The Smurfs is a side scrolling platform game, featuring the tiny blue characters from the well-known series of the same name.
Story wise, the game is pretty generic and doesn’t really give any insight as to your exact purpose. In a nutshell, Smurfette was captured by the evil Gargamel and taken to his manor. It is your duty to make the long journey to his lair and free her.
In The Smurfs, the gameplay is very much based on platforms, in a very familiar Mario style, but more vertical rather than horizontal. Although all the little Smurf can do is jump, this is all that you really need to progress. To reach certain places, you must jump on springs which you can also carry with you and place them wherever you need. There are various enemies to be found throughout its 15 levels (or “acts” as they are called), and most of them can be defeated by simply jumping on their heads. The rest (hedgehogs, for example) must be avoided.
On the screen you can keep track of your remaining health measured in tiny hearts, the number of lives, the number of leaves you collected, the remaining time and your current score. Collecting 25 leaves will grant you an extra life, and hearts can be replenished by finding berries. You are also able to collect stars which, if you gather 25, will give you access to a bonus level; strangely enough, you cannot see how many you have collected.
The Smurfs has beautifully designed graphics, but only if you take them separately: the character sprites and the backgrounds. They both have their appeal, but the characters are very flat and cartoony, not unlike the comics, while the backgrounds are very detailed and significantly more dimensional. Simply put, the two don’t mix well. Regarding the sound, there is not much to say except maybe that the effects could have been a little more realistic. Overall, it works.
To conclude, The Smurfs is a well-rounded and polished game that could have used a few more levels, and maybe also more time to complete them. Still, it is a good way to bring back childhood memories, or simply have some fun. Be warned, though, the game is not as easy as you would think.
The Smurfs features:
- 15 different acts, some with more than one stage
- Explore various locations, from forests to mountains to rivers
- Beautifully designed environment and smooth animations
- Platform gameplay with hidden trails and bonus levels