Scribblenauts Review
Scribblenauts box art
System: DS Review Rating Legend
Dev: 5th Cell 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: Warner Bros. Ent. 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: Sep. 15, 2009 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Everyone 10+ 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

My only complaints with the game are the controls and the fact that certain things that should work just don't; this doesn't happen too often, but when it does, it's frustrating. As for the controls, they could have used some more care. The animation mechanics in the game are quite rudimentary, but one could look past this aesthetic issue if it wasn't for the terrible hit detection. It's tough to employ an object correctly the first time around.

Scribblenauts screenshot

More often than not, you'll start tapping around the screen hoping that the guy will pick up the tool or drill where you want him to. Also, attaching an object to something else is tedious: you have to drag the item to wherever you want to attach it; then, you have to hope the markers will show up, and when they finally do, you have to make sure the objects stick correctly before you drop, or else the item will fall and you'll have to start all over again. This makes a simple process turn into frustration. Thankfully, the game is so unique and so much fun that most players will be able to overlook the controls and just focus on the action.

Scribblenauts is a visually pleasant game, though perhaps its childish look may drive away some older gamers. Its colorful, two-dimensional characters and shapes seem to have come right out of a children's book. They could have even been drawn by a kid! Despite what some may say, these simple graphics are charming and go well with the game's premise. Besides, the game's database includes thousands of different items, so they obviously couldn't be too complicated if they wanted to fit them all in a game cartridge. The animations, on the other hand, could have used more attention to detail; they seem a bit too basic for a modern video game.

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All in all, Scribblenauts is a game to praise. It could have offered some higher quality as far as controls, but its originality and utterly engaging gameplay are here to save the day. The lasting value is incredibly high, as you will not only have to beat each level in puzzle and action modes, but you'll also be challenged to solve each puzzle another three times with different strategies and objects each time. Talk about grinding your gears! As if that wasn't enough, there's the level editor, merit collecting, and challenging your friends. Let your laziness be the only reason to not want this game. If you're up for a thinking challenge, this should be the one!

By Maria Montoro
CCC Site Director

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
3.9
Graphics
Simple but delightful character design, environments, and objects will remind you of a children's book. Animations could use more detail though.
3.4
Control
Write to summon objects, tap to use them. Whereas this is a very simple concept and makes it accessible for everyone, some hit detection issues hinder the gameplay.
4.0
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
This game is packed with dozens of cheery tunes of all kinds. However, there aren't enough sound effects to take the game to the next level.
4.6

Play Value
Everyone will love this game right off the bat. Coming up with creative solutions to solve a puzzle with the freedom to virtually summon any object is incredibly fun. Make it over 200 puzzles and multiple ways to solve each one, and you've got a winner. Lasting value will just depend on the player's creativity.

4.0
Overall Rating - Great
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Game Features:

  • Revolutionary Gameplay: Any object you think of appears in the game! Put it to use to win the Starite.
  • Over 200 Levels: Puzzle and action gameplay modes for all-age fun. If you can write and tap, you can play!
  • Unlimited Replay: Every level has more than one solution! Keep trying the new ways and use less objects to increase your source.
  • Sanbox Title Screen: Jump into the game from the second you turn it on. Write down words in the title screen and see what you can do with the objects.


  • Screenshots / Images
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