Scribblenauts (Nintendo DS) Review: Living Up to Expectations Despite the Frustrations.
Are you intrigued by the thought of having a puzzle game that gives the player the ability to conjure up any object they can think of? Well, that's exactly what Scribblenauts guarantee their gamers. It is one of the rarest games Nintendo DS ever have. This game is incredibly stunning!
The concept of this game actually stirs up skepticism. You might think it is quite impossible to begin with. Scribblenauts is a 2D side-scrolling platform-like encounter. The whole idea is to use any item or material in the real world to solve a given situation in the game. The creators encourage players to invoke anything by writing it on the screen. However, you cannot use words that are vulgar and inappropriate for the game. Also, you cannot utilize words with trademarks, such as Superman, Batman, and other similar terms. No matter how vast a vocabulary you have, there are limitations to this game. As long as you type objects that are applicable and acceptable, you can make it exist in the game.
One of the most fantastic aspects of this game is that the items you have evoked take on their own distinct characteristics and behaviors. For example, if you conjure up a car, you can ride on it; if it is food, it can be eaten; and if it is a weapon it can be used to attack enemies, and so on. However, the big BUT is the player can only make use of all these conjured up objects through Maxwell, the game's player-controlled protagonist. You have to tell Maxwell everything. If you want to dig a hole, give the shovel to Maxwell and tell him to begin digging. If you want to drive around, tell Maxwell to jump in the car and start the engine. Get the drift?
Now, you would think controlling Maxwell is a piece of cake. Sure, if you use the D-pad and buttons. And this is where the first frustration sets in. The thing is you have to use taps on the control screen to control the little fellow. It is so much like those RTS games where the troops tend to do things on their own, even after you tell them what to do. It can be real confusing and frustrating when Maxwell can't seem to get things right!
You thought that this game is all about absurdity? Well, think again! This game implements a physics engine. If you have dropped multiple objects at the same time, and you find yourself losing sight of what happens next, you can either stack up all those items or throw them around in the surroundings.
After a well executed tutorial, you can start solving dozens and dozens of problems. The first part is pretty much basic. However, as each level is raised, the difficulty is also amplified; which implies the need to think seriously and logically.
The reason behind making it as 2D is probably to preserve the player's sanity and to fit all software into the DS cartridge. It does not only have its own unique concept on how to play the game; it also has its own unique graphic designs. Nintendo supports the Wi-Fi Connection. You can download new creations and upgrades through the Internet. If you want to pass that kind of method, you can still trade levels in the game without even using the internet.
As an interactive toy, the game is enormously fun despite the cumbersome controls. It's like a sandbox for players who enjoy mucking around outside the normal realms. The puzzles can be very challenging and can even encourage some outlandish thought processes. It's not far off to think that this franchise may soon have a sequel. Hopefully, when that happens, Maxwell gets a control upgrade, too.