10 Best Jurassic Park Video Games, Ranked (2023)

Nearing its 30th Anniversary, Jurassic Park remains one of the most cherished and remarkable works in film history thanks to its charismatic characters, astounding set pieces, unforgettable music, and exhilarating dinosaur effects. Based on Michael Crichton’s 1990 novel, Jurassic Park turned into a massive blockbuster franchise with multiple sequels and scores of video games.

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There's quite a variety among those games - some have been centered on the exploration of the iconic islands with an emphasis on dinosaurs, while others dive deeper into the narrative of the universe. From the early classics to the newer, more graphically advanced Jurassic Park games, here's a look at some of the finest adaptations throughout the years.

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10/10 Jurassic Park - Sega Genesis 1993

10 Best Jurassic Park Video Games, Ranked (1)

Months after the 1993 film release of Jurassic Park, companion games had already begun to expand on the adventure, with Sega's Jurassic Park being one of the earliest to come out that same year. It's a game designed as a side-scroller where you traverse the treacherous jungle of Isla Nublar by platforming its lush terrain and overcoming the various dinosaur species that stand in your way of escape.

One of its standouts, especially for its time, is the option for character selection, either playing as Sam Neill's Dr. Alan Grant or a velociraptor. The combat and platforming mechanics can feel a bit wonky nowadays, particularly for the flash grenades you use as Grant to dispatch dinosaurs, but its pixel art and animation style has some polished details. One example would be the flashing skeleton effect when a dinosaur gets struck with a cattle prod.

9/10 Jurassic Park - SNES 1993

10 Best Jurassic Park Video Games, Ranked (2)
(Video) Every Jurassic Park Video Game Ranked From WORST To BEST

The 1993 SNES Jurassic Park game couldn't be more of a contrast from its Sega counterpart. It plays from a top-down perspective, with the island environment generated as a labyrinth of foliage. Enemy velociraptors appear around every corner of the surrounding brush that Dr. Alan Grant must be careful to defeat.

The game feels a lot more refined and adventurous. There are narrative-based objectives to progress the game by exploring the map rather than just clearing platforms to advance levels. It also incorporates a unique transition to first-person whenever you enter any building.

8/10 Jurassic Park Arcade

10 Best Jurassic Park Video Games, Ranked (3)

Jurassic Park Arcade, created by Raw Thrills in 2015, borrows some of the styles of the two 1993 classics. However, it adapts it for an arcade cabinet first-person shooter utilizing light guns. It’s certainly more immersive with a story centered around embarking on a dinosaur rescue mission to Isla Nublar, and selecting from one of three scenarios that culminate in trapping the Triceratops, T-Rex, or Spinosaurus.

You get to take on swarms of dinosaurs in numerous inventive scenarios, including from the air with the gun equipped on the helicopter, and the back of a speeding park jeep on land. You can also collect special weapon perks, such as frostbite or shockbolt, to aid your streaks.

7/10 Jurassic Park: Operation Genesis

10 Best Jurassic Park Video Games, Ranked (4)

Operation Genesis marked a shift in the franchise's games from slaying dinosaurs to managing them, laying the foundation for later Jurassic Park management sim games. All the characters from the film are present to ensure you have everything you need to earn consistent popularity for a successful park. Dr. Grant is in charge of fossil hunting, Ellie Sattler monitors the health of your dinosaurs, and Henry Wu is your go-to for growing them in test tubes from the harvested fossils.

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There are 25 dinosaur species you can populate your park exhibits with, which all have their own needs to stay healthy and content, and things won’t look so good for your park if they’re left unaddressed. Safety is one of the most important goals of the game because guest security determines your star ranking.

6/10 Jurassic World Alive

Similar to the ending of the 2018 Fallen Kingdom film, the dinosaurs in Jurassic World Alive have been let loose onto the world. In the virtual sense, of course. Alive is an augmented reality mobile game in the vein of the massively popular Pokemon Go, where you walk around your local area in real-time, trapping and collecting dinosaurs within proximity to you.

You can then use your captured dinosaurs to battle other players’ dinosaurs in a PVP showdown, a feature that builds on some earlier, less successful, Jurassic Park dino battle games (looking at you Warpath). Another intriguing element is the ability to create hybrids of dinosaurs you own by collecting the relevant DNA throughout the map.

5/10 Jurassic World: The Game

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Jurassic World: The Game is from the same studio that made Alive, but this title came first in 2015 alongside the new film installment. It’s a free-to-play mobile park simulation game based on the updated Isla Nublar park design in Jurassic World. However, it’s vastly different from Operation Genesis, not just in graphics but also in mechanics.

(Video) Top 10 best Jurassic park games

Aside from erecting buildings and pooling resources, there’s more narrative to dig into with a visual novel style of text acting as the communication between you and the essential park characters, like Owen Grady. The gameplay focuses on leveling up your dinosaurs to have better chances of success in epic battles with other dinosaurs.

4/10 Jurassic Park: The Game

10 Best Jurassic Park Video Games, Ranked (7)

Before the success of The Walking Dead, The Wolf Among Us, and various other series, Telltale Games were still working on lesser-known adaptations like Back to the Future and Jurassic Park: The Game. Even before the formula hit big, Jurassic Par bears all the hallmarks of a Telltale game, thanks to its four narrative-driven episodes featuring branching dialogue.

The game is set around the events of the first film, opening with one of the main characters finding Dennis Nedry’s body and recovering the iconic Barbasol can of stolen embryos. There’s a twist, however, with the storyline focusing on the perspectives of entirely new characters in the park. It’s a spectacular premise that makes for a great dramatic tale within the Jurassic Park universe.

3/10 Jurassic World Aftermath

10 Best Jurassic Park Video Games, Ranked (8)

Jurassic World Aftermath is a refreshing new take on the games, returning to the horror roots that made the original film so suspenseful. The Jurassic Park franchise has become more action-adventure oriented with the World trilogy. However, it’s tense and horrifying moments like the velociraptors stalking the children in the kitchen and creeping up behind Ellie in the electrical room that define it.

Aftermath is a survival-horror stealth VR game released exclusively on the Oculus Quest in two parts, with the latest released in 2021. It’s a prequel to the film, Fallen Kingdom, with velociraptors as the main antagonists hunting you across the close quarters of the island’s facilities. Its suspense is evocative of Alien: Isolation and the VR adds more unease and immersion to the gameplay.

(Video) Electronic Gaming Monthly’s Top 10 Jurassic Park Games

2/10 Jurassic World Evolution 2

10 Best Jurassic Park Video Games, Ranked (9)

In contrast to the fate of the sequel trilogy, Jurassic World Evolution 2 is the unlikely case where the sequel is better received than the original, and it’s a worthy successor to the early 2000s Operation Genesis. Jurassic World Evolution 2 is a park management sim showcasing some stunning graphics and has over 75 dinosaur species to populate your environment with, all beautifully designed and lifelike.

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As is the general formula of the genre, you need to make sure all the guests are safe and that the dinosaurs are healthy and well-fed. You can even collect DNA from fossils that can allot new traits for your Jurassic creatures. Evolution 2 also has a campaign that directly follows the events of Fallen Kingdom, and several of the actual actors from the film return to voice their characters in the game.

1/10 Lego Jurassic World

10 Best Jurassic Park Video Games, Ranked (10)

There’s no better treat for Jurassic Park fans than Lego Jurassic World, a game that spans the original trilogy and 2015’s Jurassic World, allowing you to play through some of the most iconic moments from each movie. And it’s all done with the clever humor and charm typical of a Lego game.

Each film in the game contains five levels that recreate the movie's major plot points. The gameplay consists of puzzles that often require switching to a different character’s ability, silly boss fights where Lego hearts get depleted, and Lego versions of cutscenes with the signature cute jokes and character facial expressions. And as a bonus, you can unlock and play as select dinosaur Minifigures.

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