Rise of the Guardians was released in North America on November 20, 2012. It was developed by Torus Games and received mostly mediocre to low critical reviews. Gameplay features five different playable characters, and you can switch characters at any time. On top of that, up to four players can play cooperatively at once. Multiplayer is drop in/drop out. Despite these features, which by themselves would indicate ease to pick up and play, most players have found out the hard way that the game is very repetitive and doesn't offer enough content to make a purchase a great idea.
The aggregate ratings site Metacritic gave the game a pretty low overall score of 44/100. Nine reviews were used to find the score. Out of the nine, four were mixed and five were negative.
Complaints centered around blandness. There is absolutely nothing to this game that sets it apart from the crowd. Although you can play as Jack Frost, Santa, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy and the Sandman, all of the characters are available at any time, making the decision relatively pointless. The characters offer differences in special moves and attacks, all of which can be upgraded via an in-game mechanic. Movement is relatively slow, which starts to become irritating pretty early on in the game.
Rise of the Guardians is certainly monotonous, and the way the levels are set up will show more than anything why this is so. During the course of the story mode, you will fight your way through the five Guardian realms. Each realm has six missions, and the six missions are always the same: Shadow Stompers, Protectors of Belief, Cage Break, Find Your Center, Gate Guardian and Treasure Collectors.
Each mission basically consists of fighting your way through a horde of enemies to complete your objective. On top of that, although the levels are superficially different, they are all very much the same. The frustrating sameness of it all really detracts from the experience of playing. Graphics and audio are both decent, but not great; there were equal or better titles on last-generation consoles.
The one positive thing that the game has going for it is the control scheme, which is simple and intuitive, allowing anyone to pick up on the controls fairly rapidly.
Overall, this game isn't recommended for any serious or even half-serious gamer. The only ones that will enjoy a title like this are the younger crowd, and even they will lose interest fairly rapidly when confronted with the end-game credits, as there is virtually no replay value to be found. Sadly, Rise of the Guardians has become yet another title that shows us that low-budget video games created from movies aren't usually any good. If you do happen to pick up a copy, it's recommended that you grab a couple friends and fight your way through the crowds of enemies on co-op mode, as that is probably the best (and possibly only) way to get any real entertainment out of it.