Electronic Arts had no problem showing its might on the Electronic Entertainment Expo show floor this week, with a variety of titles set for release over the next year, including the incredibly popular Star Wars Battlefront and upcoming sequels like Mirror’s Edge Catalyst and Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare 2.
However, tucked away in a small corner of the company’s booth was its mobile division, where it showcased upcoming sports games like Madden Mobile and FIFA. The real highlight, though, came with the debut of a new free-to-play game that’s sure to be a hit with kids and casual audiences alike – Minions Paradise.
This release ties in with the forthcoming animated film Minions from Universal, which will make its debut in theaters next month. The prequel follows the adventures of the gibberish-talking assistants who find themselves supporting a new client, a female villain voiced by Sandra Bullock.
For their game debut, Minions Paradise introduces an open-world dynamic where players can unlock new activities on a tropical island, bringing in new minions to help out with menial tasks, such as resourcing materials like bamboo and breeding piranha (with the help of a turkey on a fishing lure, of course).
The game is set up on a very fair structure, with the option to buy secondary items with real money, but also opens up a number of fun activities, such as taking part in a water skiing mini-game or watching the minions react to any given task, such as one causing an accident with another when he accidentally harvests one of his bamboo walking stilts.
Mike Rasmussen, the general manager on the project, explained to us how Minions Paradise came into fruition. “This is a really close partnership with Universal and Illumination Entertainment, and what we did is we just came to them and said what we think our players want to do is have close interactions with the Minions,” he said. “We think they want to have the ability to see the Minions’ animations in almost everything that they do. So they really liked that idea and worked very closely with us to see all the animations in the game. They were very involved.”
“It’s a very close partnership, for sure,” he added.
Rasmussen also touched upon the open world, which gets even larger depending on what progress players put into the game. “That was part of the game from the very beginning,” he said. “It was about immersion. In fact, we talked about how one of our core points was Minions, Minions, Minions. They are coming to this game to play with their Minions, so we must deliver on that, or we fail. It’s about immersion into this amazing universe that Universal and Illumination have created.
The Minions have already begun taking over the world, as Paradise is already out in some foreign markets. It will release in other markets soon, which gives fans plenty of time to finish up that tiki bar before they take over.