List of Worlds Traveled Through in the first “Kingdom Hearts” Game by Square, from 2002

One, not so long ago, nobody could fathom that a crossover of Disney’s various animated characters and settings could be blended together with the franchises of Japanese game developer Square (now Square-Enix) in a serious crossover title. Any reservations faded in 2002 with the release of the first Kingdom Hearts.

The concept of traversing through various worlds based on Disney and Square works in a videogame was a major hit, enough to spawn a sprawling franchise of its own. Let’s start from the very beginning and list down the places visited by the player in the original Kingdom Hearts title.

Four locations are original creations of Square; the other ten are based on works of Disney.

  1. Destiny Islands – home of original main characters Sora, Riku and Kairi; destroyed at the beginning of the game and swallowed into the End of the World; restored (partly) at the end of the first game
  2. Traverse Town – the game’s “hub location”, made of fragments of destroyed worlds; from here, Sora and his companions travel to the other worlds
  3. Hollow Bastion – a massive castle that is all that remains of the Radiant Garden world; former home of Ansem the Wise and used as a base by Maleficent for a time
  4. End of the World – realm created by the destruction wrought by the Heartless, where the Destiny Islands were sent to; final boss area of the first game
  5. 100 Acre Wood – setting of Winnie the Pooh
  6. Agrabah – setting of Aladdin
  7. Atlantica – setting of The Little Mermaid
  8. Deep Jungle – setting of Tarzan
  9. Disney Castle – original world based on Walt Disney’s animated shorts; home of King Mickey, Queen Minnie, Donald and Goofy, among numerous other classic Disney characters; traversable in the beta but not in the finished game, only seen in cut-scenes
  10. Halloween Town – setting of The Nightmare Before Christmas
  11. Monstro – character/location in Pinocchio
  12. Neverland – setting of Peter Pan
  13. Olympus Coliseum – setting of Hercules
  14. Wonderland – setting of Alice in Wonderland

List of Game Areas in Capcom’s “Ducktales” Videogames (1 and 2)

The Ducktales videogame from Capcom in 1989 is often held to be one of the greatest (if not the greatest) videogame adaptation of a Disney property in the history of electronic entertainment. What could be more exciting than controlling Scrooge McDuck as he travels around the world to hunt for treasure and collect various gems to add into his money bin?

Here then is a list of the various areas that Scrooge explores during the course of the Ducktales videogame on the Nintendo Entertainment System. Also included are two additional areas from the title’s 2013 HD remake Ducktales Remastered, made available on on all contemporary major platforms of the time including mobile.

  1. The Amazon
  2. Transylvania – domain of Magica de Spell; also doubled as the final boss area of the original NES game with Dracula Duck
  3. King Solomon’s Mines – domain of the King of the Terra Firmians (expanded as the pathway to the Terra Firmian underworld in Remastered)
  4. The Himalayas
  5. The Moon – visited by the aliens of planet Kronk; arguably home to the most memorable background music of the game in both versions
  6. The Money Bin – first mandatory area in Remastered; serves as tutorial level
  7. Mount Vesuvius – new final boss area in Remastered; Dracula Duck is fought here, with an extended post-battle race segment

The original game had a sequel with new areas for Scrooge to go through, though it was never remade. Ducktales 2 (NES and Gameboy) however was included in The Disney Afternoon Collection compilation of Capcom’s Disney game titles, released in 2017.

  1. Niagara Falls
  2. Bermuda Triangle – like with the original game, this area was recycled as a final boss area with Scrooge’s rival Flintheart Glomgold…or is it?
  3. Mu
  4. Egypt
  5. Scotland

Disney Announces New Mobile App “Disney Heroes: Battle Mode” by PerBlue with Teaser Trailer

One look at the Disney library of original films and TV series would tell anybody that they’ve got loads and loads of characters that they can use in future projects. Well here’s one such project now, and it takes a page from one of Disney’s more recent subsidiaries, Marvel Entertainment.

Disney has just announced a new mobile game app that gathers together some of its stable of very beloved and popular characters into a turn-based role-playing game called Disney Heroes: Battle Mode. Veterans of social media games might recognize the gameplay in the video with a defunct Marvel online game.

As seen in the trailer, Disney heroes; Battle Mode assembles characters such as The Incredibles, Woody and Buzz from Toy Story, Wreck-It Ralph, and Judy and Nick from Zootopia, to form parties that will take on bad guys from their respective source media, much like Marvel: Avengers Alliance on Facebook.

Disney VP – Games Lisa Anderson describes the game as an original universe where Disney-Pixar characters exist together, adding, “[Game developer] PerBlue has done a great job of bringing our characters to life in authentically Disney ways, and players will be surprised and delighted as they mix and match hero team-ups.”

For the moment, Perblue has confirmed an initial playable cast of over 30 characters from various Disney-Pixar franchises, organized into adventuring parties that level up and evolve in powers and abilities as they are sent into missions and PVP battles. Other properties offered include Pirates of the Caribbean and more.

No release date has yet been given for Disney Heroes: Battle Mode, but pre-registration has already begun, and the mobile game will arrive later this year for Android and iOS. In a way, this comes off as a spiritual successor to Playdom’s Marvel Avengers Alliance, which is a good thing.

List of Disney Adventure Videogame Adaptations Made by Capcom for the NES

Mainly remembered as the videogame developer-publisher that conceived the iconic Street Fighter fighting game series (among many other franchises), Japanese company Capcom also happens to be close to the heart of videogame-fiend Disney fans. The reason: several console games they made in the 80s-90s of cartoons series from Disney Afternoon.

All videogames in question were for the Nintendo Entertainment System (or the Nintendo Famicom back in Japan), and were platform adventures featuring some awesome graphical detail, responsive and entertaining gameplay controls, and some sweet 8-bit soundtracks. Gamers growing up in that time were blessed to have played these digital gems.

Anyway, let’s list the videogame adaptations of Disney Afternoon cartoons made by Capcom decades ago:

  1. Ducktales (1989)
  2. Chip ‘n Dale Rescue Rangers (1990)
  3. TaleSpin (1991)
  4. Darkwing Duck (1992)
  5. Ducktales 2 (1993)
  6. Chip ‘n Dale Rescue Rangers 2 (1994)

The first Ducktales game was remade by WayForward Technologies and published by Capcom and Disney Interactive as Ducktales: Remastered in 2013 for multiple platforms (PS3, Xbox 360, Wii U, Microsoft Windows/Windows Phone, iOS, and Android).

On 2017, Capcom again published a current-console compilation of these old games by Digital Eclipse, The Disney Afternoon Collection, with added features like “Time Attack” and “Boss Rush” modes, an online leaderboard, and finally a “Rewind” mechanism to correct gameplay mistakes without losing in-game health or lives.

Disney XD and ESPN to Air E-Sports Coverage of “Madden NFL 18” Through EA Deal

Disney XD has been ruling children’s cable programming ever since 2017, with some incredibly awesome series like Frozen: The Series and the long-awaited revival of the iconic 1980s show Ducktales. But The House of Mouse has only just begun in redefining what future programs can be seen in Disney XD.

This recent development’s going to knock some socks off. Disney XD is soon showing E-Sport competitions, courtesy of the household name for sports videogames, Electronic Arts. EA has inked an exclusive broadcast contract with Disney XD and ESPN to show coverage of the EA Sports Madden NFL 18 Championship Series.

In a prepared statement, EA senior VP and Competitive Gaming Division GM Todd Sitrin said their collaboration with ESPN and Disney XD will help bring top-notch E-Sports coverage of this competition in the hit videogame installment Madden NFL 18 to fans of sports gaming and EA all over the world.

Two E-Sports events will be covered through this agreement with ESPN and Disney XD. One is the The “Madden NFL 18″ Club Championship tournament, which began last week during Pro Bowl, January 26. The other is the Madden NFL Ultimate League, starting February 2 until April 28, the NFL Draft.

EA’s Madden NFL 18 has spent about the last 12 months comfortably sitting in Top 10 Best-Selling Videogame lists, a powerful indicator of its franchise staying power since the first Madden came out back in 1988. The latest installment is hailed as the most realistic NFL videogame yet, thanks to assistance from the real-world league.

Time will tell if this deal will lead to more E-Sporting events finding a ready coverage broadcaster in Disney XD. It’d make for a nice change of pace from the hit series such sporting coverage would air alongside of.

Disney Partners with “Portal Quest” Developer PerBlue and Others to Make New Mobile App Games

When it comes to branded videogames, Disney tends to be hit or miss. Fans can probably still remember early in 2017 when the House of Mouse shut down their in-house game development team Avalanche. They were of course the makers of Disney Infinity, which was very popular with gamers everywhere.

With the House of Mouse having shut down in-house game development for a time, they’re instead making partnerships with third-party developers to bring out new titles for the Disney gamer-base. They’re also going to make new inroads into the mobile gaming market, and are thus collaborating with mobile-app development outfits.

One of these new game-development partners with the house of mouse is PerBlue, a company that has produced some casual game apps. This collaboration was announced Tuesday by Disney gaming division executive Kyle Laughlin, while he was making a keynote speech at the Casual Connect game-con held in Disneyland, Anaheim.

On the side of PerBlue, based in Madison, Wisconsin, the company’s chief operations officer Forrest Woolworth sent an email publicizing the Disney partnership, but begged off on revealing what sort of game app they were developing for the House of Mouse. Woolworth wrote that PerBlue is excited about the project.

A look at PerBlue’s 10-year game portfolio would have it that their forte is making RPG-style fantasy titles that involve leveling up a party of heroes in a series of battles. Prominent games include Portal Quest on Android, and DragonSoul which they sold to a Japanese firm back in 2016.

PerBlue joins other mobile-app developers in the new Disney game development initiative such as GameLoft, Glu and Ludia. In terms of major brand collaborators, there’s Electronic Arts which has an exclusive deal for making Star Wars videogames, and Japanese giant Square-Enix which develops the Kingdom Hearts series featuring Disney characters.

“Marvel Create Your Own” Allows Fans to Create (Kid-Friendly, Non-Violent) Comic Book Stories Online

Before 2017 turned to 2018, Marvel Entertainment announced a new online digital platform that, in theory, would gift fans of Marvel Comics with one of their wildest dreams come true: to create comic stories with their favorite characters rather easily. This was the main draw of Marvel Create Your Own.

The digital platform had its website on Taptapcomics.com debut with a nifty video explaining the things one can do with the various features. They would offer users a library of Marvel character CG models to pose to one’s content. Backgrounds, text boxes and speech balloons are also available for editing.

It all sounds awesome, but for the fine print. See, Marvel Create Your Own has an exhaustive list of restrictions for users of the platform who want to make their own comic-book-length stories. A quick once-over of the no-no’s reveals a significant bias with regards to Marvel’s parent company Disney.

First off, the Create Your Own web service is available for signup only to users “physically” present in the US, Canada, Australia and Singapore. Obscenities are prohibited in the story and dialogue, not even wingding symbols.  Clearly, any creation on the platform must be “family-friendly” to pass inspection and publication.

That’s not all. Suggestive clothing like that which bares midriffs, mention of deadly weapons, death and more adult-oriented topics are not allowed. Finally, the only pop media references that will pass muster in the text are all Disney-related. Oh, and for now no X-Men related characters are in the selection.

Needless to say, while some Marvel fans have expressed interest in trying the Create Your Own platform once it officially launches, many others have been immediately turned off by the restrictions and dumbed-down story subjects. Like critics of The Last Jedi, these “higher-level” fans took to social media to vent.

Still, if you’re an aspiring comic-book story-boarder willing to do child-oriented content, Marvel Create Your Own would be a fun way to stretch the creative muscles. User registration is already going on at their Taptapcomics website, though there’s no launch date yet. Marvel also hasn’t responded to the restriction outcry.

‘DISNEY ART ACADEMY’ COMING TO THE NINTENDO 3DS THIS MAY

disney art academy

Everyone, grab your styluses and get ready to discover your inner artist as you learn in our newest art school, Disney Art Academy for 3DS. During the latest airing of Nintendo Direct, Bill Trinen, Senior Product Marketing Manager for Nintendo of America, announced the latest interactive game that Disney will offer via Nintendo’s handheld.

Screen-Shot-2016-03-03-at-7.31.00-PM-740x399

With the help of the game’s instructor as inspired by Disney and Pixar art animators, you’ll learn the basics of drawing and colors using pre-loaded illustrations. Master the craft by using a wide array of drawing tools to create more than 80 of your favorite Disney and Pixar characters. Here’s how Bill Trinen described it:

Disney Art Academy is a fun game that will teach you how to draw popular Disney and Pixar characters. Lessons feature a wide range of characters and your instructor will teach you how to draw them step-by-step. Draw lines, color them in, add shadows and highlights as you instructed. Anyone can create beautiful illustrations of Disney and Pixar characters like these. With a wave of the magic brush, you can give your masterpiece a touch of stars, glitters, clouds and more. Sample artwork will include a variety of characters from Mickey Mouse and Winnie the Pooh. To beloved Disney Princesses, to some of Pixar’s best, and yes even Disney’s Frozen.

Screen-Shot-2016-03-03-at-7.30.42-PM-740x400

Disney Art Academy launches on Nintendo 3DS by May 13 in the US, and July 15 in Europe. Check out this video.

New TRON RUN/r Video Game Promises To Be A Feast For The Senses, Trailer

The next TRON film sequel might’ve hit the skids and got cancelled eventually, but that doesn’t mean we can’t get to see ‘The Grid’ once again and relive our animatronic adventure. Disney released a sneak preview on what could be a pumped up ‘Temple Run’ or ‘Subway Surfer’ version of 2010’s Tron: Legacy.

“Tron RUN/r” (pronounced we suppose as ‘Runner’) will task players with making it to the end of each of 30 levels in The Grid as fast as possible, and this new video trailer shows off some of the mechanics players will use. Sprinting, leaping, wall-running, grinding along rails, air dashes and sick-hot lightcycle spins all adds up to the visual appeal of the video. There’s also a bit of combat as the player battles an attacking Recognizer.

The greatest selling point of the game in spite of the simplicity and straightforwardness of its gameplay lies on the visually stunning graphics that it employs similar to what we have seen on Tron: Legacy. Truth be told, it’s a serious feast for the senses. It’s an art style that looked far better as compared with the under-appreciated Tron: Evolution game, and it looks even better now on current platforms.

The RUN/r’s soundtrack doesn’t disappoint as well, which carries with it names like the legendary Giorgio Moroder – known for his pioneering work of marrying synth disco and electronic music.

TRON RUN/r will be available on February 16, 2016 on via Steam, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. We hope to see a mobile version soon. Check out this fresh trailer from Disney Games showing the gameplay in action and tell us what you think.

TRON Run

‘Avengers Alliance’ Video Game Gets Sequel

As the gaming industry continues to evolve, Disney’s right at the front of the foray with their games across multiple platforms. Perhaps the largest market left to dominate for Disney, though, is mobile gaming. Through their partnerships and other companies Disney has an incredible opportunity to rise in this field. One of the biggest mobile games of 2015 was ‘Avengers Alliance.’ The game that blends characters from across the full spectrum of the Marvel universe received a boost in parallel with Avengers: Age of Ultron, though its been around for nearly three years. As the summer came to a close and the box office shifted from Marvel to Lucasfilm and Star Wars: The Force Awakens (still Disney…haha) the popularity may have waned a bit, but it won’t be for long.

This past week Disney announced that ‘Avengers Alliance 2’ would enter the gaming marketplace in beta mode early in 2016. Here’s a teaser trailer for the game, followed by the official press statement about the release:

Disney Interactive and Marvel Entertainment today announced that a new turn-based team role-playing game Marvel: Avengers Alliance 2, the 3D visually-enhanced mobile sequel to the smash hit social game Marvel: Avengers Alliance, will be launching soon in limited beta testing in select countries. In Marvel: Avengers Alliance 2, players will assemble a team of Marvel Super Heroes to battle Ultron, Baron Strucker, and more.  

Since its launch over three years ago, the original Marvel: Avengers Alliance has become the most successful Disney-published social game with nearly 70 million players and over 100 Super Heroes and Super Villains for players to collect and nearly 1600 different combat situations to battle through, including PVP Tournaments and Incursions.

In this original storyline for Marvel: Avengers Alliance 2, pieces of the planet are disappearing, with entire cities vanishing without a trace. It is a mystery with a single clue: all of the disappearances are at previous sites of Incursions. Villains are taking advantage of the chaos, as well as the massive deposits of Iso-8 left behind by each disappearance. Each player must level up heroes, customize each hero with special abilities and assemble the ultimate team to take into battle.

-M@