Animaniacs (video game)
North American SNES cover art, featuring the Warner Siblings, Yakko, Wakko, and Dot.
Factor 5 (Game Boy)
|Designer(s)||Hirotaka Fukuda (SNES)|
|Composer(s)||Tomoya Tomita (SNES), Rudolf Stember (Game Boy), Kiyoshi Murai (Genesis)|
Animaniacs (アニマニアックス Animaniakkusu) are a series of platform video games developed by Konami, based on the hit animated series of the same name. Two games were developed featuring significantly different gameplay and storylines; one for Super Nintendo Entertainment System, and one for the Sega Mega Drive/Genesis and Game Boy. The SNES and Genesis versions were released in 1994, and the Game Boy version in 1995.
In the Genesis version, the Warner Siblings, Yakko, Wakko, and Dot, decide to open up a hip pop culture shop in order to become closer to their favorite movie stars. To this end, they travel across various movie sets in the Warner Bros. studio lot in order to retrieve movie memorabilia to sell. However, once they collect all the memorabilia, Pinky and the Brain attempt to steal them in order to further their world domination plans.
In the SNES version, the Brain once again has another plan to conquer the world by deciding to steal the script of the new Warner Bros. film while it was under development. The CEO of Warner Bros. studio reluctantly asks the Warner Siblings for their assistance to retrieve all 24 pages of the script and foil the Brain's plan, which is the primary objective of the game.
Genesis/Game Boy version
The game features four main levels, which can be entered in any order. The player must reach the end of each level and beat the boss to obtain a piece of movie memorabilia. After clearing all four levels, players travel to the final level where they must fight Pinky and the Brain. Players control Yakko, Wakko, and Dot, switching control between them to use their respective powers accordingly. Yakko uses a paddleball to stun enemies, and is also able to push and pull objects such as crates. Wakko uses a mallet which can be used to hit switches, break certain objects and light fuses. Dot is able to blow kisses which, when used on certain characters, triggers certain actions needed to progress.
The Warner Brothers and Sister have health indicators and a number of lives. The lives can be increased by obtaining either 100 stars, or obtaining a small golden form of their faces. Their health is indicated by their faces on the top left of the screen. When they smile, they are healthy, but when they are looking either tired, unhappy, or weak, then they should find health soon (which is found in the forms of several forms of ice cream or sweets or other kinds of food). The levels are timed.
This version was ported to the Game Boy by Factor 5, but due to space constraints, only three levels are present in this version and certain parts of the three levels are absent. Both the Science Fiction/Space Opera – Space Wars (Space Trucking) and nearly all of the final Action Movie - Once There Was A Man Named Oscar levels are absent from this version. On easy mode, the Game Boy version ends early, on the first three levels. On normal and hard modes, the Game Boy version continues after the player completes the first three levels, goes to Once There Was A Man Named Oscar, and battles Pinky and the Brain.
Players navigate the three characters through a three-dimensional playing field. The primary objective of the game is to collect 24 pages of a script, though the game can be completed without obtaining all of them. The game focuses more on parodies of films at the different stages, that are once more based on different genres of movies.
The characters have no health bar, lives (the game ends when all the characters are defeated/captured, one by one) or special abilities. Characters can pick up and throw things as well as execute a dash move. If all three are together, they can also stack themselves up to reach higher platforms. A slot machine at the bottom of the screen is activated after obtaining a certain number of coins and can be used for a range of power ups, such as temporary invincibility or bringing back characters who were defeated or captured earlier.
Throughout the game, there are small robots with white block heads, red bodies and yellow appendages who work for Pinky and the Brain.
Reviewing the Genesis version, GamePro assessed that the game successfully appeals to the TV show's preadolescent target audience. They criticized the limited music and absence of voices, but praised the cartoony and detailed graphics and the way the level design requires the player to make regular use of all three characters. They gave the Super NES version a negative review, citing overly simplistic and frustrating gameplay, though they did praise the graphics for their large and colorful sprites and background references to the TV show. Reviewing the Game Boy version, they criticized the slow-moving characters and trial-and-error gameplay, but approved of the graphics and audio and concluded, "The humor and spirit of the Animaniacs lives on in this handheld game."
Digital Press gave the Genesis version 8 out of 10.