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Epic Mickey

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Epic Mickey
Disney Epic Mickey Case
North American Box Art

Developer

Junction Point Studios

Publisher

Disney Interactive Studios

Distributor

Buena Vista

Designer

Warren Spector

Composer

James Dooley

Engine

Gamebryo

Platform

Wii, Microsoft Windows, Xbox 360, Playstation 3

Genre

Platformer, Action-Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy

Release Date(s)

Wii
November 26, 2010 (EU)
November 30, 2010 (NA)
August 4, 2011 (JP)
September 28, 2012 (AU)

Microsoft Windows, Xbox 360, Playstation 3
Cancelled

Epic Mickey is a hybrid of a platformer, action-adventure and RPG developed by Junction Point Studios and published by Disney Interactive Studios about Mickey Mouse and the history of Disney. It was released on November 30th, 2010 in the United States, November 26th, 2010 in Europe and September 28, 2012 in Australia and a localized version with camera issues fixed and the difficulty setting tweaked was released on August 4th in Japan by Nintendo. The Japanese version also has its name changed into Disney Epic Mickey: Mickey Mouse and the Magic Brush. 1.As of July 2014, the game has sold nearly 3 million copies worldwide.2

Production

The video game was designed by Warren Spector at Junction Point,while being published by Disney Interactive Studios.

Early Production

The initial plans were developed in a think-tank session in 2006 about how best to renew Mickey Mouse in the eyes of the public. The Wasteland concept and Oswald and the Phantom Blot as antagonists were part of this initial pitch and the project became a factor in Disney getting Oswald back from Universal that year. They signed Warren Spector, who was skeptical that Disney would just continue watering down Mickey as they had for many years, but was convinced when told he would be allowed to help renew the character. Given full-access to the archives for inspiration on the Wasteland's setting, Warren Spector developed the game further into a hybrid platformer/roleplaying game with player's choices being a huge influence in how the story would turn out. The game was originally being developed as a steam-punk styled title. The game was going to be produced for the Xbox 360 and PS3 in 2008. A few concept art images were leaked unto the internet and created a buzz as to whether or not the game was real. Concept art for the game by Fred Gambino and Gary Glover depicts a "surrealistically bizarre" look at Disney characters and locations. Featured in the concept art are post-apocalyptic renditions of Goofy, Spaceship Earth, and Cinderella's Castle.


However, when talks a of a Wii port began, Disney Interactive suggested that a Mickey Mouse title would work for the Wii.


Late 2009 and Early 2010

The game had change dramatically from screenshots and art being presented to the public. It had gone from the post-apocalyptic steam punk styled wasteland to a new more gloomy chaotic shapeless abyss.

Mid 2011

It is revealed that a sequel may be in development. It was later confirmed in January 2012.

September 2011

Warren Spector announced Epic Mickey 3 as a project that he would like to do, but nothing is confirmed at this point.

January 2013

Junction Point annouced that it's closing, making any chances of Epic Mickey 3 being produced very slim.

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Story

A long time ago, the sorcerer Yen Sid used a magic paintbrush to create a world for Disney's forgotten characters (from creations to rusted Disney attraction parts). This was held in an intricate model on a table and was accessible through a mirror. One day Mickey is taking a nap, when his mirror makes an odd noise, awakening him. He climbs onto his dresser and pokes it, to see that he can go through it. Mickey, who finds himself inside Yen Sid's study, sees the model and waits until Yen Sid is gone before going back to take another look at it. Fiddling with it, Mickey attempts to create a statue of himself in the world but instead creates the Shadow Blot. He attempts to erase it, and ends up spilling paint on the model. He attempts to clean it up in a haste, but just spills even more paint and thinner, twisting the world. He managed to escape without Yen Sid knowing, returning to his world where he went on to live years of success and fame, but his meddling had consequences.

The paint and paint thinner have severely damaged the world and created an evil being called the "Shadow Blot", who has usurped power from Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, Disney's first creation before Mickey, and sent the world into ruin. A long time later, Mickey is kidnapped by the fake Fake Shadow Blot and sent into the world. Oswald is shocked to see him and flees the scene.

The Mad Doctor worked closely with Oswald (at first) then the Blot, creating robotic "Beetleworx", which once helped out but now patrol the wasteland, capturing Gremlins, robot versions of Mickey's friends called "buddies" for Oswald, looking like Donald Duck, Goofy and Daisy Duck as Oswald misses popularity. When he escaped, he found out what he had done. To help clean up his mess, he pulled in the paintbrush he got kidnapped. So now, Mickey must stop the Shadow Blot, gain the trust of Oswald and save the forgotten world.

Mickey Like We've Never Seen Him Before

In this new game, the player will have to opportunity to take Mickey in a totally different direction As expected, one game path is to play Mickey as the hero, but with "Epic Mickey", the player will now be able to play Mickey as a new kind of hero. The player will choose to use either paint or thinner, which will open up a whole host of different possibilities and show a Mickey the likes of which we have seldom, if ever seen. Using paint to restore things will cause Mickey to be a good character, and erasing the world with thinner will make Mickey bad. If Mickey occasionally uses both, he will be neutral. His appearance will also change depending on his actions. This "Good & Evil" system is very similar to the Fallout series' "Karma" system. However, the mechanism was scrapped in favor of the "Guardian" system. Read more on the Paint and Thinner articles.

Reception

Epic Mickey enjoyed high pre-release awareness and received positive reviews, with a score of 72.57% on GameRankings and 73/100 on Metacritic.

IGN gave it a score of 8/10, criticizing its camera, control issues and lack of voice acting, but praised its charm, story, art design, and lasting appeal for the players. Video game talk show Good Game's two presenters gave the game a 6 and 7 out of 10. They compared the paintbrush abilities to that of the water jet pack from Super Mario Sunshine and found it frustrating how the levels reset back to their original state after leaving. But on a positive note they said it "isn't as 'dark' or 'adult' as the hype made it out to be... I guess it is a kid's game after all, but at least it's an intelligent one. It doesn't come anywhere near the complexity and fun of something like Super Mario Sunshine, which I think it borrows some ideas from." Shirley Chase from GameZone complimented the game on its usage of Disney history, but added that the game had numerous flaws saying, "For all of its good points, Disney Epic Mickey does have some glaring flaws, which can make the game feel like a chore. The most noticeable problem is the camera, which will lead to more cheap deaths than anything else." In a review for GamesRadar, Chris Antista who began the article as an admitted "diehard Disney dork", praised it as a "thoroughly heartwarming salute to Disney" and that he hasn't "fallen so head over heels with the look, feel, and play of a third-person platformer since the original Banjo-Kazooie".

In its opening weekend, Epic Mickey failed to reach the UK Top 40 and even the Wii Top 10 sales charts after its November 26 UK release. On November 30, 2010, the release date in North America, the game was completely sold out on the Disney Store website by the afternoon. The game sold 1.3 million copies its first month. As of July 2014, the game sold nearly 3 million copies in North America and Europe combined.

Trivia

  • Beluga Billy made a reference to the Legend of Zelda series when he said: 'It's dangerous to go alone! Take this!'.
  • Epic Mickey is based on games like Shadow the Hedgehog, inFAMOUS and Spider Man: Web of Shadows because the all are darker representations of the game's franchise (this only applies to Shadow the Hedgehog & Spider Man: Web of Shadows) and their stories depend on the player's choices.
  • In the UK, GAME stores offered a t-shirt as a pre-order bonus. The t-shirt, however, was just regular/current Mickey, with no actual connection to the Epic Mickey game.
  • A Dutch release of the game also came packaged with a copy of Fantasia on DVD.

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