A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this is a platform game about a character who becomes a thief, and it offers puzzles and simple micro-games. Wario is rude and crude, and specializes in bathroom humor, although there isn't anything overtly offensive. The combat is minimal and not difficult, but the levels are long with challenging puzzles and the saves are few and far between. Children with short attention spans will become bored.
What's it about?
In WARIO: MASTER OF DISGUISE, Nintendo's famous antihero reverts to his platform-gaming roots while retaining his recent micro-games obsession. While watching TV, Wario is magically transported into a TV show starring the Silver Zephyr, Master Thief. Wario steals the Silver Zephyr's magic wand and vows to prove he's the better thief in hopes of gaining his own TV show, then travels to a ship to prove his pilfering prowess. To become a \"master of disguise,\" Wario learns how to use the magic wand to create costumes -- each costume provides Wario with unique abilities such as shooting cosmic blasts, jumping high, drawing blocks for climbing, and destroying blocks.
Is it any good?
To change Wario's costume, players draw symbols on the DS touch screen with the stylus. Unfortunately, the game frequently has trouble recognizing these check marks, circles, and squares, and either nothing happens or the wrong costume appears. This can be problematic during a boss battle.
Gameplay consists of two separate themes: platform puzzles and micro-games. Combining these two play patterns is a good idea in theory, but the implementation is a flop. While the platform puzzles are well designed, there are too many in each level without adequate save points, resulting in players having to replay levels repeatedly. Combine this with the boring micro-games, along with the repeated dialogue interruptions, and the result is a fractured mess.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about jokes involving body parts, and what each family defines as appropriate humor. Since Wario's goal is to steal items, families can discuss stealing and other anti-social behaviors. What is an antihero? Do you find yourself rooting for Wario, even though what he is doing is wrong?
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