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Disney Classic Games: Aladdin and The Lion King

Game review by
Paul Semel, Common Sense Media
Disney Classic Games: Aladdin and The Lion King Game Poster Image
Old Disney games are fun for newcomers and nostalgia fans.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

Both games require players to try and get better through repetition. It's only by not giving up, trying things multiple times — and, perhaps, in multiple ways — that our heroes may succeed.

Positive Role Models & Representations

In Aladdin, our hero's trying to rescue Jasmin from the evil Jafar. In The Lion King, players must help Simba when he has to grow up and become a leader.

Ease of Play

The controls will be familiar to fans of similar games, though they also have options to reconfigure the buttons, and have multiple difficulty options.

Violence & Scariness

In Aladdin, players can take out their enemies by hitting them with a sword, by throwing apples at them, or by jumping on the back of a camel, which causes it to spit. In The Lion King, Simba jumps on other animals backs with his claws drawn. But in there's no blood or gore in either game.

Language
Consumerism

Both games are based on movies (Aladdin and The Lion King) that have also inspired the makers of toys, t-shirts, and recent live action remakes.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Disney Classic Games: Aladdin and The Lion King is a collection of two classic all-ages cartoon action games for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Switch, and PC. In Aladdin, you take out your enemies by hitting them with your sword, throwing apples you find, or by getting a camel to spit on them. In The Lion King, you jump on other animal's backs with your claws out. But both games' cartoony approach and old school graphics means there's no blood or gore. There's also no inappropriate content. The games are inspired by the animated movies of the same name, movies that have also resulted in numerous toys, shirts, and other items being sold.

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What's it about?

In DISNEY CLASSIC GAMES: ALADDIN AND THE LION KING, two classic games from 1993 and 1994, respectfully, are given the reissue treatment. Following the plot of the animated movies that inspired them, Aladdin has the hero trying to save Jasmine from Jafar, while The Lion King has Simba dealing with the consequences of growing up. In both, players have to run and jump their way through complicated obstacle courses populated by enemies who'd rather see you fail. While the game's visuals are the same as they were back in the day, they are presented in high definition. More importantly, this collection includes multiple versions of both games, as well as their respective soundtracks, and multiple making-of videos and photo galleries.

Is it any good?

While small kids just discovering the animated movies will enjoy these arcade games, older fans might find them a bit dated. Originally released in 1993 and 1994, the two games collected in Disney Classic Games: Aladdin and The Lion King are 2D side-scrolling action games that recreated their respective movies' plots. This collection celebrates those original games by presenting them with the original graphics and sound, just in high-def and with the option to play them in the original 4x3 dimensions. This also has multiple versions of both games, including both the handheld and console versions and, in the case of Aladdin, a new "Final Cut" edition as well as a previously unreleased demo. There's also now a rewind feature for when you get stuck, an option to watch playthroughs that you can start playing yourself in at any point, a "Museum" with making-of videos and art galleries, as well as the game's original soundtracks.

But while kids and people really into old school games will appreciate both of tests of their reflexes, some gamers might feel these games haven't aged well, as many of the mechanics that made them clever in '93 and '94 have become commonplace in '19. Younger kids might also find these games to be a bit tougher than more recent games they've played, though both do offer multiple difficulty options, and have save functions for when players get too frustrated and want to take a walk to clear their little heads. Either way, Disney Classic Games: Aladdin and The Lion King is a relatively entertaining walk down memory lane...especially if you're too young to have played these games originally.

 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about violence. Is the impact of the violence in Disney Classic Games: Aladdin and the Lion King affected by the lack of blood and gore in the game? Would the impact be intensified if there was more realistic violence? Would that fit a Disney game?

  • In The Lion King, Simba must grow up to become the titular monarch, but what does it mean to "grow up"? How have you become more mature? Do you have more responsibilities now than you did when you were younger? More freedom?

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