What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Disney Channel All Star Party is a collection of party games, best played in groups of four. Be aware, though, that Disney Channel branding -- including logos and stars from all of the network's major shows -- is rampant throughout.
What's it about?
DISNEY CHANNEL ALL STAR PARTY is a collection of 30 competitive four-player mini-games, themed around seven different Disney Channel properties. At the start of each round, players will vie for the choice of venue: Hannah Montana, Sonny with a Chance, Wizards of Waverly Place, JONAS, Phineas and Ferb, The Suite Life on Deck, or Camp Rock 2. Each of these shows has a four or five mini-games associated with it that may involve anything from basketball shoot-outs and dance-offs to building robots and flying magic carpets.
Is it any good?
Any party game is only as good as the mini-games it offers, and Disney Channel All Star Party showcases some surprisingly fun and exciting activities. With an overload of licensed characters, this fan-feast has a built-in audience who would probably want to buy it even if it was blatantly lousy -- but parents of those super-fans can rest easy, because the game is pretty darn good. The mini-games show a surprising amount of originality and feature very smooth, simple control schemes that all work very well. And we can appreciate the effort that went into the fun animations -- when you're playing musical chairs, for instance, the characters won't all walk the same way. People who aren't even fans of these shows can simply import their own Mii avatars and still have a good time. It's even kind of fun to simply see your Miis milling about as extras in the background.
Explore, discuss, enjoy
Families can talk about branding and product placement. In what ways does this game function as an advertisement for Disney Channel and its programs? Does the marketing factor bother you at all or take away from your enjoyment of the game? Or do you think all the licensed characters are a plus?
In this game you can play as a Disney Channel character or as your own customized avatar? Would you rather plays as yourself? Or do you enjoy the chance to "be" your favorite TV stars?