Disney Epic Mickey

Game review by
Christopher Healy, Common Sense Media
Disney Epic Mickey Game Poster Image
Grand, imaginative, heartfelt adventure in dark 'toon world.
Popular with kidsParents recommend

Parents say

age 6+
Based on 5 reviews

Kids say

age 8+
Based on 34 reviews

A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

How you play has an effect on the rewards you will receive and also on which events will take place at future points in the game. In essence, when Mickey duels with evil characters, he can either dissolve them or rehabilitate them. Destruction is almost always the easier path, but is it the most rewarding? Kids are forced to make these kind of judgments throughout. Occasionally, though, destroying a structure or an enemy leads to unexpectedly helpful results.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Mickey is mischievous and overly curious -- two traits that get him into trouble during the opening scene and bring about the entire Wasteland conflict that the story is based around. However, he is redeemed as the story progresses, proving to be a helpful, courageous, caring, and charming hero.

Ease of Play

The game has lousy camera angles. The camera can prove incredibly frustrating, often getting caught in corners or even behind walls. There will undoubtedly be moments when Mickey will fall off a ledge that the camera simply wouldn't let you see. You can often move the camera manually with the D-pad on the Wii remote, but there are many times when this function simply stops working.

Violence & Scariness

There's more scary/spooky imagery than bona fide violence here. The dark, creepy Wasteland and its sinister blotster creatures (especially the giant boss monsters) are meant to be frightening, but in fighting them, Mickey is only spraying them with either paint or thinner. Paint will turn them good and make them like Mickey. Thinner will dissolve them (as they are made of paint to begin with).

Language
Consumerism

Mickey Mouse is, of course, the most iconic of all Disney characters. In addition to Mickey and other Disney characters, the game also takes place in a warped facsimile of the Disneyland theme park, complete with visual references to many of its famous rides and attractions. The story treats Disneyland as a magical place.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Disney Epic Mickey is a dark and often scary adventure story that brings the Mickey Mouse character back into the Disney spotlight. While there's nothing resembling real violence, Mickey does fight inkblot enemies with splashes of paint and thinner. While the tale has dark and spooky overtones, though, it is in the end a story of redemption, with a powerful emotional climax. If young kids can handle the spookiness, they will probably love the story.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 3 year old Written byTMIMike January 30, 2011

Awesome game but not for little Mickey fans.

I am enjoying this game. I heard about how it focused on the history of Disney and thought it would be a fun way to experience some nostalgia and share the stor... Continue reading
Parent of a 10 and 11 year old Written bymaddox121 March 3, 2016

A delight for Mickey fans of All ages.

This was one of my favorite non-mario games when i was little. The only problem is the violence is spooky, and depressing, but it is only that THAT if you are... Continue reading
Teen, 15 years old Written byGwyneth Alice April 16, 2012

An amazing game that anyone can enjoy

The game takes you to the post-apocalyptic (if you'd like) world of Wasteland, the place where all the "forgotten" Disney characters are sent. It... Continue reading
Kid, 9 years old March 1, 2015

Kind of dark

So I played this and, well the beginning is just plain DARK. First off, there is this one guy that tries to kill mickey with this huge machine with a ton of wea... Continue reading

What's it about?

DISNEY EPIC MICKEY is epic indeed. The story starts with a curious Mickey Mouse venturing into a magic mirror, where a sorcerer has created a miniature model of Disneyland (though the park isn't named). With the wizard out of the room, Mickey starts messing around and spills paint and thinner into the magical model. Years later, Mickey ends up sucked into the dark and dismal world of that model. It is known as Wasteland and serves as home to the forgotten Disney characters, including Oswald the Rabbit, who runs the place. Wasteland has also been plagued by the evil Shadow Blot, which Mickey himself spilled into the land years earlier. Now, Mickey must explore and restore this ersatz Disneyland to rid it of its blotster invaders and bring life and color back to its inhabitants. He travels through this land using paint to fix things and thinner to erase as he (or rather as the player) sees fit. The game offers many different locations, numerous platform puzzles, tons of collectibles, and a large cast of characters to meet and help.

Is it any good?

When it comes to story and presentation, Disney Epic Mickey is a phenomenal piece of work. The rich and imaginative tale is full of depth and emotion, and it unfolds masterfully. The animated sequences are brilliant, and one might almost wish Epic Mickey were just a movie he or she could sit back and enjoy. The paint/thinner concept is a great one as well, and there's a nice bit of strategy involved in deciding when to eliminate an obstacle using thinner or to fix it up with a coat of paint. The level designs are delightfully complicated with plenty of hidden nooks and passages to explore, and the many allusions to real-world Disney attractions are fun to spot. Even with some glitchy camera work, Epic Mickey is still one of the best Wii games of the year. Its many innovations certainly outweigh any negative points in the play control. Most players will likely be so enthralled by the adventure that they'll be willing to put up with a few frustrating moments.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about Mickey's character development throughout the course of the story. Is Mickey a good role model in the beginning of the tale? Is curiosity a trait to be praised or a character flaw? How does Mickey change by the end of the story? Is he a better or worse role model by that point?

  • And what about Oswald, the forgotten toon rabbit who rules Wasteland? How does his character change by the end of the story?

  • Do you like games in which the hero's moral choices are put in the players' hands? When you play a game like that, do you tend to make honorable choices, or do you enjoy the chance to be bad? Why do you choose one or the other?

  • Parents can also ask their kids if they think commercialism is at work here. While Disneyland is not specifically named or depicted in the game, Wasteland is undoubtedly meant to evoke that theme park. Does playing the game give you any desire to visit a Disney amusement park?

Game details

For kids who love adventures

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