10 Best Disney PlayStation Games
For years, popular Disney games that appeal to players of all ages have been successfully released on PlayStation consoles.Among the iconic Disney P...
Among the iconic Disney PlayStation games are Kingdom Hearts and Disney Infinity.
Further notable Disney PlayStation games include remastered versions of The Lion King and Aladdin, Disney's Extreme Skate Adventure, and Disney Dreamlight Valley.
To PlayStation and beyond! For children who grew up in the 90s and early 2000s, Disney and Pixar movies were an integral part of their childhood. In conjunction with the groundbreaking gaming platform that the PlayStation 1 and PlayStation 2 represented, popular films from Disney seemed like a natural complement to Sony's growing fan base.
Naturally, the partnership between Disney and Sony did not end with the beginning of the 21st century. From action-packed first-person shooter adventures to immersive simulated worlds, Disney PlayStation releases continue to deliver for players of all ages. Here is a list of some of the finest and most iconic Disney PlayStation games.
10 Kingdom Hearts
Few original game soundtracks are as recognizable as the introductory piano tones of "Dearly Beloved". The first installment of Kingdom Hearts, released in 2002, was a somewhat peculiar blend of Final Fantasy anime and old as well as new Disney films. The story essentially revolved around the idea that characters from Disney movies lived in different worlds (depicted as floating sky islands within a mysterious ether of asteroids and collectible emblems) that needed to be liberated from dark forces intent on stealing the hearts of some strikingly familiar-looking princesses.
After several sequels, prequels, and semi-independent continuations, Kingdom Hearts continues to enjoy great popularity as each new game introduces new Disney characters and worlds. The storyline may not make much sense, but who cares when you can fight alongside Hercules?
9 Disney Infinity
A relatively short-lived game (but a fantastic one), Disney Infinity was a blend of action-packed adventure gameplay, the construction of Sims-like worlds, and the collection of characters and items. First released in 2013, Disney Infinity introduced players to a series of quests that thematically aligned with some of the main franchises (examples included The Incredibles, Star Wars, and The Avengers). Apart from the main story missions, players could design their own fully customizable maps filled with movable vehicles, buildings, and Disney character Amiibos.
In a brilliant manner, Disney Infinity seamlessly incorporated its then-new trinity of Disney/Pixar films, Marvel movies, and Star Wars trilogies into its gameplay. Unfortunately, Disney Infinity and its associated production studio were discontinued in 2016. This discontinuation was indeed a significant disappointment, especially considering that the collectible Infinity figures (1) were not inexpensive to acquire and (2) essentially became useless once the studio closed. Whether for better or worse, Disney certainly knows how to entice its fans to spend money.
8 Star Wars: Battlefront
Alright, yes, this inclusion may seem a bit far-fetched in a post about Disney PlayStation games, considering that Star Wars was acquired by Mickey and his friends only in 2012. However, when discussing the revamped version of Star Wars: Battlefront, released for the PlayStation 4 in 2015, this game certainly deserves its spot on the "best-of" list.
Designed as both a single-player and multiplayer shooter, Battlefront allowed players to engage in battles as part of the Rebel Alliance, the Empire, the Separatists, or the Clone Army of the Republic on a multitude of intricately crafted and highly diversified maps. Through accumulating enough kills during a battle, you could upgrade your nameless soldier into a recognizable Star Wars character. Nothing surpassed the thrill of annihilating Stormtroopers with Luke Skywalker's green lightsaber (or Darth Vader's red one if you leaned toward the dark side).
7 The Lion King And Aladdin Remastered
Indeed, technically speaking, both games were originally released in the 1990s on the Sega Genesis and SNES. However, they were also bundled as a (surprisingly affordable) remastered package for the PlayStation in 2019. Based on the successful animated films, The Lion King and Aladdin formed a duology of single-player games in the style of Super Mario, where players guided Simba and Aladdin through levels that mirrored scenes from the movies.
An unforgettable challenge in The Lion King game was the level "Hakuna Matata," where players had to guide Simba to jump over a downward-moving waterfall. Caution: The familiar instrumental refrains of "it means no worries" playing in the background can feel particularly mocking when you're already frustrated at this stage in the game.
6 Epic Mickey 2
Arguably one of the more creative Disney PlayStation games, Epic Mickey 2 revolved around Mickey Mouse navigating through Wasteland, a place that essentially serves as a dark, corrupted version of Disneyland. While the first Epic Mickey was released exclusively for the Nintendo Wii, the sequel arrived on the PlayStation 3 in 2012.
With the help of his magical brush, Mickey's task is to restore familiar rides and locations to their former glory. By solving puzzles using either restorative paint or erasing thinner, players could (quite literally) bring to life some of the most beloved animated scenes and characters from the Disney franchise.
5 Toy Story 2: Buzz Lightyear To The Rescue
Following the impressive success of the first two Toy Story movies, children of the nineties had the joy of experiencing this action-adventure game. With the beloved space hero taking the lead as the sole playable character, Buzz Lightyear to the Rescue guides players through numerous intricately designed environments originally seen in the film Toy Story 2.
What set this game apart from other more typical video game adaptations of Disney movies were the creative side quests in each level (where are Bo Peep's sheep!?) and the playful perspective in toy size on a surprisingly large and eerie suburban backdrop.
4 A Bug's Life
Similar to Toy Story 2: Buzz Lightyear to the Rescue, A Bug's Life faithfully adapted the film of the same name into a level-based video game. With gameplay very similar to its aforementioned counterpart, A Bug's Life allows players to relive the story as Flik in some of the most memorable scenes from the movie.
From recruiting circus clowns to avoiding giant birds, Flik proves that it's sometimes worth stepping out of line (or the ant line, in this case) to achieve greater and better things in the long run. A particular highlight was the level where Flik leaves Ant Island by riding on a dandelion. Who would have thought that random gusts of wind could have so much power?
3 Disney's Extreme Skate Adventure
In the midst of the Tony Hawk: Pro Skater era, Disney released a more child-friendly version of the skateboarding game. Similar to the Tony Hawk series, players could choose and unlock a variety of Disney characters, as well as wear customizable clothing, to take on various skating challenges in different "lands."
Between Tarzan, Toy Story, and The Lion King (all big successes in Disney's film lineup in the 1990s and early 2000s), Disney's Extreme Skate Adventure offered a variety of creative levels aimed at an audience with slightly less interest in the adult-oriented direction and difficulty of the Tony Hawk franchise.
2 Disney Dreamlight Valley
The latest addition to Disney's PlayStation repertoire offers a relaxed fulfillment game based on a variety of characters living in Disney Dreamlight Valley.
As new players discover early on, Dreamlight Valley was once a refuge for many familiar faces - think Ariel, Elsa, and Donald Duck, to name a few - who lost their memories during a fittingly named catastrophe called "The Forgetting." As the leader of this once-thriving kingdom, your highly customizable avatar works to rebuild houses, cultivate fields, cook meals, and mine gems that slowly bring life back to the valley. Uncle Scrooge's store is especially enjoyable, as the inventory is updated every 24 hours.
1 Disney's High School Musical: Sing It!
Remember karaoke when you actually had to insert a CD into one of those standalone, giant speakers with blurry blue screens that displayed the song lyrics? That's essentially the concept that Disney's High School Musical: Sing It! builds upon with this themed singing competition game based on the successful Disney Channel movie.
Players could express their heart as soloists or ensemble members in songs like "We're All In This Together" and "Get'cha Head in the Game". If you played this game, there's a good chance you knew the accompanying dance moves just as well as the songs themselves. Pure adolescent fun.
The PlayStation undoubtedly has an extensive collection of industry-changing games and characters. But similar to its presence in theme parks and movies, Disney also brings a small, unique, and nostalgic magic to the vast gaming platform.
This magic is exactly what makes it so painful to remember that the 35 Disney Infinity figures are forgotten in the closet. Sometimes dreams of the return of products from a now outdated game really don't come true.