iPhone App Review: Disney Fireworks

Disney Fireworks for iPhoneTitle: Disney Fireworks (link)
Publisher: Walt Disney
Released: September 11, 2009
Cost: $1.99
iTouch?: Yes
Pros: Based off popular game genre, familiar images/music
Cons: Cost
Review: This is Disney’s iPhone version of the arcade/video game smash hit Dance Dance Revolution (DDR) with a couple of twists. Choosing from one of four environments, each with its own instrumental music: Peter Pan’s Neverland with ‘Second Star to the Right;’  Mulan’s Emperor’s Castle with ‘Reflection;’ Lilo and Stitch’s Hawaii with ‘He Mele No Lilo;’ and Mickey in the Sorcerer’s Apprentice, the premise is to press the appropriate color as the fireworks shell crosses the line at the top. Press the shell on target and it explodes into one of varying colors of fireworks, even the occasional Hidden Mickey firework. The  line is often not straight across either so it provides a larger challenge when you have competing shells being fired upwards. Complete a level and you can save it as a video to watch later (why, I haven’t quite figured out yet).

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iPhone App Review: Toy Story Photo Hunt

Toy Story Photo Hunt for the iPhoneTitle: Toy Story Photo Hunt (link)
Publisher: Walt Disney
Released: September 15, 2009
Cost: Free
iTouch?: Yes
Pros: Free, addictive, simple play
Cons: Addictive
Review: The type of video game commonly found in bars, Toy Story Photo Hunt brings all the fun home to the kids and is surprisingly just as challenging when sober. Billed primarily as a promotional free app for the Toy Story/Toy Story 2 re-release, this app also includes a countdown to October 2 (when the films are re-released in theaters in 3D) and the TS/TS2 trailer along with some promotional information for the Toy Story Mania! game for the Wii.

Toy Story Photo Hunt for the iPhoneThe concept itself is quite simple: identify all of the differences between two of the otherwise-same image from one of the Toy Story films. In Normal mode, you have to find the differences before the clock runs out. You start out with having to locate 2 differences and, as you progress, so does the number of differences you need to find, up to nine per image. A wrong answer penalizes you on time, but you start with and earn additional bonuses that will instantly offer you more time or even find the differences for you. In Free mode, there is no clock ticking so you can guess for the differences as much as you’d like without the fear of running out of time. In Challenge mode, you need to find only one difference between each set of photos, but the clock burns much faster, so you only have time for one bad guess (assuming you guess quickly enough). Normal mode lets you run out of time without solving all of the differences 3 times, but Challenge is far less forgiving and one mess-up ends it all. Both the Normal and Challenge modes even have a public scoreboard available so you can submit your level and see how you rank up against others.

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iPhone App Review: Radio Disney (Streaming App)

Radio Disney iPhone AppTitle: Radio Disney (link)
Publisher: Walt Disney
Released: August 28, 2009
Cost: Free
iTouch?: Yes (WiFi)
Pros: It’s free, makes Radio Disney portable
Cons: Additional features on RD website with clunky interface
Review: There’s not an awful lot to this app, with one click on the iPhone/iPod Touch, it launches and connects to the Radio Disney website where it begins streaming, providing you with song/artist information along with an artist photo (when available). Another screen allows you to view the last 10 songs played on Radio Disney without disrupting song play. Additional features (such as making a song request, sending a shoutout, answering a poll, etc) require using the device’s Safari app to reach the Radio Disney website which exits the application and shuts off the music. The website itself has a really nice opening screen but quickly becomes difficult to navigate and to discern where the links to continue are and — to be blunt — these additional functions are so simple, they could easily be integrated directly into the app.

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iPhone App Review: Toy Story Mania!

Toy Story Mania!Title: Toy Story Mania! (link)
Publisher: Walt Disney
Released: August 14, 2009
Cost: $4.99
iTouch?: Yes, but no bonus feature
Pros: Portable version of its theme park candidate, fun graphics, good re-play value
Cons: Some controls can be annoying
Review: If you’ve been to Disney’s California Adventure (Anaheim) or Disney’s Hollywood Studios (Orlando) within the past year, you no doubt are familiar with Toy Story Mania!, the Toy Story-themed 4D (that’s park-speak for 3D with cold water splashed on you) video game/attraction. Set to make its in-home debut later this year on the Nintendo Wii (minus the cold water), the iPhone edition is a happy medium which allows you to take the charm of the game with you no matter where you go.

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iPhone App Review: Disney Puzzle Slider

Disney Puzzle SliderTitle: Disney Puzzle Slider (link)
Publisher: Walt Disney
Released: August 14, 2009
Cost: $2.99
iTouch?: Yes
Pros: Dozens of amazing Disney oriented wallpapers
Cons: Controls are overly sensitive, music loop can’t be turned off
Review: Under the guise of a puzzle slider game, Disney Puzzle Slider is above all else your ticket to 74 of some really great Disney pieces of art spread across 11 categories – Mickey and Friends, Pooh and Pals, Fairies, Bloc28, Disney Villains, Pirates, Simply Mickey, Disney Stylized, Cuties, Classic Mickey and Minnie Mouse and Classic Disney Friends.

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iPhone App Review: Stan Lee’s Time Jumper

Note: For information on Stan Lee’s Time Jumper, please read our introduction article here.

Stan Lee's Time JumperTitle: Stan Lee’s Time Jumper (link)
Publisher: Walt Disney
Released: August 10, 2009
Cost: Free
iTouch?: Yes
Pros: Free!, it’s Stan Lee!, extras add to fun
Cons: Future editions aren’t free
Review: How does one animate a comic book while not turning it into a cartoon? Comics legend Stan Lee introduces us to his joint project with Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment, Time Jumper, the story of a reluctant hero who must travel through time on a quest to save his brother while fighting the time threating enemies and problems of his own.

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