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Flushed Away | review | game | Lollipop

Flushed Away

(D3 for PS2)
by Mike Delano

Based on the Dreamworks holiday 2006 animated release of the same name, Flushed Away isn't as bad as most of its movie tie-in brethren, but it nonetheless fails to wring anything new or interesting from the well-worn mold of the 3D platformer.

You control Roddy, a sharp-dressed mouse with a cockney accent who needs to find his way back up to his owners' posh condo after being shot down the crapper. That means traversing the sewers, fighting small, similar enemies or collecting items in order to proceed. The gameplay, while far from precise, isn't bad, although it isn't particularly engaging, especially considering the bulk of the game takes place in bland, colorless sewer corridors. Things perk up a little bit when Roddy's gal-pal Rita becomes playable, since her grappling hook adds a new dimension to the levels. Any enjoyment you have playing as Rita, however, is almost totally offset by horrible levels that have you piloting a boat through the sewers that controls like a drunken Burt Young stumbling through a China shop.

Flushed Away is made tolerable mostly by its quirky sense of humor and style. Blobs of slime emit melodramatic cries of woe after they're beaten to death, and allowing you to control the smart-talkin' mice equivalents of Hugh Grant and Sporty Spice as they run around in raw sewage is enough to put this title a cut above the inane cuteness of other kid-friendly games. The amiable style on display here, though, isn't nearly enough to forgive the lack of substance.


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