Well, Super Bowl 50 has come and gone, and like most years, I didn’t really care about either team. But I’ve always liked Super Bowl commercials, and I just like commercials in general. Sometimes they’re even better than the show they’re advertising. I know, I’m weird like that. And it’s always been a tradition of mine to write a blog about my favorites, so here is this year’s.
Adventure Time is one of Cartoon Network’s most popular shows, and I’ve probably reviewed more Adventure Time games than any other cartoon license out there. Since I’ve been doing this for nearly 20 years now, that’s saying something! In fact, most of my Adventure Time knowledge comes from the games, because I really don’t watch the cartoon much. Anyway, all of the Adventure Time games up to this point have starred Finn and Jake, which makes sense because they’re the main characters in the cartoon. But finally, we have an Adventure Time game starring another character, and it also happens to be my favorite one: BMO! BMO Snaps is a picture-taking arcade shooting gallery game downloadable for iOS devices (reviewed on iPad here).
Charlie Brown and the rest of the Peanuts gang have been delighting readers of the comics section in the newspapers for more than half a century, and have also scored big with award-winning animated TV specials among other things. And now there’s a full-length computer animated Peanuts movie now in theaters (and it’s actually pretty good, I enjoyed it anyway). So in honor of that, Activision released a game based on the characters and style of the new film. In the game, Charlie Brown and his friends are playing hide-and-seek, and Snoopy and Woodstock must find them! But Snoopy has a pretty vivid imagination, so a bush can become a jungle, a brick fence wall can be ancient ruins, a cardboard box can be a rocket to the moon, his doghouse can be a flying WWI biplane, and much more! Guide Snoopy through stages inside his imagination and find all the kids in this 2-D platformer available for nearly all the current gaming consoles, but reviewed on Wii U here.
Adventure Time is one of Cartoon Network’s most popular shows, and man, oh man are there a lot of games based on the franchise. Trust me; I’ve reviewed most of them! I think I’ve reviewed more games based on Adventure Time than any other cartoon license, and since I’ve been doing this for nearly 20 years, that’s saying something! Most of the other Adventure Time games imitate other classic titles like top-down Zelda games and other dungeon crawlers. But when I first heard about the name “Finn and Jake Investigations,” I thought it might be like one of those Phoenix Wright games. But when I saw screenshots it looked more like a 3-D platformer! To my surprise when I actually played it, it’s really a point and click adventure game! In fact, if TellTale Games had this license, this would probably be like something they would make, at least a few years ago. At any rate, it’s one of publisher Little Orbit’s best games yet! It’s available for nearly all the current game consoles, but reviewed on Wii U here.
Recently I played and beat the new holiday title, LEGO Dimensions. I was impressed with some of the worlds you explore and licenses used, so I decided I’d write a blog about it. In short, LEGO Dimensions is essentially Skylanders with LEGOs. You buy and build LEGO figures and vehicles, and then put them on a special pedestal so you can play as them in the game. Unlike Disney Infinity, any character and vehicle can go into any world at any time. That’s one thing that Skylanders and LEGO Dimensions does right. Half the fun was seeing all the worlds you could go into, and what surprises you’d find. In fact, brother Jeff (who I always play LEGO games with), described the game as ‘LEGO Kingdom Hearts’ and I like how he put that. So let’s dive into the portal and see what we can see!
Gravity Falls is a cartoon on the Disney XD cable channel, and it has become one of my most favorite cartoons ever. I haven’t been this into a cartoon ever since DuckTales, Rescue Rangers, or Animaniacs. So I was thrilled to have the opportunity to review the Gravity Falls game from Ubisoft. In the show, preteen twins Dipper and Mabel are sent to stay with their Great Uncle Stan for the summer. “Grunkle Stan” as they call him, he runs a tourist trap museum called the Mystery Shack in the small town of Gravity Falls, Oregon. But while the artifacts in the museum are fake, Gravity Falls is shrouded in mystery as paranormal events happen nearly every day! It’s up to twins Dipper and Mabel to discover the secrets of the town, and have some fun and maybe learn a thing or two along the way. The show is great because it has a lot of adult humor, but as a Disney channel show, it’s also fairly clean, too.
When I was a kid in the 80’s, Care Bears were pretty popular for a little while. They even had a couple of animated movies! (And the first one was surprisingly dark if I remember correctly.) Well, apparently the Care Bears are still around, because now you can play a free Match-3 puzzler featuring the Bears who don’t wear their emotions on their sleeves, but on their bellies instead! One day, Grumpy Bear was in such a bad mood that he accidentally caused a storm to split up Care-A-Lot! Now you must help Grumpy piece the land back together somehow by matching the different symbols on the Care Bears’ bellies, similar to other games like Bejeweled or Candy Crush. Care Bears: Belly Match is available to download on iOS and Android devices, but reviewed on iPad here.
Recently I reviewed Transformers Devastation, and it got me to thinking about the franchise. When I was a kid in the 80’s, I was pretty big into Transformers for a couple of years. Ever since I was a kid I always wanted a GOOD Transformers game that was truly based on the cartoon. And now we finally got one with Transformers: Devastation (although I still like Fall of Cybertron better). So in honor of the release of this long-awaited game, here’s a blog about my top five favorite Autobots (good guys) and Decepticons (bad guys).
When I was a kid, I was big into Transformers. I played with the toys and watched the old cartoon from the 80’s. It took nearly 30 years for us to get a GOOD Transformers video game, and even then, they weren’t based on the toys and cartoon I loved. But now, finally, there is a game based on the cartoon I watched as a kid, and it even has many of the same voice actors, too! Transformers: Devastation is a 3-D action game from famed game makers Platinum, and it’s reviewed on 360 here. It could almost be called, “Cary’s Childhood: The Game.”
Right in the middle of Toon Week, and we’re going to look at a game based on one of the most popular Japanese anime cartoons of all time: Dragon Ball Z! The newest game based on the popular animated series: Extreme Butoden, is now available on the 3DS from Namco Bandai! It’s a 2-D, one-on-one fighter from Arc System Works, makers of other great 2-D fighters like BlazBlue and Guilty Gear!