The Bee Movie Game Review
Bee advised, you will bee bee-sieged with a bevy of bee-related jokes and puns in this game. If you're young enough to bee driven to fits of laughter when you hear jokes that involve bees getting straight B's at Bee U, then you may find that this is your kind of game. If you're not, then, well, this game is probably not for you. It's not just a matter of the game's level of humor; the gameplay is pretty simple stuff as well. Kids may be more forgiving of the simple and repetitive nature of the gameplay, but unless you can show people what grade you're in with the fingers on one hand you'll probably want to let this one buzz on by.
The game deserves credit for not taking the easy route and simply turning in another dreadful movie-based game. There are interactive scenes and levels taken from the animated feature, but at the center of the game is a recreation of the hometown of the movie's hero, Barry B. Benson. New Hive City serves as the game's hub and you're free to explore the city and take in the sights or speak to your fellow bees. In many ways New Hive City is reminiscent of Grand Theft Auto's Liberty City, just without all the carjackings and prostitutes. You can push the story along at any time by visiting Barry's house, or you can take on a number of other missions sprinkled throughout the city such as driving your fellow bees around town ala Crazy Taxi. There's also an arcade where you can play mini games that are essentially bee versions of some arcade classics from the human world. The game also sprinkles some collectibles around town that can be used to purchase various things for Barry such as new cars and outfits. The number of things you can do probably sounds impressive, but the fun factor is tempered by the game's minimal difficulty level. It's pretty easy to complete all of the various mini games and bonus challenges, not to mention the game's main storyline.
The story missions fall into a few basic game types that are repeated throughout the story mode. The first is a timing-based game in which you control Barry as he zips through the air and tries to avoid things like people, cars, and other obstacles. Well, "control" is probably not really an apt description as Barry flies along a set path on his own and you are just there to help with last minute dodging. When Barry is in danger of hitting something (or being hit himself), an onscreen arrow will appear pointing in the direction that you need to press on the directional pad to avoid the obstacle. It's not really that hard to react to the screen prompts and hit them in time, but smaller gamers may be under the illusion that they're controlling the action directly. The next game is an exercise in flower pollination. In this kid's version of the nature of pollination, Barry must extract pollen from healthy flowers with a pollen blaster and then transfer that pollen to sick flowers to make them well again. Again, not much challenge here as it is easy to find the flowers and transfer the pollen. There's also an opportunity to fight wasps by shooting them with pollen. This is done by pointing the Wii Remote at a wasp and pulling the trigger. The on-screen cursor will tell you when to shoot and if you follow its prompts you'll hit the wasps every time.
The lack of difficulty and numerous short missions and challenges available in the game make it an option for younger gamers. Their lack of gaming skills and short attention spans make the game better suited to them than anyone else. Still, it will help a lot if your little gamer already has an interest in the movie.
In The End, This Game Hath Been Rated: 65%. Younger kids will probably find that there is some fun to be had with the game, but other Bee Movie fans will probably find the gameplay too simplistic and repetitive.