribble on the touch pad, poke stuff, and even use a microphone.  What a novel bunch of concepts.Ē  And novel they were, but now, years after it has come out, one would think that the Lost in Blue series, now on its third edition, would have grown a bit.  Not so.  Instead we have a game that isnít all that different than its predecessors.  This may be fine if you havenít played any other games in the series, but for those familiar with it, Lost in Blue 3 feels like a retread of past games.


lost-in-blue-3-1.jpg (81145 bytes) lost-in-blue-3-2.jpg (45345 bytes) lost-in-blue-3-3.jpg (30207 bytes)


Players start out with a chap, named Sam, stricken with amnesia finding himself washed ashore on a deserted island with the requisite mix of sandy beaches, palm trees, waterfalls, foliage, and so forth.  Before long he stumbles across a young lady named Claire, who apparently was dating Sam, and they set out to survive on this island while trying to get Sam to remember his past.  As time passes, they are joined by two more characters who help in the survival and mini-game hijinx.





- DS Game Reviews- Reviews of Games from Konami

What really hurts this game is that what it has players doing has already been done in the last two Lost in Blue titles.  Players need to forage for food and fresh drinking water in order to keep charactersí health, stamina, and other aspects of physical well-being in good shape.  Failure to do so results in a slow, agonizing death for the character, and itís game 


over.  However, itís just been done so much.  This constant micromanagement of characters by stuffing food in their faces, and having them run around looking for more was kind of neat the first time out, but now itís just getting tedious.


When players arenít looking for food, theyíre either trying to find a way off the island, or futzing around on mini-games.  Theyíre fun for a little bit, but not enough to cancel out the sense of same old same old plaguing Lost in Blue.  Thereís a cooking mini-game, river rafting, hunting, and so on.  What could have made them more enjoyable is if it were possible to do these things for longer, but doing so would cause your remaining characters that are waiting for you in a cave to starve to death.  Apparently they lack the initiative to scrounge around for food on their own, and thatís going to eat into playersí ability to enjoy some mini-games.


This last bit just exacerbates the whole problem of micromanagement when feeding characters.  Thereís no lack of food around that they can munch on, but they wonít get down to it unless you shove it down their throat for them.  Itís like they couldnít do a thing for themselves even if their life depended on it, and sadly it does.


A couple of other random issues that irked me were starting fires in the game, and how dark the game environment got at night.  Part of starting fires requires blowing into the microphone of the DS.  However, it seems like the sensitivity of the mic isnít that good in Lost in Blue 3.  I really had to blow into the thing to get it to work to the point that I felt like I was hyperventilating.  Moreover, at night it is dark in this game.  I know it must be difficult to see in the night on an island in the middle of nowhere, but it doesnít mean gamers need to be given eyestrain in order to enhance the realism while playing this game.


The only way that this game may be fun for some is if they completely missed out when these sorts of games first hit the market, utilizing all of the DSí functionality.  Then, and only then, will this game feel like a breathe of fresh air.  Even in that case, one could probably find an earlier edition of Lost in Blue for cheaper, and still get much of the same gameplay for a fraction of the price, again making it less worthwhile to bother with this third instalment in the series.


Jeff Nash

June 15, 2008

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