The good thing about movies is that you only have to watch them for roughly two hours. Conversely, the playing time of a videogame obviously equates to a longer experience, but that better be a damn satisfying one - one that’s worth the sixty bucks you just dropped. Ratatouille, the latest corporate shilling from Disney to bank on the far more amazing film, brings tired minigames and boring platforming to wow children in the HD-generation.
Playing as a bipedal rat with an affinity for good cuisine, you’ll need to hop around sewers, kitchens and Parisian streets to help your family score some eats, while assisting a nerdy Frenchman in becoming a better chef. These areas consist of wide-open environments with glowing beacons that activate the missions you’ll need to complete in order to progress; squash so many bugs in two minutes, find this item, find the ingredients, etc. In most cases, you’ll have to collect a certain number of “charms” to unlock these missions, which pushes you to explore the levels and is another way of saying “tedious.”
This mission style is different than the current-gen versions, because you’re allowed to tackle them in any order you choose, allowing for more freedom. Yet, because each “hub” level is so ginormous - and remember, you’re a rat - getting to each mission beacon is a hassle and a waste of time. This structure feels oddly disjointed and could have probably benefited from a little more hand-holding.
Which brings us to the almost-broken move set; your “sniff” button should direct you to where you need to go next, but hardly works, your dash button completely drains even if you tap it once and your double-jump provides no extra height, yet somehow is needed to get over the tiniest of obstacles. While the platforming is manageable, it becomes a pain, and more importantly, you become painfully aware of how the mechanics could be better.
Ratatouille on the Xbox 360 takes you through the same motions as the current-gen versions. The level progression is the same, and yet this feels like a remake; albeit a bastardized one. The game sure looks pretty, but hopefully your tastes are refined enough to browse the menu a bit longer.