Disney's Aladdin (Virgin Games video game)

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Disney's Aladdin
Aladdingenesis.jpg
Cover art for the North American version
Developer(s) Virgin Games
Publisher(s) Sega
Disney Software
Director(s) David Perry
Producer(s)
Designer(s)
  • David Bishop
  • Bill Anderson
  • Tom Tanaka
  • Seth Mendelsohn
Programmer(s) David Perry
Composer(s)
Platform(s) Sega Genesis, Amiga, DOS, Game Boy, Game Boy Color
ReleaseNovember 11, 1993
Genre(s) Platform   Blue pencil.svg
Mode(s) Single-player   Blue pencil.svg

Disney's Aladdin is a platform game based on the 1992 film of the same name developed by Virgin Games and Disney Software. The game was released by Sega for the Sega Genesis on November 11, 1993 as one of several games based on the film, including another game that was released in the same month by Capcom for the Super NES.

Platform game video game genre

Platform games, or platformers, are a video game genre and subgenre of action game. In a platformer the player controlled character must jump and climb between suspended platforms while avoiding obstacles. Environments often feature uneven terrain of varying height that must be traversed. The player often has some control over the height and distance of jumps to avoid letting their character fall to their death or miss necessary jumps. The most common unifying element of games of this genre is the jump button, but now there are other alternatives like swiping a touchscreen. Other acrobatic maneuvers may factor into the gameplay as well, such as swinging from objects such as vines or grappling hooks, as in Ristar or Bionic Commando, or bouncing from springboards or trampolines, as in Alpha Waves. These mechanics, even in the context of other genres, are commonly called platforming, a verbification of platform. Games where jumping is automated completely, such as 3D games in The Legend of Zelda series, fall outside of the genre.

<i>Aladdin</i> (1992 Disney film) 1992 American animated musical fantasy film by Walt Disney Feature Animation

Aladdin is a 1992 American animated musical fantasy film produced by Walt Disney Feature Animation and released by Walt Disney Pictures. The film is the 31st Disney animated feature film, and was the fourth produced during the Disney film era known as the Disney Renaissance. It was produced and directed by Ron Clements and John Musker, and is based on the Arabic folktale of the same name from the One Thousand and One Nights. The voice cast features Scott Weinger, Robin Williams, Linda Larkin, Jonathan Freeman, Frank Welker, Gilbert Gottfried and Douglas Seale. The film follows Aladdin, an Arabian street urchin, who finds a magic lamp containing a genie. In order to hide the lamp from the Grand vizier, he disguises himself as a wealthy prince, and tries to impress the Sultan and his daughter.

Virgin Interactive former British video game publisher

Virgin Interactive Entertainment was the video game publishing division of British conglomerate the Virgin Group. It was formed as Virgin Games in 1983. Initially built around a small development team called the Gang of Five, the company grew significantly after purchasing budget label Mastertronic in 1987.

Contents

The game is one of the best-selling Genesis games with four million copies sold. It also received a number of adapted ports for other platforms, such as the NES, Game Boy, Amiga, and DOS computers.

Game Boy 1989 portable video game console

The Game Boy is an 8-bit handheld game console developed and manufactured by Nintendo. The first handheld in the Game Boy line, it was first released in Japan on April 21, 1989, then North America, three months later, and lastly in Europe, nearly a year after. It was designed by the same team that developed the Game & Watch and several Nintendo Entertainment System games: Satoru Okada, Gunpei Yokoi, and Nintendo Research & Development 1.

Amiga family of personal computers sold by Commodore

The Amiga is a family of personal computers introduced by Commodore in 1985. The original model was part of a wave of 16- and 32-bit computers that featured 256 KB or more of RAM, mouse-based GUIs, and significantly improved graphics and audio over 8-bit systems. This wave included the Atari ST—released the same year—Apple's Macintosh, and later the Apple IIGS. Based on the Motorola 68000 microprocessor, the Amiga differed from its contemporaries through the inclusion of custom hardware to accelerate graphics and sound, including sprites and a blitter, and a pre-emptive multitasking operating system called AmigaOS.

DOS group of closely-related PC-compatible operating systems

DOS is a platform-independent acronym for disk operating system which became common shorthand for the popular family of disk operating systems for x86-based IBM PC compatibles. DOS primarily consists of Microsoft's MS-DOS and a rebranded IBM version under the name PC DOS, both of which were introduced in 1981. Later compatible systems from other manufacturers are DR DOS, ROM-DOS, PTS-DOS, Embedded DOS, FreeDOS (1998), and RxDOS. MS-DOS dominated the IBM PC compatible market between 1981 and 1995.

Gameplay

The player controls Aladdin, who must make his way through several levels based on locations from the movie: from the streets and rooftops of Agrabah, the Cave of Wonders and the Sultan's dungeon to the final confrontation in Grand Vizier Jafar's palace. The Sultan's guards and also animals of the desert want to hinder Aladdin in his way. He can attack either close range with a scimitar, which can deflect certain projectiles, or long range with a limited supply of apples. Next to apples, Aladdin can also collect gems which can be traded for lives and continues from a traveling peddler. Finding Genie or Abu icons enables bonus rounds. The Genie bonus round is a game of luck played for apples, gems or extra lives, and continues until the player runs out of Genie tokens or lands on Jafar. In Abu's bonus round, the player controls the little monkey who has to catch bonus items that fall from the sky, but without touching any of the unwanted objects like rocks and pots.

Aladdin (Disney character) fictional character in Disneys Aladdin series

Aladdin is a fictional character and the titular protagonist of Walt Disney Pictures' 31st animated feature film Aladdin (1992) based on Aladdin, a folk tale of Middle Eastern origin. He is voiced by American actor Scott Weinger, while his singing voice is provided by Brad Kane. He also stars in the two direct-to-video sequels The Return of Jafar (1994) and Aladdin and the King of Thieves (1996), as well as the animated television series based on the film. Mena Massoud played a live-action version of the character in a live action adaptation of the 1992 film.

Development

Development for the game began in January 1993, with a team of ten animators working on the animation frames. The work was then shipped to Virgin's California facility to be digitized. The game used traditional animation, which was produced by Disney animators under the supervision of Virgin's animation staff, including animation producer Andy Luckey, technical director Paul Schmiedeke and animation director Mike Dietz, using an in-house "Digicel" process to compress the data onto the cartridge. Virgin was given the deadline of October 1993 to complete production as to coincide with the home video release of the film; this deadline left Virgin with about three-quarters the normal amount of time to build a game. [1] The game features some musical arrangements from the film, along with original pieces composed by Donald Griffin and Tommy Tallarico. [2]

Traditional animation animation technique in which frames are hand-drawn

Traditional animation is an animation technique in which each frame is drawn by hand on a physical medium. The technique was the dominant form of animation in cinema until the advent of computer animation.

Andrew A. "Andy" Luckey is an American writer, director and producer, primarily of animated works. He also writes and illustrates children's books and Bible studies.

<i>Aladdin</i> (1992 soundtrack) 1992 soundtrack album by Various artists

Aladdin: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack is the soundtrack for the 1992 Disney animated feature film, Aladdin. The album was released by Walt Disney Records on CD and cassette tape on October 27, 1992. The soundtrack was intertwined with demos, work tapes and unreleased masters, as well as original scores in 1994 in a four-disc box set entitled The Music Behind the Magic: The Musical Artistry of Alan Menken, Howard Ashman & Tim Rice. A remastered reissue with altered lyrics and new artwork was released in 2001. A special edition reissue featuring two previously released demos and new artwork was released in 2004.

Ports

The Amiga and DOS were based on the Mega Drive/Genesis version, featuring enhanced music and sound effects. The NES received a port as well, which was later adapted into a Game Boy version, which was compatible with the Super Game Boy. A Game Boy Color port was developed by Crawfish Interactive and published by Ubi Soft on November 30, 2000. [3] A Sega CD version of Aladdin was planned but never started official development. [4]

Nintendo Entertainment System 8-bit video game console produced by Nintendo in 1983

The Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) is an 8-bit home video game console developed and manufactured by Nintendo. It is a remodeled export version of the company's Family Computer (FC) platform in Japan, commonly known as the Famicom, which was launched on July 15, 1983. The NES was launched in the test markets of New York City and Los Angeles in 1985, with a full launch in the rest of North America and parts of Europe in 1986, followed by Australia and other European countries in 1987. Brazil saw only unlicensed clones until the official local release in 1993. In South Korea, it was packaged as the Hyundai Comboy and distributed by Hyundai Electronics which is now SK Hynix; the Comboy was released in 1989.

Super Game Boy add-on for the SNES video game console

The Super Game Boy is a peripheral that allows Game Boy cartridges to be played on a Super Nintendo Entertainment System console. Released in June 1994, it retailed for $59.99 in the United States and £49.99 in the United Kingdom.

Game Boy Color video game console

The Game Boy Color (GBC) is a handheld game console manufactured by Nintendo, which was released on October 21, 1998, in Japan, and later released in November of the same year to international markets. It is the successor of the Game Boy and continued in the Game Boy family.

Sequel

In a "Devs Play" session with Double Fine in 2014, Louis Castle, co-founder of Westwood Studios who later worked on The Lion King , revealed that the studio had pitched a second Aladdin game that would have featured pre-rendered 3D sprites, around the same time as the Amiga game Stardust and a year prior to their use in Donkey Kong Country , but the project was scrapped by Disney. [5]

Double Fine American video game developer

Double Fine Productions, Inc. is an American video game developer based in San Francisco, founded in July 2000 by Tim Schafer after his departure from LucasArts.

Westwood Studios, Inc. was an American video game developer, based in Las Vegas, Nevada. It was founded by Brett Sperry and Louis Castle in 1985 as Westwood Associates and was renamed Westwood Studios when it merged with Virgin Games in 1992. The company was bought by Electronic Arts alongside Virgin Interactive's North American operations in 1998 In January 2003, it was announced that Westwood, alongside EA Pacific, would be merged into EA Los Angeles. The studio closed in March that year.

<i>The Lion King</i> (video game) 1994 video game

The Lion King is a platformer video game based on Disney's animated film of the same name. The title was developed by Westwood Studios and published by Virgin Interactive Entertainment for the Super NES and Genesis in 1994, and was also ported to the Nintendo Entertainment System, Game Boy, Microsoft Windows, Amiga, Master System, and Game Gear. The NES, Master System and Amiga versions were only released in the PAL region, with the NES version in particular being the last game released for the platform in the region in addition to being the final licensed game for the platform worldwide. The game follows Simba's journey from a young cub to the battle with his evil uncle Scar as an adult.

Reception

Critical reception

Reception (Genesis)
Review scores
PublicationScore
AllGame Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar half.svg [6]
CVG 80% [7]
Dragon Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svg [8]
Edge 8 / 10 [9]
EGM 34 / 40 [10]
Famitsu 35 / 40 [11]
GamePro 18.5 / 20 [12]
GamesMaster 95% [13]
IGN 8 / 10 [14]
Mean Machines Sega 82% [15]
Mega 94% [16]

On release, Famicom Tsūshin scored the Genesis version of Aladdin a 35 out of 40. [11] The game was awarded Best Genesis Game of 1993 by Electronic Gaming Monthly . They also awarded it Best Animation. [17] The game was reviewed in 1994 in Dragon #211 by Jay & Dee in the "Eye of the Monitor" column. Both reviewers gave the game 5 out of 5 stars. [8] Mega placed the game at #12 in their Top Mega Drive Games of All Time. [18]

Levi Buchanan of IGN gave the game an 8/10, calling the game "a platformer that proved the Genesis, while aging, was still quite capable of great gameplay and delightful artwork." [14]

The game sold 4 million copies worldwide at the time of its release, making it the third best-selling Sega Genesis game of all-time, after Sonic the Hedgehog and Sonic the Hedgehog 2 . [19]

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References

  1. Eddy, Andy (July 1993). "Sega, Disney and Virgin Team up on the Genesis Version of Aladdin" (PDF). Video Games & Computer Entertainment . No. 54. pp. 78–80.
  2. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-06-17. Retrieved 2016-05-31.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  3. "Disney's Aladdin - IGN" . Retrieved 2018-02-21.
  4. Wawro, Alex (2017-10-11). "Check out this deep dive into the source code for Aladdin on Genesis". Gamasutra . UBM . Retrieved 2017-02-19.
  5. "How Westwood Made The Lion King, One Of Gaming's Finest Platformers | Kotaku UK". Kotaku.co.uk. Retrieved 2017-07-25.
  6. Weiss, Bret Allan. "Aladdin (Sege Genesis) Review". AllGame. Archived from the original on November 14, 2014. Retrieved May 19, 2017.
  7. Amanda Tipping, Aladdin, Computer and Video Games , issue 145 (December 1993), page 59
  8. 1 2 Jay & Dee (November 1994). "Eye of the Monitor". Dragon (211): 39–42.
  9. "Aladdin review (Mega Drive)". Edge. November 1993. Archived from the original on May 31, 2013.
  10. Electronic Gaming Monthly, 1999 Video Game Buyer's Guide, page 132
  11. 1 2 NEW GAMES CROSS REVIEW: アラジン. Weekly Famicom Tsūshin. No.257. Pg.39. 12–19 November 1993.
  12. GamePro, issue 52 (November 1993), pages 46-47
  13. GamesMaster, issue 11, pages 64-65
  14. 1 2 Levi Buchanan. "Aladdin Retro Review". IGN. Retrieved April 30, 2017.
  15. "File:Mean Machines Sega 14 UK". Sega Retro. 2015-07-02. p. 68. Retrieved 2017-07-25.
  16. Mega, issue 14, pages 34-35
  17. "Electronic Gaming Monthly's Buyer's Guide". 1994.
  18. Mega magazine issue 26, page 74, Maverick Magazines, November 1994
  19. Horowitz, Ken (2006-03-28). "Interview: Dr. Stephen Clarke-Willson". Sega-16.com. Retrieved 2011-12-26.