A review by Brandon Weaver
Game – Spot It! Mean Machines
Developer/Publisher – Big John Games
Version – 3DS
Time Spent Playing – 1 Hour
Price – $1.99
Obtained – Big John Games
Gameplay and Controls
The in game manual describes the game as, “Welcome to Spot it Mean Machines, where players race the clock to find hidden objects in cleverly designed levels.” It’s a pretty accurate description of the game. Needless to say the player will be racing a clock to find items that are named on the top screen and then found on the touch screen. It’s a very simple concept and reminds me a lot of the I Spy books I used to have in my youth, only in this case I’m being timed to find the objects listed. The game controls well. Players can move the camera over the level by using the D-pad, Circle Pad (for those playing on the 3DS), or slide the camera around with the stylus. The player then has to tap the object once they find it, removing it from the list on the top screen. The list has a maximum amount of objects that can be displayed depending on the games difficulty. The high difficulties will force the player to find objects faster in order to free up space on the list and get the next object that must be found. Sometimes the list will name an object and instead of having a timer on it there will be a bomb. Finding an object with a bomb icon will free up the list by blowing up the named objects around it.
There is also a multiplayer mode that requires players to swap the system between one another and find objects in the time allotted to each player. I wasn’t able to give this mode a try but it’s easy to imagine how it would work.
Visuals and Sound
Not much to say here. The levels looks like a photograph of toys set on certain backdrops. It’s sort of grainy but it is a DSiWare title so one shouldn’t expect that much out of the visuals. I will say that the levels are cleverly designed and when the game asks you to find certain objects they blend in with the background but I think that is to add to the challenge and not a mistake on the developer’s part.
Concluding Overall Impressions
This is definitely a game for the younger set or casual gamer crowd. It reminds me a lot of Where’s Waldo on the NES. I used to play that a lot as a kid. If I had grown up in this era rather than the Nineties Spot It! Mean Machines would have been a fun game for me. If you have kids this is a good game for them. If you are a casual gamer who plays in short bursts this also would be a good game as the levels are fun to replay and it takes a while to memorize where everything is. You also have ten levels to memorize so a casual gamer will get decent mileage out of this game. I prefer more depth in my gaming experience but I’m not about to judge this game just because it wasn’t built around my desires.