Would you look at that? A remake of some old game, thrown on the PSP? Well that’s something you don’t see every day. Sarcasm aside: Lemmings was a pretty addictive game about a decade ago. In the meanwhile we’ve gotten used to stunning 3D environments, physics, free-roaming worlds and what have you. With all of the retro-fuss though, someone thought it might be profitable to release Lemmings again. I’m not here to blame the marketing guys, isn’t it true that some things are better left untouched?
Team 17 (the creators of the Worms series) is responsible for this game and it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Lemmings shares a lot of resemblences to the timeless classics Worms and Worms 2. For one, the game also features fully destructible 2D environments that have a cartoony feel to them. This is supplemented by the silly voices and the cheerful (but oh so annoying) soundtrack.
While the use of 2D makes for a simplified game, we can’t deny the act it looks outdated. The game is well converted to the PSP’s 16:9 aspect ratio though and it makes good use of the widescreen possibilities. The levels are very colourful and offer a lot of variety. Some levels are set in ancient Greece, while others offer an underground or infernal setting. It’s unfortunate that the game has substantial loading times. Every time you restart a game, the game will load for several seconds, which can become rather tiresome after the umpteenth time.
Lemmings is actually about getting your army of Lemmings from A to B, conquering obstacles as you go. To do this, you can turn them into specialized workers. For instance you have bombers, that can blow a hole in the ground or blast through a wall, you have blockers that make the other Lemmings turn around, you have stairbuilders and climbers to reach higher places etc. The combined use of all these different kinds of units will be required to fulfill your goals (leading a set number of Lemmings to the exit).
The basic gameplay makes Lemmings into an addictive puzzling experience that also offers quite a bit of challenge. While some levels are a sinch, some will definitely drive you up the walls. The game offers more than 150 levels (the bulk of them in the Classic Mode) and later on you will be able to download even more from the Lemmings website. Just put them onto your Memory Stick and the game will add them on the next startup. All this content can easily keep you busy for a whole lot of hours.
If you’re still not tired of those tiny creatures, the game supports game sharing and multiplayer via Infrastructure. When it comes to multiplayer, Lemmings uses all the bells and whistles on the PSP, which is something most games can only dream of.
If you’re looking for a nice new puzzling game, now that you’re finally tired of Lumines and Go! Sudoku, Lemmings is as good as any. Though the game is certainly lagging behind in the technical department, it’s still an amusing game in its own right. Still, a port of Worms 1 & 2 would have been a nicer thing. While it certainly can’t compare to the two previously mentioned games, it’s a fairly good companion for all your trips.