UbiSoft’s Planet of the Apes action/adventure Video Game title, from Fox Interactive, put players in the middle of a strange but familiar world based largely on the famous 1968 film. Though some of the movie's characters such as Doctor Zira, 'Professor' Cornelius and 'Professor' Zaius were part of the adventure, the story line was different from the movie and introduced mandrills, baboons and other unique elements. The good news is that this Planet of the Apes retelling wasn't quite as bad as the Tim Burton film. Not directly tied to any of the movies, players found themselves in a decidedly inhospitable world run by Apes that had a penchant for keeping captive humans running around in loincloths. There were some friendly primates and humans to be found, but it was the mean monkeys that were bent on stopping Ulysses from learning their many secrets.
3889. The spaceship Cassiopeia has been drifting in space since it launched in 2125. The four astronauts, on a deep space mission, were in suspended animation for the duration of their planned trip, but something malfunctioned. When the ship found a planet suitable for human life, it crash-landed on an ‘alien’ world and revived it's crew. Ulysses, Romulus and Sophie discovered that a fault had led to the death of their crewmate Martinez. Exploring the desolate planet, they were relieved to find human life, but almost immediately the tranquility was shattered by horseback hunters armed with guns. Too late to avoid capture, the crew were killed one-by-one: Romulus...Sophie. The game intro ended with Ulysses, the sole survivor, waking up in a cell, deep in the caves. This was a medical center where humans were dissected and generally toyed with. To Ulysses' horror, a deadly breed of intelligent apes have evolved and now dominate the Earth.
The Medical CenterEdit
As a gorilla guarded Ulysses, food was provided by a human slave. When he picked up the tray, he found a key and a note. Opening the door with the key, he exited the cell. Crawling through the air vents, Ulysses spied Zaius and Zira discussing his fate - Zaius seemed unnaturally opposed to the human Zira has been studying and ordered his transfer to the Homonid Monitering Unit at the Mandrill militia station, where he would be executed. Ulysses continued to another room where an Ape was experimenting on a human subject. Ulysses killed the Ape scientist and picked up a red bottle of pills. He took these pills and started to get very sick. Raising the alarm just before he passed out, he was taken to a morgue, where he revived and escaped, only to be knocked unconscious and taken to a monastery.
Ulysses woke in the monastery. There he found a hologram cartridge and a holographic projector. He used the cartridge he found, to listen to a really preachy holo-message - one of the last leaders of humanity bemoaning the destruction of his civilisation through war, division and the Apes. Next, he headed to the chapel, where a wall slid away and Ulysses' mission was revealed - Jonah, the human who brought the key to Ulysses' cell, explained that his appearance fulfilled a prophecy, that a man would come to rescue the human race, though another leader, Elie, wasn't so sure. Jonah revealed that he led the human resistance and this 'alien' planet was in fact Earth (Neterre to the resistance fighters, or Ter to the Apes). After a war had destroyed mankind, the Apes took over and the humans had split into the Ellisians and the Akanites. The rebellious Ellisians had then further split into three factions, with their leader Ellia giving each faction leader one part of an ancient relic, to be guarded and reunited at the time of renewal: a gold part was given to the group led by Ezekiel, from whom Jonah's survivors were descended, Tomas had been given a silver part and John a glass part. The tribes of Tomas and John had since been annihilated. Ulysses was given the gold part and told that John's glass part was probably at his grave in New Cyprus. A human, Gorje, was to guide Ulysses to the ruins of that ancient city.
Ulysses headed down a tunnel to gain entry to the ruined city, now occupied by gorilla soldiers.
The Ruined CityEdit
Ulysses found a cage holding a human woman in a room on the 5th floor of a building. He opened it and freed Nova, who quickly ran away. Nova shortly afterwards saved Ulysses from a vicious, chatty, procrastinating gorilla, then hurriedly left again. Ulysses then found his way to the office of General Ursus and confronted him, recovering the glass artifact and also taking a top secret report about Professor Cornelius' A.E. Project. Utilizing a service lift and switching off the ventilation system, he crawled through the massive fan blades and escaped. Emerging from a subway station entrance, Ulysses met with Nova and Bosko - in gratitude for freeing Nova, they took Ulysses to shelter in their nearby village.
The Human VillageEdit
Ulysses awoke in the human village, shortly before an Ape attack. Seeing the entrance to the cave in which the village was hidden boarded up, he lit a pile of straw next to the wooden barricade and burnt it down. He then went to the cottage of Bosko, who asked Ulysses to find his son Timon. In the courtyard he noticed Ape guards on patrol and could see the boy Timon tied to a pole. He used a knife to cut his bonds and they scampered away and returned to Bosko’s cottage. Back in the cottage Bosko told him how to leave the village and make his way to the home of Mathias, at the bottom of the canyon. After escaping the village and crossing the canyon with the help of the human Abbra, Ulysses discussed Ursus' report with Mathias - Nova’s brother. The gorillas were planning to use Cornelius' genetic research, and human genetic material, to enhance their race and dominate the other ape races. Ulysses decided to speak to Professor Cornelius at the Ape University.
After breaking in, Ulysses approached a phone on the wall in the University. He saw an advertisement on a noticeboard and dialed the number. A female ape told him to meet her in 5 minutes, believing him to be an Ape wanting to rent a room. In the ensuing meeting the friendly Ape was reluctant to help at first, but finally told him how to make contact with Cornelius and then escape, giving him the code to the storeroom. Ulysses made his way to Professor Cornelius - they discussed his research and Cornelius' own suspicions about General Ursus' interest in the project. Cornelius agreed to destroy his research so it could not be abused, while Ulysses sneaked out. Returning to Mathias, Ulysses found out that the insurrection leader Jonah had been captured - Jonah had heard something about the third part and went to search for it, but was captured. Ulysses decided to rescue him, alone.
Ulysses entered the prison and discovered that Jonah was in Cell O1. He located the cell and found Jonah, but an explosive charge shackled to Jonah would explode if he tried to leave. Jonah decided to use it to blow a hole in the wall allowing Ulysses to escape into the disused human military base next door, but Jonah would die as a result. He told Ulysses to retrieve the silver part from the Ape State Library. Ulysses quickly carried Jonah up the stairs and said goodbye. Ulysses crawled through the hole left by the explosion and escaped back to Mathias' home. Jonah's friends didn't react well to the news of his death, but Ulysses decided to carry on the fight. Mathias took over the resistance leadership and gave Ulysses instructions on how to enter the State Library through an underground factory.
Ulysses entered the factory, went to a grate, kicked it in, and crawled through to the State Library Archives. He approached a man - Simon the cleaner told him where the third part might be, and how to escape from the Archives. He saw an ape beating up a human female, and he killed the ape. The female offered to help - Anna told him to look in the 'Forbidden Place' upstairs. Ulysses then found a multimedia dispenser with a cartridge in it. He picked up the cartridge, entered another room and used the projector to watch a slide show - 'Professor Skouk' interviewed about his work in cosmetic surgery. Ulysses went to a room with a pedestal with the silver part sitting on it, he picked up the silver artifact and left through the main door on the ground floor. Returning again to Mathias and Nova, the three mystery parts were united and combined to form a map. It pointed toward Nova's “Forbidden Place”.
A shameless cliche ensued as Ulysses followed the map to the Statue of Liberty Statue Of Liberty (although he already knew he was back on Earth). He dropped down a tunnel to an area guarded by protection robot orbs. He proceeded to an office where a recording gave more detail into the strange story of humanity's plight - President John Fergus recounted the loss of the Earth to the Apes after a final battle. Ulysses used a micro recorder to record the President's voice, and was thus able to access his computer, which then recognised that Ulysses was not the President. The disembodied minds stored in the 'Central System', Jacquard and Orwell (a third, Illevitch, had malfunctioned and died) questioned him and discovered the war had been lost. They asked Ulysses to complete their 'Ark project' by going to the Presidential District and pressing a red button. A voice then announced that the self-destruct sequence had begun - Jacquard had tricked him into destroying the Central System, but would help him escape through a mysterious door. Ulysses went through to a massive door. Down another tunnel to the center of the Earth, Ulysses met underground dwelling humans, the long-lost Akanites, and heard of the origin of the prophecy of deliverance from Ape dominance. Back with Mathias at the monastery, Ulysses learned that Nova had been captured, told Mathias that he must go and unite with the Akanites, and watched another holo-message he had recovered, with President Fergus detailing how the Apes had taken over: after a great war, the inhabitants of the Ark project had emerged and used Ape slaves to help rebuild the Earth. They had used 'accelerated evolution' to make them more productive. In 2320 the apes had rebelled. A second Ark project was secretly begun with 10,000 of the elite going deep underground and cutting off all contact with the outside world - the Akanites. Ulysses decided to bring down General Ursus by traveling to the Ape High Council with this evidence.
The Ape PalaceEdit
Ulysses entered the Council Chamber. He demanded Nova's release and told the council - made up of the leaders of the five Ape species - orangutan (Zaius), gorilla (General Ursus), chimpanzee, mandrill (General Rakham) and baboon - about Ursus' treachery. With the other council leaders denouncing him, Ursus was arrested, but against their wishes leader Zaius decided to let Ulysses and Nova go. They knew of Ulysses' importance and had used Nova to lure him into a trap, but after their release Zaius revealed that allowing the human leader to run away would do more damage to the resistance than making him a martyr. A closing scene showed Ulysses and Nova gallop away on a horse, but then showed the massed forces of the resistance and the Akanites, under the leadership of Mathias, preparing to attack the Ape City.
- The acronym USNSA was also mentioned in the Planet Of The Apes Game Boy, but was apparently the name of a space agency along the lines of ANSA and NASA.
- Timon, the young human son of Bosko, shares his name with the chimpanzee high priest of the Temple of Semos in the Planet of the Apes reimagined spin-off novels Planet of the Apes: Force and Planet of the Apes: Resistance, published the following year.
- In the University, Ulysses uses the name of a first-year chemistry student ape, 'Zornam', perhaps a reference to the characters Zoram and Zanam, who guarded Ulysse Mérou in the original novel.
- UbiSoft/Fox Interactive’s 'Planet Of The Apes' GameBoy Game, released about the same time, followed a completely different storyline not involving these characters.
- 20th Century Fox Videogames' 'Planet Of The Apes' Atari VCS Game, developed in 1983, was to be the first computer game based on Planet of the Apes but a crash in the gaming industry at the time led to it's advertised release being abandoned. Many years later the prototype game began to circulate among gaming enthusiasts.
- Michael Blanchard
- Tim Harrison
- Michelle Juhlin
- Stacy Beth Klass
- Becky Kneubuhl
- Gabriel Mann
- Brian Peck as Zaius / Cornelius / Ursus
- Diego Rivera
- Rod Thunder
- Producer ... Tim Hall
- Associate Producer ... Tim Ramage
- Concept and Lead Game Design ... Jean-François Graffard, Raffi Messant
- Character Design ... Jean-François Bruckner
- Graphic Design ... Philippe Werner
- Scenario and Dialog ... Jean-François Graffard
- Lead Programmers ... Matus Kirchmayer, Edouard Poutot
- Programmers ... Fabien Kautzmann, David-Vesa Cohen
- Animators ... Olivier Georges, Jean-Philippe Savariault, Eric Moisson
- Original Music ... Lionel Gaget
- Music Supervisor ... Sylvain Brunet
- Sound Effects Editor ... Agnisharman Akkitham
- PSX Conversion ... Raphael Gesqua
- Lighting Technician ... Jesse Mather
- Manual ... Tom Gastall
- Manual ... Tim Hall
- Characters ... Pierre Boulle