review
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POSTED 27/11/10


EPIC MICKEY

Disney Interactive
Wii

There are several important things we learn early in life, such as despite their visual similarities, chocolate is yummy and poo is yucky. Here’s another crucial life lesson: beware of squishy mirrors.

It’s inquisitiveness towards one such reflective glass pane that plunges a more intrepid Mickey Mouse than we’re accustomed to – we’ve always thought him a bit of a softcock compared to Disney’s ace, Donald Duck - into a whole world of weird. Here he messes with paint and thinner and begets an evil, deathy shadow blot thingy that conjures a wasteland populated by Disney characters of yore, dark castles, broken-down amusement park rides and more...

We’re talking a fairly standard, mostly-3D-but-with-some-16-bit-styled-2D platforming collect-‘em-up with camera woes a-gogo. However, it’s improved by two things – a mechanic whereby you can draw and erase parts of levels to progress, and artwork that’s regularly quite astonishing. It’s rare that we prefer cutscenes to action, but here they’re truly magnificent. From new content to classic MM animations of decades ago, visually Epic Mickey can truly captivate. Play through any in-cartoon 2D level and try keeping a po-po-poker face.

Curiously though, this puppy’s really bloody dark – like we-wouldn’t-let-young-kids-play-it dark. Mickey manacled to a torture table as a Swiss Army knife equipped with evil mechanical eye goes him? Floating, dismembered heads of beloved characters? It’s freaky even to us! This makes the Wii a peculiar choice of exclusive format, and the full-on handholding throughout – such as the Captain-bleeding-Obvious gremlins - somewhat confusing. Maybe the guy behind it, revered game-creator Warren Spector, just really likes messing with tykes’ heads?

Epic Mickey is a remarkable paean to Disney’s classic animation that any fan will treasure, just with enough clunks to stop it from being extraordinary. Kinda like Disney’s animation filmography, we guess.

take me back to the start...

 



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ALL WRITTEN CONTENT COPYRIGHT © AMY FLOWER 2008-2017. GAME IMAGES COURTESY OF RESPECTIVE GAMES COMPANIES.