Movie Games: Wallace and Gromit – The Curse of the Were Rabbit

Welcome to Movie Games a new series where I take a look at videogames that were released to promote new and upcoming movies of the past. In this edition I will be diving into a game I recently got sent in, the game in question is of course the Curse of the Were Rabbit a Wallace and Gromit title released to help promote the 2005 flick of the same name, the game was developed by Frontier Developments and published by Konami. What I will be trying to discover in this series is not only the quality of the title but also how accurate it is to the plot of the movie it is based on so without further ado a very quick and might I add spoiler heavy recap of the movie.

In the movie everyone’s favourite inventor and dog due Wallace and Gromit are running a rabbit catching vegetable protection agency, they watch over the neighbourhood and protect the local gardens from cabbage munching menaces in preparation for the annual vegetable growers competition.

After building up such a good reputation with the neighbourhood they are both called upon by Tottington Hall which is ran by the lovely Lady Tottington, the area is overran by rabbits and Wallace and Gromit humanely manage to capture them all. This is also where we meet the films villain Victor Quartermaine, he is the competitive love interest of Lady Tottington and he wants to shoot all the rabbits to help build his reputation as the towns best hunter.

During the sub plot of the film Wallace tries changing the brainwaves of the rabbits to dislike vegetables so that all of the rabbits they have captured can be released back into the wild without chance of veggie reoffending, however the test goes wrong and while one rabbit does become non interested in healthy foods Wallace gets his brain changed as well ultimately becoming the films main threat the Were Rabbit.

It doesn’t take long for Gromit the figure this one out as he tries his best to hide the secret from the neighbourhood but unfortunately for him and Wallace, Victor soon clocks on and sees an opportunity to become the town hero and take out his competitor of Lady Tottington at the same time making Wallace the next target for his shotgun.

In the films final act after the inevitable “break up scene” between Lady Tottington and Wallace we see Gromit chasing after the Were Rabbit through the festival while taking part in an airborne dog fight with Victors Pup and ultimately taking a bullet for Wallace, Wallace jumps after Gromit’s Plane protecting his beloved dog while also sacrificing himself and ultimately killing the Were Rabbit before returning to human form and waking up thanks to the smell of Stinking Bishop. Victor is defeated by being placed into a female Were Rabbit Suit and being beaten by the local community.

The film ends with Lady Tottington opening a rabbit sanctuary in her Estate for all of the previously captured bunnies including the humanoid Bunny Hutch who still has the personality of Wallace.

The film is very good and maybe one day I will give the movie a full on review and analysis but for now my main question is how did the videogame adaptation hold up?

So to begin I want to point out that’s the games plot is pretty accurate to the film with only a few exceptions to make it work as a videogame, the main difference is that the villain Victor has a more prominent role and actually steals Wallace’s technology to make other Were Creatures.

There are also multiple maps you can explore making the terrain and areas of the game more expansive than the movie and overall in my opinion more realistic to actual British town compared to what was only shown in the flick.

After the final battle Victors fate was left the same although they never opened the bunny sanctuary and the remaining rabbits just kinda live in Wallace and Gromits house.

So with the major differences out of the way lets discuss what this licenced movie game has to offer.

First of all the game is actually pretty good, it is a puzzle platformer where you need to swap between two characters (either Wallace and Gromit or Gromit and Hutch), during the day time the missions you complete are mainly based around gathering items and capturing the little animals that are overruling the local gardens.

At night the gameplay becomes more action based and the missions here need players to defeat the various Were creatures and help protect local residents as they travel between areas.

There are arenas in the game which is something I actually really disliked as they didn’t really feel like they needed to be there and didn’t provide much more than the regular gameplay since they maintained the same general goals of defeating enemies and catching the loose animals.

There are collectable cards to get, you get one for each mission you complete and some others can be found throughout the world maps by completing timed puzzles.

The puzzles were some of the best parts of the journey as each character had different abilities, Wallace was the most diverse as he can use tools such as the Bolt Cutters and the screw driver (Hutch can also use these) Gromit on the other-hand felt a little lacking in his capabilities and didn’t seem to have much to make him stand out apart from the umbrella which allowed him to hover over distances.

Gromit did however have a side game where players could try and grow his marrow for the vegetable competition, you could buy items in the game to help the growth of your marrow as well as decorate the Green House. I really struggled to actually do any good at this side content so I never got to see it too completion.

The game looks pretty impressive for a low budget licensed game and the character designs do suit the Wallace and Gromit universe. That’s not say that the graphics are any special though considering that for a late PS2 game these are quite uninspiring and only really get a pass due to this not being a AAA title.

The game controls very well and I had very little issue with bugs or bad game design.

The games soundtrack really suits the nature of the franchise extremely well with its light hearted and non serious tones, these casual melodies make this feel like a real Aardman project and it wouldn’t surprise me if these were actually tunes from the Wallace and Gromit franchise.

Wallace and Gromit: Curse of the Were Rabbit the videogame left me in shock, I really didn’t think I would enjoy the game at all and while it isn’t phenomenal in any sense of the word, for a movie game this is actually one of the better ones, its more creative, expansive and fun than it ever needed to be and if you get the chance to pick this up cheap I highly recommend you give it a go as you may be left pleasantly surprised, it does get a little stale as its gameplay drags around the half way point but with the 2 player co-op the campaign becomes 10 times more bearable and is the best way to play.

6/10

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Thank You for all of your support.

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992) Review

The Muppet Christmas Carol is a musical fantasy film starring everyone’s favourite puppet characters, Originally created by the late Jim Henson the Muppets were a huge success on Television and eventually starring in movies until Jim’s death in 1990.

This is a really good video playlist about Jim Hensons career it was made by Youtube Channel called Defunctland and is one of the best documentary series on Jim and his creations, I would highly recommend checking it out

After Jim’s passing his son Brian took the Muppets franchise under his wing and began work on the first movie that would be made after Jim Henson and this film just so happens to be a take on the Chales Dickens story A Christmas Carol.

The story is one of the most well known tales of all time but for those who may be living under a rock, A Christmas Carol is the story of a very angry and unkind man who is shown the error of his ways on one Christmas eve where three different ghosts show him his past, present and future in hopes of giving him a chance to redeem himself and avoid an eternity in Hell.

In this version of the classic story, Ebenezer Scrooge is played by academy award winner and cinema legend Micheal Cain, his performance in this is really good, in fact its my favourite performance of Scrooge in any media. The film is relatively silly as it should be, it is the Muppets after all.

The silliest moments come from Gonzo and Rizzo who are narrating the story while the movie is playing.

Another Great example of Muppet humour is the christmas party scene, it has Animal on the drums, Rolf on the Piano, Bad Jokes from Fozzy Bear and is genuinly one the most memorable parts of the film.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4jLRLwI6OdU

What makes Cain stand out so well is that he plays such a serious role when the rest of the movie is a Muppets film, his performance in this is so convincing that by the end of the film you even start to feel a little sorry for him, I really do think this is one of his best roles, the only slight issue is that he struggles to carry a tune during his song at the end of the movie and it would have been better if his singing was dubbed.

The rest of the cast is great, I felt the muppets chosen for the characters were really good, Kermit being Bob Cratchett is an obvious choice and Miss Piggy playing his wife Emily also makes sense, but we need to take time to appreciate the smaller roles, Dr Bunsen Honeydew and Beaker play the charity collectors which is seems an odd choice but it works surprisingly well but the best casting which was ingenious in my opinion was the role of Jacob Marley going to

Waldorf and Statler, I dont think anyone expected these guys to play such a large role in the film as they were mainly used for the odd funny remark in the TV show and the previous movies, they are great as Jacob Marley (now split into two brothers) and even sing a catchy musical number.

The music for the film was written and composed by Paul Williams and Miles Goodman, I have very mixed feelings on this I would argue that half of the music is phenomenal and some of the best Christmas themed music put to screen but the other half feels a little lackluster. Some highlights for me were “Scrooge”, “Marley and Marley”, It Feels Like Christmas” and even the “finale Song” was memorable but the rest is so forgettable, I couldn’t recall “One More Sleep til Christmas” or “Bless us All”, the movie had a lot of songs cut from it including songs by Beaker and Dr Honeydew, another by Sam the Eagle, these were not very good so I’m glad they weren’t kept in the film but the track “When Love is Gone” was cut from the film in releases after the theatre since it was deemed to sad and this is a shame because its a really beautiful lyrical piece that helps give more depth to Scrooge and his long lost love Belle’s character.

My favourite track is It Feels Like Christmas sang by the Ghost of Christmas Present, its a really bouncy and fun song about the meaning of Christmas but what makes it most impressive is the Puppet used for the Ghost, he was a life size Puppet made for the movie, a human actor controlled the puppet from the inside while a Puppeteer used robotics to control the eyes and mouth and did the voice acting in sync with the actors dancing and movements.

A Muppet Christmas Carol is a magical movie that is a yearly tradition for many especially Muppet fans like myself, It has a lot going for it with its impressive puppetry, charm that only these characters can bring the the screen and of course you cannot forget about Michael Cain who is just wonderful in this, this is one of the best telling’s of the classic Dickens tale but it’s not my favourite, it falls short is some places I found the commentary from Gonzo and Rizzo a little distracting at times and a few of the songs were forgettable but overall this is a still a really amazing film and it is one of the best in the Muppets library, a lot of love went into it and I have a lot of love for it and I’m sure you will too if you give it a try this Christmas.

If you would like to help support the website please use the donation button at the top of the page, your donations will help to improve the website by allowing me to afford products to review and to be able to execute any costly updates and changes, any amount in donations are welcome.

Thank You for all of your support.

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

Sam and Max Hit the Road (1993) PC Review

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Sam and Max Hit the Road is the first release of the popular point and click adventure series which follow two anthropomorphic animal detectives as they try to solve various wacky crimes, the games are based on the original comic book series Sam and Max: Freelance Police which was created by Steve Purcell in 1987.

12333 The game is based on a 1989 comic book release where Sam and Max need to travel to various tourist locations spread across America in order to find a Bigfoot that has gone missing from a local carnival.

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The game play is similar to any-other game of the genre you will need to collect random objects throughout the game and then either give those objects to those who may desire them or they can be used to solve puzzles, the game does add the ability to question suspects in order to gain clues about where the player should head next or how the player can get past some of the more difficult challenges the game has to offer.

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For me although the game was a lot of fun like most point and click adventure games, the best part was the characters and dialogue, the game is filled to the brim with dry humour which coincidentally is one of the only types of humour I genuinely find funny   and let me just say that I was laughing my ass off throughout the majority of this game, I know a lot of people really like max for his psychotic personality and genuinely random moments but I have to admit that it was actually Sams character that I enjoyed the most, I found that Sam provided the majority of that witty dry humour that I love and although Max did this occasionally as well I just found it was funnier coming from Sam,  I don’t think it really helped that for the most part Max was fairy useless in this game, some of the puzzles require you to use Max in order to solve them but honestly this hardly ever happened and for the rest of the game play you take control of Sam which is a shame because I feel that Max would have been useful for a lot more puzzles that he actually was.

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The Dialogue actually uses voice acting which really surprised me and the best part of this is that it was actually quite impressive, of course Sam and Max sound great Max has a more energetic voice which really suits his character and Sam has a more calm and serious voice which really works for him, everyone you speak too also has a unique voice and not one single character sounds the same as another.

Apart from pausing and a few other commands the game completely uses the mouse and I had no issues at all with the general game-play however I did not like the few keyboard keys that were chosen for smaller things, for some reason you need to press F5 to go to the save menu and if I didn’t look up the manual I never would have figured this out, another key that I hated was pressing full stop to skip dialogue, its a really random choice when the developers could have easily chosen a much easier key that wasn’t in use, this wouldn’t be such an issue but when you keep having to speak to characters over and over again it can really get annoying having to keep listening to them repeat the same sentences.

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The art style and visual choices in the game are absolutely outstanding, the colours are bright, the art is smooth and the many smaller details such as the use of shadows, creases in clothes and the density of different materials such as fur really help bring the game to life, not the mention the constant animations that run in the background of the game, the game has a few still image cut-scenes with some basic animation and if you weren’t actually playing the game you might think they were from a cartoon due to how much effort the game designers put into the visuals.

005fe384ddb3e3394a57771f36203588 Sam and Max Hit the Road is a very good game which I think most people would really appreciate if they put aside some time to play it, It’s not perfect but its an innocent title that provides a lot of laughs and will leave you with some fond memories, I cant say I enjoyed it as much as I do Sierra Games but Lucas Art did a great job with this before the series got taken over by Travellers Tales 7/10

I hope you enjoyed my review of Sam and Max Hit the Road for Microsoft Windows and MS DOS.

By the way you can get yourself a copy of this game for fairly cheap via GOG.com

If you respect my opinion, I will respect yours

By Padawan

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

You can find me on Miiverse by searching for draskafer

The Care Bears Movie (1985) Review

Film Cover

First appearing on television screens in 1981 the Care Bears are a group of colourful bears that live in the clouds, each bear is named after a trait and each bear has a symbol on their belly representing this trait.

The Care Bears originally started their debut through TV specials airing between 1983 till 1985. In 1985 the Care Bears were given their own television series which was very popular amongst young children but before the television series was released we were given a movie based completely on the Care Bears toy line.

The movie starts in an orphanage where one of the staff voiced by Mickey Rooney is reading the story of the Care Bears to the children.

Care Bears Mickey Rooney

The Care Bears live in a land of clouds called Carealot, The Care Bears have the ability to travel to earth to help those who don’t care any more, the reason they do this is because the stability of Carealot depends on people on earth caring about each other, while visiting Earth the Care Bears try to befriend two young siblings called Kim and Jason.

Kim and Jason

Kim and Jason have given up about caring for people because both of their Parents left them at an orphanage at a young age, the Care bears want to befriend Kim and Jason to show them that they will not always be alone and to hopefully get them to care again.

Not much later and we are introduced to some new characters a magician and his apprentice Nicholas.

Nicholas

Nicholas is a young boy who has never had a friend in his entire life, this has made him very depressed and angry at the world, an evil spirit trapped inside a book encourages Nicholas to set it free and in exchange it will teach Nicholas how to be more recognised.

A desperate Nicholas agrees to the deal and he uses a key to unlock the book releasing the spirit inside.

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The evil spirit starts teaching Nicholas dark magic which Nicholas uses to turn people against each other and eventually taking all of the care out of the world.

Of course this has massive effects on the stability and the well being of Carealot so the Care Bears quickly investigate and learn about Nicholas and the reasons he is angry at everyone, after quickly realising that all three of these children need people to care about they all decide to head to earth to find Nicholas, but just as they start to transport the transporter is destroyed sending the children and the two Care Bears to a land between worlds.

The remaining Care Bears decide to get aboard a boat and travel down a river in the clouds in the hopes that they will find the children and the missing Care Bears,  they eventually find the children and the other two Care Bears in a new land called the Forest of Feelings, here they meet some new animal friends including Brave Heart Lion, Swift Heart Rabbit, Playful Heart Monkey and Lotsa Heart Elephant.

animalsThe animals join the children and the Care Bears in their quest and they all head out together on a big adventure to save Nicholas from the evil spirit.

The animation is basic to say the least, it looks more like a direct to VHS release than it does a movie that got released into theatres, it’s not terrible though the animation plays very smoothly and the movies use of shadows and shading is very impressive, the only real problem I had with the animation is that most of the time the characters lips don’t sync with what they are saying and this can be very distracting.

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The songs in this movie are just awful, they are all very forgetful and genuinely annoying with lyrics that make very little sense, every song in the movie honestly feels like it’s just there for filler and I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s the case.

The Care Bears Movie is not one of the best children’s movies I have ever had to sit through, the plot is not very interesting, the animation is fairly basic with the exception of the films use of shadows and shading, the songs are not fun to listen too in the slightest and apart from a pretty cool villain the movie is really bad.

I suggest skipping this one unless you have very young children who you want to keep quiet for an hour.

I hope you enjoyed this review of The Care Bears Movie

If you respect my opinion, I will respect yours

By Padawan

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

You can find me on Miiverse by searching for draskafer

 

 

Walt Disney’s Bambi Review

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Released in 1942 by Walt Disney, Bambi really is one of the most beautiful films I have ever seen. Just looking at the first few frames of the movie really helps show the amount of effort Disney put into Bambi and the animation they produced really helped bring the movie to life. 

ImageBambi is about a young fawn (Baby Deer) called Bambi, The whole movie is pretty much the story of Bambi growing up but the movie really does make the audience feel like this is a real wild animal and before you complain that the movie is too cutesy at the beginning I have only one thing to say ITS A BABY OF COURSE ITS GOING TO BE CUTE !!. 

Bambi provides its audience with some beautiful background work and some very good character development all the animals really do seem like their real animals for example Bambi has two main friends in the movie A rabbit called Thumper and a Skunk called Flower which turned out to be a dude which was a big surprise. Thumper is very similar to an actual rabbit because of the way he acts and because he thumps his foot just like a what an actual rabbit does when feeling certain emotions such as excitement or fear. Flower is very shy and hardly comes out to play, as you may know skunks are not very sociable creatures and feel threatened very often so its not often that a skunk will come out of hiding, Disney decided to make the skunk very bashful I guess this was so that children watching the film didn’t feel like the skunk was afraid or upset.

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At the moment the movie may seem very girly but I can assure you that by the second half the movie really starts to pick up with some very well designed action sequences. This mostly happens after that infamous scene which made children all over the world cry

By far apart from the animation my favourite part of Bambi is most definitely the music, The character Bambi actually has music for everything it does as if the music is part of Bambi himself as a baby the music is very soothing and almost comical but as Bambi grows up Bambi’s music changes to a more intense level and this helps show the changes that Bambi has to make in order to survive by himself in the wild. Even the rain and the wind has its own music my particular favourite is the song little april showers which plays during the raining scene, each drop of rain is a new note in the song and this helps give of a really cool and rather clever effect. 

Bambi is beautiful movie but I wouldn’t recommend it to everyone only to people who can appreciate cinema for other things other than story. Don’t get me wrong Bambi has a great story but I feel that everything else deserves more appreciation from the critics because of how well it is all executed. You can clearly tell that this is a Disney movie and personally I think its one which is definitely worthy of being called a classic

Hope you enjoyed this blog

This blog was written by Dan (Padawan)

The mysteries of easter cracked wide open (sort of)

Easter the nations excuse to eat loads and loads of junk food and a holiday which celebrates Jesus Christ resurrecting from the dead (if you believe in that stuff). Easter may just be another holiday but a lot of it dosent really make sense as people often wonder why we have the easter bunny and why we celebrate easter by eating chocolate eggs. If you are one of these people then wonder no more as I have looked into these mysteries and I believe I have discovered answers which may put our minds at rest.

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Question 1

Why is easter sometimes celebrated on different dates of the year?

Easter is celebrated on different dates between the 21st of March and the 25th of April depending on when there is a full moon in spring. I didn’t even know that easter was celebrated on different dates each year but if this is true It make me wonder what happens if there isnt a full moon one year do we just not celebrate easter?

Question 2

Why chocolate eggs?

Over the weeks of easter it is considered tradition to eat hollow eggs made of chocolate but back when easter first became a christian holiday (originally a pagan celebration) it was concidered wrong to eat eggs during the week before easter so any eggs laid where saved and decorated for children as gifts for easter. The tradition was carried on by Victorians who gave children carboared eggs which were filled with easter gifts.
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Chocolate eggs originated in the 19th century in Germany and France problem was that the chocolate eggs were hard and had a bitter taste to them, as time passed  chocolate making techniques improved and hollow chocolate eggs were developed they quickly became popular and the tradition of giving chocolate eggs on easter has stuck ever since.
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Question 3

Why do we have the easter bunny?

Originally we didn’t have a mascot for easter but in the 19th century a legend of a character who delivers the eggs was told to children. The character was soon revealed to be a bunny rabbit this is because bunnies have lots of babies at once (kittens) this symbolizes life. So the easter bunny delivers eggs as a symbol of new life which links back to the ressurection of christ on Easter Sunday. Apparently not all countries have an easter bunny because Switzerland has an easter cuckoo and Germany has an easter fox.
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I hope you enjoyed this easter related blog, have a happy easter

On saturday I will be reviewing an easter movie I won’t say what it is but here is a clue
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This blog was written by Dan (Padawan)