All Features


  PlayStation 3
  PlayStation 4
  Wii U
  Xbox 360
  Xbox One


Shrek: Ogres and Dronkeys

Score: 77%
ESRB: Everyone
Publisher: Activision
Developer: Way Forward Technologies
Media: Cartridge/1
Players: 1
Genre: Simulation

Graphics & Sound:

I am not against product cross-marketing. And if any current IP is being stretched in a million directions, it is Shrek. I think I have even seen toilet paper. So it is not surprising to see a title like Shrek: Ogres & Dronkeys hitting the market right as the DVD does and not too long before the Christmas holiday rush.

It looks fairly good for a DS game. There are some blocky characters, but nothing too severe. It isn't like you are ever confused about whether you are caring for a mini Shrek or a Dronkey. In fact, I would say that the cut scenes do not show near the polish the gameplay characters do which seems an odd reversal. The animations are very well done as the A.I. moves around the environment. The room is bigger than the camera, forcing you to look around and adding depth to the game.

The music is more than just repetitive. I had to turn it down for sanity. The sound effects are a little simplistic. I just expected the sounds to be a little, well, a little better. The voiceovers lead me to believe that they are more than likely pieced together from the actual actors. I just didn't get the feeling they did the voices themselves. The booklet offered no credits and neither did the game, so I am guessing they would have proudly mentioned that the voices for the game were authentic.


I get the sneaking suspicion I have seen and played a game exactly like Shrek: Ogres & Dronkeys before. In fact, when I first saw it, it was called Nintendogs. You are tasked with babysitting the kiddos while the King and Queen are out. Your job is simple then, just keep the midgets alive. Start out by picking a few of the ugly little, I mean royal darlings, to take care of. Now teach them through play and daily activities. Sounds about as fun as watching paint dry. I know there is a huge following for virtual pet and Sims like games, but even their patience may be stretched by this offering.

So what is there to babysitting a little Ogre or Dronkey? Well start off by keeping them occupied. In the play pen area, you can interact directly with your charges. Choose toys from the toy box and help them learn new interactions with these objects as they learn to play with them. Every time you successfully complete a goal task, you will receive points that you can use to purchase new toys and items. From time to time, you will need to care for the little ones. Bathing and brushing them is key to them being healthy and happy. There are several areas where you can play with the little ones besides the play pen; besides they can't stay cooped up all the time.

There are two main modes, Story Mode and Multiplayer Mode. In order to obtain the multiplayer, you must unlock it from the Story Mode. One of the cool things about the multiplayer mode is the pass around feature where you can take on your friends on the same DS.


There is no way to gauge a difficulty on a Sim pet game like Shrek: Ogres & Dronkeys. You are prompted to care for every aspect of the little one's daily needs. The mini-games are easy enough in the multiplayer mode, so your only challenge is the people you play. That's about all there is. I think that it would have been a little more entertaining if you were forced to clean up more ogre-ish messes like massive pukes or worse. Nothing like having to use a giant snow shovel in the nursery after the Dronkeys have been playing in there all day. Could you imagine having to change the diapers on an baby ogre? It would be like trying to wipe an elephant. That could have been its own mini-game.

Game Mechanics:

Getting around in Shrek: Ogres & Dronkeys is extremely easy. All of the interactions are clean and smooth. I expected to have some trouble using the stylus to pick up toys and interact with the kids. I had none of the issues I thought I would. This doesn't exactly come out of left field as I did have some issues with Nintendogs and other virtual pet games.

The mini-games that are associated with the multiplayer game are far more interactive than I originally gave them credit for. The ability to pass the DS is a great addition, and one born of watching siblings. The problem I saw was that you were forced to unlock the multiplayer version. The only reason I can see for this is to force the player to actually play the actual game. It should beg the question whether the cute little virtual pet game should have been the sidebar while the pass around, single DS, multiplayer game should have been in the spotlight.

This type of game is a great diversion and waste of time. Obviously meant for a younger audience, the gameplay is repetitive and not in any way fulfilling. I think that virtual pet games usually force some form of empathy for their pet, a form of ownership. I think this is possibly lost with this title because they are so unreal and knowingly cartoonish. Real pets that can be identified just hold a stronger bond, I think. After you unlock it, enjoy the multiplayer. Then if you need to kill some time, play the actual game.

-WUMPUSJAGGER, GameVortex Communications
AKA Bryon Lloyd

Sony PlayStation 3 The Eye of Judgment Microsoft Xbox 360 Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock

Game Vortex :: PSIllustrated