|System: DS||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: WayForward||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Activision||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Nov. 5, 2007||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: EVERYONE||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
There are some things to do that don't involve performing insultingly easy actions on the touchscreen. Even these performances though are just too boring to really be of any notice. For example, you can give your baby a bath; go to the bathing area, tap the tub to turn on the water, and monotonously rub the touch screen for 60 seconds or so until your baby is clean. Going outside is also an option, but as is the trend with the rest of this game, it's neither exciting nor challenging. Again, you'll perform basic, simplistic actions as you lead your babies around and "search for adventures." Aside from offering a shift in locations, and thus slightly relieving the monotony of the game, these parts of the game do little to redeem the rest of the title.
It's a shame that the gameplay is so poorly and unimaginatively done because there are some decent aspects to this game. For one, the control scheme is surprisingly intuitive. While it's not particularly unique, I expected that the shoddiness in the gameplay would roll over to other aspects of the game; interestingly though, the controls are well-done. The touchscreen and buttons are blended perfectly. Overall though, this doesn't do much; why does it matter that the controls are good if what you're using them to control is terrible?
Another positive aspect of this game, yet one that's overshadowed by the lack of quality in the game itself, is the graphics. It may be surprising that a licensed game that shows an overall lack of polish could sport good graphics, but it's true. The game runs in an impressive 3D, and the game runs very smoothly. Environments can get a little clunky, but when compared to the actual gameplay aspect of this title, the graphics in Ogres and Dronkeys are probably its most redeeming quality.
When it comes to play value, this title is a tricky one to evaluate. On the one hand, it's a title that's similar to Animal Crossing or Nintendogs. That is, provided you stay engrossed in the game, it never runs out of game time; there's always something to do. Of course, there's a huge caveat there, and one that ends up destroying any replay value that Ogres and Dronkeys has: it's got to keep your attention. As I've reiterated a countless number of times thus far, Ogres and Dronkeys is best described with the adjective "boring." And as a result, despite the sandbox style of play that's present in Ogres and Dronkeys, there's just no reason to play it beyond a few hours.
While it does have a few redeeming qualities, Shrek: Ogres and Dronkeys is brought down by its unimaginative and poorly executed gameplay mechanic. There's no real plot either, which is a shame. However, the potential for a great game was clearly present: the graphics and controls were surprisingly good, and the style of play (never-ending, sandbox-style) is conducive to a great, long-lasting game. Ultimately, while Ogres and Dronkeys only has one real flaw, that flaw ends up being huge. All you wannabe-virtual-parents better go find your copy of Nitnendogs again.
CCC Freelance Writer