Disney Fireworks (DSiWare)

Game Review

Disney Fireworks Review

USA USA Version

Posted by Desiree Turner

All flash, no bang

Combining both loud noises and pretty colors (things we've been conditioned from birth to stare at in awe), there's something magical about a good fireworks display. Disney is well-known for the nightly shows put on at their assorted theme parks, and now their game-developing arm has brought the fun to the DSi Shop in the form of Disney Fireworks. It seems they've bet that the universal love of both fireworks and their own intellectual properties will prompt people to fork over their hard-earned Nintendo Points hand over fist, but like a cheap souvenir, you'll play with it once or twice and then forget you ever bought it.

Choose from one of five different Disney-themed settings to begin. Each setting plays in the exact same manner: on the bottom screen are a red, blue, and yellow rocket, and as colored cues appear on the upper screen, which represents the sky, you'll tap and flick rockets of matching colors in time with the music. If you timed them just right, they'll hit the cues and explode in bursts of bright color. Special rockets will appear in your launchers at random, and if they explode successfully, they'll rain down a group of mini-rockets. Quickly blow into the microphone or tap the screen repeatedly, and the mini-rockets will take out all cues on the screen for you, awarding you a "perfect" for each one. "Perfect" hits are what you need to fill the "Wow Meter" on the right-hand side of the screen; filling it will send you on to the next level. Though you begin the game with only one type of special rocket to jazz up the sky every so often between normal fireworks, by completing in-game goals you'll unlock four more for each different setting. Check them out anytime in the Trophy Room.

After making it past the first group of five levels, the game introduces secondary-colored rockets, requiring you to drag one rocket across a rocket of another color in order to make green, purple, or even white fireworks. Though it sounds like something that could become hectic, it never gets to be more than you can handle, as each successive level is merely a tad harder than the next – the difficulty ramp in this game is almost too gradual, and the game itself is incredibly forgiving in that you only lose a tiny amount from your Wow Meter by missing a cue. Whether you get bored and exit the level or lose all of your Wow, you'll be shown your hit/miss statistics afterward. Your highest amount of Perfects and farthest level reached will be recorded and visible from the setting select menu.

Between the low level of difficulty, the slow music tracks, and the lack of overall variety in this game, it's a horribly repetitive experience overall. The patterns of cues across the "sky" are very similar within each five-round burst, so you'll be experiencing all kinds of deja vu while you play, tripping you up and forcing you to sit through the level that much longer. Had there been some kind of "aiming" point to the gameplay instead of having the rockets launch unerringly toward their cues no matter which upward direction you flick, it would have been much more engaging, but as it stands you're more likely to get bored and shut it off than you are to actually lose a round. Perhaps worst of all, however, is the fact that you can't choose which level you'd like begin at if you're starting a new game. Each time you play, you have to start all the way from the beginning, no matter how far you've gotten before.

For such a basic 800-point game, the visuals lack polish. Each setting features a little area on the bottom screen that grows lighter with each level you pass, revealing more elements within the setting – the Lilo & Stitch area goes from a bare beach to a party complete with dancers, waves, and Stitch himself pops up on the screen to say "hi", for example. The fireworks, however, are rather monotonous - even the "special" ones just form little images in the air - and you'll be paying more attention to hitting your cues on time than you will "ooh"ing and "aah"ing over anything. As for the music, it's nicely orchestrated, but it's very slow, sounding more like it belongs in a parade than an awesome fireworks show. There's two or three different tracks for each setting, but not enough variety overall to keep you from gradually nodding off to sleep while playing this game.


Disney Fireworks is somewhat like Big Bang Mini meets Elite Beat Agents, only without the crazy shooting action and visual brilliance of the former, the awesome music and fun of the latter, and the challenge of both. The music sets a slow, plodding tempo, a definite turn-off in terms of a good rhythm-based game, and the visuals are oddly plain. As for the difficulty, it's almost non-existent considering this game will put you to sleep long before it becomes any kind of a challenge – in fact, if you're on the market for a new sleep aid, this will probably pay for itself after the first couple of weeks. Other than that, suffice to say you won't get any kind of bang for your eight bucks here.

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User Comments (18)



moomoo said:

That stinks. I own and loved Big Bang Mini and Elite Beat Agents. Too bad this is bad.



ItalianBaptist said:

Sounds like this would have made a better "fireworks show simulator" (something like Electroplankton i guess) than a rhythm game



JoeDiddley said:

Big Bang Mini and Elite Beat Agents (well Ouendan) are two of my favourite DS games! This looks awful.



sykotek said:

Aw, my girlfriend will be so sad. She loves Disneyland and she cried when we stayed for the fireworks show during our first vacation there. I was hoping it'd be a good game to get for her. Hopefully the review of Save the Turtles will make it worth buying?



kirbygirl said:

I played a bit of this today and I actually liked it (though perhaps partly because my 3-year-old son was sitting right next to me and LOVED watching the fireworks show). It's very simple and probably good only for short pick-up-and-play sessions)--otherwise, it would likely get repetitive. But it's also very pretty and kind of relaxing.



cheapogamer4life said:

Seen the trailer today on the Wii channel and wasnt Impressed. By the end of the review I was thinking 2 star game.
3 stars, not that far off...

Maybe that turtle game will be able to save this week DL's for Dsi owners...



JuneBelle said:

@theblackdragon: I'm still tempted just for that.... LOL. If it was 500 points, I would, probably, would have already downloaded it. 800 sounds like a ripoff. 200 sounds just right.



Adamant said:

Fireworks fans might want to give Fantavision for the PS2 a go.
Not a fantastic game, but definitely better than what this thing sounds like.



kirbygirl said:

Yeah, I have to admit that my nostalgia for Fantavision is part of what makes this game appeal to me, even though it is very limited.



Simon_Deku said:

Why didn't I convince my sister to get this? It would have benn funny if she got mad because she didn't like it.



ViperGoMega said:

I actually thought this was a good game! I think it's essence of simplicity is what makes it so fun! I would like to think of it as a puzzle type game, and I do think it is a challenging game! if you like games like Meteos then you would like this game! It's extremely fun, colorful and addictive!



hjstjk said:

Don't waste your money. I got this before I saw the review and it gets fustrating and boring after awhile.

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