Review: Madagascar 3 (PS 3)

By Wayne Webb

Occasionally a movie/game tie will surprise and delight. Madagascar 3 is not one of them. This is an example of an ill thought out and largely quality-uncontrolled game that appears to have been rushed out to cash in on the popular movie that has already grossed over $700 million in worldwide box office receipts.

By Wayne Webb

Occasionally a movie/game tie will surprise and delight. Madagascar 3 is not one of them. This is an example of an ill thought out and largely quality-uncontrolled game that appears to have been rushed out to cash in on the popular movie that has already grossed over $700 million in worldwide box office receipts.

Having seen the movie already I was disappointed that the game only focused on one element of it – finding objects (90 percent of the level) and then performing low-skilled based circus stunts and tricks (the remaining 10 percent), which neither reflects the scope of the film nor the more fun elements that were ripe for game adaptation. What remained then is largely uninspired and dogged by control issues and lack of clarity. The controls feel clumsy and inaccurate, and while the skill level is very low (it is a kid’s game after all) this grates when even the simplest tasks fail due to aforementioned control issues.

The saving grace would have to be the mini games you can play head-to-head with a second player. They are not challenging but they can be frantic fun for the little ones, perfectly set for my four-year-old daughter and literally child’s play for her older brother. These mini games managed to keep them playing long after deciding the story levels were too hard. In reality, this hardness was due to having no idea what to do or where to go next. Some clues are patently obvious and sparkle brightly, others are deducible if you have done an action once or twice, but much harder to spot and realise how they are relevant to the story.

The characters are nicely brought to life, and the voices sound authentic (but I’m unsure if it is the real cast). It is brightly coloured and puts younger children in the excited mode of playing a movie they have just seen, but the excitement fades faster the older you are, this big kid especially.

If it’s a gift or massively discounted and your children are young, then go right ahead, but other than those circumstances I cannot think of much to recommend Madagascar 3.

Pros: Brightly coloured, engaging mini games, for fans of the characters and movies.
Cons: Bad controls, confusing gameplay, limited scope, repetitive and not a huge amount of fun.

1.5 Shacks Out Of 5

 

 

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