Disney was at the height of its renaissance when The Lion King was released in 1994. This movie took on a life of its own, spawning sequels, tv shows, an award-winning Broadway musical, and more. To this day The Lion King is celebrated as one of Disney’s best movies, and it absolutely deserves its praise. But with a hit animated movie comes the inevitable — a tie-in video game.
The Lion King, a side-scrolling platform-based video game, follows Simba as he grows from a young lion cub to the king of Pride Rock. The game was released on the Super Nintendo, Sega Genesis, MS-DOS, Amiga, Sega Game Gear, Master System, Nintendo Game Boy, and the Nintendo Entertainment System. This game has also been re-released for the Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 — though I played mine on the AtGames Legends Cabinet. The game plays exactly the same regardless of how you play it.
The graphics in The Lion King are bright, colorful, and really do their best to reflect the beauty that is The Lion King. Visually there’s little wrong with this game. The soundtrack is largely forgetful and can be drowned out pretty easily, and the call-outs in this game are simply re-purposed sound bites from the movie.
But what about the gameplay? This is a fairly standard side-scroller. While this game isn’t insultingly easy, it’s also not remarkably hard either. It’s a perfect balance and players will need to focus on the game to advance levels. As a child, I felt the game was harder than it needed to be. Now as an adult, I can admit it is a game you can’t just rush through — and that’s great! The satisfaction players will feel once they hear Simba’s roar on Pride Rock is satisfying.
Is it Investable?
Currently, there is not a lot of data for sales on The Lion King. A Super Nintendo version, with a WATA grade of 9.4, sold for $540 in November of 2021 — this is a steep drop from the $2,040 price a WATA 9.2 got in September of 2021.
Is this game worth investing in? That’s a tough call. Until more are sold at auctions, we won’t see a clear picture. But if you’re a Disney, video game, or Lion King collector, this would be a good addition to a collection.