Deal or no Deal DS Review

Deal or no Deal: The official Nintendo DS Game – to give it its full title – is a game about opening random boxes, which as you probably know is based on a show where people randomly open random boxes. The real life version of the show, regardless of what you think about it, what you think of the people who appear on it, or what you think of the people who watch it, is at times exciting. Also, it has to be said that Noel Edmonds does a great job at turning a show that relies on no skill from the person playing into an exciting, and at times, must watch TV show. Even if he does get a bit over excited about the whole thing. Of course, when there is real life money at stake for the person playing that also helps build a little excitement as well.

So, for the most part the game plays just as you’d expect it to. You start of with the option to pick one box from the “22 identically sealed” available. This box can have anything from 1p to £250,000 in it. You then bring your box to the middle table, although you never actually see that happening. In fact, you just magically seem to transport there. From there you get to choose from the rest of boxes in increments as the banker gives you an offer depending on the value of the boxes you randomly take out. You can then choose to deal at a the amount given, or go on and risk ‘money’ to try and get a better deal, or go all the way to the end and open the box you picked at the start. All in all it is just like the show you see on TV, well mostly, apart from the inclusion of a rather unwelcome ‘find the mug in a box’ minigame that appears between random banker offers, and seems to serve no real purpose whatsoever.

But the biggest problem with the game is a simple one. When you take a show like this, make it into a game, take out the chance of winning any real money, not include any voice samples in the game, strip away the personality of the contestants, remove all the emotion, heartbreaking sadness and unadulterated joy. Take away the quip comments from Edmonds, remove the randomness of the banker and instead add in line after line of repetitious text accompanied by bad presentation, then you are not left with much to like. In truth, you just have a game, which is about a game about opening boxes, nothing more or nothing less, and as a result it is not thee most exciting game you could ever chose to play. This is certainly a pity, as if the developers took the time to inject some life into the game, and try and capture the unique feel of the show they could have had something worthwhile, and something that stood up well through numerous play sessions. At the very least they could have had something fans of the show would have liked. But unfortunately, the end result is no where near that. So, after all that now its time for a break, and if you want to know the conclusion to this review, and I know you do, then you will be back after the break.

You’re back. Thought you would be. Well, in conclusion, I guess there were a few nice decisions made in development, although they don’t really up the game’s appeal to any extent. One nice move was the inclusion of cartoony style characters for Noel Edmonds and the twenty-one other contestants, instead of trying to shoehorn some terrible looking 3D characters into the game. At least this makes it feel like some kind of thought went into game’s creation. There is also a Banker Mode included to let you play as the Banker and offer AI contestants money, but regretfully the contestants just seem to make random decisions regardless of what you offer. One final positive note to speak of is the two main pieces of music used – the main intro theme and the Banker theme – as they well realised and sound nice on the DS, which does strides in making the game seem official. However, with the main game having almost no personality to it, and all things considered with the whole game feeling very lifeless and devoid of excitement, there really can be no response other than “thank you, but no deal” for those even contemplating getting their hands on this title.

No really where does he get them? I want some!

3 out of 10
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