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First Impressions: ‘Adventure Time: Hey Ice King! Why’d You Steal Our Garbage?!!’ [NYCC 2012]

As much as I might gripe about comics taking a back seat to other media at the bigger comic book conventions, I won’t lie: Of all the things to see and do at New York Comic-Con, trying out the upcoming Adventure Time: Hey Ice King! Why’d You Steal Our Garbage?!! video game was one that I was looking forward to the most.

I finally got to try it today, and even though I only had about fifteen minutes to goof around with it, I was pretty pleased with what I saw – especially with how the game translates the show’s unique sense of humor.In terms of gameplay: AT:HIK!WYSOG?!! is about what you’d expect from the good people over at Wayforward, the designers of Batman: Brave and the Bold and the shockingly well-reviewed Hotel Transylvania game, with smooth controls and really well-done graphics. In the short time that I played, I managed to get through the tutorial and take on a side-quest complete with a boss fight, so even though I didn’t get a chance to see any of the upgrades you can give to Finn and Jake, it still made for a nice sample.

Between the overworld map and the side-scrolling levels, the game has a decidedly old-school feel to it. What surprised me, though — even though it shouldn’t, given that Wayforward also made the darn-near-impossible Contra 4 — was that that extends to the difficulty, too. Well, sort of. It’s not what you’d call “NES Hard,” but in the early levels, Finn’s short punches don’t do a whole lot of damage, and there isn’t much life to go around. It’s not ridiculously difficult, but it doesn’t feel simple, either. There’s a nice challenge in those early levels that reminded me of that first bit of Symphony of the Night, but with more jokes.

Because that’s where Hey Ice King really shines. It’s not just that it’s fun to play, but that it’s funny. The tutorial sequence at the opening involves Finn getting mad at Jake because of a bad dream, and Jake offering to let him work out his stress by smashing up the teacup collection that he keeps in his basement.

Also, NEPTR.

Apologies for the camera phone shot, but that was too good a line to pass up.

I’m not sure whether they front-loaded all the comedy, but the bit I played was full of great gags, involving everything from why the save points exist to handing out side missions. The actual reason that Ice King has stolen Finn and Jake’s garbage is pretty great, too.

One more thing: The version I played was for the 3DS, but for those of you who (like me) have yet to upgrade from the regular ol’ DS, I don’t think there’ll be a huge problem. I kept the 3D off the whole time anyway. Having gotten a sample of it, I’m even more excited than it was when I pre-ordered, and I can’t wait to play the full version.

Mainly because this is how NEPTR ends his tutorial on stats:

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