Sunday, June 2, 2013
Shatterblog!: Adventure Time: Hey Ice King, Why'd You Steal Our Garbage!? Review
The gameplay takes two forms. There is an overworld map to wander around on, going from zone to zone. These zones are linked by stairs or passages, which is the main gameplay mode. It's side-scroller beat-em-up type combat with loads of familiar enemies from the show. The actual gameplay is really simple, with one button linked to your normal attacks and the other special moves performed by Jake who is in your backpack. You can also use cool items (also recognizable for fans of the show) in combat. As you go through the dungeons and overworld, you unlock new abilities such as Jake's Ear Shield or a downward falling stab. You also learn travel type powers that let you transition to the next zone. Basically, the Land of Ooo is divided into 4 main sections: Grasslands, Candy Kingdom, Red Rock Cliffs, and the Ice Kingdom. In each zone you have to collect a certain number of special quest items, fight a boss, rescue a princess made of the garbage the Ice King stole, then turn return with the final quest item to learn a new transitional power. The first of these allows Jake to transform into a bride, and more unlock later in the game.
The graphics are a pretty cool mix of retro/16-bit with the show's unique artwork. In 3D the foregrounds and backgrounds look really great, which I did not expect. In my experience with the 3D it has largely been annoying/distracting. The soundtrack is mostly chiptunes type music, with some exceptions. For example, the village of tough guys has a song that simply repeats the words "Drink, fight, be manly!" which is pretty funny. The song even has it's own theme, which is a modified version of the shows theme. There isn't much actual spoken dialogue but when there is the actual VAs from the show do everything. The sound effects are mostly lifted from or based off the show. The entire game is really just full of fanservice and it's lovely.
Dungeons, bossfights, and combats are all pretty solid. The dialogue and jokes are amazing and the fact that the writing is all done by Pendleton Ward really shows. There are some truly great lines (make sure to try to enter the first temple before you get the sword! Trust me on this one). The biggest complaint is the length. It took me around 6 hours to beat the game, and I went fairly slowly. While it offers a New Game + mode, it's repetitive enough to begin with that it isn't terribly re-playable. The only collectibles are 12 chests with Level Up stars hidden throughout the game. There are some hidden items but none of them are really exclusive. Pretty much everything drops from enemies at some point. I also didn't find the items to be terribly useful besides the regenerative ones. They were amusing mostly, not helpful.
Overall it's a good game. I was sad when it ended so quickly, but it was a really fun ride. I recommend it to anyone who loves the show. 8.75/10.