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Review: Lost: The Video Game (Via Domus) - Xbox 360

by Steven Williamson on 20 March 2008, 12:58

Tags: Ubisoft's Lost for Xbox 360, Action/Adventure

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LOST? You will be...

It was always going to be a mammoth task for any developer to take on the LOST series and be able to smoothly chisel it into a viable gaming entertainment experience, but such is the success of the drama that it was only a matter of time before someone took on that daunting challenge.

Personally, I would have preferred it if Ubisoft Montreal would have waited until the end of the entire show, when we're closer to discovering the secrets of the island (we hope), before it committed to the game's development, but I was still happy to know that this LOST licence-winning developer, whose portfolio includes the likes of Rainbow 6 Vegas, Splinter Cell and Assassin's Creed has a wealth of experience and should at least have the know-how to create an atmospheric game, with a decent storyline and high production values.

As a LOST fan, I've been really looking forward to this game and have been sincerely hoping that Ubisoft Montreal do the LOST universe justice. But, how exactly do you cram such an elaborate story-line into a video game experience? How do you successfully capture the array of contrasting personalities on the island and where on earth do you begin to duplicate an iota of the tension-filled atmosphere that the producers have managed to achieve so wonderfully?

Click for larger image

Click for larger image

In truth, you can't, not completely anyway. As far as the storyline goes, Ubisoft Montreal has had to do something different, it just wouldn't have worked if it had simply ripped large parts of the script straight from the show and filtered them into the game, so instead it has tackled the LOST phenomenon in an inventive way, taking parts of the original story, embellishing them slightly and then adding a brand new character into the mix with a background of his own. The new material ties in with the existing LOST story and opens up plenty of new questions (as if we needed any more).

You still get the chance to interact with many of the characters from the series, such as Charlie, Locke, Hugo and Sawyer, though in truth their personalities never really shine through due to some awful impressions and mediocre acting. You do also get to visit many of the locations from the series, such as the original beach, where the survivors of Oceanic Flight 815 crash, the Black Rock and the Swan Station, all of which have been suitably rendered and well designed, giving us the chance to interact with the LOST universe we know and love.

Although there's some evidence to suggest that Ubisoft Montreal has put more effort into the game than most developers do when trying to cash in quickly on a popular license, LOST: The Video Game still doesn't 'cut the mustard' in terms of providing an entertaining adventure experience. Hardened fans of the series will certainly still take something from the game, but the sloppy mechanics, plodding game-play and some frustrating puzzles prevent it from being the enjoyable, thrill-ridden adventure it could and should have been.