Sonny with a Chance

Common Sense Media says

Mini-games with cast of TV show are fun, but disjointed.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The game is set up as a popularity contest, with cast members of a sketch comedy show all trying to be the one to earn the most fan mail.

Positive role models

The characters all want to be more popular than one another, and they have no problem getting physical with one another (pushing, throwing things) during games.

Ease of play

There's nothing too challenging, nor anything overly complicated. Difficulty-wise, the game is well-designed for the show's young fans.

Violence & scariness

Several mini-games involve throwing and/or dodging things (pizzas, pies, water balloons, etc.). Some others require characters to bump and push one another, jockeying for key positions.

Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

The game is based on and features characters from the Disney Channel sitcom of the same name. The game card also connects players to the free-to-join D-Gamer web community. Players can win new clothing for their D-Gamer avatars through this DS game.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Sonny with a Chance is based upon the Disney Channel tween series of the same name, and that it is really only fans of that series who will be interested in playing the game. They should also be aware that, like all DS games by Disney Interactive, this one connects players to Disney's online community, D-Gamer. It is not necessary to join D-Gamer in order to enjoy Sonny with a Chance, but players will be given D-Gamer avatar outfits as "prizes," whether thy want them or not. It is also important to understand that, though the game is not being billed as DSi exclusive, there are certain mini-games that make use of the DSi's  built-in camera and will not available to players on a regular DS.

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What's it about?

The SONNY WITH A CHANCE DS game is based on the same-named Disney Channel sitcom about a teen-run sketch comedy show called \"So Random.\" In the game, members of the \"So Random\" cast turn their studio into a giant game board and play against one another to see who can collect the most fan letters. Whenever a player lands on a specified board space, he or she initiates a mini-game for all four players to take part in. Mini-games involve activities like food fights, musical chairs, and dancing. Some are showbiz-based, like the one in which players literally hog the spotlight, trying to keep within the circle of a moving spotlight and pushing other players out of the light. Along the way, players will earn money to buy new costumes and to unlock more mini-games that they can then play outside of the boardgame mode.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Sonny with a Chance, like many video game sitcom adaptations, doesn't attempt to follow plots or storylines from the show upon which it is based -- a sensible decision, as most sitcom situations aren't exactly playable scenarios. But the mini-games here do a good job of sticking with the tone and feel of the show. They certainly stay true to the "So Random" theme. And many of the mini-games are good, chaotic fun -- especially the ones that require you to push and nudge other players out of your way. The game's big flaw is in the layout of the game boards. There are too many empty spaces, and not enough that lead you into mini-games. And a mini-game can become quite monotonous and dull when it just involves one person after another moving along spaces on a board. Simply playing the mini-games on their own is much more enjoyable, but unfortunately, you can't "purchase" any of them from the in-game store until after you've completed them in a boardgame session.

Online interaction: Kids can win new avatar outfits for their online D-Gamer accounts. More impressively (though not technically online), four friends can play a mulitiplayer game with only one game card through the DS's wireless connection.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about whether fame is a worthy goal in and of itself. The characters in the game all want to be the most popular and most famous member of their show's cast. Do children think this is realistic? Or as the Sonny TV show is a comedy, do they understand the concept of the game to be satirical?

  • Why does Disney frequently create games based on their TV shows?

Game details

Platforms:Nintendo DS, Nintendo DSi
Price:$29.99
Available online?Not available online
Developer:Disney Interactive
Release date:March 16, 2010
Genre:Mini-games
ESRB rating:E for Comic Mischief, Crude Humor (Nintendo DS, Nintendo DSi)

This review of Sonny with a Chance was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Teen, 16 years old Written bySodaDog February 20, 2014
AGE
2
QUALITY
 

This Game Rips off Mario Party DS!

Just another cheap cash-in that can be completed UNDER AN HOUR. Avoid and get Mario Party DS instead
What other families should know
Too much consumerism
Safety and privacy concerns

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