Scribblenauts DS

Metascore
79

Generally favorable reviews - based on 72 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 46 out of 72
  2. Negative: 0 out of 72
Buy On
  1. 70
    If you can conquer the sloppy controls, Scribblenauts is a good enough game.
  2. There are those who will pick up Scribblenauts and love it completely. However, I fear that there are those who will hate this game, because once you look past the brilliant gimmick and innocent charm, you see a rough game with bad controls and a sense that things just could have been done much better.
  3. Edge Magazine
    70
    It delivers on 5th Cell's unlikely conceit far more capably than expected, and fulfills a blueprint so bizarrely ambitious almost nobody believed it was possible. [Nov 2009, p.92]
  4. The problem is that you can find the game frustrating playing it and you can't find a real cause to play it and to encourage a different approach to the gameplay.
  5. Scribblenauts is the perfect example that having an excellent idea is not enough to create a great game. The revolution we expected from this game turned out to be just a nice experiment.
  6. Scribblenauts' amazing amount of content is only let down by the techology that powers it.
  7. An enjoyable but flawed game. Some moments you think it’s the best thing on earth, when you think up an object that you thought couldn’t help you solve a puzzle but you suddenly use it in an inventive way. Other times you will be bored thanks to the reuse of items or frustrated with the loose controls.
  8. You'll need to find creative ways to ways to solve the game's puzzles while it finds creative ways to frustrate you.
  9. Scribblenauts succeeds in being an incredibly creative game. It just isn’t enjoyable after the effect of its initial charm wears off.
  10. In the end, we came away from Scribblenauts wondering if we had missed the point. There were a few puzzles with satisfyingly original solutions, but instead of feeling empowered by the freedom to write anything we wanted, we felt more confined by the limitations of core mechanic and the game’s lousy controls.
  11. Scribblenauts is a great idea, with some questionable execution, and some laughable design decisions.
  12. With some tweaking and structure Scribblenauts could have been one of the best games of the year. As it is, it's merely adequate.
  13. Ultimately, Scribblenauts is a novelty but little more than that.
  14. Scribblenauts is a great proof-of-concept that struggles under the weight of its own ambition and the expectations that resulted from its uniquely exciting premise.
  15. It opens up new ground for puzzle games as it forces you to think what item is needed to solve the puzzle and then to conjure it by writing the word in-game. There are some problems with the control and some people may find the levels repetitive even with all the variation that comes with the right imagination.
  16. It's a dazzling technical feat, the only problem is the actual game bits aren't all that much fun.
  17. While the package is innovative, polished and fun, often-terrible controls throw a clumsy wrench in the otherwise well-oiled machine and prevent this from taking on "must-have" status.
  18. Evaluating Scribblenauts is difficult because, in spite of its numerous flaws, it never skimps on content to work with or play through, it encourages gamers to interact with friends and family for new ideas, and it provides one of the first (if only) titles to engage a gamer's imagination like no other.
  19. If you are prepared to deal with many annoyances but seek an original and mostly enjoyable play experience, you'll be well served by Scribblenauts.
  20. 70
    Squeezing so many items into the game and having each one act how (and beyond how) the player expects is amazing.
  21. As it stands, its raw imagination will be offputting for some gamers, while invigorating to others.
  22. While it’s reassuring to find that human ingenuity is too varied to be cataloged in a tiny DS cartridge, it doesn’t make for a very fun game.
  23. Regardless of its flaws, Scribblenauts is a fine title. It may be over-hyped, but it’s still worth playing.
  24. I can't deny that I'm disappointed by Scribblenauts' shortcomings, but I will certainly continue to play after this review is done - and I hope with all my heart that 5th Cell decide to make a sequel.
  25. "Scribblenauts" is not a terrible game. It brings something new to the DS and is really fun at first. But as you progress you’ll be wishing more and more that you could simply control the hero with the D-pad and that those damn kids would stop singing "get the beat" or whatever it is they are saying.
  26. 70
    So if you can put up with the weak control scheme, there are some truly inspiring moments that can occur. Scribblenauts had such a huge vision I can't help but love it, and although sometimes it makes me want to throw my DS across the room, I'm still glad I spent the time playing it.

Awards & Rankings

#5 Most Discussed DS Game of 2009
#16 Most Shared DS Game of 2009
User Score
7.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 111 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 45
  2. Negative: 3 out of 45
  1. Sep 6, 2010
    10
    Though i didn't spend much time with the game, It is very fun and has some very creative puzzles. I was actually surprised on how expansiveThough i didn't spend much time with the game, It is very fun and has some very creative puzzles. I was actually surprised on how expansive the vocabulary was in this game. You can literally put in almost anything that is not inappropriate or overly religious. Again, the puzzles are very creative but i spent most of my time messing around in the main menu just messing with the variety of things that i can create. This is a truly expansive game that i could spend so much time playing. Full Review »
  2. Oct 29, 2010
    8
    Sloppy controls, and easily cheated levels. the 2 points off my review. Everything else? Flawless. The entertainment value of watching a pandaSloppy controls, and easily cheated levels. the 2 points off my review. Everything else? Flawless. The entertainment value of watching a panda riding another panda wearing a top hat, is simply ingenious. Full Review »
  3. DME
    Sep 24, 2010
    3
    The idea behind it was good, but execution wasn't. Graphics were "blah". Sound was decent. Controls were just awful. Puzzles were fun atThe idea behind it was good, but execution wasn't. Graphics were "blah". Sound was decent. Controls were just awful. Puzzles were fun at first but then got real boring. There are certainly worse games on the DS, but even so, I don't recommend this one. Full Review »