Game Review | Animal Paradise (Nintendo DS)

Animal paradise for the Nintendo DSIf I were told to describe Empire Interactive’s Animal Paradise in three words I would say cute, adorable and mildly addicting. Ok so the last description is two words hopefully you’ll see what I mean.

In the game you play as yourself, and you have a talent with animals. Your Uncle and Cousin who live on Hana Deka Farms asks for your help. Your Uncle is a photographer and your cousin is a photographer in training, but in order to get photos of the animals around the area they need to befriend the animals. Here is where you come in. You are to play, feed and care for the animals until they are friendly enough to have their picture taken, and the better friends with the animal you are the better photos your cousin and uncle can take! As you get closer an animal you earn more animals to play with, gain more photos of the animal and mini-games that you can play for the heck of it. If you leave an animal alone for too long though they start to get lonely and according to your cousin they can forget they were friends with you! *gasp* This can get tricky as the number of animals that you befriend grow. At one time I had four animals at one time saying they were lonely and wanted to play! I’m only one person ya know!

The game play itself is simple. While in the map mode you have your cousin giving you hints and alerts on one screen while on the other you can click on an animal’s icon to bond with it. The options to interact with each animal are relatively the same for each animal: Bond (pet the animal), Meal (feed them), Walk, Brush, Bathe and Toys (Play with the animal). Each animal enjoys some activities more than others and they will let you know when they don’t want to do something by walking away. One animal I have in mind would a particularly picky baby chick that was very hard to please. Each activity involves using the stylus to rub, drag or click on the screen in order to interact with the animal. Simple as pie. Sometimes for me this was a little too simple, but it was a good game for those times I didn’t feel like panicking and running around in circles when a monster moves into my blind spot to kill me.

The graphics for this game seem to be well done. The combination between cartoon style 2D graphics and the more realistic textures and shapes blended together well between the two screens. For the subject of the game the pastel and bright colors worked well together to give that happy feel that you’d expect from a game like this.

Now don’t laugh at me too hard, but I will admit that like the Tamagotchi and Giga Pets back in grade school, I got a little addicted to the game and ended up playing for a few hours more than planned. With the cute concept of the game and a slight attachment to each of the animals it was hard for me not to.

This game is well suited for those who prefer the casual game and are lovers of cute animals. With it’s simple, laid back gameplay it would be a good game to get a beginning gamer who loves animals involved in video games. A simple, cute, lovable game that can get you hooked if you’re not careful!

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