Big Games of 2012: Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion Draws Its Own Magic (Nintendo 3DS)

Not to be outdone by Epic Mickey 2 on consoles, the series makes its handheld debut in style.

When Epic Mickey came out for the Nintendo Wii a couple of years ago, it introduced an interesting alternative style for the legendary Walt Disney character, one with a vivid new world for him to explore and compelling new gameplay elements that let him change the world.  And though not everyone was crazy about the game being exclusive to Nintendo’s console, he certainly shook things up, opening the door for a hit franchise.  Now, in 2012, it’ll reach its fullest potential, with Epic Mickey 2 set to hit various systems, including Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.  But that’s not all – it’s coming to the 3DS as well, and is set to be better than you could ever expect.

Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion, which is being handled by the development team at DreamRift (the folks behind the Nintendo DS sleeper hit Monster Tale), won’t be a port of the original Wii game, but rather an original side-scrolling adventure where Mickey will have to fight his way through a hand-drawn world, featuring levels that are based on Disney animated films.  Not only will these include films from the past, such as Sleeping Beauty, but also current hits, such as the previously released Tangled.

Not only that, but Mickey will be able to visit a hub that acts as a home base for the levels, and they will feature familiar characters from his world, including Scrooge McDuck from DuckTales among others.  It’s not known if Oswald Rabbit, the stand-out character who was introduced in the original Epic Mickey and returning as a playable hero in part two, will take part, but we wouldn’t be surprised if he were to play a part.

Though the story hasn’t been officially unveiled for the game yet (bits and pieces of info were revealed in the latest issue of Nintendo Power), we do know that DreamRift is going for a hand-drawn approach for the game, as it will feature both exquisite sprites inspired by classic Disney cartoons, combined with beautiful scrolling backgrounds that will truly shine in 3D.