Publisher: Disney Interactive Price: �29.99 Format: PS3 (also on Xbox 360, PS2, Wii and DS) Age rating: 7+ THIS vividly splendid game, based on the new Disney cartoon, follows the daredevil exploits of Bolt – a pooch who believes he has laser vision eyes
Publisher: Disney Interactive
Format: PS3 (also on Xbox 360, PS2, Wii and DS)
Age rating: 7+
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THIS vividly splendid game, based on the new Disney cartoon, follows the daredevil exploits of Bolt - a pooch who believes he has laser vision eyes and a supersonic bark thanks to his role in a crime-fighting TV show.
While the animated movie shows what happens when the heroic hound escapes from the studio compound and realises he is just an ordinary mutt, the videogame takes place entirely within the realms of the fictional television series so his superpowers remain intact.
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With that central conceit in place, the game wastes no time in propelling Bolt and his owner, Penny, into a series of missions as they attempt to rescue her father from the evil Dr Calico. Action is split between the two central characters, so one minute you will be in control of Penny, hacking into computer terminals, leaping across platforms and sneaking into hidden lairs, and the next you will be mashing buttons to help Bolt fight off Calico's dimwitted goons.
At first, it is a lot of fun. It is like playing a junior version of Tomb Raider without the plummy accent and the ancient artifacts. After a while, though, all the sneaking about and combat sequences become woefully repetitive. The stealth sections are rendered largely redundant when you realise Penny is capable of knocking out anyone she bumps into with a one-punch attack, while the hacking mini-game is a Geometry Wars knockoff and not a very good one at that. Even Bolt's superpowers do not live up to their billing. While his bark can stun entire groups of baddies at once and his laser vision is useful for long-range attacks, they never seem to be used to their full potential.
It is not all bad news though. The game's visuals are fantastic and the tag team approach to levels helps keep the momentum going, but when Dr Calico escapes from your clutches for what seems like the umpteenth time, your patience begins to wear thin as the scripted nature of the game becomes all too apparent.
With zero story and very few laughs, Bolt never comes close to capturing the thrills of its big screen counterpart.