posted 6/29/2005 by Dave Gamble
other articles by Dave Gamble
One Page Platforms: Xbox
There are thee minigames: Tiki Mini-golf, Shuffleboard, and Lemur Rave. Mini-golf is what you'd expect from the name: a Magic Mountain type of mini golf course. It's a good enough game, but nothing spectacular, and suffers from the annoyance of all players having to share a single controller. Shuffleboard is a fun and addictive game involving players sliding on innertubes down one of three possible shuffleboard courts. Normal shuffleboard strategies of blocking and knocking other player's markers off the board apply. This game also requires players to share a controller. Lemur Rave is a mini Dance Dance Revolution game, and makes use of a second controller for the 2 player game.

The main game is a pretty straightforward platformer. It offers a nice combination of token collecting, stealth, and jumping/climbing levels. The player gets the opportunity to play as various characters from the movie, each having their own distinct moves. The levels are fun, if not overly challenging. Some of the jumping/climbing levels were a little more difficult than they should have been due to the sometimes mushy controls and a lethargic camera that seldom pointed itself where it needed to be. The levels involving mechanical equipment were particularly fun, although the idea of talking animals using a crane to capture and drop human sailors over the side of a ship at sea may be too much for some parents. In fact, there is quite a bit of talking animal on human violence, leading to a age 10+ modifier on the E - Everyone rating. Parents of children prone to picking up phrases and repeating them incessantly should also consider themselves as having been forewarned when they end up with a kid walking around the house stating, "This place sucks!" That was one of those annoyingly repetitive one-liners I mentioned above. As an inducement to buckle down and get to the next level, however, it was very effective.

There are also a few arcade games available for play on a couple of the levels, but you have to watch for them. They are essentially mini-mini-games, and are fun for a quick diversion from the platform play.

As far as movie tie-in games go, Madagascar does a good job of bringing the flavor of the movie to an interactive game. For the younger kids that really find that they enjoy the movie's characters, this will be a fun game. Without the tie-in to the movie, though, there isn't anything particularly compelling to recommend it.

Activision's Madagascar game, based on the Dreamwork's movie of the same name, offers the younger gamers the chance to play as their favorite characters as they make their way across the ocean to The Wild.

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