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A.P.I Review: Wheel of Fortune
Developer: Artech Studios OPTIONS: S.SHOT
No.1   No.2   No.3
Distributor: Hasbro Interactive 1-3 Player
Game Type: Quiz Memory Card
Review Date: December 1998 Dual Shock/Analog Compatible

Setting the Scene

Everyone likes to play along with a good gameshow every now and then.  Some
of them are exciting and suspenseful while others are just plain fun.  Well,
why not bring all of that fun to the Playstation?  Let's take a look at
Wheel of Fortune and see how the developers did.


Wheel of Fortune is a Playstation version of the TV gameshow. 


There is really not a whole lot to talk about here.  Most of the game is
spent looking at the Wheel or the Board and they both look like they should,
just like the TV versions.  The animation of the Wheel is acceptable but
nothing too fancy.  There are also a lot of FMVs thrown in throughout the
game to allow Vanna to talk to the contestants or for the contestants to see
the prizes.  These are o.k. but they didn't really excite me too much.  In
fact, they kinda aggravated me a little because it slows down the play of
the game.

Sounds and Effects

Not too much here either.  Wheel of Fortune isn't an action type game so
there is no need for a lot of sounds and effects.  The two biggest aspects
here are the sound of the Wheel spinning and the vibration of the dual-shock
controller as the Wheel is going round and round... Wooeee.  Both add a nice
touch to an otherwise boring part of the game.  It is also possible to turn
both of these features off in the Options menu.


All in all not a bad game, but certainly nothing to get too excited about,
unless of course you're a huge Wheel of Fortune fan in which case you have
much bigger problems to worry about.  The only big difference between the
Playstation and TV versions is that Vanna White hosts the Playstation
version and there is no Pat Sajak, not a bad tradeoff considering she's a
lot better looking.

The game comes with two different modes, Normal Game and Solo Game.  Normal
mode allows you to play just like the television version with up to three
contestants.  You can set the game for three, four, or five rounds, or ten,
fifteen, or twenty minutes.  

In any case you battle the other contestants for the most money and the 
player with the highest total at the end of the game plays the bonus 
round for the special prize.  If you only have one or two contestants 
then the computer will fill in the remaining spots.  These computer 
contestants never shut up and are extremely annoying, just like the
real contestants.  It's very realistic because they say stupid things 
and waste money buying vowels they don't really need.  

Solo mode is more like a practice mode.  You have the same options 
available to you but you play the game by yourself, no other contestants.  
You start out with a bunch of free spins and if you run out before you 
solve the puzzle, the computer solves it for you.  I found this mode 
more fun because I got to win all the money and it moves along a lot 
faster than a game with three contestants.  

Normal mode tends to drag on a bit when the computer is doing well 
because you just sit there the entire time the computer is playing.

Value for Money

If you like to play Wheel of Fortune on TV then you will probably enjoy the
Playstation version.  However, if you are not a big fan of the TV Gameshow,
then I don't recommend wasting your cash or time.  

Wheel of Fortune is not a bad game but there is little action or excitement 
to occupy someone that is not already a fan of the game.  
GRAPHICS: 13/20 I think the developers did a good job creating a Playstation version of Wheel of Fortune. Except for some minor details the two versions are very similar.

However, if the idea was to win people over to become fans of the Wheel, then they certainly failed. I do not like the TV Gameshow Wheel of Fortune and I found it hard to sit through an animated version for the Playstation.

Simply put, I found it rather boring! But hey, I'm a sports game nut so what do I know!
SOUND: 6/10
VALUE: 13/20


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