Do the milkshake the milkshake do the shake
Following on from yesterdays Invizimals: The Alliance review, we're here to talk about that OTHER Invizimals title, The Lost Kingdom. You know, the non-portable one without all the Augmented Reality stuff the series has built its foundations on. So how does this heavily nerfed PS3 Invizimals title fare without its signature gimmick? Read on to find out.
Kids get a pretty raw deal in todays gaming scene. If a kiddo wants to find out about the best the gaming industry has to offer they will be bombarded with a number of critically acclaimed, rather adult titles. The Walking Dead. The Last of Us. Tomb Raider. Mass Effect. All of the games mentioned are critical darlings... but also feature content far too extreme for younger audiences. So where are the great games for the kids? Won't somebody think of the CHILDREN?! Ahem.. Anyhow, barring some truly fantastic LEGO titles and the always awesome Nintendo offerings, there are very few games that kids can really rave about.
Sadly, while Invizimals: The Lost Kingdom cannot really be defined as a must have, it is definitely a charming little kids game that gets the important stuff right... even if it does suffer some technical issues along the way. The game is quite pretty with vibrant, colourful environments and clever character designs. Unfortunately, the visuals seem to take their toll on the framerate every so often, causing the game to chug like a freshman downing a keg. There are a bunch of different Invizimals to unlock and control, each featuring their own skills which can be upgraded throughout the adventure.
These skills can be upgraded as the game progresses with little glowing Z's you pick up in the world. It's basically the God of War combat and upgrade system in a kids game. Even the static cameras are similar to Sony's uber violent greek mythology slasher. So, the way I see it is... If a game like Invizimals The Lost Kingdom can teach younger players the basic controls and upgrading mechanics of titles like God of War, then it's doing a great job of educating new gamers about game designs found in our more adult critical darlings. For that alone, kudos must be given.
The cutscenes are potentially the most irritating thing about the game. They are all live action, which makes no sense considering even the Invizimals TV Series is rendered in with an interesting CGI style. Why they made the choice to bring real (awful) actors to the game escapes me and really clashes with the funky designs present in the game itself.
There is nothing particularly great about Invizimals - The Lost Kingdom. However, there is also nothing particularly BAD about the game either. It's a harmless title, that has some interesting design choices and fun - if a bit derivative - gameplay. It's a good game to get kids accustomed to the more complex controls found in titles aimed at more mature audiences like God of War or Devil May Cry. If you have kids, you could do a lot worse than picking them up this flawed but fun little action platformer.
Not every game needs to be a masterpiece. Some can just settle for being good games... and that's surprisingly not a bad thing.
Paddy Murphy hails from a rural part of Ireland, where the men are men... and so are the women. He has released over a dozen games as a developer and wrote news and reviews for several websites including RPGamer.com and Gamepinion.org. He is a capricorn, his favourite food is Udon Noodles and his favourite beverage is... any with alcohol!
Jimmy the Geek