WarningMight contain spoilers.

I cannot adequately express my love and admiration for Jurassic Park . It’s my favourite movie of all time. I watched it every few days as a child, and while I’ve been a little neglectful in recent years thanks to the demands of adulthood, I return to it every now and then just to remind myself how perfect it is. I equally adore the much-derided The Lost World: Jurassic Park . On the other hand, Jurassic Park III is a jarring change of pace, and the Jurassic World franchise is, like its signature genetically engineered monstrosity, a soulless, money-chasing abomination.

Despite all that, I couldn’t resist Jurassic World Evolution 2. It’s (theoretically) part of the Jurassic Park universe! It’s a game about managing a park full of dinosaurs! How could it not be fun? Well… it isn’t.

‘Soulless’ applies here just as much as with the franchise. There is no joy in this game. There is no wonder or delight. The models and animation are tepid and unimaginative. The gameplay is bland and characterless. Everything special about Jurassic Park is reduced to its most boring, tedious form. What story there is, with Bryce Dallas Howard, Jeff Goldblum, and not Chris Pratt but a substitute,[1] is very much in keeping with the rest of the franchise.

In all honesty, however, even if this were done better, I should have understood that a game about building a safe, successful park is necessarily the antithesis of everything that makes the original films unforgettable. A good version of that game might be very enjoyable, but it could never be Jurassic Park.

  1. Small mercy, I suppose.