The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom

Common Sense Media says

Unique time-travel puzzler that is incredibly challenging.

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

Ignoring the obviously farcical storyline (see Role Models below), the message one gets from the game play itself is one about the importance of creative thinking, planning ahead, and challenging preconceived expectations.

Positive role models

P.B. Winterbottom is a thief (even if the only things he steals are pies). There are times in the story when he ends up coming to the aid of others, but any help he gives someone else is an unintentional byproduct of his relentless quest for pies. He is not redeemed by the end of the tale, nor does he receive any comeuppance. This is all played for laughs.

Ease of play

The game is undeniably difficult. Some of the puzzles may seem impossible the first twenty times you try them. But trial and error is the essential strategy for the game. Still there is often very little wiggle room in happening upon the one very specific solution for each level.

Violence

Winterbottom must sometimes smack his clones with his umbrella, sending them flying into the air, in order to solve puzzles. There is no evidence of pain from this. Winterbottom or his clones can fall into fire on certain levels -- if this happens, they silently disappear into a puff of smoke and reappear where they started.

Sex
Not applicable
Language

In the narration, Winterbottom is called juvenile epithets, like Buttwit or Turdmuffin.

Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom offers a unique gaming experience in both visual style and style of play, but that this mind-bending puzzle game is also extremely difficult. Kids who don't have the patience for trial and error, or who can't tolerate a game in which they may need to replay the same level several times before succeeding, are likely to get frustrated. Parents should also be aware that there is some mild potty-mouth language used in the comical, rhyming, written narration.

Parents say

Kids say

What's it about?

THE MISADVENTURES OF P.B. WINTERBOTTOM follows the exploits of a notorious pie thief who is lured through a time warp by a giant floating pie. Gathering up dozens of delicious pastries on his quest for the mother pie, Winterbottom discovers that he can warp time, reliving the same few seconds over and over again, essentially creating several copies of himself that must work together to grab pies situated in puzzling locations. The entire game is presented in black-and-white, with dialogue cards popping up between scenes, as if it were a silent movie.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

It's safe to say you've never played anything like The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom. The game looks utterly fabulous and does a great job of playing up that aura of the Hollywood silent era. And the gameplay concept -- you essentially perform an action on screen, then jump back in time and perform a new action in concert with a clone of yourself performing that first action, and so on -- feels so fresh and innovative. The only real flaw in the game, if you are to call it that, is the difficulty level. To call it challenging is an understatement. But those willing to put in the effort will feel rightly proud of themselves for finishing.

Online interaction: Scores and finishing times can be posted to leaderboards on Xbox Live.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the silent movie era of Hollywood. Have your children ever seen a silent movie? How is the game like a real silent films? How is it different?

  • Parents can also discuss the concept of farce with their children. P.B. Winterbottom is described as a vile and wicked villain, but his actions and demeanor are far from truly evil. How is this different from games or movies in which the lead character is genuinely a bad person? How does comedy dilute the bad behavior in the game?

Game details

Platforms:Xbox 360
Price:$10.00
Available online?Not available online
Developer:2K Games
Release date:February 12, 2010
Genre:Puzzle
ESRB rating:E for Comic Mischief (Xbox 360)

This review of The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom 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.

Find out more

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

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.

Find out more

About our buy links

When you use our links to make a purchase, Common Sense Media earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes. As a nonprofit organization, these funds help us continue providing independent, ad-free services for educators, families, and kids while the price you pay remains the same. Thank you for your support.
Read more

See more about how we rate and review.

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Kid, 10 years old March 20, 2010
AGE
15
QUALITY
 

The Misadventures Of P.B. Winterbottom Is On For 15 Years Old

I Don't Like The Cover
What other families should know
Too much swearing
Great messages
Great role models
Adult Written byJinny Gudmundsen March 2, 2010
AGE
11
QUALITY
 

Poll

Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?

Essential Apps Guide