Max & The Magic Marker
Posted 3 years ago By kingquagmire - David Collins
Drawing was a magical experience for me when I was a kid. I could create entire worlds out of a box of Crayons and a few sheets of paper. Of course, my ego directed me elsewhere when I realized my artistic skills never evolved past the first grade. But, I wonder if I would have kept at it if I was able to truly bring my imagination to life? The guys at Press Play must have wondered the same thing, as they’ve given us a glimpse at what that might actually be like in their latest WiiWare title, Max & The Magic Marker.
Max is an ordinary child who loves to draw. One day, a marker shows up in the mail, packaged in a plain envelope with no return address. Being a typical kid, the first thing he does is sit down and draw with it. He sketches out a purple monster and it immediately comes to life, jumping right off the page and into Max’s other drawings. Max takes off after the creature by drawing himself in his other drawings with the magical marker.
This 2D platformer is not your typical Mario clone. It takes full advantage of the WiiMote’s motion control by making your own drawing prowess the focal point, in lieu of the normal run and jump mechanic. Max can move left and right, jump, and push obstacles around, all with the Nunchuk. He won’t get far though without you and his trusty Magic Marker. You have to draw steps, ladders, bridges, teeter-totters and anything else you can imagine to help him along. He’s limited though, as the monster has stolen all the ink from the marker, making it necessary for Max to find as many globs of ink as possible during his jouorney.
Given that this is a WiiWare title, you can’t expect a lot from the visuals or the sound, even though both are appropriate to the setting (i.e. an 8-year olds sketchbook). So the big hook is the physics-based drawing power of the marker. Fortunately, Press Play did a fine job making sure that it’s picture perfect. From drawing boxes to squashing baddies, to making all kinds of oddly shaped constructions that can only be deemed a bridge in the loosest sense of the word, the draw-mechanic was only inhibited by my own lack of skill. Sure, controlling Max himself felt a bit awkward but I think that was mostly due to the fact that my Wii doesn’t get as much love from me as it should, so I’m a bit rusty with the Nunchuk-WiiMote controls.
Fans of platformers looking for a new twist will love this game. It takes the control mechanic behind Crayon Physics and mashes it up with a simple 2D platformer. The 15 levels will keep you busy for roughly 3-4 hours, which isn’t bad for a downloadable title, even at 1000 Wii Points, although I would have prefered it to be a bit longer. I didn’t find the puzzles too taxing, but I can guarantee that if you don’t have a bit of imagination of your own, you will struggle with some of it. Press Play rounds out the package with time trials, challenges and extra levels, making this one of the few WiiWare titles that I can easily draw my recommendation on.
+ Puzzles can make you think...
- Could be a bit longer
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Release Date : 2010/03/08
System : Nintendo Wii
Publisher : PressPlay
Developer : Press Play
Category : Platformer
ESRB : E
7.0 / 10
8.5 / 10
8.0 / 10
8.7 / 10