Gigantosaurus: The Game review – a huge step towards good children’s gaming

I wanted to review Gigantosaurus: The Game because I wanted something to play with my toddler. I’m guessing, because you’re reading this, that you are in the same boat. My four-year-old son is pretty acclimated to touch devices, but most of the games he plays (barring a weird affinity towards Plants vs. Zombies) are mindless fluff that do a good job of triggering the dopamine in his brain but probably aren’t going to stimulate his intellect in any way. We all do it, honestly.

I’ve noticed him watch me play console games for a while now, so I thought now is as good a time as any to find something we could play together that would a) be simple enough for him to understand and broad enough to keep his interest and b) have enough substance that I won’t be bored to tears while spending quality time with my kid. In this simple mission Gigantosaurus succeeds in the best way a licensed game possibly could.

Based on a Disney cartoon neither of us have seen but are now keen on checking out, Gigantosaurus is a collect-a-thon 3D platformer in which you take four googly-eyed dinosaurs on an adventure to unplug a volcano that’s been hit by a meteor and help their giant buddy, the title character, all the while. In between the large areas you take part in randomly inserted kart racing on your way because, well, why the heck not?

The levels in the game are also appropriately similar to the title – large, expansive, stereotypically themed areas (think jungle, ice, etc.) with simple traversal puzzles and plenty of doo-dads to distract even the most ardent adventurers on their way to rescuing and returning the various eggs strewn about before moving on to the next world. There are four playable tots that you can choose from, with instances where you have to switch to a specific one in order to surmount certain hurdles. It doesn’t feel fundamental to the game, but it is a nice change of pace, made even better by the ability to just change on the fly. Otherwise, the game keeps you moving along and exploring because of all the other collectables you can get on your way to the eggs, which was thankfully enough to keep my son interested.

More importantly, the game’s two button set-up — mainly the jump and attack, felt good to me and was easy enough for the kiddo to trigger at will. The kart racing not so much, but these levels were so forgiving and infrequent that it wasn’t too much of a bother. The world design, while aesthetically a console generation behind, was easy to grok and, dare I say it, fun to explore. The game does a good job of unobtrusively keeping the players together, but the times we needed artificial help in that regard were few and far between because my son was generally able to keep lockstep with me.

Gigantosaurus is not going to blow your mind in any way, but it’s a very pleasant surprise when a game can stay true to its license while still remaining a fun to play with your kids. I know that probably sounds like a backhanded compliment, but solid kids’ games are hard to come by, so competency is a valued bullet point. Gigantosaurus: The Game does an admirable job of being something that a variety of ages could play together and earnestly have a good time.

Gigantosaurus: The Game was developed by Wildsphere Studios and is available on Switch, PS4, Xbox One and Steam. We played the Switch version.

Disclosure statement: review code for Gigantosaurus: The Game was provided by Swipe Right PR. A Most Agreeable Pastime operates as an independent site, and all opinions expressed are those of the author.

Follow A Most Agreeable Pastime on Twitter: @MostAgreeable