|System: DS||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Artificial Mind||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Majesco||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Aug. 15, 2009||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
Graphically, the game is probably a little better than what you might expect. They're not exactly great, but given the fact that this is not just a movie tie-in game but a budget-priced movie tie-in game, the 3-D backgrounds are perhaps more than most would ask for. The main problem here - in keeping with the rest of the game - is that there just aren't enough art assets involved. There are multiple stages in each level, and every single one is essentially a simple rearranging of the last. The look gets extremely boring after a while, and you'll start to yearn for a change of pace after only a few levels.
In terms of audio, what's here is passable. The sound effects are all spot on, and the music accompanying each level is better than most DS games. However, the narrator who explains the different techniques of each character and walks you through the tutorial is not good at all. It will actually surprise you with how bad it is. Maybe it's bad form to harp on a child actor for a spot of bad acting, but the voice-overs sound like they made him read the lines one after another off cue cards, (no comma) and never even did a second take. It's bad enough that any adult will probably laugh out loud a bit when hearing it.
On the plus side though, kids will enjoy being able to play as characters from the movie. However, these characters are sorely lacking in personality and flavor. Aside from their one special ability, they're all really the same. All of the great personality that goes into bringing the film characters to life is all gone when they're on the DS.
As I mentioned though, this is a budget-priced title, and $20 doesn't get you too far on any gaming system let alone a portable one. The fact is, this is a fundamentally sound game that, at the very least, lasts a long time and will provide respite from a considerable amount of boredom. And isn't that what a budget-priced portable movie game should be all about? If you're a parent, you just want something that will keep your kid busy in the back seat, and if you're a kid, you just want something to do when you're sitting in the lobby of the dentist's office. This game accomplishes that, and it does so without any frustrating or specifically boring content, and for that it deserves at least faint praise.
CCC Freelance Writer