The Adventures Of TinTin: The Secret Of The Unicorn (The Game)
On the 21st of September 2011 Ubisoft hosted the UBINIGHTS event in Melbourne. This is where they showcase the latest blockbuster titles that will be available by the end of the year. The entire OzBoxLive team was invited to get a hands-on preview of several titles. Here are our thoughts on the multiplayer aspect of the upcoming release “The Adventures of TinTin: The Secret of The Unicorn (The Game)”.
David Lynch – “Two important things I learnt from trying this game: 1) it’s not what you’d expect from a movie tie-in game, and 2) DO NOT play puzzle or co-op games with Mark L – he is hopeless with game logic puzzles, taking directions and not falling off ledges repeatedly!! :-p
Ultimately, at its heart this is a puzzle game, pure and simple. It obviously tries to take the “feel” of the movie (which is, in turn, based on the Belgian comic series by Hergé), and recreate the characters and style with diverse platforming and puzzling. And from someone who’s read the original comics, I like what they’ve done. Ubisoft have done a magnificent job, there are plenty of quirks and head-scratching moments, graphically it’s crisp and clear… but most importantly, it’s a heck of a lot of fun (even with Mark :-p)!!”
Mark ten Buuren – “This game is a side scroller at its core, having to run through each level climbing up platforms or jumping down to ones below. As much as I wanted to keep playing this game, I only had a quick shot at one of the levels but it was pretty fun. The level that I had a go at was a multiplayer one, where both the players played as the character Snowy the dog. The main aim of it was to get to the end of the level first and with the most score. You earn score by breaking objects or sniffing out buried treasures. The level that we did had lots of gaps in the flooring, so that Snowy would have to leap and bound over them, otherwise you would fall and have to start again. At one point I was baffled, we came across a vertical wall. But we soon realised Snowy, being a dog, could quickly scamper up walls like these on to the platform above. All-in-all the game had a simplistic feel about it, but was still highly enjoyable.”
Callan Winfield – “I’m a Tintin fan, used to read those comic/books, as well as the TV shows – I loved them!! The game makes the leap to 3D, but then so is the upcoming film so that’s not a downside. I’m happy with the game, Tintin is at heart a puzzle-solving guy, so I’m glad the game didn’t go all action, it is itself more of a puzzle solver than anything else. The game in co-op mode is a puzzler, you get to play the title character as well as everyone you could want, (go Thompson and Thompson!!) but with an extremely fun team up. “Snowy and Snowy” these two are a lot of fun to play as you solve puzzles and sniff out treasure, literally. A very fun platformer with nifty puzzles requiring thought on which character you need, and a lot of puzzles being two-part, so team work is essential. The “Snowy and Snowy” teamplay alone win this game over for me.”
Mark Libman – “TinTin was very interesting as I had no idea what was going on for the first ten minutes. As it turns out that was because the people I were watching playing clearly had never played a video game before in their life and could not figure out a very simple puzzle. I couldn’t even tell that this was a puzzle game whilst watching them play!
The game is very simple in its mechanics with two player co-op support and the ability to change characters at any time. This ability to swap allows you to perform different move such as Grapple Hook, Block, Shield etc. depending on the character. Surprisingly the game looks like Super Smash Bros. in terms of it being a side scroller with several stages in the level. You would have thought a TinTin game would be like Tomb Raider, Uncharted or even Crash Bandicoot. But the developers have opted for a unique movie tie-in that actually could do well once people try it out.
A couple of unique things worth mentioning is that the game supports Kinect. So, though it wasn’t on the trial, when there is a sword fighting scene players can apparently stand up and wave their arms around. If you don’t own a Kinect sensor then you would simply use the controller. This sounds like a nice enhancement and hopefully there are a few different moments in the game that encourage gamers to get off the couch and interact with TinTIn. The second thing I noticed was that the game supports 3D TVs. This will be a great feature for this particular style of game as that extra level of depth will surely bring the world even more to life.
The best thing about TinTin is actually playing as the dogs. Watching them run and leap to their death, or get squashed by mechanical pumps was something I’ve never seen before. Even if the game gets approved by the OFLC I’m sure that the RSPCA will have something to say about this!!”
Guy Grealy – “I’ll be honest with you. I’m not a TinTin fan in any regards. I couldn’t tell you who TinTin is. I couldn’t tell you what he does. What I can tell you is that the game is good. I could also tell you if a picture you’re holding is of TinTin, but I’m not here to brag. When I thought of the game in the past, I envisioned a poor action adventure slap-dash thrown together to coincide with the movie release. However, the lovely gents at Ubisoft were kind enough to push my assumptions down a flight of stairs and present me with a delightful puzzle game reminiscent of Trine. TinTin is played on 2D stages, where players must work together to solve puzzles and progress to the next screen. Each character has a different ability that must be used to get past different obstacles, for example TinTin has a grappling hook, while the Captain can knock down weak walls.
If you’re playing with a friend, you will each control a different character and have to work together to solve the puzzles. If you’re playing alone however, don’t worry, because just like Trine, you can cycle through characters at the press of a button. The art in TinTin is fantastic. It looks just like the movie, and the animations and environments are fantastic. I particularly love the climbing animations, as the characters realistically scrabble as they are pulling themselves up, and the animations for Snowy the dog have to be the best dog animations I’ve seen in a game. All in all, TinTin was a pleasant surprise. As I said, I was expecting a forgettable action adventure made purely to piggyback in the wake of the movie, but this is a very clever puzzle game sure to appeal to more than just fans of the franchise. Even if you don’t care for the TinTin itself, if you’re a fan of puzzle games and great animation, you’d be silly not to check this out.”