I took a casual walkthough of my Wal-Mart, and wrote down the most aweful games we have in stock. Take a look at what gets put on shelves, and what some poor dumb saps may actually purchase:
Imagine: Party Babyz
The funny thing is, to my great amazement, IGN gave it a 7.5. Ubisoft has crapped out a whole like of "Imagine" games aimed at young girls. This one lets you be a babysitter! Others cast players as a wedding designer, ice skater, doctor, and more. Ubisoft seems to be the only one trying to heavily hit a young girl audience, but is any of this stuff any good, seriously? Perhaps I'm casting myself as against change and expanding gaming so there is something for everyone, but I just cant take this stuff seriously, and I gag that this stuff is on the same shelf as Call of Duty.
Jillian Michaels Fitness Ultimatum 2009Oh boy oh boy oh boy! Now if Richard Simmons would hurry up and make a Wii game that uses the balance board too, my living room Wii fittness regimine would be complete. Since actually going outside to excercise is too hard, this game lets you pretend by excercising inside while the activities onscreen make you forget your not actually rowing a canoe. One reviewer states, "The developers could have used some coaching and beatings by Jillian to get this game into shape. Visually it doesn't look like a Wii game, and it barely makes use of Wii's motion controls." Official Nintendo Magazine UK flat out says its broken. But are the people who buy this the type to look at reviews and make informed decisions? Probably not.
Golds Gym Cadrio Workout:
It's generally agreed upon that most liscensed games suck, so seeing the kind of marketing move that got Golds Gym involved in a game automatically triggered my gag reflex. However, if Metacritic can be trusted, this is actually the fitness "game" to get. One reviewer writes, "For me, someone who tries to exercise as regularly as possible, it was something refreshing and new, and I’ll definitely keep it up; also, the discounted $30 price point is more than a fair deal for the hours of exercise you will get out of it." The user reviews were also pretty high. So, for once, our deeply instilled expectations may be wrong (on this one, at least), who knows?
Guinness World Records: The Video Game
Really? A mini-game collection about "breaking world records?" I expected blasting reviews, and this one to be another shovelware collection, but it pulls a modest 67 metacritic average. It even sports leaderboards (Oh wow! No Way! I guess with Nintendo's Online, that must be a big deal). I'm sorry, but this who game looks incredibly lame, and even as a 8-10 year old I wouldn't want to touch this. At least it isn't a Spongebob game... (love the cartoon, but don't get me started on the games)
Dancing With the Stars: We Dance!
Thank you Activision, oh Thank You!!! For those who just can't get enough of the show, now its possible to dance around and be every bit as beautiful and athletic as those on the show! This must be the best game ever! Well, I tried to find out, and it turns out that, even though the game released on October 21, 2008, NOBODY has reviewed it. No reputable reviews are on metacritic. Its simply not worth wasting the time over. Its sad when the best thing about the game is the front cover of the case...
I think I can make a case from these examples of the pollution the Wii is causing. If game companies want to reach a larger female audience, I don't care, but surely they can do better than liscenced shovelware, and, as always, all customers need to be aware of what they are buying so we don't see an ocean of this stuff.