If you’re a fan of the Gamelounge, you know that I’ve been looking forward to the release of Epic Mickey for over six months. If you don’t know what Epic Mickey is, slap yourself three times and apologize to your parents for being such a disappointment. Now that your back I’ll fill you in on what Epic Mickey is so that you don’t have to be the disappointment at the Thanksgiving Dinner table this year.
Epic Mickey is a plat-forming Wii exclusive that focuses on Mickey Mouse. (If I have to explain Mickey Mouse to you, then you’re reading on a pirated server in China. Good for you, fight the oppression.) Mickey has been pulled into a mirrored world. Much like “Alice Through The Looking Glass”, Mickey is faced with a world much like his own, only this world is twisted. It’s as if someone has tried to recreate his kingdom, his friends and his life. This is because his older brother (Walt Disney’s first cartoon creation that he lost over a contract dispute) Oswalt has been living in this world. Seeing the life and triumph that Mickey has experienced, he feels that should’ve been his to have. So he’s created animatronic friends the likes of which are Donald, Goofy and others.
Pulled into this world by the Evil Blot (a creature of both Ink and Thinner), Mickey brings with him a paintbrush. This brush allows the use of Thinner or Paint where ever you deem necessary. This is where my hands on picked up the game. It’s a game that is fairly intuitive if you’ve ever played a Wii plat-former. The thumbstick controls your movement, you shake the remote to spin-attack, and you use the Z/B triggers to use Thinner and Paint, respectively. While only playing the tutorial, I was witness to a rather dark game. Mickey is captured by an evil doctor, cuffed to a table and made the victim of an apparent murder attempt. Admittedly, there were some rather humorous jokes thrown in here, but this is a Mickey Mouse bearing Wii title that I will not play around my daughter.
Once I got use of the free-play and the Paint Thinner vs Paint, the subtly of the game started to show its head. For instance, there was a door that I needed to get through. I had two options, I could paint and rebuild the door, opening it and making for a difficult jump, or I could destroy the frame with the thinner allowing for the door to fall and make a makeshift bridge. Both of them will get me across the danger, but one is destructive and one is creative. You’ll be faced with multiple challenges like this throughout the game. If you choose to build and create, your Mickey will become much brighter and cheery. If, however, you choose destruction, your Mickey will begin to resemble a rat-like character. I don’t know if the good/bad meter affects more than your looks, but it’s a nice twist in a Wii game.
The only real complaint I had with the hands-on was that there was no “sprint”. There are times where you have to cover a great deal of ground and a sprint would make things move a little faster. I asked the exhibitor if they were thinking of adding It and he said he didn’t know. (Hey, at least I tried.) Other than that tiny complaint, I think Epic Mickey is looking pretty good. With this, Donkey Kong Country Returns and the NBA Jam releases, I’m very glad I’ve held onto my Wii.