Disney Melee Mania – Early Impressions On Apple TV

The Apple TV Gaming Blog is about to fire up the Apple TV 4K (first-gen) and take Disney Melee Mania through its paces. It’s Friday morning here in the land down under, a pot of coffee has been brewed specifically for the task, and now it’s game on.

The studio behind Disney’s latest Apple Arcade outing – Mighty Bear Games – also brought Butter Royale to the gaming subscription service, and regular readers will know that ATVG gave Butter Royale the gong for best Apple TV game of 2020.

Butter Royale just gets everything right, taking the battle royale genre and viewing it top-down as a twin-stick shooter, with perfect shooting mechanics, warm, friendly food-themed weaponry, the perfect match lengths for a very more-ish gameplay loop and gorgeous, bright, cartoon visuals with tonnes of characters to unlock and upgrade.

If Disney Melee Mania turns out to be nothing more than a Disney-skinned Butter Royale, you won’t find any complaints from this corner of the Southern Hemisphere.

But will it bring more to the table than the game that put Might Bear Games on the map?

Mash that Continue button below and let’s find out.

Okay, turns out Disney Melee Mania is definitely not a re-skinned Butter Royale.

Replacing the large, open landscape of Butter Royale’s PvP shooter is a tight, arena-based playfield. Players are matched into two teams of three and then it’s on for young and old, with Disney characters from across the decades bringing their unique attack styles to the battlefield.

Buzz Lightyear has his blaster for ranged attacks, Timon has claws to get up-close-and-personal with, Elsa shoots ice crystals, Wreck-It Ralph smashes it up Hulk-style in pixelated glory – you get the idea. Rather than equipping characters with different weapons that suit your play-style, as per Butter Royale, Disney Melee Mania is about finding the character with the skillset that suits you. Being a twin-stick shooter fan, so far my favourite is Buzz (although I just unlocked Ralph and he is coming a close second).

Characters also have secondary and super attacks, all of which are a joy to discover, and time on the battlefield will earn players experience points with which to upgrade characters, and a collectible currency to spend in the shop.

Fear not though, Apple Arcade games have no in-app-purchases, so anything bought in the shop is strictly done using collected in-game currency.

I’ve seen two game modes so far, with perhaps more on the way – Team Rumble and Spotlight Dash.

Team Rumble is all-out warfare between two parties of three, with points earned for knockdowns, while Spotlight sees players capturing an area and holding it to collect points. In both modes, the team with the most points when the clock runs down wins. Simple.

And both are a lot of fun.

These are very early impressions, but it seems Mighty Bear Games still had plenty of special sauce left in the tank after Butter Royale, and the studio has applied it liberally to create a superb quality one-more-go multiplayer brawler for Apple Arcade.

Okay, I’m going back in.

I really want to unlock Eve.

If you’re new to The Apple TV Gaming Blog (ATVG), or just new to Apple TV gaming in general, or both, then the best place to get acquainted is this recap of Apple TV gaming in 2021. You’ll find a great collection of games to play, and a bunch of useful links to previous site content. Welcome aboard. Enjoy the ride.