If you have noticed, a lot of the games released in the past few years have been based on television shows or movies. I mean, just from what it sitting on my desk, I see that six of the nine unopened games I have on my desk are based on TV shows (okay, one is based on a movie). But, it's obvious that this is a very good market Unfortunately, while there are so many games of this type, there don't ever seem to be a ton of them that you feel that you have to play, unless you're a big fan of that particular TV or movie source. And so it is with FUTURAMA, a game that offers a lot for fans of the series but little for everyone else.
FUTURAMA has never been the most popular show on the Fox Network, although it does have its fair share of fans. In the game, you'll play as Fry, Leela, Bender and Dr. Zoidberg, although you'll run across you're a good many of the other characters that you will see frequently on the show. The best part about this game is that it really seems like a lost episode from the series. FUTURAMA features all of the voice actors from the show, along with all the writers, making for a pretty good storyline.
Much like any other third-person action game, in FUTURAMA you'll run through each level picking up power-ups and blasting enemies until you reach the end of the level. And then of course, you do the same thing during the next level. Other than a few short vehicle-based missions, FUTURAMA plays a lot like every other third-person action game on the market today. While this isn't necessarily bad, gamers looking for a challenge or excitement will be a bit disappointed.
Other than the repetitive gameplay, the game does have a few problems. The main one has to be the camera. If left alone, the camera doesn't seem to know which angle presents you with the best view, especially if you back yourself into a corner, when it will switch back and forth between views sporadically until you mess around with it. Also, when the camera moves behind a wall, the wall doesn't become transparent like in most games, so it is very easy to get stuck or killed by something that you cannot see. The other problem in the game is the targeting system. While it doesn't cause problems if you're facing one enemy at a time, it can cause havoc when you enter a room that has crates and enemies. Half the time you'll end up shooting a box on the other side of the room rather than the enemy in your face.
But the defining point for FUTURAMA is the look and sound of the game. The game is cel-shaded and the game looks almost exactly like the television show. And of course, the voice actors do an excellent job in making this feel like the show, and I'm sure that has something to do with the writers from the show doing the script.
While FUTURAMA may appeal to fans of the series, it probably won't attract regular gamers. Even the fans of the show may want to "try-before-you-buy" because there really isn't much to do after beating the game once.