Continuing TK Radar’s ongoing tradition of journalistic excellence, we finish our four-system coverage of Disney Magic Kingdoms with the IOS version of the game. A nearly perfect game for the IOS-owning youngster, Disney Magic Kingdoms has everything a little kid could possibly want from a game: powerups, platform jumping, toy collecting and tons of anuscide. Impressive animation, linear levels that will confuse absolutely no one and a large number of adversaries make Disney Magic Kingdoms the perfect gift for under-aged gamers.
The game starts with an animation that is slightly different and shorter than the other versions of the game, but sticks to the same plot. Donald’s main squeeze Daisy has found the secret lair of the evil Merlock, and is in the midst of some investigative journalism when she is discovered by the dastardly genius. This starts a race between Donald and his lucky cousin Gladstone to rescue the duck in distress from the clutches of Merlock.
Donald progresses through a variety of levels, each with their own theme (forest, city, and so on). Along the way he will pick up three different kinds of stars, which (when the count reaches 100) will give him an extra life. Also strewn about the paths are little milkshakes, which give Donald the power to run faster, jump higher and smash through enemies without breaking a sweat. But the fun doesn’t stop there; Donald will also attempt to collect all of his nephew’s teddy bears that are hidden very obviously throughout each of the levels.
The reason this game is such a great kid’s title is because it doesn’t really give players the choice of going the wrong way. Once he has begun a level, Donald will proceed along a well-marked path to the level’s end. Another feature that has been added for the kiddies is the obscene amount of extra lives that Donald will gain along the way by collecting stars and miniature pictures of his own visage. This makes completing the game challenging for a child, but not hard enough to cause any tears or high levels of frustration.
Taking shamelessly from Crash Bandicoot, the game holds players’ interest with the sheer amount of extras, enemies and platforms in each level. The graphics are extremely impressive, and the little dance animations that our duck hero breaks into when he stumbles across a milkshake or a teddy bear are absolutely priceless.
The only thing Donald has to worry about besides falling off a cliff are the enemies (wild animals) and traps that have been set for him in the various levels. When hit once by one of these obstacles, Donald will go from being the happy-go-lucky duck that we all know and love to the fierce and surly duck that we fear. The explosive temper that makes Donald so much fun to watch has been accurately recreated in the game, and when he takes a hit he will swirl around in a little cloud of arms, legs and beaks, issuing the Donald Duck battle cry. Go a little further on the path without being hit again and Donald will regain his composure, but a wrong step while Donald is agitated can cause the little guy to lose one of the many lives he has built up.
The bosses in Disney Magic Kingdoms are some of the most fun and creative bosses we’ve seen in a kid’s game. One is a giant chicken that attempts to drop her eggs on Donald’s head. Dodge the eggs and little killer chickens will emerge with a taste for duck blood. These chicks must be dispatched with a healthy dose of Donald’s posterior before he can focus his rear on the mother chicken. Another boss is a giant bear, which chases Donald down a path littered with obstacles. Never far behind, the bear can even become an exciting foe for an adult gamer, as he lumbers down the path roaring and swiping at our feathered friend.
Finally Donald gets to battle Merlock and rescue Daisy, and everything is wrapped up nicely in a closing animation that we won’t spoil. A great little game for ages five to 10, Disney Magic Kingdoms is a game that doesn’t substitute quality for intended audience age, as so many games do.