|System: X360, PS3, Wii, PC, PSP, DS||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Ubisoft Shanghai||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Ubisoft||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Sep. 18, 2009||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-2||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone 10+||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
One feature of the game that kids will find appealing is the drop-in co-op. Every level of the game can be played with two players, and there is no need to activate a special mode. Better still is the fact that the co-op is fully functional. While other games like Monsters vs. Aliens have a co-op mode where the other player basically controls a pointer to gather extra points, the second player in this title actually controls a second character, complete with gadgets to use and fully functional controls. The only disadvantage the second player has is that the camera is fixed on the first player, so it is easy for the second player to get lost if the first player is running ahead.
Although the game looks satisfactory and plays well, one aspect that definitely could have used a little extra care is the sound. The game's soundtrack is very repetitive and the theme music loop is far too short. The character voiceovers are also very repetitive, and the main character only says one or two level-specific lines over and over again, which can become very annoying. The best part of the sound in this title has to be the 8-bit tunes, which really only work if you have nostalgic feelings towards old game music. But aside from the short plot scene music, it is best to keep the sound on this game turned down.
There are several things to like about the video game adaptation of Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. The fun 8-bit plot scenes and gadget based levels offer kids plenty of fun gameplay, and the option of co-op play and collection quests make this an easy choice for older kids to really get into. However, the short gameplay time and repetitive vocal and graphical elements of the title make it a bit hard to recommend at a $50 price point. If you know little kids who enjoyed the movie, this title is definitely worth a rental and will keep them amused for a few afternoons. Just don't expect giant meatballs of gameplay.
Amanda L. Kondolojy
CCC Staff Contributor