Monday, December 31, 2007

DS Review Grab Bag

I'll take a break from playing Animal Crossing to catch up on a few reviews. This time of the year is traditionally slow in terms of releases so let's backtrack a little before we get cooking again with the new stuff.

Solitaire Overload

This game would win an award in the category of "Most Accurate Title." Truly I was overloaded by the amount of solitaire contained in this cart. With over 100 versions of solitaire broken down into families you'd have to love solitaire a whole lot to consider this one. I had no idea that many solo card games even existed. If your goal in life is to enter and win the World Solitaire Championships then better grab this cart today and start training. It'll also help if your life is already all about solitaire because the instructions are pretty light for each individual game.

I've got to give this one at least a hold because you get exactly what the box describes. If you really like solitaire then this has to be a buy.

Jenga World Tour

I'll admit it: I started thinking up mean stuff to say about this title before I even powered up my DS. I mean come on a video game version of Jenga? How could this possibly turn out? I couldn't believe how surprised I was to find out that this game was even worse than I could have ever imagined. There is a special place in Hell reserved for this game. I can't figure who makes up the market for this game. I'm guessing it's three year olds who can read and spend time with Grandma in EB: "'Gramma! JENGA!' 'That's right honey! Jenga. Let's see I did say you could have one thing today. Do you want Jenga?'" Honestly, it's the only scenario I can think of that would result in a sale of this title. I'm not even going to explain how you use the stylus to take a block from the middle and put it on top. One thing I can say though; just as I was about to turn this steaming pile off I was told my next challenger was an alien from an intergalactic race obsessed with Jenga. For whatever reason I waited to see who this alien might be and what he looked like. But now that I've admitted that I hate this game even more.

Sell. And then burn the money you got for it.

Dr. Seuss: How the Grinch Stole Christmas

It's a kids sure but does that mean it has to be so very bad? Kids deserve a lot better than this. Why even bother making a Christmas game at all? Who's going to be playing this in July? Worse, I'd hate to meet the kid who's all "Mommy! It's November! Almost time to get out How the Grinch Stole Christmas for DS!" Goodness. I was almost going to be swayed on this game when I realized it was sort of a stealth game. You have to maneuver the Grinch around and steal presents without anyone seeing you do it. Sounds promising but then the goofballs wore off. Look, I acknowledge a kid might like this and the presentation isn't the worst I've seen but my point is that you can do a lot better with your DS dollar by closing your eyes and feeling around the rack at Gamestop.

I'll sum this one up with a quote from Professor Julius Sumner Miller addressing critics who thought his lectures might prove too difficult for children: "The best must be made to reach and it will serve them all their lives."


Left or Right: Ambidextrous Challenge

Played through the evaluation round and was surprised to learn that I "favor" my "right" "hand" over my "left" hand and that I'm not alone and that most people seem to "favor" a hand! Stunned I played on in an effort to correct this apparent disability but then I came to my senses and snapped this cart in half; using my dominant right hand. A disaster. I think Nintendo needs to start issuing licenses to companies looking to publish "training" games to cut back on some of this junk. Shovelware in that I want to hit this thing with a shovel.

Sell this can of garbage. Don't peel off that plastic; you'll be sorry.

Math Play

This game isn't in the same league as Brain Training in terms of quality of gameplay and training value. I will say though that parents who subscribe to Highlights Magazine for their children will probably see some value in this title. Cute little animals and fairly challenging math questions for children to chew on are the reason this game was a hit in Japan. The biggest problem is there is only one mode of gameplay: equation making. Over and over with the equation making. I bet Japanese mothers drool at the thought of having junior grinding his way through this and that's exactly what'll it be for most kids: a grind.

Hold I guess.

Back to Animal Crossing. Wake me when Advance Wars: Days of Ruin comes out.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks Von Kaiser,
I actually had jenga in my hand last week. I put it back cause i had a feeling i'd be storing it in my bathroom.