follow us:

Latest News

Be a zombie in other players' games in Dying Light
You can only do so much with killing zombies these days. In Dying Light, Techland will have players be more fluid with their zombie killing, but what if you're tired of killing zombies and want to join the mob. Well, there's a mode for that. ... [read more]
Driveclub, Arkham Asylum, Spelunky and more free games coming to PS+ in October
October might be the busiest month for gamers. Sony is ensuring that it stays that way with the announcement of free games that will be hitting on PS4, PS3 and PS Vita this month.... [read more]
Take a look at the new Amplitude
Back in May, Harmonix took to Kickstarter to fund a remastered version of one of their successful pre-Guitar Hero games, Amplitude. Today they uploaded a first look at the gameplay that's in very early stages of development.... [read more]

Latest Articles

An Open Letter to 2K Sports - How 'Bout Them Spurs?
I saw your latest trailer for NBA 2K15, and I had to simply shake my head. As an avid San Antonio Spurs fan, you know that team that won the NBA Championship last year, I was disappointed with their exclusion from the trailer. After re-watching trailer, I realized that they ... [read more]
gamescom 2014: Sony shows off more indie games and hidden Silent Hill game
Lots of games ranging from AAA to Indie along with some shocking surprises were revealed at this year’s Sony Press Conference at gamescom in Cologne, Germany.... [read more]
gamescom 2014: Microsoft comes out fighting
After falling behind Sony again and again, Microsoft finally put on a show for gamers at gamescom 2014 to remind everyone that they are still in the fight.... [read more]

Latest Reviews

The Walking Dead Season 2 Episode 5 "No Going Back" Review
When Telltale Games announced the second season of The Walking Dead, fans of the first season were wondering where Telltale was going to take the series. By focusing on Clementine, the second season went in a different direction than the TV series or comics have gone. It was... [read more]
Gods Will Be Watching Review
Don't let the looks fool you, this is not a regular adventure game and it's definitely not for the squeamish. ... [read more]
Demon Gaze Review
To put it simply, Demon Gaze is old school RPG action with a bit of fan service thrown in. ... [read more]

Latest Videos

8-Bit Eric: NES Zapper Games
Remember the NES Zapper? That beautiful orange, or gray, gun that let you feel like a real gunslinger. 8-Bit Eric remembers, and he has some NES Zapper games you may not have played. ... [read more]
8-Bit Eric: Underrated Sega Genesis Games
The Genesis had a large library of great games, but some of those great games overshadowed some other quality games that ended up getting lost in the bargain bin. 8-Bit Eric is here to show you some of the hidden gems on the Genesis that you may want to give a try. ... [read more]
8-Bit Eric: Super Retro Trio Review
For some gamers, conserving space is becoming harder to do. With more consoles coming out, those older consoles can take far too much space. That's where multi-system consoles like Retro-bit's Super Retro Trio console come into play. 8-Bit Eric shows you how well the console... [read more]
Alice: Madness Returns Review
Posted on August 19, 2011 by

Alice: Madness Returns is the sequel to 2000's American McGee's Alice, a third person action game released for Windows that added an extra dash of strange to the surreal world created by Lewis Carroll in his classic books.  Alice: Madness Returns is available for the Playstation 3, Xbox 360 and Windows.  This review is based on a 50% playthrough of the Xbox 360 version.

Set shortly after the events of the first game, Alice is living in an orphanage where she is being treated for her hallucinations of Wonderland.  While going out for medication, she follows a white cat that eventually leads her back to a Wonderland that is not the same one she had left before.  The game alternates between the real world of late 1800's London and the Wonderland in Alice's mind.

A one-time download code for American McGee's Alice is included. Owners of used copies can purchase it for $9.99 (sound familiar?) via an in-game menu but the Alice Returns disc will be required to play it.  As we do not keep review copies here at Original Gamer, I did not redeem it and cannot provide any insight into the re-release.

WONDER LAND

Atmospheric - Alice: Madness Returns has some great aesthetics.  This Wonderland is quite unlike anything that you have seen before, assuming of course, you haven't played the first game already.  The 'real world' areas reflect an Industrial Age London that is just a bit off kilter and Wonderland is a sight to see in itself.  Wonderland is beautiful at times, and grotesque at others, but it, and its denizens are fascinating to look at.  An orchestral soundtrack and great voice acting complete the excellent presentation.

Story - Alice's troubles stem from a house fire in which her family perished.  She was the sole survivor of the incident, and has not been able to remember the events of that fateful night.  As you progress through the game, you come to learn what actually happened in cutscenes.  Memories of her past are literally scattered throughout the levels, with each one uncovering just a little more about Alice and what she has been through.  Both of those elements kept me playing so I could find out what happens next.

Anyone Can Play - Madness Returns has several features that keep it from getting too frustrating.  Alice can triple-jump and hover, which makes the platforming just a little bit easier.  There are infinite lives, projectile weapons have a lock-on that automatically switches to the next enemy after one is defeated, and there is a slight delay before enemies attack, giving the player a chance to dodge.  Finally, the game can be saved at any time.

Mixed Bag of Tricks - In addition to the third-person platforming and fighting, you will also encounter a shump level, some 2D platforming sections and battle arenas scattered throughout.

 

 

MAD AS A HATTER

Tweedledum Combat - While the controls are mapped out fairly well, the combat can feel a bit clunky at times, especially once you start fighting multiple enemies at once.  When in targeting mode, the camera zooms in a just bit too close to Alice, leaving her completely vulnerable to attacks from behind.

Hopping Mad - Despite the features mentioned above, Alice does have some frustrating platforming bits and tough battles, so it isn't entirely newbie-friendly.  Having infinite lives helped, but there were moments where I had to stop playing for fear of losing my own sanity.                  

Camera Tends To Be Late - As in most third-person games, the camera can get just a hair behind the action at times, and while it can be controlled with the R stick, I found myself fighting it at times.

 

 

Alice: Madness Returns is one of those games where the presentation and story help the game overcome its technical issues, at least for me.  I was willing to overlook the game's minor problems because the story kept me interested enough to play through to find out what was going to happen next.  While noticeable, the fighting and camera issues I mentioned weren't bad enough to detract from the overall experience.  Alice: Madness Returns isn't a perfect game, but like Alice herself, once drawn into Wonderland you may find yourself staying there for awhile, all the time being fascinated by its beauty and its hideousness.  That said; if the concept doesn't excite you, then you may want to stay out of this rabbit hole.

 

*This review was based on the Xbox 360 version of the game with a review code provided by the publisher.*

What's your most anticipated game for October?

Super Smash Bros. 3D
Alien: Isolation
NBA 2K15
Project Spark
Sleeping Dogs: Definitive Edition
The Evil Within
Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel
Legend of Grimrock II
Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth
Samurai Warriors 4
WWE 2K15
Driveclub
Freedom Wars
Bayonetta 2
Costume Quest 2
Sunset Overdrive
NBA Live 15
View Results - View Comments

Podcast


Destiny and #Gamergate again


Alice: Madness Returns Trailer is Pretty Damn Disturbing

Alice: Madness Returns Review

El Shaddai Review

Other Gaming News From The Web