Alice in Wonderland (DS)
Alice in Wonderland for the Nintendo DS shows great promise as a topsy turvy sidekick to the visually stunning movie, but seems to fall short, as most movie video games seem to do. There are some satisfying puzzles and charming musical score, but the flaws still shine bright.
The story is simple. Ten years after her first nonsensical adventure, Alice has once again fallen down the rabbit hole and comes face to face with an assortment of crazy characters. However, this Alice has lost her memory, and it's up to the White Rabbit and other Wonderland inhabitants to restore Alice's memories. And beyond that is the question, is she really the Alice from ten years ago?
The game play allows you the use of five characters, each with their own special ability. The March Hare can use telekinesis and the White Rabbit is able to stop time. The controls are simplistic and allow you to focus on the puzzles rather than which combination of buttons allows characters to switch. As the puzzles grow more demanding, solving them requires you to combine the various abilities of the characters in order to move forward.
As the player, your role in the game is to protect Alice as she undertakes her quest, and sometimes that protection is glorified babysitting. While the puzzles maintain interest, the fighting system is simple to the point of boredom. Red Cards drag the seemingly useless Alice into the void, and after mashing the A-button enough times, all the Cards fall down and Alice is once more safe. As the game continues, the only difference in the opponents fighting skills is the appearance of a shield.
While the graphics do their best to maintain Tim Burton's quality, there is a disarming clash between the human and the animal characters. Alice and the Mad Hatter have a slap dash appearance against the smooth symmetry of the March Hare and Dormouse. And with poor voice acting, it adds a comical quality to the game, but you're laughing at it, not with it.
While Alice in Wonderland had the opportunity to be an engaging puzzle game, the simplistic combat and clashing visual graphics once again continue the curse of the lacking movie inspired video game. by Lauren
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