Scene It? Box Office Smash Review

Lee Abrahams

Quick, who played Frankenstein’s creation in Mel Brooks’ 1974 horror-comedy “Young Frankenstein”?

Did you not get the above question right off the bat? Well don’t feel bad, as there’s a wide variety of movies included in this game, ranging from the 1957 classic “12 Angry Men,” to the pop-culture phenomenon that is “Shrek.” With all these titles, you’re bound to know a few answers without needing to be a movie buff………hang on, isn’t this sounding pretty damn familiar? (Flips through some old reviews) Whoops, my bad it would appear that I’m just ripping off the original Scene It review. Funny that – as you’ll get the exact same feeling when you play the game.

Now don’t get me wrong I am a HUGE movie fan and any chance I have to display that nerdish backlog of knowledge (and humiliate my nearest and dearest at the same time) is one to be cherished. However, a movie quiz game seems oddly out of place on the 360, especially when you consider that you can get the exact same game in DVD form for a fraction of the cost. Microsoft have gone all out to try and make their console more family friendly but surely this cash-in is a step too far?.

Hands up if you think you’re a Mii.

The premise of the game has remained pretty much the same, you can play against up to three friends on the same machine, or go it solo in true Comic Book Guy tradition – assuming your knowledge outweighs your friends list, in the bid to be crowned the movie king. You’ll face a variety of questions over a series of rounds, with points being scored for right answers but even more points for getting them correct in the fastest possible time. The questions themselves cover all genres and age groups so even your grandma won’t have too many problems recognizing most of the films on offer. However, once you’ve played the game a few times you’ll notice older questions starting to creep in and the game becomes one of memorization rather than knowledge – a major gripe as it dramatically reduces the fun that you can have.

If you didn’t buy last years version then you can always buy the game with a set of four big button controllers thrown in – this adds to the fun as it gives the game a real quiz show feel. My only concern being that the infra red control box is sometimes a bit picky about what it detects – if you aren’t sat straight on to it or have a fairly cluttered room then it will struggle to pick up some of your responses. This phenomenon is thankfully quite rare but noticeable enough to be annoying. Other than for this game the pads are largely useless though so it would also be nice if MS could try and branch out and release a bit more of a variety.

Juno? JUNO! Crap I pressed the wrong button.

There’s been a couple of major changes for the better in the form of online play and the potential for downloadable content – both of which are more than welcome. However, the online mode suffers from the same drawbacks as the main game and players will often quit if they are getting beaten (though that’s more a general scourge when playing online). Extra content would be a welcome addition but surely this game itself should have gone down that route? With the title feeling like little more than an expansion pack, it should have been available as DLC; not to mention the fact that the price aspect could quickly come into play – how much would another 1000 questions be worth and would they just be mixed in with the old questions that you’ve seen and answered a hundred times? Until more concrete information emerges then it’s hard to get excited.

It’s hard to criticize this game graphically as most of what you’ll see on screen is taken directly from the films in question. However, a nice option is that the game allows you to use your new Avatar – presumably so it can lay the virtual trivia smackdown. Other than that the backdrops are pretty bland and a few doodles aside it’s hardly going to blow your mind. The annoying commentator/host has been dusted off though and his voice soon starts to grate as crappy clichés and gags are repeated over and over again – if only you could mute him but alas not.

Rolf Harris would be proud.

People had the full 1000 in this game within a day or two of its release so don’t go expecting a challenge. Even if you restrict playing this game to solely family occasions it will still grant you points thick and fast, so if you set out to complete it you can probably do so within a matter of hours. The only slightly tricky part could be the online aspect as there are some real nerds out there just waiting to trash you – but set up a boosting session or challenge some dumb friends and you’ll be cruising. It’s also worth noticing that you can no longer pause the game, find the answer and then resume which is a relief as it means some modicum of skill is now required. My biggest disappointment is that the list is almost identical to the last title and very little thought seems to have been put in to improve it.

This is a great party game and one that the whole family can enjoy, however aside from a few bells and whistles you’d be better off just buying the DVD equivalent to be honest. All this is at the end of the day is a glorified questions pack with online play and you’ll soon grow tired of it. Play the game four or five times and the questions will soon start to repeat making the whole thing feel like a waste of money – after that point the game will be relegated to the shelf to gather dust. If the promised downloadable trivia packs ever arrive then this could be a different proposition but that’s more a case of time will tell so I’d hold off until then.

As with the first game, the commentator will soon begin to get on your nerves as he repeats the same lines over and OVER again. Would it have hurt to provide him with more than ten lines of dialogue?.

Not a lot they could do here as most of the stuff is taken directly from films or promotional materials, however the doodles are cute and the backdrops suitably film oriented..

Press a button to answer questions – it’s not rocket science and the only fun resides in seeing a film clip that inspires warm (or comical) memories. It soon gets old and is the kind of game you unwillingly play with your family because your mum loves it.

A fun quiz game that has a plethora of questions to test even the most anal of film critics. However, it’s really only suitable for two or more players and as such may end up gathering dust.

The achievements here are generic and pretty easy, even without the old pause and check IMDB trick. Frankly they could have spruced up the variety as this is almost a carbon copy of the last outing.

Still a fun movie game but one that is little more than an add on pack to what has come before. Surely it would make more sense to release new questions as DLC rather than releasing an unnecessary, and overpriced, new product that has very little in the way of extras. The online mode is a nice addition but is simply not enough to warrant a purchase .

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