FusionFall Review: Play Alongside Your Favorite Cartoon Characters



By Dane Frandsen (Lefos), Onrpg writer
What would you say if I were to tell you that all of your favorite Cartoon Network original characters just happened to inhabit the same universe? Quite believable seeing as how more than one cameo had occurred, right? Now, what if I told you that their world was under siege from an evil alien planet and its overlord? Again, not much of a stretch considering some of the plots that had been seen on a number of Cartoon Network shows (Or the entirety of the Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy.). Now, what if I were to tell you that this was the premise of Cartoon Networks first ever massively multiplayer online game, FusionFall? Sounds good, right? Well, despite some obvious effort on Cartoon Network’s side, it doesn’t ever really reach its full potential.

Many Characters, One World

Let us get the ball rolling on what I am SURE everyone is curious about, the game world. As your character, you will be assisting your favorite Cartoon Network characters by completing various quests from them. Quests help only to further solidify the setting, with objectives ranging from collecting the required materials to repair Dexter's time machine, to collecting money for Eddy, and even retrieving Numah (Yes, they actually do spell it numbah!) Five's stolen pizza toppings. All of the characters act as you would expect them to, given their various backgrounds established in the shows, meshing together strangely well. While interactions between the characters are sadly lacking, they come off as smooth and, dare I say, natural.

Digestion, Planetary Style

This brings me to my next point, the game's story. While it's nothing amazing it is strangely clever for a free, browser based MMORPG. Straight from the start, the game thrusts you into interaction with various Cartoon Network original characters. Strangely enough, this works rather well and actually helps to move the story along. At the start, you'll find yourself with Dexter, whom you graciously have volunteered to help with a time travel experiment. However, all is not well, as you hear DeeDee utter those most famous of words("Ooo, what does this button do?"). Thanks to her interfering, you are flung into the future, where your adventure will truly begin.
As previously mentioned, the evil overlord Fuse has arrived, and brought his evil planet Fusion with him, with but one goal: destruction of anything and everything, of course. While he is doing so, various parts of the game world are becoming infected, creating what are known as infected zones. But as any loyal Cartoon Network fan of old can tell you, nobody is going down without a fight! This is where you come in. After Dexter's experiment goes awry, you find yourself in the future and in the middle of a fight to reclaim the world.
Along the way, you'll be assisted by: Dexter, the Kid's Next Door, Eddy, Eduardo, Samurai Jack, and Mandark. Keep in mind this is just in the first two or three hours of gameplay! These characters and more will be there to give you missions through the course of the game, and even assist you in combat(More on that shortly.). Now, if I had to find one thing to complain about in the myriad of characters it would be the fact that none of them are ever really explained, their backgrounds never truly explored (Oh, and there is no Johnny Bravo. Seriously, what is up with that?)

Two Buttons

Speaking of gameplay... this is FusionFall's downfall. Movement is done via a standard WASD control scheme, while combat consists of locking on to an enemy, and holding down left mouse. Now, this is broken up by the use of what are called "Nanos", FusionFall's equivalent of skills. Nanos are obtained via defeating an evil fusion form of the various characters and picking one of three abilities for that Nano(Don't worry, they can be reset at specific points throughout the game.). These fusion characters are fought as part of special missions, attained when you collect enough "fusion matter", or experience points as they are usually called. Fusion missions will cause the characters level to advance and open up new missions.

Fusion Cells: They Make Things Pretty!

With the story, gameplay, and game world itself out of the way, I think it is time for us to discuss what many will find equally important, the graphical and sound quality of the game. Graphically, the game is visually stunning. We are talking about a browser game with full 3D environments and cell shaded characters, which I never thought I would see. The characters have all been recreated into a new anime style, thanks to the amazing efforts of Mario F. Piedra. Animations are fluid and effects are surprisingly well done, while the environment itself is done is a basic three-dimensional style.
In terms of sound design, it could be worse. The characters are all voiced by their original voice actors (As far as I can tell.), and the soundtrack is fitting to the atmosphere. Sound effects for weapons and the like could be stronger, though. After hearing the same noise from my gun over the course of two hours, I was ready to go smash something with a sledgehammer.

Childhood Scorned

Now, after you attain level five in the game, you are able to return to the present, thanks to your efforts towards rebuilding Dexter's time machine. I wish I could give you more information on this point in the game, but it's at that point that the free trial of the game ends and the monthly fee of $5.95 kicks in. While I can say I did enjoy the game for the novelty of interacting with my favorite cartoon characters from my childhood, I couldn't justify spending the money on it.
While the small attention to detail with the voices is a nice touch, the graphics are astounding, and the story is strangely clever, the overall gameplay just wasn't enough for me to truly enjoy my brief experience. These goods were all drowned out by poor gameplay, lackluster sound effects, and absolutely ZERO variety.
Now had I been about ten years younger, the game would have been amazing for me, seeing my favorite characters interacting with eachother and getting the chance to even help them myself. Alas, any Cartoon Network fan over the age of fifteen is better off skipping this game entirely, or getting a quick fix with the short trial that is currently available; while those that are not fans of the Cartoons or their characters are better off not even going near the game’s website.
Pros
- Original voice cast adds some awesome character to this already unique world.
- Amazing graphical quality brings your favorite characters to life.
- Witty writing keeps even boring quests interesting with funny quips and clever stories.
Cons
- Poor gameplay, you hold left click and sometimes hit right click.
- Repetitive sound effects, you better like that gun’s blast.
- No variety, ALL you do is fight.
- A few missing characters. I would have loved seeing Johnny Bravo, as well as the full Kids Next Door cast.

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Comments

  • vancha

    BRING THE OLD ONE BACK,THIS ONE SUCKS

    • dakota

      i agree the new one u cant do fun stuff just retarted things the old one was like the best thing ever was better then wizard 101 but know it took a down fall if u bring back fusionfalluniverse u wil get mor peolpe to play tht then fusionfall

  • dakota

    i like fusionfallunvierse the new one suck monkey butt