STAFF REVIEW of The Guy Game (Xbox)

Thursday, September 9, 2004.
by RichVGS

The Guy Game Box art WARNING: The following review contains suggestive themes that may be inappropriate for some readers. It also features words such as ?assets,? ?the goods? and ?party juice? that will replace words like ?----,? ?--- ----,? and ?----- ----.?

?Tired of the same college girls showing it all on beaches across America?? It must be after three in the morning and most cable stations have sold time to the ?Girls Gone Wild? people. Are we tired of it? For most guys, probably not. Let?s face facts?sex sells. This is the reason why the cast of shows like ?The Real World? are usually full of pretty girls and boys?no one wants to see some fat slops lounging around a house (although that would be a bit more realistic). You think anyone is going to want to drink Pepsi if their spokesman was a four-hundred pound sumo wrestler? Of course not, we want someone like Britney Spears or Beyonce Knowles telling us what to drink. Finally, we have game companies getting to the act by designing characters like Lara Croft and the Dead or Alive girls in order to push more games. Then, almost two years ago, Acclaim (rest in peace brothers and sisters) decided to see just how much !&%$@#* played a role in game sales by creating a game around nudity with the release of BMX XXX. The gamble did not pay off as fans showed, by not buying this one, that a topless girl riding a bike wasn?t enough to hide a really crappy game. Well, it looks like game studios are taking another stab at the sex market with the release of three new titles. Coming soon we have Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude and Playboy: The Mansion, but now available Gathering presents The Guy Game.

Basic story behind The Guy Game is simple?there is no story. The video scenes were shot during spring break on location at South Padre Island (a popular stomping ground for Girls Gone Wild) and provide the closest thing to a storyline. Women are brought up on a stage and asked pop culture questions. If they get it right, they get to keep their self respect. If the answer wrong, they must flash ?the goods? for the male onlookers and the camera man. I was curious to know if these women won any kind of prize for getting more questions right, but I never got my answered. Basically just bunch of college kids having fun (and some booze) on the beach.

Gameplay breaks down like this. Once you?ve picked a cheerleader to represent you, its time for things to get underway. First, each player draws a card to determine rank and money awarded before the start of the game. The ranks go President, Vice President, Treasurer and A--hole (ranks are basically meaningless with only the President having some sort of important power and the A--hole?s ability to make farting sounds). Once ranks are decided, the President gets to make a rule. The game provides fifteen different rules (no player may use profanity, no first names, everyone must sit on floor, players need permission to go to the bathroom, etc.) or the President may create a rule. If the rules are broken, the rule breaker gets a penalty, which we?ll get into later.

The game is broken up into four rounds. Round 1 and round 3 are broken up into two parts: individual and team decision. In round 1, players are asked multiple choice question and are awarded points based on the time in which an answer is selected and (of course) correctness. It is also here that a player can take action against another player by picking moves such as ?head butting,? which will take additional points away from a player if that player answers incorrectly. You can also option to try for double money or choose immunity and not be penalized for an incorrect response. Once everyone has selected an answer, the game cuts to video of our host asking the same question to a young (and probably drunk) college girl. Now it?s time to work together fellas. You have to decide whether she?ll answer right or wrong. The more of you pick the correct answer, the more bonus points you?ll be awarded. The girl now answers and will either walk away victorious or have to show off her ?assets.? Money and bonus points are now awarded. Bonus points are used to move the ?Flash-O-Meter? that decides how much of the girls you see at this time. At first, ?the goods? are covered totally by a ?The Guy Game? logo, then everything is blurred out, then finally, once the meter is in the red, everything is exposed. Congratulations?we have nudity.

Second round brings a bit of action to the table. Here, the President decides which of three games players will compete in. The first involves rolling a large ball around and pushing as many little balls off a platform as possible. The second is similar to a Skee-Ball like game that has players launch balls off a platform and aim for targets representing point values. The final game option is a soccer like game where players must shoot balls into opponents? goals. If you?ve ever played Fusion Frenzy, you?ll get these games down quick.

Third round plays similar to the first one, accept instead of deciding if the girl is going to get the question right or wrong, you have to decide which wrong answer they?re going to say. Final round has the girls taking some sort of physical challenge. The players first select which girl they?ll back and then how much they want to bet on them. After the challenge is completed the final points are totaled and a winner is announced. At this point, the winner?s cheerleader will now perform a two minute exotic dance that could result is seeing some additional skin. But in order to get to the final round, you guys have to work together to put the Flash-O-Meter into the red, otherwise the game ends and you will see no nudity. Once you?ve completed an episode, you?ll unlock new videos and pictures in the bonus features area, as well as new playable cheerleaders. Also, you will have access to new episodes that will include new girls and questions. As the game progresses, the girls get hotter.

In addition to being a trivia game, The Guy Game can also be used as drinking game (I suggest having a sober person to act as referee). During the normal course of gameplay, the President will have the option (once every couple of questions and when Presidency changes hands) of selecting or creating a new rule. If a player fails to follow the rule, they receive a penalty, which in the game means nothing. The penalties are paid out in drinks if players choose. This is great news of those of you that need a reason to get slammed with your buddies on a Saturday night.

Now, in order to review this game properly, I decided every aspect of this game had to be examined. Unfortunately (or fortunately depending on who you ask), I don?t drink, so I recruited a group of co-workers from my day job to play this game in multiplayer mode. The subjects were provided an Xbox, four controllers, a copy of the game and about $80 worth of beer. The players consisted of four guys (Tom, Jeremy, Quentin and Adam), one girl (Gina) and yours truly acting as observer and referee. Jeremy, Adam and Quentin started out in game number one. After a few questions and a number of early drinks, the guys quickly got into the game. ?Thank you God,? Quentin exclaimed upon seeing some of the girls featured in the game. Gina arrived moments after the game began and watched the guys go at it. Gina was not nearly as excited as the guys were. ?This game portrays women as stupid,? Gina stated when the first round came to a close. Round 2 saw the arrival of Tom and Gina into the game and the real teamwork began. The guys became more concerned about getting bonus points and advancing the Flash-O-Meter then winning the game itself. As one of the guy stated ?No matter who wins, we all win.? The game session went on for about four hours and $50 worth of beer. In the long run, the players (feeling no pain at this point) enjoyed the game, except for Gina who found the whole thing kind of stupid and wanted to know when the women?s version of the game was coming out.

Graphically speaking, the trivial portion of the game is basic and has no real outstanding features. The video cut scenes have fantastic frame rate with almost no freeze ups. The sound falls under the same category. The background music is generic rock beats that you won?t even notice after a few minutes. The commentators can be a bit annoying in their attempts to be funny at times, but it?s not really about the humor, is it guys? Like most trivia games, it?s about gameplay, not graphics or sound.

On the discussion of gameplay, it seems that most reviewers get back to the greatness of incorporating a drinking game and nudity into a trivia game and get lost on the issue which is whether this game is good or not. Let?s look passed that for a moment, shall we. The trivia portion is standard pick an answer quickly for more points type game. The twist comes in when you gamble on the girls? answers. Similar to the television game show ?Street Smarts? or the radio segments on the Howard Stern show, players must risk points in deciding on the girls? intelligence. Cute idea, but it?s a bit overdone. It?s a bit more fun to discuss what wrong answer the girls are going to give. Overall, it?s fun?at first. A true moment of surprise occurred when a new game was started from the beginning when everyone in the room realized that the questions were exactly the same in each episode. This really takes away from the replay value when you know that once a round is played, you can?t play it again without having a major advantage. This is something that could easily be corrected with content downloading. Sure, there are questions available without video, but what is the point when you remove the nudity portion of the game, which, lets face it, is the whole point. Also, if you don?t drink, the game gets stupid real quick. Sure, there?s the desire to see the girls topless, but is it worth the $39.99 price tag? Personally, I don?t think so.

While the game becomes really repetitive, the major problem is the lack of Live support. As I stated above, downloadable content would solve the repetitive problem. Each month they could have had a download pack with new girls and new questions. In addition to content downloading, how about some online multiplayer action so gamers will always have someone to play with. Sure, you can play The Guy Game alone, but it is much more fun having some friends around slamming cold one left and right. While the feel of Xbox Live would not compare to having friends in the same room, it could provide a reasonable alternative.

To some up, The Guy Game is a decent attempt at making a game around !&%$@#* appeal, but it still doesn?t quite hit the mark. The repetitive questions in each episode give the game almost no replay value, especially if you only have a small circle of friends. This is something that could easily be corrected with Live support, but for some reason, the option was not exercised. Single player mode takes away from much of the game?s fun considering this is one to be played with friends and beer (you can play the drinking game alone if you want, but you might want to get some help instead). Finally, the price of the game is the real downfall. If Gathering had opted to go with a launch price of $19.99, The Guy Game would be a must own party game for guys the world over. But when you attach a $39.99 price tag, guys might be better off picking up some Trivial Pursuit cards, a case of their favorite brew and the latest ?Girls Gone Wild? DVD and the same effect can be reached. While this isn?t a complete disaster like Acclaim?s BMX XXX, Gathering doesn?t quite hit the mark with The Guy Game. Better luck next time.

From the Inside, Keep on Gaming!

Overall: 4.4 / 10
Gameplay: 4.0 / 10
Visuals: 6.0 / 10
Sound: 5.6 / 10


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