#??: Super Scribblenauts
This is the sequel to Scribblenauts, a game that promised to bring something revolutionary to the Nintendo DS system, and that was a game where you could “scribble” any word in you wanted in Maxwell’s notepad, and voilá! You’d see it on the screen. Whilst most common words are available, some producing specific creatures/items, and some produce the same character (such as God or Zeus, who produce the same lighting-bolt tossing diety) but far from all words were included. Whilst that’s a logical result whilst producing such a game for the first time, the imaginative gamer in me got a bit frustrated when they wouldn’t produce some of the creatures or items I desired. This has gotten improved though in this game, so let’s get on with the review.
Graphics: 7/10 It really feels some kind of Macromedia Flash-based game, though I’d think implementing such a game into the DS would result in failure (I’m saying this not having any kind of expertise whatsoever in that area, so take it with a grain of salt). It does look good though, with paper-cut out monsters (or is it wooden cutouts?) held together with buttons (or is it nails?) in their joints. Charming, and while not the best in graphics that the DS has to offer, it looks great for what it’s supposed to be. When compared to the first game it looks the same though, as most sprites have been recycled, probably to save time and to add more time working on adding new items, monsters and words into the game.
Sounds & Music: 7/10 The same few songs keep on looping in all the stages, some kind of Yoshi’s Island- esque cutesy theme which gets old quite fast. The sound effects are good though, but don’t expect much variety here either, after all, this isn’t where this title’s forte lies. Read further to find out where it lies… LIES!! It’s ALL LIES! Just kidding. Just spazzin’ out a little is all.
Gameplay: 10/10 They’ve improved quite a lot in this department, while the visuals, sounds, music and controls are pretty much the same, the word bank and the new function of adding adjectives before the nouns gives a lot of new possibilities to finish the levels. While the challenge isn’t that huge (bar that level where you have to sneak past the dragon to get the key to save the damsel in distress) there’s a lot of ways to get creative with words, such as when I defeated the last boss easily using my imagination. And that’s where the forte is of the game, you have to use your imagination to get past the obstacles. There’s little that requires you to use your brain until you pollute your environmental air with ear smoke. I managed to beat the puzzles by bypassing them with items and such. The key word is IMAGINATION. And this game gives a lot of room for using that. Forget reflexes, skills and wits, you have to revert into a small kid to beat this game.
Replay value: 9/10 There are so many ways to beat each level, and the entire game, if you’d like to that is. Replayability if also an area where the game stands strong- and with a lot of new and imaginative levels to beat you’ll get a lot of juice out of this game.
Trivia: I didn’t notice this as much, having played the first game 3-4 years prior to this one, but apparently 5th Cell, the developers of the game, tuned up the responsiveness of the game’s controls.
First image from: Wired.com Second Image from: Destructoid.com Third Image from: (C) MartianOddity