Adventure Time: Finn and Jake Investigations (Wii U, 3DS, PS3, PS4, 360, Xbox One)

ADVENTURE_BOXAdventure Time is one of Cartoon Network’s most popular shows, and man, oh man are there a lot of games based on the franchise.  Trust me; I’ve reviewed most of them!  I think I’ve reviewed more games based on Adventure Time than any other cartoon license, and since I’ve been doing this for nearly 20 years, that’s saying something!  Most of the other Adventure Time games imitate other classic titles like top-down Zelda games and other dungeon crawlers.  But when I first heard about the name “Finn and Jake Investigations,” I thought it might be like one of those Phoenix Wright games.  But when I saw screenshots it looked more like a 3-D platformer!  To my surprise when I actually played it, it’s really a point and click adventure game!  In fact, if TellTale Games had this license, this would probably be like something they would make, at least a few years ago.  At any rate, it’s one of publisher Little Orbit’s best games yet!  It’s available for nearly all the current game consoles, but reviewed on Wii U here.

Anyway, in the game, boy Finn and his stretchy magic dog Jake are hanging out in their treehouse when they find an enchanted tickertape machine.  Their mom and dad used it to find cases to solve when they were investigators, so Finn and Jake decide to use it to help out their friends in the land of Ooo and be like their parents!  While the game plays like a point and click adventure, you don’t move around a cursor with a mouse to click on things.  You directly control Finn with the stick and move him around to points of interest.  When you approach something you can interact with, the game will prompt you to do one of three things.  You can look at the object in question, you can pick it up, or you can use another item on it.  When you approach another character, you can usually talk to them, too, or open doors when you go near them.  While it takes a second or two to get used to this way of controlling things, there are plenty of tutorials you can do at the beginning of the game that’ll help out a bit.

Sometimes, you might have to combine two items in the inventory screen to make a new one, and you can also use Jake as an item if you need to reach something far away, or climb up a tall ledge.   The only part of the game that isn’t a point and click adventure is the combat mode.  When you have to fight enemies, the screen switches to a 3-D arena and you have to fight in real time with your sword and Jake’s abilities.  It kind of reminds me of Tales RPG battles.  There is no way to die in the combat areas, but you’ll get more treasure if you don’t get hit.  Although treasure really doesn’t do anything except look cool in the treehouse!  The game is split into five cases, or episodes, so it’s really like a TellTale episodic adventure, except you don’t have to wait two months to play the next one!  You can also earn rewards like achievements for doing certain things.  One of the coolest things about the game is that it is fully voiced by the cast of the cartoon show, and considering how much text is in the game, that’s pretty impressive!

The problems with the game are few and far between, and are fairly minimal and hardly worth mentioning.  The 3-D graphics are nice, but I wish they were cel-shaded so it would look more like the cartoon show.  While the game is fairly straightforward, there is no hint option so it can be a bit of a roadblock if you get stuck.  And finally, there are some puzzles that are easier if you know about characters and plots from the show.  I don’t really watch the cartoon but I was able to muddle through a lot of it in this game since I’ve reviewed so many other Adventure Time titles (plus my brothers really like that show).  But it is more fun if you enjoy the cartoon.  At any rate, if you like point and click adventures and are a big Adventure Time fan, you should definitely get this game!


Kid Factor:

Adventure Time: Finn and Jake Investigations is rated E-10 with ESRB descriptors of Cartoon Violence and Comic Mischief.  While you do fight and punch enemies in the combat mode, they just fall over with stars over their heads when defeated, so the violence is only cartoony.  Finn and Jake do play pranks on certain characters in the game, and there are some butt and fart jokes, too.  But if you’re OK with your kids watching the cartoon, they’ll be OK with the game, too.  Reading skill is required, because while the game is fully voiced, there are times when you’ll need to make menu selections in the inventory where you must read.  It may be kind of silly, but while Finn and Jake willingly cause mischief sometimes, they are always happy and willing to help their friends and put their pals’ problems before their own, and I think that’s a good message in the game.

One Response to “Adventure Time: Finn and Jake Investigations (Wii U, 3DS, PS3, PS4, 360, Xbox One)”

  1. I actually might get this for PS4. I’m not a superfan of the show like some friends, but I do enjoy it.

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