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Shaun the Sheep Review

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Developer: Daydream Software Publisher: D3 Publisher
Release Date: September 23, 2008 Also On: None

Once upon a time, there were a couple of computer animated characters named Wallace and Gromit. They achieved some level of cult popularity, and so it was only natural that other properties would come out from the company that created them. Shaun the Sheep is just such a property. Animated with the same animation style as Wallace and Gromit, Shaun the Sheep is exactly what he sounds like, a sheep on a farm. Now this new property has a DS game to its name. But is the game any good? Read on to find out.

Graphically, the game looks like “Gromit became a sheep and went to the farm”. Granted, the result hardly maximizes the capabilities of the DS system, but such is forgivable since they were going more for the graphical style of the movie or whatever that the game is based on than a maximization of the DS’s capabilities. Either way, these graphics are decent.

On the sound front, the music is okay although it tends to reloop a lot more often than I’d like and there isn’t as much variety as their could have been. The sound effects are decent, but they too become repetitive fast, and what few one-liners of voice acting there are are quite grating. Overall, then, the sound is one of the weaker areas of this game.

In terms of gameplay, there are three modes in this game: a story mode, a minigame mode, and a collection mode. In the story mode, you play through the story of the game in which you are trying to find all of the sheep that have escaped their sheep pen before the farmer gets home. You have to sometimes use the sheep you’ve found to solve puzzles or access restricted areas, and there are a few minigames thrown in for good measure as well. On top of this, there are twelve chicks hidden throughout the farm that can be found and traded to the mother hen for collection pictures or extra minigames for the minigame mode.

There are problems with this mode, however. First of all, it’s short, beatable in a little over an hour even with finding all the chicks. And, after you’ve found everything, there’s no reason to go back and play it anymore. Second, the puzzles are usually blatantly obvious as to their solution. Third, the minigames aren’t that exciting. Overall, then, there’s not much to this game. It’s decent for one short play through but completely lacks replay value.

In the minigame mode, you can play any of the minigames from the game at will. The ones that you play in the story mode you unlock as you play them in that mode. There are a couple others that are unlockable by finding chicks as well. None of them are really that exciting, the best one being the Pac-man clone with a sheep eating corn and running from pigs, but it is a Pac-man without power pellets, so it lacks the full punch of a Pac-man game. Needless to say, the lot of them don’t provide much entertainment value.

And then there’s the collection mode. Basically you choose one of the pictures that you’ve been provided by the chicks’ mother and it is given to you as a slide puzzle on the bottom screen for you to try to complete. I shouldn’t even have to say this, but I’ll say it anyway: this is unexcitement at its worst.

So, there are three modes ranging from pathetic to halfway decent. What then is my conclusion? Maybe rent it if you’re a fan of the source material, but don’t buy it until it becomes very cheap. There are other, better games out there.

Graphics: 6.5
Sound: 5
Gameplay: 4
Creativity: 4
Replay Value/Game Length: 4
Final: 4.7
Written by Martin Review Guide