My students are engaged in the activity because they are always eager to find out what the next scene will be, and how the math problems will be nestled within. They also like how within each handout I inscribe the title in a way that fits with the theme of that particular scene - another attention catching technique. And since this review activity only takes about fifteen minutes of class time, it is quick yet extremely beneficial.
From a teacher's perspective our competition is tough. Passing out a handout of 30 problems that are all in a format of 534x25= is not as stimulating in the students' eyes as playing games such as Grand Theft Auto and Resident Evil.
It is amazing the difference in effort you will get from worksheet to worksheet. Granted the amount of effort may vary immensely from year to year depending on the group of students you have.
Subtract 1-, 2-, 3-, 4-, or 5-digit number from a 5-digit number