Rio, a game about a blue macaw who couldn't fly, was a decent animated movie for the younger crowd that came out earlier this year. As an animated film, a tie-in game was inevitable; instead of going the typical platforming route, however, the game was developed as a multiplayer minigame compilation title. The result is a decent, but not terribly good, game for younger gamers.
There are four game modes to play through: the main story mode will see you play minigames from a number of locations featured in the movie, from snowy Minnesota to the gloomy bird-smugglers' hideout, to the bright lights of Carnaval. As you win games, you progress through the plot, with brief (very brief) cutscenes from the movie to connect the two. Don't expect a rehash of the film's plot, though.
The other three modes are more for quick, pick-up-and-play games with friends, whether you're randomly grabbing minigames from a spinning board or trying to win minigames to get enough monkeys in your conga line, if you just want to play some games then this is what the modes are here for. Gamers can pick their favourite character from the film to play as, listening to them throw out one-liners every now and then as they win or lose matches.
The game boasts over 40 minigames on the back of the box: while this is technically true, a lot of the minigames share some easily-noticeable similarities. For example, in one level, you'll be throwing snowballs to get the most points, while another level will have you throwing mudballs to dirty your opponents while trying to stay clean. There are also a multitude of musical chair-style minigames, where you try to collect fruits before jumping onto a pedestal or into a barrel when the music stops. And there are a whole lot of musical rhythm minigames.
Mostly, it's this repetition of minigames that is the title's greatest failing. The graphics are bright and colorful, the games are decent, though not exciting, and the music is catchy and varied enough. Playing the same games over and over again can get a little tiring though, especially as they tend to be fairly simplistic, with only one or two buttons ever required for each of them.
There are better minigame titles out there to play, but Rio is a good enough choice if a young one you know has played the rest. It won't hold the interest of a seasoned gamer at all, but when it comes to someone a little younger, the colorful graphics and simple controls could be a good match.