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 Tangled is based on the film of the same name and that many children will likely want to play it simply because of its recognizable title and characters. It features some mild cartoon violence of the whack-a-bad-guy variety; no one is seriously hurt or killed, but the objects doing the whacking are usually swords.
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What's it about?
Inspired by the new film of the same name, DISNEY TANGLED puts players in control of two players at once: a princess with long magical hair named Rapunzel and her companion Flynn. They adventure in search of the mysterious lights she has watched float through skies from the balcony of the tower in which she lived. Players can use the princess's long golden tresses in a wide variety of ways, from healing and growing flowers to a makeshift rope that Flynn can climb to a means of pulling heavy objects. Flynn, meanwhile, uses his upgradable sword to defend the pair from enemy soldiers and hack away at obstacles such as dead bushes. Solo players have the ability to switch between Rapunzel and Flynn on a whim, but up to four players can play cooperatively at the same time, with two taking on the roles of the heroes and two others helping them by waggling their remotes to break environmental objects and defeat enemies.
Is it any good?
Disney Tangled isn’t a particularly enchanting interactive experience. Play scenarios are repetitive and level design is unimaginative. Older kids will likely find it grows dull and monotonous within the first couple of levels. Younger kids may have fun with it, but only because it features characters with which they are familiar. Even they may grow bored and frustrated as they deal with Flynn and Rapunzel’s often dim artificial intelligence (suggestion: make liberal use of the protagonists’ ability to hold each other’s hands to ensure they don’t, say, accidentally fall off ledges).
What’s more, production values are pretty dismal. From blocky character models to drab environmental designs, the game’s visuals are decidedly previous generation. The actors do a fine job of reprising their roles in the narrative scenes between levels, but they repeat themselves perpetually during play. Long story short, this is a flimsy game adaptation.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about gender roles in games. Do you think Rapunzel and Flynn represent traditional “stranded princess” and “male rescuer” archetypes? Why or why not?
Families can also discuss the game’s use of swords in combat. No one gets hurt, but does that make fighting with swords okay for a game with such a young intended audience? Could it give some children the impression that one can swing at others with a blade without hurting them?
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