Indiana Jones and the Staff of Kings
|Indiana Jones and the Staff of Kings|
|Developer(s)||Artificial Mind and Movement, Amaze (PSP)|
|Platform(s)||Wii, PlayStation Portable, Nintendo DS, PlayStation 2|
|Mode(s)||Single-player, multiplayer cooperative|
Indiana Jones and the Staff of Kings is a historical fantasy video game published by LucasArts for the Wii, Nintendo DS, PlayStation 2, and PlayStation Portable. The game is the third in the series of original 3D Indiana Jones games, preceded by Indiana Jones and the Emperor's Tomb, and Indiana Jones and the Infernal Machine. The Wii version also includes Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis video game as an unlockable.
The game was initially developed for the higher-end PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 systems, before switching to the aforementioned lower-end platforms. As a result, both systems never saw a proper Indiana Jones video game being released besides the Lego Indiana Jones duology.
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The Wii version of the game includes an exclusive co-op story mode (with Indy and Henry Jones Sr.) and unlockable version of the classic point and click adventure Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis (also set in 1939). On the PlayStation 2 and Wii versions Big Head mode, Henry Jones Sr., Tuxedo Indy, and Han Solo from Star Wars are unlockable.
The story begins with Indiana Jones hunting for an ancient ram's head idol in Sudan in 1939. Indy traverses a canyon and enters the temple of the idol. After a few narrow escapes, including a swarm of spiders and collapsing statues, Indy finds the idol and is about to exit, when he encounters a group of Nazis. Indy is confronted by their leader, Magnus Voller, and a Nazi aide bearing a pistol. Indy is forced to give up the Idol, but makes an escape when he distracts Voller. Indy then makes his way outside, and fights off some Nazi soldiers. He gets in a truck and chases after a plane that is taking off down the runway. After catching up to the plane, he disposes of the pilot and takes off. He is briefly pursued by some Nazi fighters, but escapes and heads back to the United States.
Back in America, Indiana receives a letter from an old friend, Archie Tan. He explains that he has information about the disappearance of Indy's former college professor, Charles Kingston. Indy heads to San Francisco to talk to Archie, only to find that he and his granddaughter Suzie have been kidnapped. Indy tracks down Suzie, and learns from her the location of her grandfather's office. He also learns of an ancient artifact that Archie was guarding, the Jade Sphere. Indy heads to the office and finds a secret passageway, leading to some waiting thugs. He defeats the thugs and rides a rickety chair lift down into a subterranean chamber filled with old ships. The chairlift gets hit by a thug with a pistol but Indy manages to survive the ride down. He also survives when a mast falls down. He meets more thugs down below, but dispatches them. He then finds the Jade Sphere in a pile of cannonballs. A day later, Indy is standing outside a San Francisco office, when he spots Archie across the street being held by Magnus Voller and a Nazi agent. Voller orders Indy to hand over the Sphere, lest Professor Tan die. Indy appears to throw the Sphere to Voller before he and Archie flee, but when Magnus opens the packaging he discovers it is a worthless statue. Indy and Archie are chased by cars with machine gunners inside. Indy uses his pistol to shoot out the tires or engines of the cars (in the Nintendo DS version, this is replaced by a brawl on top of the cable car), and the trolley is stopped by Archie. After Archie tells Indy about the events that transpired, Indiana decides to head for Central America, where Kingston found the Sphere years ago.
At the dock to his destination, Indy gets into a minor argument with an Irish photographer named Maggie O'Mally, who decides to escort him on the way there. However, their campsite and the surrounding forest are attacked by native mercenaries in Magnus's employment. Indy manages to fend off the attackers. He saves a village of Indians in the Wii and PS2 version, who give him the key to a pyramid. Indy travels through the ruined pyramid, which is based on the Mayan underworld, which leads to a diary of Kingston's revealing details of the Staff of Kings, the artifact that Moses used to part the Red Sea. After obtaining further clues on the staff's location in Istanbul, Indy locates Kingston in Nepal. Unfortunately, the Nazis have followed Indiana to the Staff's resting place and kidnap Kingston and Maggie (who is actually an MI6 agent). Indy then sneaks onto the Nazis' zeppelin, the Odin, and rescues Maggie, but is unable to prevent Magnus from fatally shooting Kingston and using the Staff to clear a path through the Red Sea. In response, Indy and Maggie chase Magnus on a motorcycle with a sidecar and defeat him with a rocket launcher. Magnus then attempts to escape, but Indy sucker-punches him into the wall of water. Upon reaching dry land, the staff unleashes a blast that causes the water to sink the zeppelin. It then turns into a snake, and Indy laments "Ugh.. It can take care of itself...".
The game was announced in 2005. In a July 2008 interview with DailyGame, a LucasArts representative dismissed rumours of the game's cancellation, stating that it was "very deep into development". The game was initially intended to target the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, leveraging their power to display more advanced graphics while using the same engine as the high-definition versions of Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, but was later switched to lower-end consoles and handhelds. The game's story was inspired by Raiders of the Lost Ark and is a collaborative effort of the design and management teams at LucasArts, with one of the writers being Peter Hirschmann. It was created a few years before the release and received some input from George Lucas and Steven Spielberg.
IGN praising its interface, graphic effects, number of extras, interactive levels, and varied gameplay, but criticized its "stupidly implemented motion controls". The A.V. Club gave it an F (a 0 on the Metacritic scale). They called the motion controls "inexcusable" and stated the game's best aspect was the inclusion of the point-and-click adventure Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis. GameSpot criticized its "terribly laid-out checkpoints", "out-of-date" visuals, and "atrocious, annoying motion controls".
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