James Cameron's Avatar

  • Year:2009
  • Director:James Cameron
  • Cast:Michelle Rodriguez, Sigourney Weaver, Sam Worthington
  • Release Date:January 11, 2010
  • Distributor:Ubi Soft
  • The Film:3.0

Not bad if you’re in an undemanding mood and you just can’t shake Avatar fever.

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There are three things one can be sure of in this world: death, taxes and crappy video game tie-ins. That said, Avatar at least attempts to rise above the usual movie-linked dross, bringing interesting gameplay elements and sumptuous graphics.

Firstly it should be noted that the game doesn't follow the movie's story. Sure it's set on Pandora, and yes you are in an Avatar giant Hippie Space Smurf body in parts of the game - but you can forge your own destiny.

For instance at a point not too far into the game you can choose to side with the Na'vi or the RDA. Both choices lead to cool action, where you operate mechs or flying beasties depending on which side your character is allied with.

Both sides have their strengths and weaknesses and both provide a unique, if slightly underwhelming, third person action experience.

Another nice touch is the ability to play the game in 3-D. Like the movie, 3-D does tend to help you overlook the narrative flaws and glitchy moments.

Ultimately, though, Avatar is a game you've played a million times before. It's nice to have such a strong backdrop, and rabid fans of the movie will appreciate the references - not to mention Sigourney Weaver (who was an absolute revelation in the movie, nice one Sigs) and Giovanni Ribisi (also a cracking role) playing their respective parts. Although, as this is sort of an alternate reality version of the game Sam Worthington and Zoe Saldana (swoon) do not appear.

It sounds fantastic on paper but very linear progression, repetitive game mechanics and, irony of ironies, sloppy in-game camerawork put this on a level above normal movie licenses but still marred with annoying flaws.

Not bad if you're in an undemanding mood and you just can't shake Avatar fever.

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