A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that the game -- while providing an important message about the value of friendship -- features one character hunting his friend and some cartoonish violence. Also, the gameplay is challenging and may frustrate young players who are newer to video games.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's it about?
MADAGASCAR follows the general plot of the movie. Four animals -- a fun-loving zebra (Marty), a pretentious lion (Alex), a sassy hippo (Gloria), and a neurotic giraffe (Melman) -- have escaped from the zoo. Players follow their adventures through New York City, aboard a steamer ship, and on to Madagascar as they band together to try to gain their freedom.
Playing as one of the characters, players will face many unique challenges. There is the daring escape from the zoo, past a hilarious "Crocodile Hunter" knock-off; a mutiny orchestrated by a group of penguins aboard a freighter; and several difficult stages trying to help fleeing lemurs on a desolate island.
Is it any good?
The game almost misses its core audience by being too difficult -- some stages require a lot of motor dexterity as well as a creative mind. Fortunately, the game comes with an unlimited number of lives, but younger players may get frustrated. The game also has some thematic intensity, which fans of the movie will remember. At one point, Alex has something of a nervous breakdown from not eating meat, and proceeds to try and hunt down one of his friends, Melman the giraffe.
The game has terrific graphics. The clarity of the scenes and brilliant colors really make scenes -- like one played through a waterfall -- aesthetically pleasing. If players can put up with the voice acting, they may get that being-in-the-movie feeling. Overall the game is solid, with intense graphics, an easy-to-follow storyline, and quick pace.
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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.