Players: 1 Player Game | Release Date: 10/23/02 | Genre: Action
When we previewed ToeJam and Earl 3: Mission to Earth, the game showed a lot of promise. This franchise was a huge cult classic on the Genesis and Sega has done nothing with it until now. However, after spending some time in Mission to Earth, I must say I am a little bit disappointed.
ToeJam, Earl, and Latisha have been given an assignment by the mighty Funkopotamous to retrieve the 12 Stolen Albums of Funk. Along the way, you have the option to bring as many earthlings to funk as you can. After receiving this mission, our three heroes jump into their ship and head to earth.
Once arriving in earth, you must collect keys, talk to people, and convert them to funk by using your one attack move. The camera is not active and you must manually adjust it at all times. However, since the gameplay is slow, this doesn't normally present a problem. After collecting enough keys, a level will open up and you can visit it via a hub system like what is seen in Super Mario Sunshine. Before entering a level within the hub, a brief cinema from some 즵nky sistersill play and provide you with the objectives. Mostly this requires you to use your attack move on people until they are converted to funk, talk to them for money or presents, deliver items to people, collect keys, and use the elevator to exit the level.
ToeJam and Earl 3 also features a great two player mode that allows you to play through the game together. When both characters are on screen at the same time, the split screen goes away. However, when one player wanders away from the other, the game will jump into a split screen mode. This is similar to what Sony's War of the Monsters does in it's two player mode.
Sega has also thrown in some Xbox Live content. Players can log on, download additional characters and levels. However, players must pay a strange muscular man wandering around the hub level money earned in the game to use these levels.
When Blizzard launched Diablo several years ago for the PC, each dungeon was randomly generated. While more PC games have done that since then, not many console games have. However, Sega has integrated a random level feature into Mission to Earth. Once going into a level within the hub, it will be randomly generated--allowing you to play a unique level everytime you go through the game. The only problem is that I don't really anticipate many players wanting to go through the game multiple times. Even with the two player option, ToeJam and Earl 3 has very repetitive gameplay and just isn't a lot of fun. Fans of the past Genesis titles will probably want to check this one out. However, I recommend renting the title before committing to a purchase.