Toy Story 3: The Game
Posted 2 years ago By - Jay Acevedo
Let’s be honest, every time a company releases a game based on an animated movie, it’s for the quick cash and relies on the movie franchise’s popularity to sell a few thousand copies while the name is hot. Kids bug their parents to bring them to the movies, bug them to stop by McDonalds because they want the Happy Meal movie tie-in toy, and of course they want the game if you happen to have a video game console at home.
I never was a big fan of licensed titles based on TV cartoons or animated shows/movies. However, with my eldest child going on four, I’ve started to pay more attention to them over the last two years. Pixar is the incontestable leader when it comes to appealing and million dollar grossing movies, but up until now, none of their franchises managed to bring the same magic to a video game. On the other side, Dreamworks has already three solid games in Kung-Fu Panda, Bee Movie, and Monsters vs Aliens. Toy Story is THE biggest animated movie franchise out there and the latest movie has been gathering lots of positive feedback. You might ask: “What about the game is any different from the other shoddy tie-ins?” Let’s just say that Avalanche Software (of Bolt and Meet the Robinsons fame) has made something great, but could have been greater.
Toy Story 3: The Game features two main modes: Story and Toy Box. In Story mode, you play as as either Buzz, Woody or Jessie and are tasked with completing levels inspired by some of the movie’s key scenes. In addition to the accustomed run and jump nature of a platformer, each character has his/her own special ability. Woody uses his lasso to reach places the others can’t. Buzz is the strongest of the group with a laser beam and his trusty jet-pack. Jessie has a super jump that allows her to get to the toughest spots. You can switch between the three characters at any time to make use of their abilities. Once a mission is complete, you’ll earn rewards and collectibles.
However, the Toy Box mode acts as a meta-game of sorts inside the main game. In other words: a mini E-rated Grand Theft Auto. It is not very deep, mind you, but has just enough appeal to spend some quality time in it. All the gold and collectibles awarded in the Story Mode can be used here to customize the city and populate it with new characters and venues. Toy Box also provides more collectibles to find and additional mini-missions to do, ranging from the usual “go there do this and come back” to racing. The missions earn you additional money to unlock more new in-game content. Among the list of collectibles, Pixar-based costumes such as Wall-E or The Incredibles are scattered throughout the world and can be used to customize the townspeople. While it sounds silly, it is good enough for me to dress every single plastic person in town.
Visually the game does justice to the beautiful CGI the movie franchise is known for. The vibrant colors and the level decor are true representations of what you would expect of a game based on Toy Story. However, the voice acting lacks the love from the movie cast; for example, Woody doesn’t sound like Tom Hanks. Also, the controls are directly responsible for the game’s faults. Games based on movie or television properties often fail in that department. The platforming isn’t incredibly hard to figure out, but it seems like these “kid-friendly” games are made in a way that’s anything but kid-friendly. Often times, the player would need to replay the same section many times because of repeated “cheap” deaths. The aiming system is loose, and the characters seem have an innate ability to fail to grab ledges while jumping. Some sections will take four or five attempts before they can be passed, and that’s with me, an experienced gamer, at the controls. Now imagine your kid trying the same sections. Mind you, these control nitpicks won’t make the game impossible to finish (it can be completed in about a day), but they do make the fun pill hard to swallow. That is especially true in a game like this, where the replay value is huge since you are rewarded with collectibles on a constant basis. At least with a second controller connected the pain can be eased a bit through two player cooperative gaming.
Personally, I’ve spent more time fooling around in the Toy Box mode than playing the Story mode, and it wouldn’t surprise me if you end up doing the same. Sure, the missions aren’t exceptionally difficult and are quick to complete, but the fact that one can spend countless hours building and customizing Woody’s Round Up the way you want it is a great plus. You won’t get hundreds of hours out this mode, but it does offer just enough to get you and the family by.
Toy Story 3 isn’t the best game out there and is far from being flawless. However, in the realm of movie licensed titles and family games in general, this one deserves the opening of your wallet. I’ve actually started wondering if the Toy Box mode wouldn’t push Disney Interactive to do an open world Toy Story game. There’s enough content to make it happen.
In the meantime, give Toy Story 3 a chance. Your kids will love you for it, provided they can get you away from it long enough for them to play it.
+ Good replay value
+ Lots of unlockables
+ Two player co-op is a plus
+ Gameplay easy to figure out...
1 week ago :: Injustice: Gods Among Us
1 week ago :: Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14
2 weeks ago :: BioShock Infinite
4 weeks ago :: Gears of War Judgment
1 month ago :: (Kinect) The Hip Hop Dance Experience
1 month ago :: Tomb Raider
1 month ago :: Crysis 3
2 months ago :: DmC Devil May Cry
2 months ago :: (XBLA) Serious Sam Double D XXL
Download us here!
Game Junkies podcast and audio interviews
Release Date : 2010/06/15
System : Xbox 360
Publisher : Disney Interactive
Developer : Avalanche Software
Category : Adventure
ESRB : E10+
7.0 / 10
8.5 / 10
8.0 / 10
8.7 / 10