There once was a girl oh so fair.
But for that, she did have to beware.
The queen was quite vain
With a death on her brain
So she moved to at least have a prayer.
Magic mirror on the wall, who thought it would be good idea to make a Snow White video game over 60 years after the Disney movie came out let alone at all? There is a narcissistic queen. She wants to kill a girl that’s prettier than her. The princess hides out in a cottage with seven not-so-tall men. The queen finds her anyway and poisons her, but a prince saves her. The protagonist does nothing but hide, housekeep, sleep, and be carried off. What a riveting road map for an adventure! Well, on the plus side, at least Snow White’s parents’ last name wasn’t Yellow.
Speaking of colors, isn’t it odd that one of the only types of game cartridges that are clear, as in, having no color, are Game Boy Color games? WonderSwan Color games are the same way, oddly. The world gets some consoles with “color” in the title, and with them, we start getting cartridges totally devoid of color. But hey, for bloggers, it’s always better when life doesn’t make sense.
Another great thing about the tale of Snow White is the comfort it must give girls who get mocked for their appearance. After all, the only reason Snow White was targeted for death was for being too pretty. At least unattractive females know their lives are safe from jealous bimbos.
The game starts by mocking Dopey because making fun of seemingly-mentally-challenged people is fun; he’s the icon for easy mode. Players are then greeted by an image of Snow White wearing a face mask and crying. Guess she’s emotionally fed up with Covid-19.
Next, we’re graced by the image of the great stalker prince with a gaze upon his noble brow most derpy. In the movie, he starts singing, and Snow White runs away in fear, and with a face like that, I would too.
Level one is based on the queen’s order to her huntsman to take Snow White out to pick wildflowers and then claim her heart. As you collect the plants, you can even see the guy leaning nearby, a nice visual detail. However, the queen asked him to take her to a secluded glade in the forest, yet the game area takes place at the castle itself. There are wooded areas later in the game, so the work to make such locales was already done, so I cannot comprehend this change.
Between the levels are minigames. Geez, I’ve sure looked at a lot of these types of titles lately, haven’t I? At least they all proceed a bit differently. Mickey’s Ultimate Challenge has nothing but minigames and three difficulties to choose from. JumpStart Dino Adventure Field Trip also had nothing except them but made you play through all three difficulties to see the ending, and Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs has two difficulties with minigames sprinkled between platforming levels. Well, as long as this one has no sliding puzzles, we’re cool.
After collecting all the flowers, you have to- COMPLETE A SLIDE PUZZLE!? Okay, this game should get an automatic negative 3.14 because it has one of the worst things ever, and I like pie. We then get a cutscene with the queen starting off her question with “Mirror, mirror” instead of “Magic mirror,” because whoever wrote this clearly just saw the movie once or twice many years ago and tried reciting it from memory. But hey, I hate research too, so we’re kindred spirits.
After the huntsman can’t bring himself to kill Snow White and has her flee, we get level two of- collecting butterflies. I mean, yeah, when the animals first show her the seven dwarfs’ house, there’s an extremely brief moment of a couple butterflies scuttering by, but this is really grasping at straws to formulate the basis of a stage. At least the next section is a bit more actiony where she flees through the dark woods avoiding bats.
After that, Snow White goes around the cottage collecting rabbits. Oh hey, now we know what she made that soup with. This is followed by catching the plates the animals wash before they break. And then it’s time for music note collecting because- she likes singing, I guess. She should have grabbed the notes in that castle area at the start since she sang a song there, and that butterfly fetch quest in the woods thereafter should have been for the flowers she gathered in the movie. Then we get a round of Simon Says using the dwarfs with their instruments. In my opinion, the harder difficulty makes this segment go on way too long, especially for kids. My brain was strained trying to repeat a whopping dozen ever-lengthening segments.
The next part just screws things up big time: In the motion picture, Snow White makes a gooseberry pie for her hosts. The evil queen disguises herself as an old hag and tempts Snow White to eat a poisoned apple after saying that an apple pie would be the preferable dish. However, in the game, she collects apples. Okay, well, that messes up the story because she no longer has any reason to accept an apple, but later in the game, we see round, green fruit in a minigame that could pretty much pass as gooseberries, so why wasn’t that used for this objective so the story could unfold in the logical way it was intended to?
Granted, the disguised queen adds further incentive to take the fruit by saying it’s a wishing apple, but in the game’s universe, the events could not have unfolded like they did in the film. Speaking of how things played out, now that I think about it, Snow White probably believed that wishing apple was real her entire life. I mean, her wish was to have her prince, she ate the apple, and the next she knew, her prince was there. Her wish really did come true in her mind as soon as she took that bite.
Welp, now you play as a deer going to get help from the dwarfs. This part, thankfully, really feels more like a game with obstacles, falling debris, and bottomless pits as you auto scroll to the right. You even have to adjust your speed to avoid getting hit and make the jumps. The lightning flashes look nice, but being followed by claps of thunder would have been the icing on the gooseberry cake.
The game cuts to Grumpy as you continue his workload of the day by collecting gems while navigating the mine. Then we come to one of the oddest additions to the game albeit a welcome one for the fun. You know those two vultures that looked happy as the queen made her way to the cottage? They’re a boss battle now. And they’re fought by Dopey who shoots them with beams of light created by reflecting the rays of the sun with a diamond. But the strangeness doesn’t stop there. The birds don’t actually attack you. In fact, they’re just minding their own business and flying around. He ends up just looking like he felt like being cruel to innocent animals.
Yeah, regardless of difficulty level, they don’t swoop down to attack with their claws or drop poop or anything. Even the manual describes this part as Dopey “defending” himself despite them just moving along like any other birds.
Furthermore, Dopey was actually the one dwarf that fired stuff off in the movie, but what he shot was bubbles. If they’re gonna add some random battle sequence with him, it would have connected to the film somewhat if he was blasting those things out of his mouth instead. Sure, bubbles don’t really hurt anything, but reflected light doesn’t exactly cause damage either. Unless it’s a throw pillow you left near an open window for a month.
Once the scavengers are defeated, you play as Grumpy again because it’s not like there’s seven different dwarfs or anything; the game clearly had no choice but to make you use the same one twice. And he collects- hearts? What is that supposed to symbolize? How he got bashful before he left for the mine after Snow White kissed him? Plus, since the huntsman brought back the heart of a pig to try fooling the queen into thinking he really killed her, acquiring hearts in this game has some very disturbing implications. I mean, they’re friggin’ BEATING! And while hearts can also be symbolic of love, shouldn’t you technically be controlling the prince for that?
Afterwards, it’s Concentration because every single minigame title I play seems to have that as a requirement. Anyway, the prince awakens Snow White with a kiss, and they live happily ever after. Geez, just imagine his abilities as a role-playing game character:
Frightening Song- Scare away one target but grants no experience points or items.
Beguile- Inflicts Charm on target to make them fight for you for three turns.
True Love’s Kiss- Cures Sleep and Poison.
Happy Ever After- Inflicts Happiness on target for remainder of battle which boosts resistance to mental attacks by 25%.
The game’s final challenge is a dumbed down version of Tetris. You see a “The end” on the back of the storybook because, as we all know, the final words of a tome are on the cover and not one of the pages.
The credits play against a background that’s yellow, symbolizing my relief that Snow White’s last name was not. Well, with the story said and done, let’s move on.
The game controls fine, but it’s not like there’s much to do or need of good reflexes. Snow White stops briefly after she lands which messes with the smooth feeling of momentum, but I doubt anyone would fail something here due to how things handle. Entering passages is a breeze too. You don’t need to press a thing; you just stop moving outside a door, and boom, you go in. This simplifies the game, but since it’s already so basic, I think I’d prefer a bit more interaction as the player, especially since this can lead to entering someplace by accident if, say, you have to sneeze right at an entryway.
I’m normally not a fan of the occasional leaps of faith one must take to find some items, but there’s no falling damage or time limit, and this game is way too easy, so I weirdly welcome them here. A bit unhappy though with how picky the game is regarding where you need to stand to collect things; I shouldn’t have to fidget around when I’m literally right on top of something. But I do like how if the pause button is pressed, Sleepy shows up in an unconscious state, a very creative and fitting choice.
The scenery throughout the games gets pretty repetitive, but what we do get looks nice enough. The castle is nice looking, and the scary trees are pretty creepy. Sometimes, animated animals were placed in the background just for more atmosphere, and it’s an appreciated touch. All NPC’s look fantastic too though I’m not sure why the huntsman is dressed like he’s cosplaying a red mage from the Final Fantasy series.
Nor do I get why Snow White isn’t actually looking at the apple she’s holding on the cover. Come on, Miss White. Just lower your gaze a wee bit there.
Grumpy’s dainty jumping animation and Bashful’s stoned expression while accordion playing are just beautiful though.
The music is decent. It works; it fits okay. Things sound pretty chill during relaxed moments and a bit tense during stressful scenes. There’s just nothing memorable about any of it. It’s hard to remember the tunes even right after hearing them. The sound effects are alright too. Fine choice for jumping and picking up items. When it comes to the auditory department of this game, my overall mentality is that I basically just don’t have anything bad to say about it. The noise from whenever you enter a door seems a little dramatic/elongated, but it’s still whatevs.
A compliment I can give it over JumpStart Dino Adventure Field Trip from last time is that it actually has music during the credits, so kudos. However, the same track is played at the beginning of the game though too, so they couldn’t even make something new to grace our ears upon completion.
The story is what you already know about Disney’s Snow White, and they show a good number of scenes. However, there aren’t nearly enough words to accompany the visuals, so it’s all paraphrased to oblivion here. It’s like reading the outline to a fairytale. Plus, it’s not like Snow White is high art in the realm of storytelling in the first place, but it at least has the benefit of being a beloved classic.
This title’s existence is a strange thing since it doesn’t really scream, “Video game,” at all. A Disney film such as The Sword in the Stone seems like a much more logical choice, but this is what we got. If you’re a fan of Snow White and are curious to see how it translates to game form, you might get a little amused with how this goes about it, and it’s a romp that young children can certainly easily grasp. If you’ve got a four- or five-year-old just starting gaming, hey, this works as a nice, cheap entry point. But if the evil queen had sent her huntsman out to bring her the circuit board of this cartridge, I kinda doubt he would have hesitated for that.
Well, I gotta going. My pen and paper RPG group is about to take on Yzma and Kronk, and they need the prince’s kisses to dispel her poison effects. Thanks for reading, and God bless.
Graphics and Sound- 5/10
Difficulty Balance- 2.5/10
Next time on The Bad Wordplayer:
A crossdressing woman with a nickname synonymous to latency kills men that killed men so that men won’t be killed.