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Despicable Me: Minion Mania Review: Be Prepared for a Challenge

Despicable Me is an upcoming movie that I’m actually looking forward to watching; the only real movie that I’ve enjoyed this summer thus far was Toy Story 3.  Karate Kid was far too bland, The Last Airbender consisted of horrendous acting, and Knight and Day was… just not my type of movie.

I think I’ve seen the trailer for Despicable Me way too many times though, and the iPhone game was just a way to pass the time as I’m waiting for the actual movie to be released this Friday.  Sure, the game could use some more levels, but the amount of brain power needed to accomplish each mission is quite fantastic.

If you’re a puzzle fan at all, this is definitely one for you.  Although for anyone else, you may find it a bit difficult and the graphics a bit too pixelated.

Likes

Challenge: I’m usually not one that likes difficult games, but this one actually works your mind and requires you to think.  It also requires you to test each piece of the level, whether it be buttons, guns, or grappling hooks.  It’s almost like Toki Tori except with a Despicable Me theme added to it, making for quite a gameplay experience.

Each level is unique: After one level, the next one seems to be an entirely different puzzle.  I’m encountered with more items, more rooms, and even more… whatever those yellow creatures are called.  The variety alone makes me come back to the game to test my mind, and it’s definitely a game that’ll keep your mental strength quite even.

The extras: The only reason I would buy a DVD is for the extras.  iTunes provides such an easy way to download and purchase movies, I’m too lazy to drive over to the local supermarket and buy a DVD.  And the same seems to be with a game: without the extras, it’s hard to recommend.  Fortunately, Despicable Me has some surprising extras that actually shocked me, such as the ability to purchase clothes for your yellow creature and the fact that new clothes are revealed after beating a certain level.  Achievements are also included, making the bonus pack quite larger than expected.

Dislikes

Glitches: I’ve run across a couple of glitches; for one, I shot my little creature out of the cannon only to witness the “ball of death”.  That basically means he got stuck in the cannonball form and never returned.

More levels please: 20 levels should last you anywhere from 2-4 hours, but still, it would have been nice if they added some more.

Physics: I know this isn’t a physics puzzler, but it would have been nice if they added some realism to this game.  For example, the little creature is physically rendered as more of a box than an actual, breathing entity.  When shooting these “boxes” onto platforms and such, they seem to just appear there and not gracefully jump or fly there.  While I see why they didn’t pay much attention to this area, it would have been better if they did.

Graphics: I highly doubt Namco went for the pixelated yet 3D look, and if they did, it looks absolutely horrible.  The colors are also a bit dull, and like I said before, the character models are quite pixelated.

Despicable Me: Minion Mania isn’t the first of its kind nor is it the best.  As you can see from above, there are numerous number of flaws that are holding this one back.  But because of the ability to customize your character and the fact that it’s quite challenging make this an easy recommendation for any puzzle fans out there.  So if you’re in need of some mental boosts, be sure to put this one atleast on the wish list.

Just a word of warning, it seems as if the game is crashing.  I haven’t had any issues, but many people on iTunes are complaining of that issue.  Let’s hope it gets fixed.

Despicable Me: Minion Mania was developed by Namco, and I played through version 1.0 on my iPhone 4.  The price is $4.99, and there is a lite version to try before you buy.




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