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Alice in Wonderland review

AT A GLANCE
  • Great characters brilliantly voiced
  • Good use of Wii-mote activated powers
  • It's a beautifully designed world
  • You can't die
  • The poor Dormouse doesn't get much to do
  • It's not a huge game

In Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland, the heroine eats a cake to grow larger, drinks a potion to grow smaller and meets all manner of extraordinary characters. It’s an interesting starting point for a videogame and when focused through the prism of Tim Burton’s imagination, even more so.

The surprise is that you don’t play Alice. Instead, she spends the game congratulating you for minor feats, getting captured by guards and cowering on the Mad Hatter’s hat. However you do get to play as the Hatter, the Cheshire Cat, the White Rabbit, the March Hare and the Dormouse. Each of them has a unique ability that is vital to progress through the strange world Carroll invented and Burton re-imagined.

Ultimately, much of the success of this title can be placed at Tim Burton’s door. The environments and characters are marvellous. They strike just the right balance between lovable and sinister – Stephen Fry’s Cheshire Cat and Johnny Depp’s Mad Hatter are particularly good.

But the cleverness of the game’s level design is also worthy of praise. Puzzles are multi-faceted, meaning you’ll need to switch between characters to solve them. Often a level’s perspective will be turned on its head. Essentially this disguises the fact that underneath it all this is just another Lego-style platformer – albeit a clever and charming one.

It’s not a huge adventure but there are plenty of highlights. Whether you’re reassembling a tumble-down, topsy-turvey house whilst under siege from malevolent playing cards, or taking down a boss by removing an eyeball with a hatpin, the game isn’t afraid to take dark turns away from your average child-friendly movie licence.

The result is hardly original but it’s well made, enjoyable and occasionally surprising. At heart it’s well made but unremarkable – yet, like the Mad Hatter himself, it’s dressed up eccentrically and packed with enough quirks to keep things interesting.

Mar 3, 2010

More Info

Release date: Mar 02 2010 - Wii, DS (US)
Mar 02 2010 - Wii, DS (UK)
Available Platforms: Wii, DS
Published by: Disney Interactive Studios
Developed by: Etranges Libellules
ESRB Rating:
Everyone 10+: Fantasy Violence
PEGI Rating:
12+

13 comments

  • Big D - January 4, 2012 10:21 a.m.

    How do you get the 2 big chests at the bandersnach stables because there blocked by 2 vortexes and the gards dont stop if u can help please reply
  • Annataylor - March 26, 2010 9:45 a.m.

    What happened to Disney? Tim Burton's Alice In Wonderland does not compare to the original animation. I remember when I was a child I would watch films like The Jungle Book and 101 Dalmatians and be amazed! Now, Disney has gone downhill and its films seem to be getting worse and worse as time goes by. If you ask me, many kids websites like Disney's should not be listed on the top category of sites like http://www.twitter.com/dozenkids. Is it time for us to realize that Disney is not really what it used to be and in fact it now scraping the barrel of entertainment?
  • colbierolans - March 5, 2010 11:11 p.m.

    One of the biggest question remains, does something so good could produce something that's the opposite? And also can Mia handle the role of alice exudingly well? See the overlook review: http://bit.ly/alice-in-wonderland-trailer-best-worst
  • AmanteDeLaLuz - March 5, 2010 4:03 a.m.

    I'm so not a gamer. I can't even figure out how to get past the huge killer tree thing... I've been swiping at it with my pocket watch forever and getting nowhere. Any pointers anybody? Help?!
  • Amnesiac - March 5, 2010 2:31 a.m.

    "i had to say this: your saying its better than heavy rain?" HHHNNNGGGGHHHH
  • OnyxOblivion - March 4, 2010 11:53 a.m.

    @Ghidora Somehow, I actually have to agree with you. But you know what I meant...You don't let 8 year old kids play Heavy Rain. reCAPTCHA: sarcasm talks Yes...Yes, it does.
  • vogler1604 - March 4, 2010 6:12 a.m.

    lol @ Ghidora
  • Ghidora - March 4, 2010 5:13 a.m.

    @OnyxOblivion " I doubt it would hold up well for more mature audiences." Hey, just like Heavy Rain!
  • may.be.vital - March 4, 2010 4:46 a.m.

    Very surprised at how this turned out... I'm impressed!
  • OnyxOblivion - March 4, 2010 4:02 a.m.

    @Cyberninja Relax. It's just a number. This just means its a great kids game. I doubt it would hold up well for more mature audiences.
  • Cyberninja - March 4, 2010 3:13 a.m.

    i had to say this: your saying its better than heavy rain?
  • JustTheBoBreaker - March 4, 2010 1:48 a.m.

    Ya, very nice review, even though I probably won't play the game.
  • TrigunGunner - March 4, 2010 1:42 a.m.

    No comments about the music you said would be well composed by the renown artist? And this review was short, sweet, and to the point. I like it.

Showing 1-13 of 13 comments

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