Shorts Review
Shorts box art
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.

Shorts screenshot

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.

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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.

By Andrew Groen
CCC Freelance Writer

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
3.0
Graphics
Better than you would expect from a budget-priced DS game. Visuals are a bit grainy, but three dimensional backgrounds give it a little more panache than one might expect.
4.0
Control
The controls do their job just fine. Manipulating the character is a breeze, and complex platforming elements are never hindered.
2.1
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
The sound effects and music are all pretty good. The music in particular fits quite well. Really bad voice work from the narrator brings you out of the experience.
2.8

Play Value
It's a simple title, but one that befits its low price of $20. As a cheap title that will keep the kids busy during car rides and trips to the bank, Shorts serves its purpose but nothing more.

2.6
Overall Rating - Average
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Game Features:

  • 26 replayable episodes in 3 distinct levels from the movie that take place in a laboratory-like house in the town Black Falls, a factory, and a castle with a moat.
  • Get help from alien friends, giant wasps and a pterodactyl dinosaur to reach new areas.
  • Face a multitude of enemies like booger monsters, bomb shooting crocodiles, poison-spitting snakes, bats, and sparking robots.


  • Screenshots / Images
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