So the D23 Expo (click here to read coverage, by the way) is now but a distant memory. Sigh. Can we do it again?!? Just kidding!
I was originally going to close out my D23 coverage with a Top 5 list for the upcoming video game “Disneyland Adventures” from Xbox 360, but then I realized that I just had too many good things to say about it.
I was fortunate enough to play it at the convention and, I have to be honest, before doing so I wasn't that excited for it. Sure, the idea sounded cool (travel through Disneyland, interact with characters, go on “rides,” etc.), but I wasn't sold on just how well it would translate. But it translates pretty damn well. Learn how after the jump.
10. You can dance with characters!
Or wave at them! Or get their autograph! Or get your photo taken with them! Sure, for a 34-year-old bald man that's not that exciting, but if I were a kid it would blown my mind.
9. The entire park is there!
And it all looks exactly as if you were strolling through the park today. And I'm not just talking about the main buildings and the rides. The Dole Whip stand? There. The garbage cans? There. Your favorite spot on Main Street to grab a bite? There. Of course, you can't buy a Dole Whip, but nothing is perfect, right?
8. There is a ton to do!
Each ride in the park is an adventure and, depending on the ride, each adventure has a different number of “chapters.” The Matterhorn and Peter Pan's Flight, for example, have three chapters each; The Enchanted Tiki Room has one. But my point is that it's not just one activity or game per ride. They seriously maximized the play time with this game.
7. Mickey Mouse sounds like Mickey Mouse!
All character voices in the game are done by the Disney-approved voice talents who are also responsible for doing the voices in the parks, cartoons, commercials, etc. Therefore, the characters are the characters and not some voice actor's poor interpretation of Donald Duck.
6. Fastpasses, fastpasses, fastpasses!
Let's say you find yourself in Tomorrowland but you really want to ride Pirates of the Caribbean immediately. Sure, you can make the hike across the park, or you can utilize the game's Fastpass option and jump to any attraction by raising both of your hands in the air. And then wave them like you just don't care!
5. It's all in the details, baby!
Like Disneyland itself, the game is successful in its attention to the tiniest little bit of minutiae. There are Hidden Mickeys, nods to elements in an attraction's line, and homages to Disney's past. Want an example? Well…
4. Homages to Disney's past!
One of the chapters/games/levels on the Matterhorn allows you to ski with Goofy, an homage to the 1941 animated short "The Art of Skiing” that features Goofy demonstrating how to downhill ski. The game is completely modern when it comes to the park's layout, but it remains absolutely aware of the Disney history that came before it.
3. Characters have personalities!
When you meet Mickey he's totally ready to give you a high-five, but characters like Eeyore or Bashful may act a little more reluctant and shy. It might seem like a no-brainer, but the fact that they thought to match characters with the personalities they're known for is really awesome. I just hope Captain Hook doesn't want to impale people.
2. No waiting in long lines for rides!
Although, that would be absolutely hilarious if they had you wait for an hour to get on Star Tours, only to have it break down just as you're about to board. That would be the best/worst video game ever.
1. And I only saw a fraction of what's coming when it's released on November 15!
I played the game for probably a total of five minutes, and a lot more is coming when the game comes out this fall, but I was very impressed by what little I saw. Hopefully this will spark a Magic Kingdom game (hint, hint), followed by an Epcot game where I can get drunk as I drink virtual beer around the World Showcase Lagoon. Ah… now that's my idea of a video game.