102 Dalmatians is Disney at its Best

Disney software has produced a winner. I wish all their games were this good. 102 Dalmatians: Puppies to the Rescue is fun for the entire family and completely playable for children eight and up. If you have an easy to use joystick, younger children might enjoy it as well. The premise for the game is simple and straightforward. Cruella De Vil and her minions are back and up to no good. They’ve started a toy company with lousy robot toys and they are blaming their lack of sales on pets. Their evil plan: If children don’t have pets to spend … Continue reading 102 Dalmatians is Disney at its Best

Sethi Rules Educational Games

Sethi and the Crown of Egypt is one of those rare gems that lets parents and children play together and have fun, while both the child and the parent are entertained. And if you want to teach your child about life in ancient Egypt, you would be hard pressed to find a better method. The player takes on the role of Sethi, an Egyptian farmer child who leads a simple life. He has a remarkable lemur pet named Pepi, who is his constant companion throughout the game. Pepi often provides comic relief. And since he can talk, he also gives … Continue reading Sethi Rules Educational Games

Millie Meter's Nutrition Adventure Falls Flat

I have never been so appalled at a piece of so-called educational software in my life. Millie Meter is so far from educational as to be down right offensive at times, though mostly it’s just an absurd piece of software. The game begins with the heroine, Millie Meter walking among boulders. One of them has a stomachache. He asks Millie to get in a helicopter (they call it something cute, but it’s a helicopter) that he just happens to keep nearby in case he wants anyone to travel through his digestive system. This beginning is the first problem. I don’t … Continue reading Millie Meter's Nutrition Adventure Falls Flat

Play with the ABCs Makes Letters Friendly

ALPHABET: Play with the ABCs, is exactly what it says. It is an opportunity to play with each letter of the alphabet in its own unique way. Based on the art of Czech artist Kveta Pacoska, letters float and fade in and out on the screen. The child can double click on one which will take him to a screen of just that letter. Then he/she has to figure out how to effect the letter, sometimes blowing into the microphone will ripple the letter. Sometimes it’s a matter of moving the mouse so that a letter like "G" will eat … Continue reading Play with the ABCs Makes Letters Friendly

Emperor's New Groove is Not So Groovy

Disney makes movies children love, but unfortunately they don’t seem to spend the same kind of time and attention in their game division, which results in uneven game packages based on movies. Most children will want the games because of whatever movie characters are displayed on the box, but often the game is discarded shortly thereafter because it just isn’t good enough to hold their attention. The Emperor’s New Groove: Groove Center is just such a game. It has one good game, one really weak game, one mediocre game, and a ridiculous so-called creativity center. The game opens with Evil … Continue reading Emperor's New Groove is Not So Groovy

Myst III: Exile is Puzzle Vengeance

When I first played Myst so many years ago, I enjoyed myself so thoroughly I thought that one could not improve upon this greatness. When Riven came out years later, I was certain of it. Now, after much hype (which even included a film trailer at last year’s E3, no less), Myst III: Exile is here. Would this new chapter in the Myst saga be as great a puzzle experience is its initial predecessor, or would this be another cheap attempt to cash in on the Myst legacy? Only some serious playing time would reveal the truth. First off, I … Continue reading Myst III: Exile is Puzzle Vengeance

Red Faction is a Shot Above

I have a great affection towards the guys at Volition for their amazing Freespace series on the PC. It was this series that continued the space combat action that I grew up with in Wing Commander, and lasted for two great games. But recently they decided to direct their efforts to the first person shooter genre with Red Faction, a game which has been receiving a lot of hype. Fortunately the hype is definitely worth it, as Red Faction is definitely the best single player FPS the PlayStation2 has in its library. I was easily attracted to the main storyline, … Continue reading Red Faction is a Shot Above

Magical Ballroom, More Mundane than Magical

Beauty and the Beast Magical Ballroom is part of the Disney Princesses series of games geared toward girls 5 and up. Disney is trying to fill the huge gap that exists in the games-for-girls market. The Magical Ballroom is a decent offering, but I doubt seriously that a girl over 9 will enjoy it. The game opens with a movie sequence telling of all the changes in the castle since the movie. The child signs in by typing her name on a scroll, which is saved for return visits. Then Belle greets the child and explains the four rooms for … Continue reading Magical Ballroom, More Mundane than Magical

Blue is an Artistic Dog

Blue’s Art Time Activities is the latest offering from Humongous Entertainment in conjunction with Nickelodeon’s Nick Jr. It features the popular characters from Blue’s Clues. The game is for children 3 to six-years-old and teaches the basic tenants of art while providing several areas for different types of creative play. The overall theme of the CD-ROM is that Blue is having a really big art show and the child needs to help various characters finish their pieces in time for the show. The child can, of course, create his/her own works for the show as well. Steve, Blue’s live human … Continue reading Blue is an Artistic Dog

Escape from Monkey Island Has Appeal

Yes, friends, your old pal Guybrush Threepwood is back for his fourth appearance, but this time he’s in 3-D! Guybrush, now married to the beautiful but dangerous Governor Marley, returns to his old stomping grounds on Melee Island(TM) (all of the islands in the game series are trademarked for some reason) to find most of the pirates gone, and his wife declared dead. You must help save her mansion from being destroyed, and sail forth to try to find lawyers to help your plight. Of course, nothing is that easy, as you must figure out how to accomplish necessary tasks … Continue reading Escape from Monkey Island Has Appeal

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