A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Disney Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two is an action and adventure game for kids, but that parts may prove frustratingly tricky for its target audience -- and perhaps even their parents. Kids play in a dark and frequently gloomy world. Players confront choices throughout the game, and will need to think about the potential consequences that might come with their actions. Depending on the choices kids make, the game can take on a slightly darker tone. Violence is limited to splashing thinner on or zapping robotic and cartoon enemies, but there are times when players can choose to do something worse: destroy rather than create, which often results in a sadder world. Parents should also note there is also a strong co-operative element -- it's a game better played with a friend controlling Mickey's companion Oswald.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's it about?
Disney's iconic mouse returns to Wasteland with his magical paint- and thinner-spraying brush in DISNEY EPIC MICKEY 2: THE POWER OF TWO. Once he's back in the land of forgotten cartoons he finds much of it in ruin, having suffered a terrible quake. The Mad Scientist -- villain of the first game -- is on the scene claiming he knows who is responsible, but few are willing to trust him. Mickey teams up with Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, an old Disney cartoon he met during his last visit, and the two go on a mission to deduce what's really happening. Taking on enemies and puzzles together -- a second player can control Oswald, who wields a magic remote control that can shoot electric blasts and interface with machinery -- they travel through nostalgic and long lost Disney locales, meet plenty of forgotten characters, and face difficult decisions that will leave a lasting mark on Wasteland and its characters.
Is it any good?
Pity the heartless soul who doesn't want to love this game. Its lush and beautiful cartoon world is filled with nostalgia for older players and fresh animated wonders for younger ones. It is an ode to all things Disney. What's more, it attempts to bring more to the arena of kids' games than just unthinking, reflexive action. It wants kids to think about what they do, how they want to do it, and what the results of their actions might be. It's a game of immense potential.
Which makes it all the sadder that it fails in so many ways. Players aren't provided nearly enough direction in many of the game's puzzles, which lack meaningful visual clues and audio cues. As a result, you're often left wandering in a frustrating search for something that will let you progress. And Oswald, poor Oswald, is a bit of a dummy. If he's not under the control of a player, the computer will have him do all sorts of silly things -- fall off ledges, use his propeller ears for seemingly no reason -- while you wait for him to catch up and perform some necessary tandem action. It's a shame solo players can't just switch to Oswald as needed. Put simply, this game just never finds that ol' Disney magic.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about cooperation. What sorts of things do you like to have help with? When do you like to do things on your own? Are there times when you're shy about asking for a bit of assistance?
Families can also discuss making thoughtful choices. Everything you do in life has repercussions, large or small. Do you think about how your actions affect others, or how their actions affect you? How do you ensure the things you do don't keep others from doing what they want to do?
- Platforms: Mac, Nintendo Wii, Nintendo Wii U, PlayStation 3, Windows, Xbox 360
- Skills: Collaboration: cooperation, teamwork
Thinking & Reasoning: defining problems, investigation, solving puzzles
- Price: $59.99
- Available online? Not available online
- Developer: Disney Interactive
- Release date: November 18, 2012
- Genre: Action/Adventure
- Topics: Magic and Fantasy
- ESRB rating: E for Cartoon Violence
- Last updated: December 17, 2019
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.