Game: Apples to Apples
System: XBOX 360
Review By: Illmatic
Apples to Apples is one of those board games that no matter how old you are, you can always have a good time with it. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve pulled this game out whenever friends come over and each time delivering a unique experience. THQ and Mattel have teamed up to bring us one of the most easy to learn, yet impossible to master, interactive versions of Apples to Apples. In the past, video games based on board games have not been very successful or are executed very poorly. Does Apples to Apples fall into this group, or will it prove to be better than its comrades?
Fun Factor: Without a doubt, Apples to Apples is one of the most unique and fun card games that I have ever played, right next to Cranium. The concept is simple and the possibilities are endless. One of the most unique things about Apples to Apples is that no two games ever play the same, essentially giving the game infinite replayability. The crossover from card game to video game is pretty good. All of the rules and concepts that you know and love are all here and properly executed.
Gameplay: Apples to Apples has some of the easiest rules in the card game world. Players must select one of their red cards in which they think is most like the Judge’s green card. One example is matching a red “Justin Beiber” card with the judge’s green “Handsome” card. After all red cards are played, the judge picks one card that they think goes best with their green card, awarding that player one point. The judge’s position is rotated to another person after every turn and gameplay resumes as usual. The game is won when a player accumulates 6 points.
When playing in the single player mode you will notice that the rules differ significantly than the original card game. You start the round with a green card and four red cards. The red cards have two words, one of which is blurred out. The blurred out words can be found on a matrix of letters that closely resembles a word search table. It is your job to find the correct missing word within the word matrix before the time runs out. Although this mode does give new life to Apples to Apples, it can become very frustrating during the last few levels.
The online component is arguably the best feature in Apples to Apples. Gameplay, when played with 5 other live users can be very fun and highly addictive. The classic rules can be customized to your liking, making your game of Apples to Apples truly unique and tailored to fit your play style.
Graphics: The eye candy in Apples to Apples is bright, saturated, and full of life. I wasn’t expecting awesome graphics and neither will anybody who decides to play this. The animations are cute, charming, and will definitely appeal to a younger audience. However, there aren’t many animations in the game, making the game feel a little empty in this department.
Sound: The music in Apples to Apples fits the game very well. It is smooth, mellow, and easy on the ears. My only gripe with the music is how repetitive it gets. From what I could tell it’s the same song looped over and over which never changes to a new song. Although the song that was playing was soothing, it wouldn’t have hurt to listen to a variety of tracks. The sound effects in the game are also pretty scarce. The game uses the same sound effects over and over, which got old really fast.
Replayability: In theory this game has a ton of replayability thanks to the online component, however, there was one major flaw that I encountered every time I tried joining an online match – NOT ENOUGH PLAYERS ONLINE! That’s right, finding an online match usually takes about 10-15 minutes before we had enough players in the lobby to start a match. This could have happened for a couple of reasons; the game is still fairly new, and not enough players know about this game yet. I will give it the benefit of the doubt and hope that more players eventually start playing online. The games that I played online were fun and gave me a happy feeling that I haven’t felt in an online game in a while.
Final Score: 3.5 out of 5!
Apples to Apples
MSRP: 800 MSP