Holy shmowza that doesn’t even work as an acronym.
Console Played: Nintendo 3DS (also available on the DS). The 3d made it look a bit like a pop-up book, with parallax scrolling of the background layers. It was enjoyable with or without this feature. Luckily, I believe the DS and 3DS versions are priced the same.
Completion Time: less than 8 hours.
Demographic: the 7 to 13 years range OR anyone who is an Adventure Time fan (so, anyone in their early-twenties).
First, here is the unboxing video I forgot to post:
Woo! Wasn’t that rad?
I’m a big biased fan of the TV series. When I heard there was going to be a Nintendo DS game coming out I was elated. I pre-ordered it ASAP, then waited for it to arrive. Woo hoo it came! Then I shot that video above. Then I got really sick and had to do holiday crap with the family so I wasn’t able to play it immediately.
Anyways, game review!!!!
The game starts in a dream sequence that does nothing other than set you up for the tutorial. Most of the game is played in a side view platformer. You can punch (later use a sword), kick, and long punch with Jake who has taken up residence in your backpack. The world map is a top down view similar to Pokémon or the original Dragon Quest games. You can get into battles on the world map if you run into a dark shadow thing that appears. These can largely be avoided though.
Inside cities you can talk to the populace to either get quests or tips on what to do next. I made sure to read as many of these as possible because I like the humor and writing.
The average dungeon (many are just tunnels from one part of Ooo to another) has bottomless pits, various enemies, and very basic puzzles. Use an ability on this one thing, wall opens up. Find a key, locked door is no longer a problem. Basic videogame flow with minimal backtracking.
You collect items from treasure chests, fallen enemies, or just find them floating in bubbles. All of these are either food or temporary power-ups. The food you can combine with a condiment such as syrup or salt for an even greater effect (sometimes a negative, I think!). The items range from a temporary alternate weapon, power boost, or to be used outside of battle to avoid enemies.
Nothing is horrifyingly difficult, and the player isn’t punished for making mistakes. This is why I’ve described the game difficulty as low. But honestly, it isn’t aimed at hardened gamers; it is meant to be played by younger kids who may need an introduction to videogame basics.
You do need reading comprehension in order to progress in the game without blindly stumbling around. The game capitalizes item names in the speech bubbles so that young readers can pick it up. If my nephew gets a Nintendo DS this Xmas I’ll probably buy him this game as he needs to practice reading.
If you aren’t judgmental of some “sit back and relax” gameplay, then you’ll be able to enjoy the quirky humor throughout this game. Pantyhose, chainsaw-bear, and Finn’s confused adolescent speech were my favorites.
Oh, and while I’m trying not to spoil anything with this review I should tell you that the timeframe and characters are up to date with the latest episodes. I didn’t expect to see several of the characters, and they even sneak in the gender-bender fan-fiction characters for a small appearance.
This wasn’t just a cash-in by the creator Pendleton Ward nor Cartoon Network. I’ve played crappy kids’ games that are made poorly and rushed out to make a quick buck off of kids who only want it because their favorite character is on it. The gameplay, art, music, and writing were all enjoyable. Getting a New Game + mode should make this game last longer for younger players.