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Gamer Tuesday

January 18, 2011

           

Pap the Disney Gamer's Highlights: Beauty and the Beast Computer Game

System: DOS Computers

Developed by: Disney Software

Growing up, I had a speech impediment due to a disease I had when I was just three months old. Due to this, I had to attend many therapies, speech therapy included. This was my favorite thing to do in the week as the teacher not only was incredibly nice and wonderful, she had a computer which we used to play games with. She had such a great impact in me that it lead me to becoming the internet and gaming nerd I am today. What am I getting at with this monologue of my life? After all, this is the Disney Gamer's column, not the “Oh please Pap continue boring us with the sad story of your life” column! One of the games we used to play was Disney's Beauty and the Beast. Not only that, it was my first exposure to what may be one of my all-time favorite Disney films. But now you may be wondering, how can a romantic tale like Beauty and the Beast be turned into a video game? Well the folks at Disney Software certainly knew what to do.
   

Loading the game up it retells the first half of the events in the film, with Belle being a captive at Beast's castle. The enchanted objects, however, decide to throw a ball in their honor. The whole game is basically preparing the iconic ballroom scene, and you do so by participating in mini-games based off of the characters and the movie.

Like I just mentioned, each game deals with an aspect of the ball, such as getting Belle's dress ready, picking the flowers and preparing the dinner. Each servant will be your guide through these mini-games. For example, Cogsworth wants you to compose the music for the festivities. In order to do so you must remember the symbols he presents to you, then you must select the book with the correct symbol. As the game progresses the symbols become harder to remember and Cogsworth adds more to the list.
              

Lumiere's mini-game has you collecting cherries in a setting that is straight out of the “Be our guest” musical number. But, there are other enchanted objects dancing, so you must be careful not to bump into them. Fifi, Lumiere's girlfriend, is the host of the flower picking mini-game. In it you must dust away the snow off the flowers and pick the matching set in order to decorate the ballroom. Wardrobe's mini-game is the hardest of them all as you must collect three pieces of matching color cloths before she can give you Belle's dress. Finally, Mrs. Potts hosts an egg collecting mini-game where you must guide falling eggs onto the pan by moving the pots and pans around.
            

For an early 90s computer game, Beauty and the Beast looks beautiful, paying tribute to the gorgeous colors and design of the feature film. The characters all animate fluidly and look nearly identical to their movie counterparts. The game even has stain glass for its menu system and animation ripped right out of the film for a presentation that is stunning. The music is also fantastic. All of the mini-games feature songs from the movie, like “Belle," “Be our guest,” and, of course, “Beauty and the Beast."

All in all, the game wasn't perfect as some of the mini-games dragged on for too long, and some where really challenging for the intended audience. But it is a beautiful looking game that knows how to use the movie's world and characters very well, making it one of my beloved gaming memories of my childhood.

 

 

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