You know iPhone games have travelled pretty far when platformers actually work. This seems to be the case with Earthworm Jim on the iPhone, and while the controls were my worst fear, they have definitely been improved and revamped to work.
If you don’t know what Earthworm Jim is, it’s a platformer that has been on almost every “old” platform. From the SEGA machines to the Gameboy, Earthworm Jim has travelled a long way to finally appear on the iPhone. The iPhone version contains all new artwork and graphics along with some brighter visuals, but other than that, it’s exactly how you remember it.
Graphics: The revamped graphics were very well done, and they keep that nostalgia there for older gamers. Some games redo their whole design along with redesigning the character models, leading to a lack of nostalgia. Earthworm Jim did a great job of providing revamped graphics, but still keeping that old spirit in there.
Controls: Now normally, a game like this just wouldn’t work. We’ve seen games like Castle of Magic have some spotty controls, and others didn’t make use of the iPhone. Earthworm Jim seems to do away with all these superstitions by providing a working d-pad control scheme, and when I first started playing the game, I was utterly surprised. Seriously though, both joystick and d-pad control schemes work phenomenally, and most of you shouldn’t have a problem with them.
Everything You Dreamed Of: Recreating retro experiences on the iPhone is somewhat difficult as there are no physical buttons and/or joysticks. Earthworm Jim on the iPhone is everything a retro gamer will remember, and everything you hoped for is included. This is Earthworm Jim. It’s not some shoddy port (i.e. Sonic the Hedgehog), but it’s a successful recreation of Earthworm Jim on the iPhone.
Controls: Now hold your horses here. In the likes I mentioned how good the controls were, so how can I dislike them at the same time? Well, here’s why: the controls take up almost half the screen. They work, but some may be bothered by the sheer size of the controls, and it may even block your view of the character. Personally, I didn’t have a problem with the controls blocking my view, but they’re definitely huge nonetheless.
What more can I say. This is Earthworm Jim on my iPhone, and the controls are actually working. This successful port is everything I hoped the iPhone version would be and more, and the revamped graphics are only the start. I’m sure most of you have sold your SEGA systems and Gameboys, leaving you with only memories of these classical games. Well fear no longer, the iPhone can handle retro games and it can handle platformers.