Straight to the bargain bin: playing bad games so you don’t have to
I’m not a big fan of Grease. In fact, I’ve been so scarred by my university experiences that any time the megamix comes on in a club I immediately bolt for the fire exit or look for some exposed audio cabling with which to literally hang the DJ. I’m also not a big fan of motion-controlled dancing games – I’d probably rather be caught doing a Michael Hutchence than have to play one in front of a large group of people. So, naturally, I greeted the PSN release of Grease Dance with all the glee of a man with a nut allergy going down a peanut butter slip ’n’ slide. However it does also feature karaoke, so the humiliation potential is at least squared.
Ski-Doo Snowmobile Challenge
When EA secured the FIFA license it struck gold. Likewise the various holders of the WWF/WWE rights over the years. Still, I can’t help but wonder if money could have been better spent than on the official vehicles for Ski-Doo Snowmobile Challenge, as esteemed as the slope-friendly manufacturer might be. As for the game… well it’s poor, but not notably so given the context: this is actually a 2009 game surreptitiously dolled up for a European release. Naughty naughty. Other than that, the handling’s tricky, the graphics are basic, and there’s a disturbing pumping heart at the side of the screen at all times. Ours ended up breaking rather quickly.
Top Gun: Hard Lock
Why do people keep messing up Top Gun games? It’s really quite simple: make a Move-controlled beach volley ball sim that can only be played shirtless, the special edition for which comes packaged with an extra-large bottle of baby oil. Easy. Top Gun: Hard Lock is the latest in a long line to get things wrong. You don’t even get to play as Maverick or Iceman, merely some genero-pilot called Spider. In fairness, the game’s not appalling, but its Ace Combat-aping ‘over the shoulder’ camera is so shaky that I felt nauseous within ten minutes. So, on second thoughts, maybe it is appalling after all…
Abomination of the month: Greg Hastings Paintball 2
If you like the idea of having “ffft, ffft, ffft” – and only that sound – constantly ringing around your head, then by all means play Greg Hastings Paintball 2, the game with the least exciting ‘celebrity’ endorsement since… well, the first game, probably. All you do is run behind inflatable cover, spaff some coloured balls far into the distance and wait to see if you’ve Byker Groved some poor sucker. It looks abysmal, but worse is the way you can cheat by wiping off the paint if you get hit. Which is a bit like MW3 having a ‘remove bullet from skull and resurrect self’ button.