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Nintendo DS Game Review

It's My Circus
Elephant Friend


Format: Nintendo DS
2K Play
RRP: £19.99
5 026555 044103
Age Restrictions: 3+
Available 19 March 2010

Not everyone can say they are Circus Friends with an Asian elephant. But you can. Care for your playful pachyderm by making sure it eats well, stays clean and healthy, and gets daily exercise. Hone your training skills to help your friend star in the greatest show on earth...

It's My Circus: Elephant Friend is a pretty impressive virtual pet game that is packed full of entertaining content.

When you start the game you can choose the name of your elephant as well as its skin colour (which can be changed during the game if you decide that having a blue elephant was a bit silly after all). You then have the option to run through the tutorial or jump straight into the main game.

The game is split into two main areas. Firstly there's the area where you can care for your elephant (keep it clean / healthy / entertained / well fed / tidy its bed / buy new clothes) and then there's preparing and performing your circus act.

Caring for your elephant is done through a section of mini games/tasks. For example to keep it clean you must engage in four acts: straightening its eyelashes, cleaning its teeth, hosing it down and cleaning its feet. The elephant will let you know if it's feeling ill / hungry / restless / dirty and then it's down to you to make sure it's kept happy.

With aspects like keeping it entertained, you can play a number of mini-games (plate spinning, painting, playing the xylophone etc) and there are plenty more to be unlocked when you have the money. You can also buy different outfits to perform in.

The main part of the game involves you training your elephant for the Big Top. You can either go to the training tent, or one of three performance tents (easy, medium or hard). However, for each tent you'll need to have more tricks in your repertoire. And, when performing for an audience, each trick you perform correctly rewards you with money (which can be used to open new tricks, clothes, activities or special food items).

Once you've bought a trick, this is added to your list of performable actions in your shows. These are picked at random and each trick involves completing a mini-game in a set time. And, depending on which level you are performing, this will decide whether the mini-game is on the easy, medium or hard setting.

Part of the fun here is unlocking all of the tricks and accessories, but once that's been achieved you'll still find it a challenge to complete all rounds in the hard level of the performance arena.

A pretty entertaining puzzle/virtual pet game that will appeal to all the family.


Darren Rea

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