Oct 29, 2007
Like the disheveled, bearded gentleman staring intently from a park bench, there's something a bit off-putting about a massive, faceless corporation like Electronic Arts crafting an original, kid-friendly minigame collection for the Nintendo DS. But the end result, EA Playground, is a welcome change of pace from the usual kiddie fare on the platform, which typically involves an uninspired concoction of dated gameplay elements and a popular license.
EA Playground collects nine simple minigames, such as Hoops (basketball), hopscotch, and dodgeball, and wraps them up in a safe schoolyard setting (along with a stadium and a park) populated with young'ins looking for a challenge. While the game lacks a narrative or dedicated campaign, players can freely wander the environments, earning marbles (currency) or stickers for completing objectives in each minigame. Collected marbles can be swapped for additional stickers that add marginal new abilities or power-ups to each of the minigames, slightly extending the overall experience.