Monster High: New Ghoul in School (Nintendo 3DS) Review

By André Eriksson 15.02.2016

Review for Monster High: New Ghoul in School on Nintendo 3DS

The popular cartoon Monster High is impossible to ignore for those with someone under the age of 15 in their life, and everyone has an opinion on the show. Some salute its focus on promoting diversity, while others criticize it due to its focus on the exterior qualities of the characters. However, it sells like hot pockets at a videogame convention, and therefore it might not seem strange at all that the series got a movie and a videogame loosely based on said movie. Cubed3 delves into the latter and signs up as a student at Monster High. Will the experience get straight As, or will it flunk out in first semester?

School is starting at Monster High and the new ghoul in school is shown around where monsters live in harmony (or at the very least where they try to). Just as the title implies, Monster High: New Ghoul in School puts the player in the shoes of the newcomer, and at first it might seem like a pleasant experience.

All the famous characters from the show are there to greet the new student and show them around. With iconic characters such as Ghoulia, Toralei, Spectra, Frankie, and others there are a diverse selection of characters to pick from to create interesting stores and scenarios. There are some interesting stories in Monster High, if the player has the patience it takes to discover them.

There are several storylines going on at Monster High, just like there is at every high-school, with clubs to attend and people needing help with different things. There is the possibility to create a comic book heroine, build a robot, take care of a huge plant, and much, much more. Monster High fully utilizes the strong suits of the IP with the focus on acceptance of each other's differences and daring to go against the herd, which is actually a core part of the main story. What could possibly be wrong with a game like this having a strong and eye catching IP which has actually cared about how it portrays the characters? Quite a lot, sadly.

The problem rests within the gameplay. While the cut-scenes are interesting and certainly will keep fans of the show pleased, the gameplay in between those cut-scenes feels like a complete waste of time. Most of the gameplay is made up of going from one place to another at the school, sometimes having a mission to look for some items. It doesn't sound bad at first, but the problem is that the area in which Monster High: New Ghoul in School takes place is very small, and the game is extremely long considering this fact. This means that the player will be forced to go from one place to another without really exploring anything new, seeing the same areas over and over and over again creating a very stale experience.

Screenshot for Monster High: New Ghoul in School on Nintendo 3DS

The few occasions where the gameplay changes into fearleading sessions, players might be forgiven for thinking that they will experience something fun that will break through the monotony of the overall gameplay. While it certainly is something different from the usual gameplay, it's not something positive. The fearleading is basically a round of Simon Says, starting at round 12. It is a very unpleasant experience trying to remember a 12 button combination, but to also press them in rhythm to the music like a rhythm game takes it to a whole new level of annoyance that is almost solely based on trial and error.

Beside the monotonous and frankly boring gameplay, Monster High: New Ghoul in School is ridden with technical issues. Worse, the voice acting at times ruins the story with its annoyance; it sounds like they recorded the voice acting with really old and cheap equipment as it is sometimes difficult to hear what the monsters say. That the gameplay is faulty with issues such as getting caught mid-air by touching a wall is, considering how little effort and focus was put into these parts to begin with, understandable. However, in a game where the focus is heavily put on the characters and their stories, it feels like the quality of the recording of the voices should have been given a greater budget.

Overall, Monster High: New Ghoul in School serves its purpose as a fix for those who love the show. The characters are well-portrayed and some of the stories can be beautiful, fun, and at times, heart-warming. It capitalizes on the strong parts of the IP, while removing some the worse parts. The horrible gameplay and overall lack of quality makes this a title for only extreme fans of the show. Everybody else should avoid at all costs.

Screenshot for Monster High: New Ghoul in School on Nintendo 3DS

Cubed3 Rating

3/10
Rated 3 out of 10

Bad

While Monster High: New Ghoul in School makes very good use of the IP, it is still barely passable as a game. Fans of the show will enjoy the adventures as a new ghoul at Monster High, and being friends with Ghoulia, Spectra, Frankie, and the rest of the gang at Monster High will certainly be entertaining enough. However, there are gameplay issues which drag the score down a lot. It gets extremely boring going through the same corridors over and over again, and fearleading could not have possibly been designed worse. This makes Monster High: New Ghoul in School a title that is extremely boring to play through from start to finish, even for fans of the show.

Developer

Torus

Publisher

Little Orbit

Genre

Adventure

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  3/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date None   Australian release date Out now   

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