GAME NAME: Carnival Games: Monkey See Monkey Do
DEVELOPER(S): 2k Play
PUBLISHER(S): 2k Games
PLATFORM(S): Xbox 360
GENRE(S): Mini Games
RELEASE DATE(S): April 2011
The Carnival Games franchise first started out on the Wii in 2007 and was a great commercial success, moving over 6 million copies. The game hit the same casual market as the Wii Sports and Wii Play games did. 2K Play released a couple more sequels such as New Carnival Games and Carnival Games: Mini Golf, both of which were successful commercially as well. It was only a matter of time before a version of the hit franchise was released for the Xbox 360 Kinect platform given the casual appeal of the motion-capture system.
Cat Daddy Games and 2K play have brought casual gamers a brand new edition of the Carnival Games franchise, offering twenty mini-games, broken up into four different themes. There is a nice variety of games on this collection. For example, one game has players riding a roller coaster collecting coins, than the next game users hop on the back of a pig while racing around a track. Some other games include skee ball, a basketball challenge, funnel cake falls, and classics like strength test and ring toss. The avatar support in the game is a nice little touch. Being able to use yourself in all the mini games while also having friends avatars show up in some games makes for some good times. The dunk tank mini game that inserts a different member off your friends list to attempt to dunk in the water is a party favorite of ours.
For all the games completed, gamers are awarded prizes based on performance. The tickets earned can be used to purchase different avatar items for your character. Some of the items that are able to be purchased are a barker hat and suit, a robot monkey prop, and a dragon. There are forty prizes to earn in total. The downfall to the award system though is that a lot of the items cost a ridiculous amount of tickets so in order to get them all your going to find yourself playing the same mini games over and over.
The Kinect camera controls come with some good and some bad moments. Not all the mini games respond very well. For example, on the Wodin the Wizard mini game players speak to the wizard by talking at the Kinect microphone and I found myself having to get very close to the Kinetic and yell at it to even get it to respond. Also, the pig racing mini game controls were really unresponsive and hard to control. Games such as skee ball and ring toss had a really good feel to them though and could be controlled with precise responsiveness.
The graphics are average nothing too spectacular. It is very colorful fitting the carnival environment well. The audio also fits well. The cheesy barker voice and carnival noises fit the game perfectly. They get a little annoying though after an hour or two, but then again that’s probably about how long party goers are going to play the game for. The 30 achievements available for the game are mostly simple to complete. They consist of different high scores on the games and playing all the games. Experienced gamers could probably get them all in a matter of a few hours, depending how good you do.
There is multiplayer for up to two players which is fun a lot of the times, but I realized it was hard to keep both people on screen and to stay out of the way of the other persons half of the screen. It is not the best game on the Kinect for multiplayer but has its moments.
In conclusion Carnival Games: Monkey See Monkey Do is a good rent for the Xbox 360. It is fun to play for some easy achievements that can be earned in only a few hours. It has a variety of different mini games, as well as the ability to purchase items for your avatar. Most of the controls were great except for a few games. It’s a good game for playing with family or younger kids cause anyone can just jump in and know what’s going on in a matter of seconds.