Guest Author - Lisa Shea
Garfield and his Nine Lives is a GameBoy Advance adventure game featuring the always hungry tabby cat and his cartoon friends.
The game is a side scrolling adventure much like Super Mario, but featuring Garfield as the main character. He can run, jump, and kick enemies. He goes through a series of themed levels such as a circus, farm, haunted house, and other interesting locations. In each ones the enemies are what you might expect - foxes, ghosts, bats, and so on. Nothing overly scary, and while many of them are challenging, they're all quite doable even for youngsters.
There are three difficulty settings, so that tykes and adults can find a challenge they will enjoy. Also, you can have the dialogue in English, Spanish or French - so if you're trying to learn a new language, this could be a fun way to do it! Not that there's a lot of talk in this game. You get a few quips and jokes along the way, but that's about it.
Each level has a basic task - gather up the eggs, find the key. Each game also has bonus tasks - find all the coffee cups. Back on the main screen, you can see which levels you've beaten and what remains on each one, as well as what difficulty you took that level on. That way you can work on levels one at a time, choosing your favorites and ramping the difficulty up step by step until you can get a perfect score on the hardest level.
The sounds are what you'd expect from a GameBoy Advance title - cutesy music and silly sound effects.
You eat lasagna to regain your health, of course!
There are some downsides here. Some of the monsters can become quite annoying. For example, one enemy "bounces you back" - and you can get between two of them, and they get you stuck in the middle. I had one monster bounce me back "into" a decorative box, and it was a few minutes before the game let me get back out of it again.
Still, the game is great fun for Garfield fans.
Buy Garfield and his Nine Lives from Amazon.com