Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion - Review


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The wicked witch Mizrabel is causing havoc in the Disney Wasteland and it’s up to Mickey Mouse to put her evil plans to rest. After Oswald, the lucky rabbit, informs Mickey Mouse that Minnie has been spotted in the Wasteland, Mickey rushes off, with his trusty Paint Brush in hand, to save Minnie, as well as any others in danger, thanks to the evil Mizrabel.



Gameplay

7 / 10


Using Mickey’s Paint Brush and Paint Thinner, you’ll travel through different areas of the Castle of Illusion, rescuing those who’ve been kidnapped by the wicked witch. By using Mickey’s Paint Brush, you’ll be able to create objects that allow you to progress, such as a moving platform or a cannon that shoots Mickey further forward. Likewise, you can also use the Paint Thinner to remove roadblocks and create bridges or objects that allow you to carry onwards. The painting and thinning mechanism themselves don’t feel very creative. You’ll find yourself using the touchscreen to trace an image, or erase one, but this mechanism doesn’t really feel ‘fun.’

The game moves along at a leisurely pace. Yes, this is a platforming adventure, but it doesn’t have that speed factor that you’ll find in games such as
New Super Mario Bros 2 and Rayman Origins. Having to toggle between the general platforming of the game, and the use of the touch screen to paint/thin can put a halt on the games already slow pacing. The platforming itself though is actually quite fun, and once you get used to Mickey’s slow movements, the game does become rather enjoyable.


Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion Trailer


In
Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion you’ll find a hub like area called the ‘Fortress’ where your rescued friends await. Here, you can shop for new upgrades (which range from health boosts to spoil rate increases) by using ‘E-Tickets’ collected in each level. Here, you’ll also find that you can accept side-quests from the many characters waiting in their respective rooms. These extra tasks are actually very small, and don’t really ask much from you. They basically offer you an incentive to replay certain levels over again. The levels themselves don’t change as you return to complete these side-missions, making it feel rather repetitive. Changing the levels design, even in a minor way, would have added a new dynamic that could have made Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion feel like a more complete experience.

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Being a platforming game divided into worlds, you can be sure that you’ll find yourself in a few boss battles along the way. These confrontations are rather interesting but the notable problem is that there just aren’t many of them at all and it doesn’t help that these encounters aren’t very difficult.

The biggest disappointment is how little there is to
Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion. If you speed on through the game, without stopping to partake in any side-quests, It will take you less then three hours to complete, theoretically allowing you to finish the story in one sitting. If you work at completing every side-mission and purchasing every upgrade, you’ll find that this will add some more time to your experience.



Presentation

7.5 / 10


There’s no question that
Power of Illusion takes its graphical cues from the 1990 title ‘Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse’ initially released for the Sega Mega-Drive (Genesis). The art style is completely unique when compared to other games on the 3DS and the 2D colourful style looks really great in 3D. The few cutscene images look gorgeous but the problem is it’s just that; images. There are no animated cutscenes at all and the characters you interact with don’t talk, apart from a few who, from time to time, will say a few quick remarks here and there.

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Without spoiling too much, the games three worlds, each comprised of only a few stages, are loosely based on major Disney stories. Each stage takes you to different areas of Disney’s vast library and even those who aren’t diehard Disney fans will most definitely know where each location is based on.

It’s great to see many familiar Disney faces in
Power of Illusion, but it’s even better to see those characters who aren’t so highly regarded and often featured as Goofy, Donald and Aladdin. You’ll see Scrooge McDuck from DuckTales fame, and Repunzel from 2010’s Tangled.

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The characters, locations and art style of Power of Illusion are easily some of the best aspects of the game and you’ll certainly notice the overall presentation, even if the stages designs aren’t completely creative or mind-blowing.



Music

8 / 10


You’ll be pretty surprised at the quality of music in
Power of Illusion. The game features a beautiful orchestral style soundtrack that simply sounds amazing. Familiar elements from Disney movies will creep into the music, but for the most part, the game features all original music. The tunes are quirky at times, and grand during others, a notion that is all too familiar to longtime Disney fans.

A few songs from
Castle of Illusion return in bold and refreshing ways. Thanks to the advancement of technology, these tracks sound completely different and tend to serve as an homage to that era of Disney games. In fact, the whole game tends to do that, even if it stumbles from time to time.




Pros

  • Rich library of loveable characters
  • Beautiful visual style that’s unique to the system
  • Mickey Mouse!

Cons
  • Lacks any true depth
  • Side quests make the game feel repetitive
  • Short. Like Jiminy Cricket Short


Overall - 7.5 / 10

The overall score is not necessarily an average
Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion was released for 3DS on November 22 in Australia.


Written by Michael Villalon for ‘The VG Island’.

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