After the success of Timon & Pumbaa's Jungle Games, 7th Level attemped to do the same with Disney's 1996 animated feature, The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Calling it Topsy Turvy Games and being set during the Festival of Fools, it follows the familiar mini-game structure, this time hosted by the trio of gargoyles.
The amount of animation has increased dramatically, and is the usual high standard. The presentation, however, has taken a step back. While Jungle Games saw Timon & Pumbaa traverse a top-down map not unlike a Theme Park guide, Topsy Turvy Games uses a series of menus. They're still nice looking and certainly in keeping with the product as a whole but it doesn't allow for the same kind of shenanigans.
The first game on the list is Chiseler which takes the classic Breakout gameplay and reverses it. It's also a two-player game with both Victor and Hugo taking part. Laverne is the referie who replaces any lost balls (or pidgeons). Break down a wall of blocks to reveal a picture. The first to do so wins. In keeping with many other mini-game compilations, it's not as good as its inspiration. The playfield will only ever be a solid wall with no attempt at design beyond the shade of the bricks. Your pidgeon will only affect the top layer of bricks as well, meaning that if it hits a lower tile from the side, nothing happens. Poor.
Djali Bowling is fun if only for the animated madness that's going on. It a bowling game where the pins are replaced with peasants and the bowling ball with a goat. Select the speed, spin and angle from a moving slider and watch the carnage ensue. The crowd will heckle as you do so with lines like "get my mother in the back row". It's a simple game will little to keep you playing but it's elevated by the raucus humour.
The shooting gallery returns with Le Food Feud. On the streets of the festival, Parisians will wander around in costumes that scream "shoot me". Some will attack back from the windows, but if you miss, an splodge of food will stain the environment. It doesn't play as well as Timon & Pumbaa's Sling Shooter from Jungle Games, but it has a lot more fun animation going on. A lot of work obviously went into it as it takes centre stage on the level select menu.
Upsy Daisy tries to do something different. Two jesters fitted with gravity defying ballons attempt to pop each other's balloons mid-air. It's quite hard to control too, as any attempt at movement is counter-balanced by what the programmers perceived as realistic physics. You can only float higher if you place yourself above the chimney stacks that bellow out smoke. Moving left or right has an inertia to it that doesn't give you a sense of control, but it does give an interesting randomness to the fight. If you find yourself in the ideal positio y can atack lefo righ trt your opponent's balloons. Think a poorly conceived event from a TV game show like Gladiators. One that no contestant has any idea how to win. It kind of fun to be a part of, but you'll never attempt it again.
The last of the five mini-games is a quiz called Inside Outwards. You are presented with a seemingly random word or phrase, but it's been turned inside and outwards. The opposite phrase will often be a well known one, and the answer will be from a multiple choice of three. For example "light pony" will become "dark horse". It's not always that easy either as the selection can be confoundingly similar, especially when given the tight time constraint. Using the previous example, I found myself choosing "hard bull" as an answer, being momentarily convinced that the catchphrase actually existed. It doesn't, but just to save face, I think it should be. I think I'll add it to the Urban Dictionary.
Despite the quality (or lack thereof), I think most of you reading this will already know the amount of enjoyment you'll get out of this. I'm never going to play any of these titles a second time, but the first time is nevertheless a great deal of fun, Djali Bowling and all.
To download the game, follow the link below. This custom installer exclusive to The Collection Chamber uses DOSBox running Microsoft Windows 3.1 to get the game working on modern systems. Tested on Windows 10.
File Size: 172 Mb. Install Size: 272 Mb. Need help? Consult the Collection Chamber FAQ
Disney's The Hunchback of Notre Dame: Topsy Turvy Games is © Disney InteractiveReview, Cover Design and Installer created by me