We have our first disc based game for review today, Attack of the Movies 3D. As this is a rail shooter we will be reviewing the Wii version but just for the record, there is also a 360 version. From what I’ve seen of the 360 version though the only difference between the two are slightly better graphics and much worse controls on the 360 version. The basic idea is that you get to play through a variety of B action movie genres, though some of the genres don’t seem all that typical, using 3D graphics to “enhance” the experience. I’m going to say outright that I’ve always been skeptical of the technological Reese’s peanut butter cups that are 3D games but I’m more than willing to give something like this a chance. Unfortunately this game was not the one to light my 3D world on fire so rather than spew bile for the whole review I’m just going to discuss what was expected of this game (what was described in its press release) and what it delivered (what we actually got).
So let’s start of with the biggest selling point which is the 3D. First off don’t be expecting a Pixar movie quality 3D experience as you won’t be using the awesome RealD glasses you see in the theaters these days, instead it’ll be the good old red and blue(cyan technically) glasses from the late ’80s/early ’90s. You get four pairs of glasses which are of decent quality (for cardboard 3D glasses that is) which means you’ll have enough for the max number of players. The 3D effects are minor at best unfortunately, my fiancée and I couldn’t see any real 3d effects with the exception of a slightly raised HUD. That said I have read some comments from people saying that the 3D was amazing so maybe my eyes are busted (or maybe someone’s ad team is trying out the viral forum thing).
Next let’s talk about the action packed movie themed levels that were advertised. There are 6 different levels which are themed in the following order: insect invasion, space battle, ancient temple, robot apocalypse, underwater, and graveyard/Halloween. Right off the bat you can tell a couple of those aren’t really standard movie themes (seriously underwater themed? I can only think of maybe like three action movies that take place almost entirely under or even on water) so there’s the movie themed levels claim out the window. As for action packed the actual levels do contain a fair chunk of fun and somewhat intense action. Unfortunately though despite the fact that the levels are mildly difficult, the bosses are kind of boring and stupid easy as they have respawning power-ups in easy view and the majority of boss attacks are dodge/cancel-able. Worst of all the levels are very short averaging out at about 15 minutes each (depending on your individual remote controller prowess) and feel over way too quickly.
The last important feature the game advertises is a variety of unique weaponry custom-built for each level and on this point I call shenanigans. There are only three weapons and they are the same in each level, you have your one shot, triple shot, and rapid fire shot. The only difference between the space pistol, the graveyard pistol, and every other level’s pistol is the sound. Every weapon has the same ammo capacity, same looking shots, and the same portrait in the HUD so this feature is completely nonexistent. I should mention that there is a fourth weapon type but for the life of me I have no clue how to unlock it. It can be unlocked through a menu within the main menu by inputting a code but unfortunately the code was nowhere to be found. I beat the game and I got no code, I read every bit of text on the box and manual (it was new copy of the game) and I got no code, I even checked all over the internet (including both the game’s website and Gamefaqs) and I still couldn’t find a code. I may have missed the code somewhere but I doubt it and if they aren’t going to make a piece of the game’s content at all accessible then I’m not going to count it towards the game’s review score.
The promises this game does come through on 100% are four player multiplayer and compatibility with the Wii zapper but those aren’t really anything to be proud of. The best way to describe my feelings towards this game is that it feels like an arcade game from 1995 and that’s not a good thing. The premise and tech here feels gimmicky and the gameplay feels designed to take quarters from as many players at a time as possible, which is ironic seeing as this is a budget priced disc game. The ideas presented here are somewhat interesting but it just doesn’t really deliver. On the bright side it’s a budget title ($30), it has an awesome lenticular 3D box cover (the same effect as on those old 3D trading cards from back in the day), and if you want an OK family game that everyone can play (it’s rated T but there’s nothing worse than what you’d see on an episode of the Power Rangers here) this will definitely fill that void. This game gets a two out of five stars and while it may not be for everybody the few redeeming qualities of this game will make it just right for the more tolerant gamers out there.