Version Reviewed: 1.0
App Reviewed on: iPhone 5
Graphics / Sound Rating:
User Interface Rating:
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I’m not going to lie, I flipped out a little when I first saw that teaser for DuckTales Remastered back in 2013. The NES version of DuckTales has been close to the top of my nostalgia list for many, many years - right up there with Mega Man 2 and Elevator Action to name a couple - so seeing it get a high definition remaster was pretty amazing.
But that was about two years ago. By now the shock of the new has worn off, and we’re left with trying to figure out whether or not DuckTales Remastered is a worthwhile iOS port. It kind of is, but it’s got a little bit of a control issue.
Scrooge McDuck, his nephews, and his
friends employees are traveling the globe (and slightly beyond) in order to hunt down all sorts of treasures. There’s definitely more to the story here than in the original Nintendo version, and it’s told fairly well with cutscenes voiced by the original cartoon’s voice actors (!!). The plot isn’t anything to get excited about but it frames things nicely, at least.
The two core mechanics from the original - whacking stuff with Scrooge’s cane and the ‘cane bounce’ - have been kept intact, as have the multitude of obvious and hidden chests full of jewels; all of which come into play constantly in each of the five levels.
A new Easy mode has been added for younger or less experienced players, and if you’ve never played the original or are perhaps a bit rusty I’d actually recommend starting there. The NES version was surprisingly tough, and despite being a modern remaster this version doesn’t pull its punches either. Of course you can absolutely dive in on Normal or even Hard, but it's not going to be a walk in the park.
Pretty much everything about DuckTales Remastered is great, both from a nostalgic point of view and from a more contemporary angle. The music has been remixed but is still faithful to the original (and extremely good), the visuals are fantastic, the voice acting makes me crack a smile every time, and the harder difficulties are actually hard. The only problem is the controls.
Well, I should say the virtual controls. You can play DuckTales Remastered using a MFi controller and it works really well, but if you don’t have that option you might occasionally find yourself missing a button tap at a crucial moment or accidentally making Scrooge duck (as in “duck and cover”) when you meant to move to one side or the other. It’s nothing game-breaking, but it can sometimes cause frustration.
DuckTales Remastered is a game worth playing regardless of whether or not you’ve played the original. If you already own this remake for consoles or PC you could probably do without this version (although being able to play it on the go is still cool), but if you’re a total newcomer this is as good a place to start as any.