Friday, July 30, 2010

v2, d131: WOF#2: Random Nintendo Game of the Month (Disney Edition!)

Confession: This RNGOTM isn't exactly random. Then again, this isn't actually a monthly feature, so whatever.

I've started re-playing one of my favorite PS2 games, Kingdom Hearts, recently. It's really a fantastic game that just about anybody could love. I mean come on, my WIFE has played through the thing. If you've unfamiliar, the game is basically a fantasy/adventure/action game with role-playing elements that centers around a boy hero who is traveling to different worlds trying to horde off the armies of shadows that seek to return all of existence to darkness. Oh, and his weapon is a giant key. Oh, and the worlds are all from various Disney movies, and Donald and Goofy travel along and fight with him, aided (at various times) by Peter Pan, Jack Skellington, Aladdin, Ariel, the Beast, etc.

You want to play now.

Anyway, due to my recent KH gaming, I decided to go back to the ORIGINAL Disney crossover adventure game, Capcom's 1988 NES classic Mickey Mousecapade.

I actually owned this game once upon a time.

The story goes something like this: Mickey and Minnie Mouse are traveling through various levels to rescue their friend, who has been kidnapped by an evil queen. For some reason, Mickey attacks with throwing stars, and Minnie can get them, too. Minnie is odd in this game. She follows you and does whatever you do; she jumps when you do, she climbs when you do, she follows your every step. Even if you jump to a higher platform and she misses, when you jump to the next platform she'll jump in the same direction as if she were going with you. Further, there are times when you think you're uncovering a hidden item, but instead a crow or something pops out and carries a fretful Minnie away, and you have to rescue her before you can complete the level. A catch: if you can get off the screen before the crow completely escapes with Minnie, she'll be back with you on the next screen. That makes sense.

The levels are the Fun House, the Ocean, the Woods, the Pirate Ship, and the Castle. (It seems to me the Pirate Ship would go between the Ocean and the Woods, but whatever. I'm not picky) Some of the bad guys are kinda random--a scorpion-looking thing, a spider, dancing...chairs?--but many are just kinda thrown together from various Disney cartoons. The brooms and dancing mushrooms from Fantasia. Card soldiers from Alice in Wonderland. Honeycomb-throwing bears, purportedly from the Country Bear Jamboree (though I don't believe this claim), or as it's known to the children of southern California this day in age, the Winnie-the-Pooh ride (but I'm not bitter). The bosses are all Disney villains--an obscure witch from a Donald Duck cartoon, the crocodile from Peter Pan, Kaa from The Jungle Book, and Pete. Tinkerbell shows up to help in the Woods. Here's something I learned today: the game was apparently mostly Alice in Wonderland-themed in its Japanese release, but the North American version decided to shake things up a bit with the inclusion of the other characters. The final castle, however, is pretty straightforward Wonderland: Cards attack, giant dragonflies, walruses in vests and top hats, which means the final boss of the game is, naturally...Maleficent from Sleeping Beauty.


Every level begins with a sign pointing to wherever you're going, i.e. "To Fun House" or "To Pirate Ship." I guess the Pirate Ship never really moves. Mickey walks up to the sign and then turns around and shouts, "Minnie!" and Minnie comes scampering after him. I don't know what Minnie is doing back there, but every single time she has to be reminded to come along. Dumb Minnie. Can't keep up, gets kidnapped, and oh--even though she can't take damage, she can die. If you jump to a ledge over a pit and Minnie doesn't make the jump, Mickey apparently decides there's no point anymore, and he jumps, too. It's pretty heavy stuff.

Okay, now for some gameplay:

Catchy tune. And if you absolutely want the ending spoiled and the identity of Mickey's mysterious "friend" revealed:

Overall, I remember this being a really fun game. It's a little tripped out. But that's okay. We were all a little weird back in the NES days. I mean come on, fighting Disney bad guys with throwing stars in a woods-like setting that somehow rests between an ocean and a pirate ship? That's just wacky.

All right, I'm off to throttle more Heartless with the Keyblade in Tarzan's jungle.