How can I open up for what could be the most creative game of all time? How can I take those pretty, pretty words I hold so dear and make them dance for a game that does it even better? It’s hard to admit, ladies and gents, but I’ve been bested. Ego defeated, pride shattered, modesty still nonexistent — Scribblenauts is better than me, better with these words than I could ever be, and by George it wants everyone to know it.

The video’s past the break. Just watch it. I’m done.

Well, the video is kinda past the break. We’re not allowed to embed actual videos on our posts, so you’ll have to settle for a link instead. Go watch it now. I’ll be waiting when you get back.

There. Impressed yet? You might also be a little confused, considering that the sheer awesomeness just provided comes a little out of context. In case you haven’t heard of it, Scribblenauts is a puzzle-platformer set to debut for the Nintendo DS later this year. In it, you’ll control a young boy named Maxwell who must work his way through a staggering 220 puzzles over the course of the game. Each level will task you with collecting a Starite (star, basically) object using only two things: your stylus and your imagination, the former being used to enter the letters of the word the latter comes up with.

Take your average piñata, for example, with a delicious Starite inside. You could be plain and ordinary and write in ‘sword,’ using the weapon that would then appear to slice your way to victory. Want to go the pacifistic route? Maybe write in ‘fan’ and use that to blow the piñata around until the line snaps and it comes crashing to the ground. How about fireworks? I’ve not seen them in-game, so this is purely speculation, but a colorful explosion set off beneath the much-maligned piñata just might set it on fire and force it to give up its prize.

The entertainment, as you can imagine, comes from that squishy thing between your ears. Sure, you could probably breeze through each possible by picking the simplest solution, but there’s something to be said for the stalwart gamer who stretches his mind a little bit. Scribblenauts does its part in challenging you to solve puzzles through unconventional methods. The piñata, for example, offers an extra reward if you solve it without using a weapon, so maybe that pacifistic route isn’t so lame after all.

Another example? One puzzle spotted at E3 put poor Maxwell and the Starite on opposite sides of a pool. Not such a big deal, normally, except these baby blue waters were swarming with sharks. That complicates things a little. You could summon a helicopter, sure, and just fly your way across. Or maybe build a bridge? Ah, what the hell. Summon a TV, toss it in the waters, and electrocute those big-jawed jerks. That last one actually happened at the show. Didn’t see it myself, I’ll admit, but it’s one of the more popular examples being tossed around by the gaming press.

It’s an exciting game, from every indication, and one I’m really looking forward to playing. I was a little skeptical at first that the game could deliver on its promises — an object for every word? — but hands-on experience with the title by the E3 journalists indicates the game is very difficult to stump. You won’t find inappropriate content, of course, nor any copyrighted terms, but beyond that it seems like Scribblenauts has every base covered.

The thought boggles the mind. I can’t help but think of the poor artists, the miserable workhorses who spent the last few months creating cute renditions of every noun in the dictionary. Maybe we should all buy the game on launch day just to support them? Think of the artists, people, and their poor, poor pens.

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No Comments on "Scribblenauts"

  1. Brian
    23/06/2009 at 8:35 pm Permalink

    I will definitely be playing this when it comes out. Oh, yes…


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