Scribblenauts Unlimited Review
This marks the third platform that ‘Scribblenauts Unlimited’ is now available on, players may have picked up the title for the Nintendo 3DS or the PC in the past. If you did not get your hands on this game from 5th Cell, then you may want to choose the new Wii U version for it’s bright design and clever gameplay.
Scribblenauts Unlimited is the perfect title for the newly released Wii U and the Wii U GamePad. Mostly because the GamePad’s simple integration with the game blends seamlessly with the gameplay and shouldn’t be any trouble at all for any age to jump in and get started. Starring Maxwell, players can magically create objects by typing them into the gamepad and those objects appear within the game. You use these creations to solve puzzles, explore the land and torment those that oppose you.
Maxwell is a bit of a trickster, and after playing a cruel trick on man asking for food, a curse is placed on Maxwell (think Beauty in the Beast opening moments). The curse is slowly transforming Lily, Maxwell’s sister and adorable square-head shown on the right, into stone. The only way she can be saved is if Maxwell collect’s “Starites” from helping others with his unique powers of conjuration. You would think Maxwell would have been doing this anyway but he is not a very helpful person.
Now you will meet a giant-cast of characters that need your help, you can simply help them by completing their wishes or you can re-write the ‘Monkey’s Paw’ by W. W. Jacob and help them in cruel and mysterious ways. The challenges are housed in a wide-array of settings. There are smaller “worlds” or “sets” that house individuals that will all need your help. An underwater city needs your help, a subway station in a busy metropolis has a man that needs your help, or a kingdom in general…needs your help. You get the idea, the quests are fun to complete and the characters have unique and often times interesting needs that require your attention. Obviously the most fun that I had was thinking of the worst possible ways I could solve their issue while still getting credit for it. Or by crafting elements of my own life into the game (see Spinster Sister later on).
[quote_right]In gameplay the thought and design that went into the objects is what the makes the game such a treat. Every time I thought I was thinking outside of the box with my requests, 5TH cell came prepared[/quote_right]In gameplay the thought and design that went into the objects is what the makes the game such a treat. Every time I thought I was thinking outside of the box with my requests, 5TH cell came prepared. You can turn any object into a modified object using the adjective-modifier option. This turns flowers into rotten flowers for example, a perfect gift for a date I thought. It’s an important mechanic because, like I said, there is something innately predisposition in my brain to instantly start thinking of what would be the strangest object to craft for each mission, instead of the most proper. Now if the object isn’t present, or probably too graphic or a trademark that 5th Cell couldn’t use, you can create one like it or modify an object to resemble it.
So that’s the greatest part of the game, the flip-side to this is that the game rests entirely on your desire to keep creating objects for people with problems. There really isn’t any challenge-curve, or any particular instance that would require a crafty design in order to continue. The game just keeps pressing on, using the same gameplay-mechanic to solve each new challenge. There wasn’t any real difference from the 20th mission I solved from the first one I encountered. The game is fueled on imagination and creativity. You are basically building a story that only you really get. A “Spinster Sister” as a wedding guest is hilarious to me because I have people in my life that I don’t enjoy and I am giving that little creation its own backstory, motive and personality. If I picked “cousin” and just kept going on in my game, it would not have fun or memorable. You are building a tiny world with these characters and of you just do the missions, then you are going from mission to mission with no real motivation to keep playing.
Obviously I got tired and there were times that I hit virtual “writers block/object block” and had to take a break. The game is better in shorter bursts rather than longer marathon sessions. I had the most fun when I was feeling particularly crafty, helpful or evil and the virtual-world takes on a special meaning at those times. It’s a fun game though if you play by your own “secret rules”, which is really what I felt the developers were hoping you would do. Many times after someone made it clear that they needed a “car” or at least a mode of transportation I would shout “SURVEY SAYS?!….CHEAP SCOOTER!” then giggled and move on. It should be known that ‘cheap’ was a go to word for me in the game, because ‘hipster scooter’, ‘hipster stupid jeans’ and ‘hipster ex-boyfriend’ were not viable choices. This game was very cathartic at times.