Also On: Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PS5, PS4, PC
Publisher: Limited Run Games
Developer: Limited Run Games
I’d imagine most kids have a dinosaur phase of their life. I certainly had my own, with multiple books detailing difficult to pronounce dino’s from various eras that I poured over daily. I would also guess that those early years of fascination likely fades for most, but it’s clear based on the success of the Jurassic Park franchise as a whole that nobody ever truly falls out of love with gigantic bird lizards.
Growing up as a kid/teenager in the 90’s, I was introduced to Michael Crichton’s Jurassic Park novel just a bit before the movie was released. Despite the confusing Chaos Theory segments with Ian Malcolm, I absolutely loved it, and was very excited for the upcoming film by the time that first trailer aired. Of course the film ended up being a smash hit, and once again reignited my love for all things dinosaurs. Thankfully video game developers and publishers were at the ready, unleashing a number of Jurassic Park games across multiple 8-bit, 16-bit, and handheld platforms.
Personally I played a lot of Jurassic Park on SNES and Genesis, and I’d guess those are the two most popular platforms overall for Jurassic Park games. However, the NES and Game Boy also had entries similar to their 16-bit counterparts. And if, like me, you had never played those particular games before, now you can thanks to Limited Run’s Jurassic Park Classic Games Collection. This collection features Jurassic Park for NES, SNES, Genesis and Gameboy, along with Jurassic Park II for SNES and Game Boy, rounding things out with Jurassic Park Rampage Edition on Genesis. It’s a nice little collection of these games, finally bringing the set to modern platforms.
From what I played of the games I grew up with, the emulation for these titles feels spot on to what I remember. While there aren’t a lot of bells and whistles here for retro enthusiasts, you do gain the ability to rewind time, save, apply a CRT filter, a border to fill out the edges or play in native resolution. Sadly, there are no bonuses outside of a soundtrack option for each game, allowing you to play through all the tracks for each release. I absolutely adore the music in Jurassic Park SNES, but I’d have loved to see manual scans, box art, and any additional info that could have been dug up on the history of these releases and the people behind them.
As far as how well these Jurassic Park titles stand the test of time, you could argue that they kind of don’t. I think there’s some merit for the SNES release and the two Genesis titles, but the rest are not my personal cup of tea. I think a lot of your love for this collection is going to be based on your nostalgia for the games, and not necessarily how great they were at the time. Despite my enjoyment of Jurassic Park on SNES, for example, it clearly struggles due to its ambition, mixing both outdoor 3rd person perspective sequences with indoor first-person locations that don’t quite have the horsepower behind them to make them enjoyable segments to explore.
Still, it’s not too often that we get to see collections like this of licensed games from the 16-bit era. There’s a lot of this stuff that will just never make it to platforms like Virtual Console, so I’m happy to see someone out there doing the work to try and put these releases together despite the quality of original games. It also helps that nothing appears to have been mucked up along the way, each of these titles plays exactly as I remember, which is definitely the key when going back and doing these retro collections. So if you’re like me, and have any fond memories of these games growing up as a kid in the 90’s, then I’d say Jurassic Park Classic Games Collection is certainly worth a look.
Note: Limited Run Games provided us with a Jurassic Park Classic Games Collection Switch code for review purposes.