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Review: Family Guy - PS2 & Xbox

by Steven Williamson on 3 November 2006, 14:01

Tags: 2K Games Family Guy on Xbox, Take-Two Interactive (NASDAQ:TTWO), Action/Adventure

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Stewie is still intent on world domination

In Family Guy you start in the role of Stewie, who is still dreaming of world domination and talking in that stereotypical British accent. Stewie carries a mind control gun and the first mission sees you collecting 20 items which are hidden around the Griffin household. These items upgrade the gun allowing 2 foot tall Stewie to manipulate and jump into the skin of other characters. The first chance to use the gun is on Lois, the stay at home mum; you’ll have to work out a simple puzzle and move Lois over to the hoover in the living room and press the triangle button to interact with the hoover. As Lois powers up the dust buster you’ll disturb Brian the dog who is taking a nap on the carpet, he’ll make a dash for the back door which then opens allowing you to exit the level and begin your second objective.

Many of Stewies’ missions involve using his mind control device to enter the body of another character to solve a puzzle or using his ray gun to shoot and dispose of enemies or destroy objects to enable him to move onto the next area. Many of the objects lying about, from dustbins to vending machines can be destroyed with some revealing hidden health packs vital for when Stewie’s health gets too low.

The subject matter of many of these missions is original. For example, I can’t remember any game that involves jumping on the stomachs of pregnant women and watching their babies shoot out of the womb onto the hospital floor. The idea behind this objective is to alert the nurse who sits by the door to the next level, and once you’ve jumped on a dozen or so stomachs, she’ll leave her seat allowing you to exit the level.

Many of Stewie’s platform puzzle-style objectives are made too easy to solve due to interactive items sporting a marker, in the form of some stardust, indicating where you have to head to next. The game would have been more challenging by allowing us to work out what we had to do, but as it stands these puzzles aren’t really puzzles at all.

Stewie moves around the environment by jumping, double jumping and using his balloon float function in order to access otherwise unreachable places. He also has a grapple hook that allows him to reach high areas and by pressing and holding the X button whilst executing a double jump, Stewie will float with balloons on his back to the next area. Although the controls map well to the character, there is no sense of imagination or ambition from the designers to try something different.

Furthermore there's hardly any room for exploration and as soon as you move from one section to another the doors will lock behind you or you’ll be trapped in a small area until you find a way of reaching the exit. This means that you can’t go back and forth and the linear path ensures that you just move from one area to the next with little effort.