Our spellchecker is not broken. The headline is Japanese, and it translates roughly to “Mickey’s Adventure in Tokyo Disneyland.” (I’ll let you clever folks figure out which Japanese word means “Adventure”).
Up until about a month ago, I never knew Mickey had adventures in Tokyo Disneyland. I just sort of assumed he sat in the back office and collected his paycheck. But then I decided to do a series of articles about video games based on the Disney theme parks, and my research led me here.
|I don’t know about you, but to me, the most confusing thing on this screen is the fact that Scrooge McDuck apparently had a girlfriend.|
I know what you are thinking: The parkeology guys research? And the answer is: Yes, when we can’t think of anything better to make up. For instance that Gulf Coast room thing that Teevtee wrote about was a total fabrication. Who would really believe that Disney used to run a full-service restaurant out of a Contemporary ballroom? It’s like a bad April Fool’s joke
Except that it really happened.
Anyway, this video game was released for the Japanese market, for a home system known as the Super Famicom. This system was analogous to the Super Nintendo here in the States (I’ll let you clever folks figure out which Japanese word means “Nintendo”). As such, it had souped up colorful graphics, a rocking 16-bit MIDI score, and twice as many buttons to learn.
|Doesn’t Mickey ever get tired of rescuing these guys?|
The plot will be familiar to anyone who read my first entry in this series, Adventures in the Magic Kingdom (no Magic Kingdom Daibouken). Something about Mickey having to save Tokyo Disneyland by rescuing the sacred whatevers from the clutches of the evil somethings. He does this by conquering levels based on famous park attractions.
As you would expect, the levels are based on Cinderella’s Carousel, the PeopleMover, and the Emporium. No, okay, they are based on Pirates and Mansion, obviously, because those rides appear in every single park video game ever, including those released by Knott’s Berry Farm. The three mountains (Splash, Big Thunder, and Space) also comprise levels. The final level is based on the Castle Mystery Tour, which is an attraction unique to Tokyo, and a subject very interesting to parkeologists, though I don’t think this game really sheds any new light on it. On a personal note, just once I would like to see a level based on the Swiss Family Treehouse. The platform jumping possibilities are endless.
|This is either the Pirates level, or Mickey in the belly of a giant space slug.|
Mickey’s weapon in the game is a supply of balloons, which he uses to reach high spots and also to turn the various enemy voices into hilarious squeaky chipmunk sounds (just kidding about that last part). This was before anyone cared about the environment, so Mickey has no problem popping his balloons and creating new ones on a whim. There is a rumor that Tokyo Disney Seas was built on a landfill of ruptured rubber bladders.
|That clown on the left has one job: Make sure nobody materializes out of the rock wall onto this ledge. He doesn’t need to worry about the big open shaft behind him.|
Like all Japanese video games, it is virtually incomprehensible as a story, but rather engaging when it comes to graphics and playability. The game is available via ROM download out there on the Interwebs, and there are several youtube videos where you can get the flavor.
There is some great info (and fun screenshots) on a forum on the Visions Fantastic site (which is awesome, by the way). It also mentions a Gameboy game called “Tokyo Disneyland Fantasy Tour.” I haven’t been able to find much info about this one at all, but it sounds sublime, given Gameboy’s advanced black & white graphic capabilities.
|Tour Tokyo Disneyland via 1930s newspaper!|
Oh yeah, you’re right. I’m guessing all the side scrollers had the appropriate music from their respective shorts. I forgot about that. I was referring to the rest of the music in the different lands. I was really hoping for some cool Haunted Mansiony music, but I was disappointed.
Now that you mention it, I cannot remember a single bit of music from the game. Oh wait! Do they play the steamboat willie song in one of the side-scrolling levels?
Oh man, I wish they would have played Swisskapolka at some point. Unfortunately, one of the weakest points of the game was the music. It was all new shit.
I have to confess, I haven’t got very far in Epic Mickey. I keep getting distracted by other things. Like the Michael Jackson Experience.
But now that there is a rumor of a Treehouse, I will be playing non stop, to the exclusion of everything else in my life.
Great find! BTW, “Ruptured Rubber Bladders” is my new favorite tongue-twister.
A friend of mine told me that there’s a version of the Swiss Family Robinson Treehouse in Epic Mickey but I’m just at the point where I’m ready to start exploring “Ventureland” myself in that game so I haven’t seen it for myself (I hope the game includes the Swisskapolka).