The Ant Bully is one of those moderately successful computer animated feature films now turned video game. Ported over from the GameCube, the Wii version boasts some new control mechanics, though not much more beyond that. The story revolves around a young boy who once tortured ants, but due to some sort of â€œAnt curseâ€ has now become one in order to see their plight and then help them fend off an exterminator. In short itâ€™s not much of a plot and the game doesn’t even really take you through its entirety, they start you immediately as an ant as you do â€œant-lyâ€ things so that you can restore your humanity. Along the way, youâ€™ll make friends of the ants and learn a lesson about compassion or something to that effect.
As stated before, this is a remnant of the last generation of GameCube games, so it may look good, but itâ€™s not exactly what you might expect from a new console with beefed up horsepower. At times, however, the game looks only a little better than something you may have found on the Nintendo 64. The characters tend to look okay, but with only a small variety of them youâ€™re going to get a little bored of them quickly. Backgrounds are also on the sparse side, looking rather uninspired with lots and lots of dirt. In short the game looks dull and not at all what you hope the future brings to the Wii.
If youâ€™re disappointed by the graphics then the audio shouldnâ€™t be that much more of a problem. Thereâ€™s a bunch of repetitive music and sound effects not to mention â€œuniqueâ€ one-liners that youâ€™ll hear hundreds of times throughout your game. Since I havenâ€™t seen the movie, I couldnâ€™t for certain tell you whether they used the musical score from it, but itâ€™s safe to say that if they did the movie had a boring soundtrack too.
The one area where some effort has been focused on is the gameplay. The unique Wii remote and nunchuk offer some gameplay not usually seen on standard platform/fetch-quest games like this. The nunchuk is used to control both your character as well as the camera, which is fine except for when you want to simply rest your hand and the screen starts moving around. Waving your remote around can result in many things, whether that be swinging your weapon or catapulting across a gap via an â€œant ladderâ€. Thatâ€™s a decent effort by the developerâ€™s to make use of some new technology available to them. However, that doesnâ€™t make up for a lack of a new game, since this is just â€œsloppy secondsâ€ from the GameCube.
All that being said, this could be a decent enough game for younger children. Itâ€™s definitely not fun for adults, unless your idea of fun involves hitting yourself over the head repeatedly with a blunt object. The game isnâ€™t overwhelmingly difficult making it simple enough for the younger crowd, while still being accessible to adults who may be needed for brief stints of assistance.
Sure, running around and performing such fetch-quests as bringing back food for the colony or collecting pieces of a weapon may not be fun for your average 25 year old, but in the eyes of an eight year-old this is great stuff. So, if you look at it from their perspective itâ€™s probably a decent game, and since thatâ€™s the target audience you have to look at it like that. Then again, theyâ€™re not asking eight year olds to review this game, so if youâ€™re looking for a game for a younger member of your family, this is a decent effort, but probably a rental first. If youâ€™re in the older set then thereâ€™s no way you should even be looking in this direction in the first place, but in the off chance that you are…look away! Pretend itâ€™s the Medusa and keep your distance.
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