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Why you might actually want to play Toy Story 3

Is anyone surprised a new Toy Story game is on the way? There’s a new movie coming out, after all, so a coinciding game is practically required. But here’s something you may not expect: A reason to care.

Yes, you, Johnny Hardcore. How the hell is Pixar going to grab a gamer’s attention during the Halo: Reach beta and on the eve of a new Mario game? By doing something none of those other slipshod movie licenses have ever even attempted before.  “Playing with toys” is taking on a whole new meaning…

Of course, it doesn’t hurt that Toy Story 3 just happens to star the most beloved animated film characters of our generation. What kind of monster doesn’t have a soft spot for Woody and Buzz Lightyear? If you’re capable of reading this text, you’ve probably spent more time with Andy’s toys than he has, and for older nerds, they hold a deeper meaning. Not only did Toy Story revitalize the modern animated film, it changed the way people talked about games.

Following 1995, any time a new console was announced, gamers and the press had one question: Will it look like Toy Story? 90% of post-Toy Story articles about games like Donkey Kong Country dropped Pixar’s name, and best of all, everything but Command & Conquer abandoned full-motion video cutscenes. Yet Toy Story’s legacy never seemed to benefit its own games. While I know myself and a few you of you carry fond memories for early Toy Story games, polygons and sprites weren’t up to the task of visually representing the characters, and that’s exactly where Toy Story 3: The Video Game succeeds.

It should go without saying that the characters look closer to their cinematic counterparts than ever before, but there are smaller, next-gen nuances that’ll warm the hearts of fans who appreciate them. These aren’t the slippery, weightless game heroes most movie cash-ins toss about lazily. Buzz moves with all the recognizable confidence of a plastic Space Ranger, whereas Woody retains the strenuous, exaggerated movements that come from having arms with the consistency of noodles. And Bullseye… watching Bullseye run was honestly heartwarming.

What can I say? As a fan, touches like that mean a great deal to me, but that’s not even close to the what makes Toy Story 3 look like a remarkable cut above any of its contemporaries. In the afternoon we spent at Pixar, developer Avalanche Studios spent a great deal of time acknowledging where exactly movie licensed games fall short: Rigidly adhering to the plot of the film.

Simply taking moments from a great movie and turning them into bland, extended linear missions is tired, and we all know it. Oh, Toy Story 3 will have story campaign, but we didn’t care to see it, and they didn’t care to show it. (HOWEVER, we were told that the meta videogame opening from Toy Story 2 is playable in the game, which is ridiculously cool. AND being the lucky bastards we are, we got to see the opening of Toy Story 3! Without spoiling anything, let’s just say that it’s a colossal fantasy sequence tailor-suited for a great gameplay experience.)

20 comments

  • Apollomon - May 11, 2010 10:43 a.m.

    other pixar stuff? awesome!!! I want to get me an OCD m-o, cause he is brilliant...during the film i thought he said his name was mop til the end credits and it said his name was m-o...then i thought of 3 stooges lol
  • hardcore_gamer1990 - May 10, 2010 12:06 a.m.

    @Fanboyhunter - It's Pixar. End of.
  • GameManiac - May 9, 2010 11:49 p.m.

    A movie-based game that doesn't suck... Well I'll be damned.
  • batman5273 - May 9, 2010 11:14 p.m.

    cant wait
  • Hydrohs - May 9, 2010 3:54 p.m.

    I have the Toy Story 2 PC game, and I always loved it as a kid. No idea how it hold up now however. I'll keep my eye on this one.
  • Fraught - May 9, 2010 10:23 a.m.

    Even though I really like Pixar's movies, I don't think I'm willing to pay $100 for a movie tie-in, no matter if it's from my favourite studio's movie ever.
  • Triscuitable - May 8, 2010 9:26 p.m.

    Sorry for the double comment. But what kind of ReCAPTCHA is "atas Fosdick"?
  • Triscuitable - May 8, 2010 9:24 p.m.

    I might actually pick this one up. Another nice touch would be the little seams where the body parts are sealed together, and little holes with screws holding it tight. Ah, childlife. How I miss it. Dear god, I WANT TO SEE A G.I. JOE FIGURE IN THIS GAME!
  • Azymuth - May 8, 2010 7:51 p.m.

    Yeah, you always make an article about the next movie tie-in and how THIS ONE won't suck. I'll wait for the real review. reCaptcha: is riskiness
  • CH3BURASHKA - May 8, 2010 7:21 p.m.

    I still remember the SNES game. Not good...
  • Camoxide - May 8, 2010 12:59 p.m.

    Video games have almost caught up to 15 year old CGI
  • Tenfey - May 8, 2010 5:38 a.m.

    I played Toy Story on the SNES. It had a strange first person segment that reminded me of Doom.
  • brickman409 - May 8, 2010 4:33 a.m.

    will any game ever actually look like toy story?
  • michaelmcc827 - May 8, 2010 1:01 a.m.

    But will it be the next Team Fortress 2?
  • Cyberninja - May 8, 2010 12:49 a.m.

    only chris can make me want a childrens game and my nephews and niece would like this
  • Cleanser247 - May 7, 2010 11:51 p.m.

    This really does look exciting! I didn't know to much about this game until you explained what it was all about. You've actually got me interested in what this game has to offer. Good preview Chris!
  • fanboyhunter - May 7, 2010 11:51 p.m.

    I think it's cute how you like Disney stuff Chris but I gotta say I would never spend a single penny on something like this.
  • sleepy92ismypsn - May 7, 2010 11:39 p.m.

    >What kind of monster doesn't have a soft woody fot buzz lightyear. i might play this game but i wouldn't pay $60 for it unless it gets really good reviews.theres 3 reasons i wanna play it, because 1. it doesnt look like it will be doomed as a video game of a movie i hear it has a different story then the movie and im hoping it has a deep customization for the level creator. 2. i loved the first 2 movies as a kid. and 3. what kind of monster doesn't have a soft woody for buzz lightyear. bud light to the rescue. to .08 and beyond!
  • skynetiscoming - May 7, 2010 11:15 p.m.

    Wow, your enthusiasm has me really excited. Always loved Toy Story since I was five. After the thrid movie ends, and I presume there won't be any more, it'll be cool to have all the toys from the movie to play with FOREVER! :D
  • KevlarTurban - May 7, 2010 11:01 p.m.

    Dude, I saw this trailer and instantly knew you would be writing an article about it. Looks awesome by the way, and is actually working to get my son excited about potty training so he (daddy) can get it.

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