(DSiWare)

Game Review

Chuck E. Cheese's Arcade Room Review

USA USA Version

Posted by Philip J Reed

Cheese Louise

We're not sure why UFO Interactive bothered to get the Chuck E. Cheese license for this mirthless assortment of half-baked minigames, but we can conclusively say that it wasn't worth its time or the effort to do so. Chuck E. Cheese's Arcade Room is, in a word, awful.

The first major issue is the stingy number of games available. We're not sure how many games it takes to qualify for the title of "arcade room," but we'd certainly have expected more than five, especially when two of them feel like identical duplicates of others; thereby leaving us with an even more measly three.

Chuck E. Cheese's Arcade Room is essentially just a menu from which you select these minigames. There are a few attempts at padding out the experience, which we'll get to in a moment, but the games on offer are the main attraction, and they're uniformly abysmal. For starters, there's Basketball and Alley Roller (you may know the latter as Skee Ball), which are both controlled the same way: flicking the stylus upward on the screen. That's it.

The angle of your throw and the speed are both controlled by this single flick of the stylus, which means that once you stumble upon the correct flick to hit your target, you never have to deviate from it. In fact, you'd be foolish to, and you'll find yourself scoring perfect games almost immediately. As evidence of this, the first time we played Basketball we had a streak of 10 or 11 baskets. The second time we played we got 89 without even having to try, simply by repeating the same simple swipe. After that, there was really no point playing. Ditto Alley Roller, wherein you only need to hit the 1,000 point target once, and then just repeat what you've done until you're out of balls. It's clearly a broken experience and, as you might expect, not very fun at all.

The second pair of duplicate games are the cumbersomely named Mr. Munch Target Practice and Smash a Munch. The first one is a simple shooting gallery into which no care was put whatsoever, as evidenced by Chuck E. Cheese's Arcade Room's carefree attitude toward its spelling, sometimes calling it Mr. Munch Target Practice and other times Mr. Munch's Target Practice. For a collection that didn't provide any guidance at all in its own help file, this fits pretty well with the overall level of care invested in development. To play, you tap the target you wish to hit. You should aim a bit ahead of where your target is moving, which is probably common sense to anybody who's ever encountered a moving object in their lifetime, but since that's all the game has to offer in terms of strategy we thought it was worth pointing out.

Its duplicate is Smash a Munch, which you might recognize as a variation on Whac-A-Mole. We say "variation" because the main difference here is that it's not any fun: you use the stylus to tap Munch as he appears. If you think that's worth 500 of your hard-earned points, then be our guest and download it immediately. The small screen and slow movement of Munch make for an incredibly easy game, without any variation whatsoever.

The outlier here is a game that's alternately referred to as Jasper Racing and Jasper's Racing, because Chuck E. Cheese's Arcade Room wants to rub our nose in the fact that it really doesn't give two hoots what you think about it. In this game you control a motorbike that's driving forward: pressing A causes you to speed up, and you can also move left and right.

This is the most unique game on offer, and there are still two major problems here. Firstly, this is the only game that isn't controlled by the stylus, and since you can't even navigate the menus without it that means you'll have to put your stylus away for a quick round of Jasper Racing (or Jasper's Racing), and then dig it out again as soon as you finish, even if all you want to do is start it up again. This is a pretty unnecessary annoyance and perpetuates the feeling that you're playing a very unfinished title. The other problem is that its obstacles are randomized, meaning you can sometimes drive directly forward throughout the entire game, without having to move even once. How common could that problem possibly be? Well, we played through it four times, and that exact situation happened twice, so you be the judge.

There's also an option in the arcade to play Dress Up. Here you have a picture of Chuck E. Cheese himself that you can customize with different hats, shirts and pants. It's exactly as fun as you'd expect, and completely unnecessary. Most of his clothing is locked, but you can unlock it by buying a single item from the Shop.

The Shop contains various items you can buy with your tickets, which you earn from playing the games. Most of these items do nothing at all, so there's no real incentive to unlock them. The only one potentially worth getting is the one that unlocks additional clothing options for Chuck E. Cheese, but somehow we didn't see that as much incentive at all. Call us sticks in the mud.

There is also a section called Challenges, which sees you trying to achieve a particular score or other condition on each of the five games. The bars are set quite low here and we cleared them all the first time we tried. Our reward for doing so? Nothing, unless you count never having to play Chuck E. Cheese's Arcade Room again.

And we do.

Conclusion

Chuck E. Cheese's Arcade Room is, simply, awful. It's a meager collection of five games that range from tedious to broken, and the in-game incentives to keep playing — tickets and challenges — just serve to underscore the dullness of the experience on offer. There is nothing worth recommending here, and with far superior games available for fewer points, this one feels like outright robbery. The graphics are passable and the music manages not to be irritating, but the experience as a whole is just plain unsatisfying. Colour us cheesed off.

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User Comments (77)

nba4life

#1

nba4life said:

you said that there are 5 games but 2 of them are duplicates, wouldnt there be 4 games not 3(in the article u said 3 so im just pointing that out) wait, never mind i was counting dress up as a game.

Geonjaha

#3

Geonjaha said:

Looks at 3DSWare
Dont you ever get this bad! For the love of God, please dont!
Good Review - the only bad part of it was where you had to pay them money to review it.

@nba4life: 5-2=3

Undead_terror

#5

Undead_terror said:

as i said before:
(sings in a jingle bells rhythem)
ufo,ufo,why do you make games,they all suck,not worth time
'''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''
cant believe we had another 1 star rated game within the past month,the last was pirates assault and thats from another group

Kirk

#6

Kirk said:

So basically it's a cheap cash in to make a few bucks of casuals and numpties.

WaxxyOne

#7

WaxxyOne said:

@nba4life: Read again. They said there are 5 games but 2 sets of 2 games each are duplicates of each other.

1. Basketball and Alley Roller (Skeeball).
2, Mr. Munch('s) Target Practice and Smash a Munch.
3. Jasper('s) Racing.

This is exactly the result I was expecting. Anything with Chuck E. Cheese in the title is going to be just awful.

Geonjaha

#10

Geonjaha said:

@SanFrisco9er - It's because 0/10 isnt a possible review score. Dont make the mistake of thinking the game did anything to earn any score but the lowest one possible. :3

ADaviii

#11

ADaviii said:

Admittedly, whenever I see Chuck E. Cheese now, I think of the Olan Rogers story about it!

Apparently, the skit is more fun than the game is to play.

WaLzgiStaff

#16

WaLzgi said:

I think CB is going for the world record on the number of head traumas suffered from game reviews!

jediknight

#20

jediknight said:

That is pretty half... Not even that. A quarter... Although, this is Chuckee-Cheese We're talking about, the place where toddlers get cheap pizza and pink eye from the ball pits.

WildMan

#21

WildMan said:

Can't say that I didn't expect this. When I first saw "Chuck E. Cheese" in the title I knew it was going to suck horribly.

Morpheel

#22

Morpheel said:

Oh well...
I mean, I know you can't expect the game to be bad judging from the name and developer alone, but UFO will need to work hard if they want anyone to take them seriously now.

Kinioka

#23

Kinioka said:

500 points...Oh.
Nintendo should do something to prevent crap like this to be sold. A kid with some money to waste on eshop may buy this.

Odnetnin

#24

Odnetnin said:

"To play, you tap the target you wish to hit. You should aim a bit ahead of where your target is moving, which is probably common sense to anybody who's ever encountered a moving object in their lifetime, but since that's all the game has to offer in terms of strategy we thought it was worth pointing out."

"There is also a section called Challenges, which sees you trying to achieve a particular score or other condition on each of the five games. The bars are set quite low here and we cleared them all the first time we tried. Our reward for doing so? Nothing, unless you count never having to play Chuck E. Cheese's Arcade Room again.
And we do."

I was reading this review while eating lunch, and twice I stopped to read these quotes aloud. These are great bits of comedic writing, Phil. Cheers.

Zzyyvux

#26

Zzyyvux said:

I expected this when I first saw that it was coming out. I hate it when people make pathetic games like this and clog up the shop with them.

x10power

#28

x10power said:

So this is among the levels as E.T. and Super Man 64. I played E.T. but I never played superman 64.

warioswoods

#29

warioswoods said:

Showbiz Pizza (later consolidated / renamed to Chuck E. Cheese's) used to be an imaginative concept based around some of the best animatronics ever made. I loved seeing the band play; the characters seemed real to the point of being wonderfully creepy. The arcade wasn't half bad, either.

But this game?

Untitled

Fatz is NOT pleased.

Prof_Clayton

#32

Prof_Clayton said:

But the eShop video made it look so good! :'(
Nice review CB, hopefully the 100th can top this one.

Klimbatize

#34

Klimbatize said:

I don't think anyone expected this to be great, but the review didn't address something I wanted to know about the game. The game is obviously meant for three to six year-olds. I have a three year old that enjoys games that are no challenge for an adult (Arcade Bowling, for example) and that we would easily say is trash. But that doesn't mean it would be awful for a youngster. I had this on my radar for him because he likes Chuck E. Cheese's and it seemed like the games would be simple enough for him to enjoy without getting frustrated.

Thinking as a child...Does the game at least make kind of a big deal when the tickets come out of the machine? Are there sound effects and music to make it resemble a Chuck E. Cheese's? Would even a kid who doesn't have perfect eye-hand coordination get perfects on all the games while barely trying?

Shotgunryugan

#35

Shotgunryugan said:

<Facedesk>

We definitely need more games like this,surely Sony and Microsoft would love games like this/obvious sarcasm.

Capt_N

#37

Capt_N said:

Chicken_Brutus is really the second online alter ego of, & created by James Rolfe.

♪He's gonna play games from the present, & past! Games that are definitely not a blast! He'd rather play, a decent game! Or at least one that's not a complete flop! He says, Why, oh why oh why,... did I take my time to review this complete slop? Cause He's Chicken_Brutus, & he likes to play bad games,...♪

Sad that these kind of games flood online shops.

Klimbatize

#40

Klimbatize said:

@HADAA Thanks, Dad!

@Kinioka Yes, but my point is that the review didn't address the game with its intended audience in mind--small kids. I mean, did anyone above the age of 8 really think they were going to like this game, or find it challenging whatsoever? Of course not. Experienced gamers are obviously not going to like this type of game, so the review could at least be helpful by addressing the game with its intended audience in mind.

ajcismo

#41

ajcismo said:

They should have a real Chuck E Cheese experience game:
1) Avoid the screaming/crying/fighting kids
2) Avoid the vomit on the floor
3) Find the lost child in the ball pit
4) Eat "pizza" without food poisoning,
and my personal favorite:
5) Teenage pizza face or actual pizza on my plate
(Notice 2 of these are similar? Just like the real game!)

XCWarrior

#42

XCWarrior said:

Why did this get reviewed before Block Factory? I'm actually somewhat interested in that being a puzzle fan.

Knux

#44

Knux said:

UNO Interactive never ceases to amaze me when it comes to failing. Amazing review, CB.

NintenDude97

#45

NintenDude97 said:

Ouch, another 1? The dsiware these days is terrible. I haven't dl'ed a dsiware game since four swords, and that was free.

Sonicman

#47

Sonicman said:

I actually find this game not that bad for a younger audience, and although I have not played this game yet (nor will ever hopefully) I can safely say it's better to give your kid this than Viewtiful Joe, trust me on this. :l

Radixxs

#49

Radixxs said:

When a review is better than the game itself, something is probably wrong.

Not when the review's written by CB.

WaLzgiStaff

#53

WaLzgi said:

@Krimbatize: Sorry, but I think your kid deserves a better game than this. This game may have been intended for little kids, but from the sounds of the review, it was more than half-*ssed and there are better options for kids that got much better scores.

BulbasaurusRex

#55

BulbasaurusRex said:

@Jamouse Because Nintendo's quality control only cares about bugs and glitches. If the game works as intended, they don't care how good or bad the game itself is.

James

#56

James said:

@XCWarrior A collection of five minigames takes less time to review than a game that lets you create your own puzzlers.

Philip_J_ReedStaff

#59

Philip_J_Reed said:

@Krimbatize:
No, the game does not make a big deal about the tickets coming out of the machine, nor redeeming them for prizes. In fact, blink and you'll miss the brief and unsatisfying animation of the tickets, which occurs mainly out of sight! The sound effects also make no attempt to sound like a Chuck E. Cheese.

You're correct that a small child might have difficulty scoring perfect games, but I can't answer for your own — or for any! — as to how much they'll enjoy swiping a stylus upward over and over again. If they will enjoy that, in spite of the broken state of the games themselves, then that suggests to me that they'll enjoy doing it in any game, and you'd be better off finding something better and cheaper.

But, again, that's just me. Reviews can't tell you what games you will enjoy...they can only explain the experience and leave you to judge how much you'd enjoy it for yourself!

Klimbatize

#61

Klimbatize said:

@Chicken_Brutus Thank you very much for taking the time to address my questions. I apologize for making you write and think about this game for another few minutes.

Philip_J_ReedStaff

#62

Philip_J_Reed said:

I apologize for making you write and think about this game for another few minutes.

Haha! No worries. I meant to reply to you yesterday but was on my phone and couldn't do so easily. I'm glad you checked back for a response, and whatever you choose to purchase I hope you guys enjoy it!

Firejonie

#67

Firejonie said:

UFO needs to stop making games like this, when I look at Chuck E. Cheese and Samurai Sword Destiny, I feel Samurai Sword would be a better game. Which in most cases is true but Samurai is still mediocre. Maybe if UFO stopped making stuff like Chuck E. Cheese and made more stuff like Samurai Sword and put more effort into it, it might be a good game. But this is UFO were talking about. Also what is with UFO's obsession with 2D plain fighting games? Both Samurai Sword and Zombie Slayer Diox both look the same, even their upcoming Johnny Kung Fu looks simular.

TheDreamingHawk

#68

TheDreamingHawk said:

Wow. I liked Chuck. E Cheese when I was little, but that was only for the sonic spinner game that had there. (Thank you SEGA!) This game just seemed terrible when it was announced. At least it isn't 3DSWare...

jgary1

#69

jgary1 said:

How hard is it to make a little kiddo game like this that doesn't completely suck? I mean, with the Chuck E. Cheese name attached ... this thing will practically sell itself. Pathetic, but completely expected.

JoeysGirl

#71

JoeysGirl said:

Showbiz was in my city when I was younger. Used to go there a lot with my younger siblings. They had better games and MUCH better prizes than Chuck E Cheeses. The pizza was good too. They should just make a game based on Showbiz. And have Mitzi take the place of Chuck. Dress her up instead. LOL

Kitsune_Rei

#73

Kitsune_Rei said:

Ouch that sounds horrible. I feel bad for any kid who uses their money for it, it seems like the only age that might enjoy it is too young to really be using a DS. I would think most kids, who have played much of any other games, would be bored by it after just a couple plays.

Birthday_Boy

#74

Birthday_Boy said:

@Fire Is there something wrong with 2D Fighters? Becaus I have been playing Street Fighter for 20 years and never did I think "This is lame"

EddieEddieEddie

#75

EddieEddieEddie said:

This is a joke, and a very bad one. This doesn't even deserve to exist, like the AVGN said in Action 52, "Was this game made by a human being?" I often question myself this. A LOT.

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