Most helpful positive review
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Loads of unlockables!
on July 28, 2013
I was worried after checking reviews here on Amazon that my 8-year-old son was going to regret this purchase. As of right now, there are only reviews for the Wii and Wii U versions and all are terrible. My son desperately wanted this with his money he had saved up, so I fought the urge to talk him out of it and made the purchase. The Wii versions HAVE to be different because I don't understand how this game is getting such a bad rap. They mention a "tournament mode" which the Xbox version does not have. They mention touchy controls, races ending when hitting a wall, etc. This doesn't even make sense to me because there is no "racing" in the Xbox version of this game (Update: After checking the Wii description of the game, it does differ in that only the Wii version lists a 4 player race mode, all other versions do not mention this). Also the claims that the graphics are horrible just simply aren't true for the Xbox version. We play on a 55" plasma and the graphics are great for this type of game. The environments are pretty realistic and true to the movie.
That said, it's important to note that this is NOT a racing game. As the name suggests (Super Stunt Squad) this game is about performing stunts and tricks. This game is not meant for the very young as it has a lot of complex control combos, but it was very easy for my son and I to get into. Playing the tutorial is a must or you'll have no idea how to perform all the different tricks you need to succeed. You can do jumps, flips, slides, wheelies, nosies, grabs, and more. All require different button combos that are likely too challenging for the very young, but the learning curve is pretty decent if you play the tutorial. Both he and I were testing out our new skills within 10 minutes of turning the game on.
Things we like about this game is it is NOT made for young children, and therefore has much more replay value that you typically get with games made after movies. There are hundreds of objectives to complete, and by achieving them, you unlock goodies from new shells (including special ones for each snail that you can fully customize), power ups that improve various "stats" on each snail, such speed and handling, new levels, and new characters. At this point we haven't unlocked any characters but it appears that you can get Skidmark at some point. You start out with Turbo, Whiplash, Smoove Move and Burn, each with their standard shells. There are 6 possible levels to unlock, which isn't a lot, but each one is full of objectives to seek for unlockables or achievements. Each snail has a possible 15 permanent power ups that make them perform better and they each have 5 or 6 shells to unlock as well as numerous customization options for each. Each snail appears to have a "custom" shell that you can fully customize with a full color wheel and unlockable stickers with logos from the shops at Starlight Plaza. In addition to the shells and stats, there are tons of objectives to complete just for the fun of it.
At first my kiddo was disappointed that this was not a racing game, but after playing for a short while, we were both anxiously passing the controller back and forth, trying to complete the different objectives. We played for a couple hours together and only reluctantly quit to go to bed, so I'm not sure what's with all these reviewers saying they got sick of it after 10 minutes. Again, this game is challenging. The tasks range from "collect 5 of X item" to racing against time to collect the flags. Some are fairly easy, some are extremely difficult and aren't possible without first unlocking several upgrades. There's no way my kiddo could complete this game by himself, but he can do enough by himself that it doesn't frustrate him, and the free play mode takes all the pressure of the objectives off and just lets you cruise around and explore. The areas are fairly small and limited in number, but I think we'll continue to play until we've at least upgraded all our snails.
Overall the game has good pacing, rewarding you regularly for your successes, and each upgrade makes obtaining those objectives a little bit easier. I don't know that we'd ever complete the 600 some objectives, but it's fun to try! My son and I would much prefer a challenging game that will last than an easy game that can be completed in a few hours and never looked at again. The only reason I subtracted a star is because this game would be so much better if there were more than 6 areas to play in. You will unlock them all within a few hours and then it's all about getting the upgrades and no new areas. This will be a must buy for Turbo fans when the price comes down a bit after the newness passes.