Bratz: The Movie - WII - Review
I have to tell you, for a reviewer who loves horror games, I have yet to be as scared playing a game as I was playing this one. For starters, there is something really creepy to me about the Bratz dolls. Even before this game came out, I was freaked out by their large eyes completely absent nose and engorged heads. The mere fact that millions of little girls are obsessed with them was, in my opinion, the breaking of the seventh seal. And then, just as I was over my fear of them, a movie was announced about them and I curled up in a ball, a ball I tell ya, for three days. Luckily it was a live-action movie and they chose to not use special effects to show the Bratz girls' enlarged head and eyes. Even more so, the movie flopped horribly, ensuring the sequel will not get the green light. Ah, bliss. But then in a completely unsurprising turn, the Bratz Movie video game tie-in came out and became available for the good folks at Gamezone to review.
So I tell you, why would I of all people want to review this game? One reason, my niece.
"Feed that girl a taco, she's gonna blow away!"
So I handed her the game and told her to play her heart out. I did not want to influence her opinion of the game and seeing that she is one of those girls who likes the Bratz dolls, I figured her opinion would be as good as it gets, and coming from the target audience, I decided I would not be accused of negatively effecting the review, so here we go, a completely unbiased review taken from the lips of a young girl who enjoys the Bratz dolls and license.
"This sucks Uncle Mike."
I kid you not, after letting her play for little over an hour I walked into the family room and watched her play the game. Those words came out as soon as she realized I was standing there watching her play. To begin with, the game is designed to take advantage of everything Bratz. What that means to you is that you play as four different girls who enjoy shopping in the local mall. The game divides it all up by having you control different characters (Cloe, Jasmin, Jade and Sasha) as they go through the adventures of purchasing clothes and then purchasing clothes and then, purchasing clothes. Ok, you do enjoy other things like designing clothes and putting clothes on your little doggie. I'm kidding, you do more than that, but with the exception of some rollerblading and coin collecting (how original) you can see where this might bore even the most rabid of Bratz fans. Yes, there is the turn on the fashion runway as well as the music video shoot and even a career making shot to get invited to be in a movie (which eventually flops, but don't tell Jade, she's thinking it will be the vehicle for her own solo career).
One thing though, I must say I did like the level where you must take pictures of various objects that showed me there could have been more to the game if they had continued in this vein, but as it was a bright spot in the title, it quickly faded and the game went back to a more tedious gameplay.
"You know you have arrived when a semi-truck has your likeness painted on it."
Since there is a significant lack of plot other then the whole "let's shop" quest, and the design a new look thing, the developers decided they needed to come up with something redeeming to teach young girls other then it is important to be superficial, obsessed with looks and fashion. To that, they added the fact that the Bratz girls are writing reviews about the clothes they try on and buy. But this was merely an afterthought, to think that someone could do nothing but shop all day and write about it while making a living is about as preposterous as playing video games all day and making a, uh XXXXXXXXXXXX (edited by Gamezone Management).
Graphically, the game is fairly boring. The Bratz girls all seem to be the same character with interchangable head, they even stand in the same goofy model pose when you stop controlling them. There is a large and I mean large collection of clothing designs and colors in which to mix and match and if clothing design is your thing, then I would say you have found your shangra la. Otherwise, the game fails to excite when it comes to shading, texturing, and even level design. The game clearly is a port of the PS2 version and makes no bones about trying to glam things up with the more powerful Wii. The same could be said about the audio, while it is one of the better parts of the game, it still fails to excite the player or bring any sort of urgency to the title, even in situations that are urgent.
Review Scoring Details for Bratz: The Movie
The game doesn't take advantage of the Wii's strengths, presumably because it is a port from an inferior system. Playing the different girls as they roll through their adventures is somewhat dulled by repetitive gameplay and specific gaming preferences (you should like fashion and all that entails).
Just like real life (with the toys that is) you can change their clothes, hair, style, all that stuff, but it doesn't change the fact that the game simply doesn't look that good.
Some of the music has a decent beat and even some rock hidden in there, but it still fails to bring anything new and exciting to the game.
Look, you have to be some sort of special gamer to really derive pleasure from this game. There is some challenge in some of the adventures, but it is a strange game in the sense that it doesn't play like a regular game, and I don't mean that in a positive way.
I know, I know, the developers are cashing in on a license. I understand business, but even this title will frustrate Bratz fans.
I simply don't understand, I asked my niece to help me find a reason as to why this game is just so, weird, She had no answers for me, and so I will continue my journey, playing something else.