Sunday, January 24, 2010

You're such a girl

Over Christmas one of my co-workers got a PS3 from his wife along with a few games.   One night while comparing his trophies I noticed that he had Hannah Montana The Movie the video game.  I'll admit that I'm a sucker for trophies.  I prefer the term Trophy Hunter while others I know enjoy likening me to a "trophy whore".  In the end it doesn't matter because the trinkets are basically meaningless but to my mind add a bit of extra game play value.  Hannah Montana The Movie the video game (sounds so silly to say that five times fast) is a trophy hunter's dream.  The game is an easy Platinum-- Platinum being the highest trophy earned on a PS3 game after earning all others offered in a game.  Some games are brutally hard to earn a Platinum trophy. In the end when you look at the collection of trophies it is pretty cool to have some a few of the higher value.

I asked if I could borrow Hannah Montana The Movie the video game.  The initial reaction was, "Are you serious?  That's a kids game."  Hey I've got 3 kids.  I'm borrowing it so they can play it.  Again the response, "Are you serious?"  So I had to reveal the truth and say that I really only wanted to play it for the trophies.  My gamer cred (if I even really had any) was slowly dropping with my co-worker.  But after a few days of pleasantly asking if I could borrow the game he relented.

Thursday night I came home with Hannah Montana The Movie the video game.  I had dinner and then went downstairs to play the game.  My son (who is 9) came downstairs a few minutes after I had started to play, looked at the TV and realized that I wasn't playing Assassin's Creed II or Dragon Age: Origins and with a very incredulous tone asked, "What are YOU playing dad?"

"Hannah Montana The Movie the video game"

Blank stare back from my son.  He looked at the TV again and then looked at me and said, "You're such a girl sometimes dad" and promptly ran upstairs to tell the rest of the family.  "Dad's playing Hannah Montana!"  Several muted laughs could be heard through the basement ceiling.

Shortly after that however my son came back downstairs and asked if he could play now.

My son, being 9, has watched many episodes of Hannah Montana.  As a father I'd like to think that he is watching the show for the wholesome family friendly messages that are a part of each episode.  In reality I think it is a combination of him enjoying the slapstick nature of the kid centric hilarity on the show but also a bit of a young boy crush on Miley Cyrus.

Regardless of this I relented and let my son play because I had to go pick up my 11 year old daughter from dance practice.  Upon returning from picking up my daughter from dance I went back downstairs to find my son was completely sucked into the game and he would let me have the controller back.  My younger daughter came down to join us and after my son admitted that he couldn't figure out how to do the dance moves that are required during the musical numbers I took control and showed them both how to play.

Soon after that, we began to pass the controller round robin between the three of us and continued our time with Hannah Montana The Movie the video game. 

While some might poo-poo the game because it is a kid game, I have to suggest that those nay-sayers give the game a chance.  It isn't a complete wasted effort of a licensed property and tells a decent Hannah Montana story (I've been forced to watch enough of the show over the years to see the predictable formulaic outcome).  It apparently is good enough that my son even commented that he wants to watch the movie now.

The game revolves around the Miley being able to collect items to decorate her touring bus, fetch items to help out friends and relatives, and perform songs at various venues as the title character Hannah Montana.  (For those who don't know, in the fictional world people believe that Hannah Montana and Miley Cyrus are two separate people.  "Comedy gold" ensues in pretty much every episode as Miley struggles to keep the facade up).  In this day and age of musical rhythm games it feels a bit odd to play one without any actual instruments, but as Hannah Montana sings throughout the game you are prompted with various movements that correspond to different stick movements with the controller.  The game also utilizes the SIXAXIS motion controller capabilities as you can shake the controller to activate some of the on screen prompts.  Overall the controls work fairly well as the challenge is not aimed at a parent of my age, but rather the 7-11 year old demographic that has made the show as popular as it is.

As songs are completed and items are found, credits are put into a little piggie bank.  This allows for the other game play aspect to kick in.  Shopping and playing dress-up.  The on screen likeness of Miley Cyrus is basically a walking talking paper doll that once clothes have been purchased (don't for get the jewelry too!) you can spend hours upon hours trying on various wardrobe styles.

Overall I have to say that I'm impressed with this game.  Two out of three kids in the house have really enjoyed it.  While it isn't a blockbuster AAA title like Uncharted 2, it is a game that is appropriate for kids that isn't too simple, has an engaging story (to a kid), and looks and sounds good.  Voice acting is done by the actual actors from the show and you can clearly tell who each character on screen represents as well.  Toss in a few carnival mini games, mix with the musical numbers and paper doll dress up and you've got a solid kid game.

If you have kids that enjoy the show, Hannah Montana The Movie the video game is worth picking up.


  1. Hilarious on so many levels. Thanks for the laughs :-)
    A question: When every kid who shows up gets a trophy for participation, is it still worth anything?