Based on the animated movie, SCEA’s licensed title Disney/Pixar’s Monsters, Inc. Scream Team for the Playstation does a great job in capturing the essence and fun of the flick and is a decent game in its own right. Its aimed at the younger crowd but still offers an enjoyable experience for the younger player. As outlined in the game’s opening, you can play as either of two surprisingly lovable monsters who dwell in childrens’ closets since its their job - nothing personal. Each of these characters are trying to win a place in the prestigious Monsters, Inc. corporation as pro-monster. For those who haven’t seen the movie yet, the big blue furry guy is named Sulley while his companion, a small green creature with one eye is named Mike. Each of these characters has their own abilities as well as strengths and weaknesses so players will find themselves switching back and forth throughout the adventure.
The game itself is set on the Monsters, Inc. Scare
Island and your goal is to get through the training levels and earn the right to
be a full-fledged monster. The game slowly unfolds as players go through an
extended, somewhat long orientation session where they learn the basics of the
game. Basically, you collect ooze and must scare the little robot children,
called Nerves. Scaring the nerves requires you to perform a series of moves on
another screen. This is really effectively implemented and is easy to
understand. Plus, some of the scare animations are hilarious making this
probably the most enjoyable part of the game. However, things aren’t quite
that simple as each nerve is a different color and you need to collect enough
ooze to get your scare meter high enough to perform these moves. This is a bit
easy in the early going and the extended training session gets tedious in a
hurry. However, patience is definitely a virtue in this case. Once these
training sessions have been completed, Monsters, Inc.’s adventure really
On the bright side, the game is quite a bit longer than expected. There are 15 levels in all and each one is quite large which plenty of secret areas, hidden switches and other tasks to complete. Finishing each level with a medal is the most challenging task, since you are only awarded medals after you scare a certain number of Nerve robots, while the toys will constantly get in your way. Still, the gameplay is fairly simple and yes, a bit on the easy side, but given the target audience, this is appropriate. It shouldn’t take an experienced player long to get through the game and the standard controls and action-points shouldn’t really be much of an obstacle to enjoying the title.
So while Monsters, Inc. won’t win any awards for originality or innovation, it’s a solid title that captures the essence of the movies. It’s got solid production values, fits the feel of the movies and is a decent game in its own right. While Monsters, Inc. is a bit generic in the gameplay department, it has large levels and some variety. This all makes it a solid effort from SCEA. So don’t worry, this is a decent game for what it is though highly entertaining when you’re scaring one of the Nerves and laughing at the goofy moves the monsters make. While older gamers may find themselves a bit bored, the young gamers and young-at-heart gamers will enjoy this fun game’s mix of action and puzzle solving.
- Michael Palisano