If you ever wanted your hand in designing your own game without the hassle of programming and story development, then you might find Drawn to Life for the Nintendo DS quite appealing. Drawn to Life lets you take your DS stylus and create a variety of things, from your character’s avatar to the weapons you’ll use in your adventure. While the limitations of the designs are left to the holder, the ability to design unique images for your character is a lot of fun, and it’s cool to see your work put to use as you play through the platformer. Unfortunately, the creativity stops there as the actual gameplay is nothing more than a simple platformer.
The story of the game involves the happy creatures called Raposas that is dealing with a dark plague that has consumed the land. The dark clouds of the plague have destroyed the book of life, which contains all the essentials of life such as the sun, weather and time. Unfortunately, or fortunately for you, the Raposas God abandoned the race and so when you come along they happily want you to take his place.
In order to wipe out the darkness you take control of a special mannequin that’s been locked away for ages to be opened if something like a plague were to enter into the equation. Once the mannequin is unlocked you get your first crack at artistic expression. Your first task is to design your character by either using one of the templates given to you or by opening up the draw and color pad. It’s entirely up to you. You literally can create any character you want and if your drawing skills are somewhat lacking you can walk around with something that looks like a blob head. It’s no surprise that there are some limitations to your design abilities such as not being able to design down to the pixel. Coloring can also be frustrating because you’re using the stylus and you’ll find yourself going over the lines. There is no doubt, however, that in better hands you can create some amazing characters.
Once you design your character and begin your quest you’ll come across easels from time-to-time that allow your character to design modes of transportation between the levels. You literally can draw whatever you want so you can draw a wavy line and use that as your mode of transport if you desire. The game will offer suggestions, but the final product is entirely left to you. There’s noting watching the Liger we drew traverse to the next level.
Occasionally, you’ll come across pre-drawn objects that can only be drawn in. We’re not entirely sure why these levels don’t allow you to design your own ships, but it would have been nice to see all of the levels enjoy the same customization.
Unfortunately, the game itself is a bit of a bore. You’ll find most of your time walking around the Raposa village fetching objects or jumping around standard platform levels that offer less than stellar experiences. These things seem like chores compared to the drawing elements of the game. To put it simply, you’ll be playing levels that look very similar to each other. It would have been nice to see more variety, but alas, the entire game is very elementary and geared specifically for the young set.
- Score: 7.5
- Drawn to Life makes excellent use of the DS touch pad by allowing you to easily design your own characters, weapons, and various transports. Unfortunately, the rest of the game can become quite a chore and often becomes redundant.