Scribblenauts Unlimited

Platform(s): Nintendo 3DS, PC, WiiU
Genre: Puzzle
Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
Developer: 5th Cell
Release Date: Nov. 2012


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WiiU Preview - 'Scribblenauts Unlimited'

by Erik "NekoIncardine" Ottosen on June 19, 2012 @ 12:30 a.m. PDT

Scribblenauts Unlimited features a side-scrolling open world with high-definition, hand-drawn scenery. Players can help the hero, Maxwell, solve puzzles and challenges by summoning any object they can imagine. Players now have the ability to create original objects, assign unique properties, and share them online.

"Hammer." That's a hammer. Hand the hammer to Maxwell. Make a lame Beatles reference. Then start getting creative because Scribblenauts, that oddly joyous creation of 5th Cell, is back on 3DS, WiiU and PC. At Nintendo's booth, I took a few minutes to see what was new and hot with the WiiU version of Scribblenauts Unlimited.

The first, and most immediately obvious, change to the game is the introduction of vector graphics — and with them, the ability to zoom in and out freely on both the Gamepad screen and the television. This zooming looks beautiful and is smooth, clocking in at 60 frames per second for objects.

Then, there's the open world. Rather than a series of levels to work your word magic on, the game gives you a large number of giant linked levels, including Starites to hunt down within these levels and challenges that cause level environments to form around Maxwell.

From the developer's perspective, the requisite larger vocabulary is no longer enough, so they're letting players get in on the action with object creation. Put pieces together, paint them freely, add more pieces, and you've got an object. It's not a very interesting object until you load the scripting menu and program object behaviors. For example, the "Zombonut," a Zombie Donut, might eat all food that surrounds him and strike anyone who pisses him off with bolts of lightning … that come from his donut hole. Then, you can upload the Zombonut to the cloud, where other players can download him for their games. Imagine entire levels of Zombonuts, thanks to people you don't even know.

The game also includes one more useful and puzzle-solving function: the ability to apply adjectives to existing objects, even if they're from the environment instead of your creations. The expectation that this will be useful is implicit in the Scribblenauts theme of finding creative, strange solutions to puzzles.

Scribblenauts Unlimited is coming to the 3DS, WiiU and PC this holiday season. As usual, it is strongly recommended for all imaginative people and not recommended for the less imaginative.

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