Having been teased with a lovely press pack about the release of the game Disney Universe on the 28th of October, I was delighted to receive the game to review. My son had been most intrigued by the press pack and has been wearing the t-shirt with pride. It was brilliant timing as it was half term. I was sent a copy of the game for the X-box, but is also available for the Wii and Play Station 3.
Disney Universe is a virtual theme park which consists of six separate worlds that are based on well known Disney films. These are Aladdin, Alice in Wonderland, The Lion King, Pirates of the Caribbean, Monsters, Inc., and WALL-E. Each world is based on the film, so Pirates of the Caribbean contains pirate ships, Monsters Inc contains children and doors and so on. Unfortunately there is a problem, Disney Universe has been hacked and it’s artificial intelligence is working to try and harm you. They have captured the guests at the park and its your mission to save the day and release them.
In order to do this your character has to choose from a number of different costumes, which are based on Disney characters. It’s a theme park, you need to blend in! There are a limited selection to choose from at first but as you progress though the levels and rescue the guests you gain more. The costumes are Disney or Pixar characters, like the Cheshire Cat from Alice in Wonderland, Mike from Monsters Inc. and Mickey Mouse. The different costumes come with different weapons that are relevant to the character.
Each of the six worlds is divided into three chapters which are separated into three levels each. The aim is to get to the end gate for each world, whilst fighting enemies and solving challenges along the way. The game play is fast and furious and as you go you collect gold and other collectables. The gold is used to buy additional costumes and unlock new levels. Scattered throughout the game are keys which allow you to unlock treasure chests which let your character become more powerful by giving them addtitonal powers. The game starts in the Pirates of the Caribbean world, other levels have to be unlocked.
The puzzles are reasonably easy to solve but do involve some thinking. If you are stuck there are big blue arrows on the screen showing you where to go next. There are also prompts on the screen to help you. A lot of the challenges work well with two people which is great as it encourages the kids to play together. The enemies are mainly killed easily, but there are a couple of nasty ones that take a lot of getting rid of. If you do get killed you reappear a few seconds later ready to run back into the fray. At regular intervals you also find yourself being cursed and turning into things like a boot or a hamburger which always raises a laugh.
My son really enjoyed this game and also played it happily with his friends when they came round. The great thing about the multi-player mode is you can co-operate or you can be nasty and whack your friends to steal there money, or nick a collectable before they do. It is not a game that is over quickly, it takes a while to unlock new characters and levels so this game will be enjoyed for some time. The great thing is that Disney are going to release new costumes, locations and characters so that the game will never be finished. It’s a great game for the family as well, I enjoyed playing it and my son was thrilled I would play it with him. It is now one of the first games he plays after he has done his homework.
The game can be played alone or with up to four players.
PEGI Rating: 7