Published on June 15th, 2011 | by Kyle Spencer, Editor
Alice: Madness Returns Review
Developer: Spicy Horse Games
Platform: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 [Reviewed], PC
Release: June 14, 2011
Following the events of the original American McGee’s Alice, we take a a very twisted ride back through the looking glass and return to the eerie world of Wonderland. The game is very gratifying, however it does show its flaws early on and consistently.
The game is set shortly after the events of American McGee’s Alice as you take over Alice as she wakes up outside the Insane Asylum, not cured of her insanity. She quickly returns to the crazy world in hopes to find whoever was responsible for the first that killed her entire family. You will be shuffled between two different settings as you will be walking the streets of a broken down, gritty London, and the majestically, bright world of Wonderland. All of your favorite characters from the original game return in a bright new fashion and each characters actions fit the world of Wonderland very well.
The game is a hack-and-slash third-person action-based melee combat game that features some very fluid animations and combat controls. There were never any stoppages or lag issues when moving between combos that each weapon has a variety of. The dodge mechanic is pretty quick and reminiscent of the God of War franchise, as is the combo system. Each weapon you come across in the game features a variety of different techniques in combat. It features a little bit of Devil May Cry mechanics since Alice can switch between weapons on the fly and combine the different weapon to unleash lethal attacks.
The game is very open and exploratory. It does play in the traditional third person action mode but also has some very conventional platforming mechanics that work very well within the structure of the game. Alice can shrink herself to find hidden paths and items that can be added to her inventory.
The game world is a beautiful piece of art. Each level of the game is very imaginative and features some of the best world designs I have seen in recent months. The world of Wonderland is bright and full of colors, while transversing back to the streets of London leave you look at a dark and grainy world. The game world is also very large and can take some time to explore. Even though the world does look beautiful it does falter when it comes to the exploration. Some obstacles in the level design make it a bit difficult to maneuver and at times got me stuck in the level.
(Alice is out for revenge in the hack and slash, twisted world of Wonderland)
The characters of Wonderland make Alice what is has always been. Regardless of which version of the twisted tale you refer to, the characters are the what make the world great. Each character performance was done very well and the voice acting was top notch. The music was very fitting of the games design, but sadly enough was not very long which led to a lot of repetition.
The Final Truth:
Alice: Madness Returns is a unique game to play. If you were a fan of the original game you will enjoy playing the long awaited sequel. Although the game is insane and mature in many different ways, it is a bright new look at a beloved series of books. Alice is a clever puzzle-based third-person action game that controls very well and features an immerse world and characters. However the game is lengthy, and can become repetitive a lot of the time and is best played in smaller doses. There is plenty to explore in the bright beautiful world of wonderland and will leave coalitionists playing for long periods of times.
+ Fun gameplay mechanics
+ Interesting story
+ Beautiful world
– Repetitive gameplay
– graphical missteps
– World objects get in the way of exploration