Toy Story


Publisher: Disney interactive

Developer: Traveller’s tales

Genre: 2D platformer (mostly)

Release date: April 26th 1996

Console: Sega megadrive/ Genesis




Disney are well known all over the world for making timeless classic films and even characters, back in the 90’s they announced they would be making an animation movie (which wasn’t very common in the movie world yet,) along with pixar. The movie was called toy story, and when it was released back in November 22nd 1995 it was a smash hit and instant classic. Disney and pixar really kicked off the whole animation genre of films, nowadays there are countless animation films. But still compared to toy story, they, lets face it suck! As I said before toy story was a smash hit and what comes next after a film becomes very popular? Merchandise! Yup there was everything toy story, from lunchboxes to toilet paper! Of course the most famous of merchandise are the ‘toys’ of toy story. There were toys of nearly every single character that starred in the film. And of course eventually there was a video game released. The game was released for multiple platforms at the time, but the one I’m particularly going to review is the one that was released for the Sega megadrive. So was the game just as good as the movie, or was it as good as rex’s roar? Let’s find out!




The story of um toy…story is about toys that come to life whenever there are no people around. Around humans the toys act like, well toys, and when the humans are not around the toys come to life! The story particularly in the game is focused on a specific toy; a cowboy action doll called Woody. Woody is Andy’s (The kid who owns all the toys) most favourite toy, and Woody always gets the best spot when the toys are not being played with, which is on top of Andy’s bed. However today is the day of Andy’s birthday, and the toys all listen in on the baby monitor they have set upstairs in Andy’s room, so they can hear what new toys Andy has been given for his birthday. One new toy in particular steals the show and Andy’s mates look in awe as they see he has received an all new Buzz Lightyear action figure, the best selling toy on the market! I won’t go into the whole story in depth but Woody begins to grow jealous of the Andy’s brand spanking new action figure. This is where the adventure really begins….




General Gameplay


For about 90% of the game toy story is a 2D platformer, where you play as woody whilst completing different objectives to advance to the next level. However there are different other types of levels in toy story, such as racing levels and even a first person view type level which back in 1995 wasn’t done very often at all, especially on video game consoles. The levels are varied and mostly take part from scenes from the movie, only taking liberties when necessary. The levels that are original are fun and fit in with the plot brilliantly, so they never feel like they’ve just been shoved in for good measure. The difficulty is also spot on. Starts of easy, but gets harder as the game progresses. However some early levels can also be tricky and younger players may find these difficult (I know I did back in the day!) But for the most part the game’s difficulty is quite fair.




 Controls are effective and simple in toy story. Woody can jump and use his pull string as a type of whip; to attack enemies, and use it to swing on various hooks. The game controls well, with a fine balance when woody jumps it doesn’t feel too weighty or too light, it’s just right. You will rarely find yourself complaining about the control system, the only time where you might find the controls a bit dodgy; is the really inside the claw machine level. In this level the game is taken from a first person perspective instead of the normal side scrolling view, although this is more to do with the first person point of view rather than the actual controls.


Graphics and presentation


The graphics and overall presentation in toy story is some of the finest you will ever see on a sega megadrive. Most characters that were present in the film are also present in the game, and they look fantastic! The graphics are similar to those in Donkey Kong country, the designers went for a realistic computer animated approach, which thinking about it would be the best result to try and mimic the movie. The overall result is stunning, as I said before you will be hard pushed to find graphics better than toy story’s. From the characters to the level backgrounds, everything looks great and has much detail and character that reflects the move. Back in the day they very much impressed gamers and critics alike, and I still find myself thinking; how the heck did they make the graphics this good on the megadrive?!


Music and Sound


The music is also good in the game, instead of using the film’s soundtrack and converting it to megadrive form, the music composers decided to make their own musical jingles for the game, and they’re pretty catchy and suit each level well. That said they did use one or two themes from the movie including the main theme; you’ve got a friend in me by Randy Newman, which turned out ok but can get repetitive within a few minutes. Overall though the music in each level is good and shows imagination of the composers instead of just using all the songs from the movie, good job guys!


How it plays now


Toy story is a good old fashioned 2D platformer and can still be enjoyed today, I find myself popping the game in to have a quick go on it from time to time! But whilst I was playing it for the review I really had a good long go on it, and it was a very happy experience it still plays and looks very well. Nowadays most Disney games disappoint, but back in the 90’s they could do no wrong with films or video games and this is just one of the games that proved Disney’s excellence.


Overall Score


 Toy story was not only a great movie for all audiences but also a great game for all audiences as well. The game suits the megadrive and is great old fashioned 2D platforming game, which can only be found on the grand old retro consoles.





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