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Gamer Tuesday

November 20, 2012

Pap the Disney Gamer's Highlights: Goof Troop

Developed by: Capcom

System: Super Nintendo

Hey. Remember what I said in my Goofy's Hysterical History Tour article about how there isn't that many Goofy themed games? Well, I kinda lied. There IS another Goofy game besides Hysterical History Tour. That game happens to be Goof Troop for the Super NES. However, in my defense, History Tour focuses on Goofy, the classic Disney character, whereas Goof Troop is based on a TV show that focuses on a different kind of Goofy. Confused? Let me elaborate on that...

Goof Troop SuperNES

EvEver since he was introduced, Goofy's main appeal was that he could easily portray any kind of character, from genuinely cartoony to highly satirical, and still keep his lovely, winning personality. His animated shorts star either Goofy has his silly self, or as an image of the common, every day man meant to parody or satirize a common element of every day life (like vacation, smoking or dancing).

In the 90s, when the Disney Afternoon was a bonafide hit with young audiences, Disney introduced into its lineup Goof Troop, starring Goofy as a single father to Max Goof as he dealt with the issues of every day life while still being, well, Goofy. I find this TV show to be a great mix of classic Goofy and Goofy as the avatar for the common man. This meant that his stories could still be somewhat rooted in the '90s mentality' the show portrayed but still be highly comedic in their presentation. The success of the TV show inspired a much beloved film, A Goofy Movie.

Goof Troop Super NES

The success of the TV show also led to a video game, which was developed by none other than Capcom. I've discussed to death the ties Disney had with Capcom in the past, so I won't go further with that. What I will say is that while the game didn't catch the same fire as DuckTales and Chip N' Dale Rescue Rangers on the NES did, it certainly garnered a cult following due to its gameplay design that broke the mold in terms of licensed games rules.

Interestingly, rather than going down the 2D platforming route they took with DuckTales and other Disney titles, Capcom instead made the Goof Troop game into an adventure game. The story is that both Goofy and Max have gone to an island to rescue Pete and his son PJ from dangerous pirates. In order to do so, they must work as a team in order to solve the puzzles that lie ahead. The word 'team' is what defines Goof Troop. Goof Troop is primarily known as one of the most definitive two player experiences on the Super NES. That is to say that the game is best when played with a friend.

Goof Troop Super NES

There are many reasons as to why that is the case with the game. Level designs and puzzles were created with co-operative play in mind. You won't be competing with other players, instead you will be working together to advance in the game. Playing as either Goofy or Max, you will be helping the other player defeat enemies or work to complete a puzzle faster. Goofy and Max are also unique characters with distinctive skills. That means that Goofy is the stronger of the two, while Max is much faster but lacks the strength his old man has.

These mechanics are far from gimmicky, though, as they have been very polished and create an experience that is like no other. As an example, when a character is defeated during two player mode, the two characters don't restart. Instead, the remaining player will complete the dungeon, and the other player resurfaces in the next dungeon. At times, the game even resembles Nintendo's The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past with its focus on dungeon exploration and puzzle solving. It should be noted that even though I have been focusing on Goof Troop as being a two player affair, it CAN be played in single player mode.

Goof Troop Super NES

It is common knowledge by now that Capcom took great stride in presenting us digital Disney worlds in great detail and good music to boot. While Goof Troop isn't the absolute best in terms of presenting a Disney franchise in video game form, it is a very well polished one. Characters look and feel like their TV show counterparts and animate like them too. Humorous details like stars that appear when characters are hit by a box make the game feel like a Goofy affair. Music is very bouncy and catchy, appropriate for the story and characters involved.

Clearly, what truly stands out is the gameplay. Capcom could have easily done yet another platformer under the Disney name and be done with it. But much like how Goofy has taken on different roles but retained his original persona, Goof Troop the game maintains the polish and quality that Capcom's Disney games have presented throughout the years but does so with an unique gameplay concept. Scrooge McDuck, Chip N' Dale, and Mickey may have been sidescrolling stars, but only Goofy can claim that he has been on a puzzle solving adventure with his son Max, and had fun doing it.

Goof Troop Super NES


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