Written: 6.14.07 Acquired: 1.20.06 Status: Cart only Price: $4
Oh no, not another license turned video game! You may think from the outset. And really, history would have your back. Thankfully, Capcom have incubated Aladdin with almost as much maternal care as Disney bestowed on the film. That means top-notch animation, plenty of jokes and an authentic Middle Eastern atmosphere all packed into a platformer based on 1992's most successful film
Instant classic, then? Well...
Aladdin roared onto the scene in late '92 and went on to gross over 500 million worldwide! It was met with undying fanfare. The songs won an Oscar. The credits at the end of the film contain 513 people! It was the first Disney film to show a belly button. Aladdin was based, believe it or not, on a cross between Michael J. Fox and Tom Cruise
Aladdin once killed 40 thieves, by the way
[That was Ali Baba, you fool -Ed.]
The guy was such a smash hit that he had his own series as part of the classic Disney Afternoon lineup back during the early to mid 90's. I was a pretty big fan of the TV series. If you don't remember the Disney Afternoon, it was essentially the cartoon version of TGIF, except it came on Mondays through Fridays from 3 to 5 PM.... just perfect for veggin' out right after school
Oh they don't make 'em like how they used to... that's fer damn sure!
Capcom had a lot to live up to. But if anyone could do it back in those days, it was the Big C
THE ADVENTURES OF ABU
Abu, Aladdin's adorable little furball, is loaded with excellent animation. He usually follows you on-screen and although he does not affect gameplay, his presence is a very welcomed one. Check out the little rascal!
Abu like apple. Apple make Abu very happy
SNAP OUTTA IT LITTLE GUY!
THE MARKET PLACE
In the dusty streets of Agrabah, the game begins
The good ole bop on the head never fails, eh?
You can also toss an apple from far away
Either he's joined the circus or he's gonna have one hell of a bruise in a second
Apples only stun baddies. The rest is now yours for the taking
Ahh, you gotta appreciate that fine Capcom detail. Here, Al bounces off a peeping Amir [Har Har -Ed.]
He's not a bad guy, even!
Little touches like this add a lot to a game
Dude's reaction is hilarious
That's right, you tell 'im Abu!
Indeed, there's a bit of a Prince of Persia feel to the whole thing
Press down here to end his misery, smooth like you'd expect
These guys, in packs, are bad news
You never know what you may find in these: jewels, 1-UP, George Foreman's Grill, etc.
Ooooh, will he make it? The suspense! It's more riveting than the 2007 NBA Finals!
Hang on tight, Al! Least 'til that barrel rolls by harmlessly
Now that it's cracked upon impact, you're good to pass go and collect $200
Don't let these bums have the satisfaction of pointing and laughing at your fallen behind. I did for the SOLE purpose of getting this shot, of course [UH HUH... -Ed.]
The graphics, as you can see, are simply beautiful
"Where's that piece of garbage, monkey! SPEAK!"
They truly are!
Beams not only help get you to point X, but can also knock out baddies. Ace!
BOSS OF MARKET PLACE
With a scimitar like that Al's got more guts than brains
Apples have no adverse-affect on this guy, not even "down there"!
As he prepares to swipe for your head...
Evade it with a well-timed leap
Abu's sparring animations during this whole thing is pure gold... priceless!
You and me both, Abu. You and me both....
THE CAVES OF WONDER
Abu charges ahead. Aladdin, on the other hand, is a bit more apprehensive
See, this just won't do. I'm gonna need some colesaw, some potatoes, some gravy, some...
That pinky-type action alluded to earlier is a Godsend in these Caves here. And watch out for those pesky little scorpion guys!
Apples don't stun but kill animal baddies. You can also hop on the bats, but obviously, you'd be a fool to do so with 'em scorps
The control is generally pretty good, but jumps and bounces off parts such as these can be a bit tough
No, man! NEVER EVER TRUST A MONKEY!
"Way to go Abu! And to think, I doubted you for a second there! I'M -- WE'RE rich!"
Of course, greed comes with a price, usually
*Sigh* Shoulda listen to me, Al...
OH YEAH... ouch
Magic Carpet's game debut is a very memorable one, thanks in no small part to Abu!
The next level in the Caves involves this water log ride. Why can't Carpet just carry you to the exit?
[Why do bad guys leave food lying around for convenient consumption? Oh look, just write the damn review -Ed.]
Your timing here must be impeccable like a 12th degree black belt ninja. Alright I lied
Don't hang there too long for it will drop
Say, my man, ya got numbers for me too?
Never doubt the power of mumbo jumbo!
Trademark Capcom detail and animation on full display, folks!
This level is the classic tricky force scroller
Look at that boy cheat death! Amazing
You gotta be quick and nimble on your feet!
Bounces here are a bit tough
The carpet force scroller is filled with oooh and ahhh moments
Not to mention plenty of D'OH! ones as well!
INSIDE THE GENIE'S LAMP
These Genie platforms frown once you come into contact with it... so many games incorporate this detail, but it never gets old
[I beg to differ, but carry on -Ed.]
Maximum concentration is required here. Love how Al's hanging there for dear life!
... Totally frustrating
Nothing tops versatile gameplay. Either hang on the balloon or pop it for a boost!
You know, it's moments like this where you really have to ask yourself, "Is she really worth it?"
One bounce though and they die as quickly as they come
The shifting sands will send the plodding gamer to an early grave
Neither do I, Al, neither do I...
Another tricky bit, but don't be fooled -- the game is by and large quite easy
THE BONUS LEVEL MAGIC CARPET RIDE
Whether you want to admit it or not, this is the greatest sight (and sound) in the entire game. Based on the scene from the movie, it even has the infamous "A Whole New World" song! Sans lyrics, of course, but it is a near-perfect rendition otherwise. The whole damn thing is almost enough to make even the most hardened warrior feel all warm and tingly inside
So uh, how about them Bears?
One of the cooler parts of the game...
That oughta "brighten" up his day!
In the TV series he became an ally believe it or not
The sword-flinging baddies are the toughest of 'em all... cool little bit this is
The flame pit rises and sinks. Act accordingly
BATTLE WITH JAFAR
I hope Jafar has his favorite BBQ sauce because he's about to eat his own words!
Repeat this simple pattern for prosperity and good health, friend
"DO YOU THINK THIS IS OVER, FOOL? IT IS ONLY THE BEGINNING, MWAHAHAHA!"
The only part in the game that suffers from slowdown
Use your rug to serve as a parachute until the platform rises again
Ahhhh the memories...
Old Snake-Breath has an easy pattern. Do yer thang, Big AL!
YEAH TELL 'IM, AL!
*COLLECTIVE GROUP GASP*
RUN FOREST RUN!
Oooooh, gruesome. You think he's seen 300??
Is it? Only you can find out...
If you manage to track down the golden scarab beetle that appears from time to time you get to play this wheel game at the end of the level
The continue screen is brilliant. Check out Genie and Abu's priceless reactions!
Virgin did the Genesis game and it is very different, much more emphasis on action than platforming
Both games were highly praised, but the Genesis game edged out by most accounts
WHAT THE CRITICS SAID:
EGM: 8, 8, 8, 9
GameFan: 87, 89, 90, 90
Super Play: 81%
In the mood for a pure platform game that you could easily beat without clearing your schedule? Then you'd want to check this out. One gaming magazine called it "A short burst of gaming heaven." I disagree slightly. While a very nice game, there's simply not enough. The levels are over just before I was able to sink my teeth into 'em. The lack of enemies, not to mention the lack of enemy diversity, was also a major disappointment
It's a shame you can finish this game before you could the movie. If only there were more, the score would be much higher. Nonetheless, what you have here is still better than many games I could name. The graphics are splendid, filled with detail, fine colors and scrolls. The sound is pretty good, especially the renditions of the movie's various themes. Gameplay is classic stuff, sprinkled with a little Prince of Persia feel to it. The control is generally solid, but I hated how when you press left or right, Aladdin takes a step or two in that direction. On small platforms this causes him to slip every now and then, so be thankful for that hanging-by-the-ledge-with-your-pinky business! Some handspring bounces off obstacles are also a bit tough from time to time, but that's about it. Overall the game is very easy
It's always hard when you play a game that you like quite a lot, but it ends all too soon. If I had three wishes one would definitely be to double the length of the game. The other two? Well, if I were to share that with you the guys with the white coats and the net will be looking for me, so best leave that alone... [Note to self: next time, I need to conduct a background check... -Ed.]
In the end Aladdin is the classic enjoy it while it lasts game. You hate Capcom for not doing more with it, yet at the same time you love 'em for what they did do. Seems a bit strange, maybe, but fitting for a game that you'll praise while playing, and then damning once it's over
In fact, it's so short the whole blasted game is over before you can scream IT'S A WHOLE NEW WORLD! ADAZZLING --