Adventure Time: Hey Ice King! Why’d you steal our garbage?! has to be the most annoying game title of all time. It’s even more annoying than games that feel the need to include a period after every letter. If it weren’t Adventure Time, I’d likely pass it up on the title alone, out of spite. I mean, really… have you tried to abbreviate it? Look! It’s AT:HIK!WYSOG?! for Christ’s sake. I’m just going to refer to it as Hey, Ice King from here on out since it doesn’t look like an eight-year-old wrote it.
Adventure Time: Hey Ice King! Why’d You Steal Our Garbage?! (3DS [reviewed], DS)
Developer: WayForward Industries
Publisher: D3 Publisher
Release: November 20, 2012
MSRP: $29.99 / $39.99 (Collector’s Edition) [Buy Now]
Hey, Ice King is not only the first proper Adventure Time game, but it’s also a proper throwback to the RPG side-scrollers of late 80’s and 90’s – most notability, Zelda II: The Adventures of Link. Much like The Adventures of Link, Hey, Ice King features an emphasis on side-scrolling, RPG elements, a navigable overworld and boss battles.
I’d do a detailed story synopsis, but the title does a perfect job of doing that for me. Seriously, that’s what the game is about. The Ice King steals Finn and Jake’s garbage so they have to search far and wide, while completing quests and unlocking new upgrades. Sadly, the writing doesn’t have the amount of charm the TV show has. Hey, Ice King’s attempt at clever writing comes off as cheesy and almost does the show an injustice.
Hey, Ice King is short, like really short. I managed to beat it in around four hours. All things considered, Hey, Ice King would have better been suited for iOS. It’s short, lacks the personality of the property and features boring gameplay – just like the other Adventure Time games on iOS. This is a shame, because it has so much potential that just doesn’t feel like it’s being utilized.
Players move Finn and Jake around the overworld from a top-down perspective. Occasionally, shadowy figures will appear and if Finn bumps into them, the game switches into a side-scrolling mode and players are tasked with killing the enemies before they can move on. Other than the overworld navigation, the entire game is played as a side-scroller. It’s not bad, but the gameplay is very simplistic. Finn’s sword attacks are the most ideal to use, and Jake’s usually impressive powers are surprisingly weak and near useless in Hey, Ice King. There’s also an item management system that allows you to collect, use and mix items into more powerful versions of themselves. For the most part, this is a waste unless you’re having a hard time on a boss and need some extra DPS or health.
The music in Hey, Ice King is a truly the high point. Although they can be repetitive, the chiptune remixes of the Adventure Time theme song are mathematically tight. I already made Hey, Ice King’s theme song my ring tone and I’m kind of bummed that I can’t buy the soundtrack. It’s so good.
Keep in mind this is an old game with an Adventure Time coat of paint. If you want a modern, 3D Adventure Time game, then you should sit this one out. But if you have fond memories of the golden years of gaming, back when you had to blow on shit to get it to work, then Adventure Time: Hey Ice King! Why’d you steal our garbage?! is the game for you. It’s as basic as they come, but most games from back then were as well.