Madagascar 3: The Video Game
3DS | D3Publisher / Torus Games | 1 Player | Out Now (North America)
Just to go over the game's structure again for those who are reading this review first, the handheld version of Madagascar 3: The Video Game has you performing mission objectives not completely unlike what's seen in the console counterpart, but with the goal of accumulating enough ticket sales to then be able to put on a show at the Big Top. Completing missions will progressively move your progress bar along and it's only at 80% that you'll have enough funding to put on the show as needed. Aside from the actual escapade, it's not a terribly fancy structure and there isn't much in the way of a plot, but that's what you have to grin and bear to accept this as the game that it is.
Before even touching on why I feel so strongly that the handheld iteration of Madagascar 3: The Video Game is so poor, I was much more satisfied with the presentation in the 3DS version. Seeing the story stills at the very beginning of the game looked a whole lot better than the condensed and very compressed images seen at the start of the DS adventure. This put me in a slightly better mood for what was to follow. From there, moving to the actual playing field, it was nice to see that the game actually runs fairly smoothly with not nearly as many hiccups. The 3D effects in this game are not worth writing home about, but overall, presentation is much better than the shoddy DS port. Admittedly, that's hardly a cause to be jumping for joy. Even this version of the game still suffers from some framerate inconsistency, though not quite to the same regularity as the DS release nor to the same off-putting degree. It also still features music that could prompt you to close the curtain early over how unfashionably repetitive it is. Thus, even in these cases, the 3DS version is far from spared of criticism.
I do appreciate that there aren't as many technical concerns, as this actually makes the level of enjoyment a tad better than the DS release. But this is solely based on the reason that there isn't such an overruling presence of glitches and technical issues. Ultimately, better visuals do not change the fact my strong feelings on it being insultingly repetitive. Thus, any such attempts on the part of the presentation to revive non-existent fun factor are worthless. As was discussed in the review of the DS version, the entire journey lacks purpose, and this proves to be the final nail in the coffin that even overshadows the structure that I've already established to be poor on its own.
Although the 3DS version dances around my judgment of the DS release a bit because of its superior presentation, I still stand by my original assertion that Madagascar 3: The Video Game is not worth anyone's time. Even here, it is still unable to shake the strong repetition and lack of purpose it carries throughout. With this in mind, you would be wise to avoid spending money on something so lacking in worth.
13/30 - Very Poor
Gameplay 3/10 - An orchestrated collect-a-thon, insultingly shallow structure, extremely repetitive mission objectives, really lacking in purpose
Presentation 7/10 - Much better than the DS release with not nearly as many glitches, framerate still has trouble, sound isn't buggy but is still repetitive
Enjoyment 1/5 - Reduced number of technical faults have made things a bit better, not enough to excuse the game, fun factor practically non-existent
Extra Content 2/5 - Content is there but the design is way too off-putting to sit through 'till the end, same points on the game's worthlessness still stand
Equivalent to a score of 43% (percentage score is approximate and based solely on the previously stated rating) - Our Rating System