Parents' Guide to

Space Chimps

By Chad Sapieha, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 8+

Movie-based chimp romp with competent puzzle play.

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Movie-based games have a reputation for being little more than a means to cash in on a film's popularity. At first glance, Space Chimps helps to propagate this perception, thanks to its lackluster environments, seemingly formulaic play, and sometimes aggravating camera (it tends to get stuck behind nearby walls). However, there is a bit more to this chimp romp than meets the eye. For starters, it has good dialogue and voice work, including Andy Samberg as the game's primary hero. What's more, the platform action is well designed. Swinging on ropes, spinning around bars, and leaping from one unsteady rock to the next is nothing new, but it's also not always as intuitive and addictive as it is in Space Chimps. In other words, it's just plain fun to play.

Still, there are noticeable indications that Space Chimps suffered from limited development resources -- a common problem among movie-based games. The biggest issue is its unfortunately short story mode. Even casual players can expect to finish the game in around four hours. You can replay missions to find all the collectibles and beat level goal times, but the only reason to do so is to unlock concept art and movies. Plus, the story is slapdash. It dumps players into the action with little in the way of foreword or explanation; and never really manages to pull together a cohesive (or coherent) narrative. Still, the solid platform game play keeps Space Chimps on the right side of recommendation, though it makes a better rental than a purchase.

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