Toonsylvania Review

With so many exceptional Game Boy platformers on the market, one simply can't justify picking up Toonsylvania.

Toonsylvania is based the cartoon series of the same name. The game is a platformer, of sorts, and stars Igor, the series' requisite hunchback. Igor's quest is to reassemble Toonsylvania's take on Frankenstein's monster, whose parts have been scattered throughout the game world as a result of a botched experiment.

As logic would dictate, the game's action revolves around Igor collecting the monster's scattered body parts through a series of platform levels. The levels aren't as linear as you'd expect; rather, they're fairly sprawling and allow for plenty of free roaming. Replete with ledges and pits, the environments are decorated quite richly, though many cosmetic objects often appear to be gameplay-related - you'll often find yourself trying to flick a switch that is, in actuality, part of the background.

Igor's goal in each stage is to collect a set number of quest objects (unique to each stage) in order to proceed. This involves loads of item fetching throughout the stages, which seem sprawling at first, but tend to feel rather cramped once you've bounced through them a dozen times. The switches that trigger the appearance of quest objects are also largely identical to the decor of the stages, so finding the correct object to flick is mostly a matter of trial and error. Once the correct switch is found and triggered, the game segues to the area where the quest object rests, which is usually indistinguishable from the rest of the stage. What results is a mad scramble through the indistinguishable areas that make up a stage, hoping that you'll stumble upon the all-important quest objects. At the end of each world, as per the formula, awaits a boss, whose defeat grants Igor a piece of the monster.

To get through all the obstacles put in his path, Igor is armed with a vicious punch attack, and he often picks up skulls that he can lob at enemies. Both attacks are mapped so the same button, and there's no way to deselect the skulls, so, when armed, Igor will alternately punch and lob skulls, depending on his proximity to enemies. The enemies you best will respawn once you leave the screen, though, so avoiding them altogether is the best bet, unless they're overtly blocking your path.

From a visual standpoint, Toonsylvania looks quite good; Igor himself boasts quite a bit of animation, and his gestures are genuinely amusing. If anything, LSP has done much to imbue him with the life of his televised counterpart. The stages, while less-than-ideal to traverse, actually look pretty nice, if a bit overproduced - almost every nook and cranny boasts some kind of embellishment. The cinematics are well produced and quite impressive, considering the platform. Likeness to the subject of its license is something Toonsylvania was able to pull off successfully.

With so many exceptional Game Boy platformers on the market, one simply can't justify picking up Toonsylvania. Unless you're a rabid fan of the cartoon series, the tedium involved easily overshadows anything the game might have going for it.

The Good

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The Bad

About the Author


First Released June 2000
  • Game Boy Color

With so many exceptional Game Boy platformers on the market, one simply can't justify picking up Toonsylvania.


Average Rating

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Content is generally suitable for all ages. May contain minimal cartoon, fantasy or mild violence and/or infrequent use of mild language.
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