|System: PS2, Wii, DS, X360, PS3, PC||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Idol Minds Digital Entertainment||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. 4, 2008||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-2||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
Playing through the story features the same types of mini-challenges, but theyre not all bad. Youll travel across platforms and through obstacle courses with various characters such as Alex the lion, which can be enjoyable. Also, there is a lot of variety in the types of tasks youll have to complete as well.
The use of several different characters with their own unique abilities adds some variety to the game too. Nothing tends to be overly challenging, which can be a problem found in many childrens games featuring wickedly complex mazes and poorly-explained objectives. Though some of the mini-games can be boring, theyre short enough that youll move onto the next one in no time. Unlockables are found in the Duty Free Store, where you can purchase different apparel, video clips, and bonus features for the mini-games including bonus golf holes and music tracks.
There are simply too many factors that make Escape 2 Africa feel more like an afterthought on the PS2 than an attempt to bring an original concept to the market. Moreover, promotional tools are riddled throughout the game; one of the four main features on the opening menu is a preview for another Dreamworks game. If it were tucked away in a bonus videos section as opposed to directly on main menu with Options, Begin Story, and Africa Arcade selections, their marketing ploy may not have been as noticeable.
Though functionality isnt one of its strong points, the games major saving graces are its humorous cutscenes and voiceover work, namely that of Julien. The variety of challenges offered in story mode will keep kids busy for weeks. While Escape 2 Africa is not altogether innovative and it is obvious the game was designed to work better on the Wii, it does have its moments of fun and can be very entertaining at times. And when it comes to a childrens title, what more can you really ask for?
CCC Freelance Writer