Review: Apples to Apples (XBLA)

Review: Apples to Apples (XBLA)

There’s a great knock-knock joke that I like to tell every now and then. It goes a little something…like this: “Knock-knock. Who’s there? Banana. Banana who? Knock-knock…etc.” This continues until the teller decides to change it from “Banana” to “Orange,” and the punchline changes to “Orange you glad I didn’t say banana again?” Why is this relevant? Well, I was thinking of Apples to Apples, the downloadable version of the popular board game, and realized that comparing the single player version to the board game would be like comparing apples and oranges. This, of course, reminded me of the most annoyingly wonderful knock-knock joke ever, and hey, here we are at the end of the introductory paragraph!

Apples to Apples is a great party board game. The basic concept is simple. Every player is dealt a hand of red cards, each of which contains a person/place/thing/concept/etc. and a definition of said person/place/thing/concept/etc. One person draws a green card with a word and a few synonyms for that word. The green card is displayed, and each person plays the red card that closest fits the green card played. The player who played green then chooses the best red card, and the owner of the red card gets a point. The game continues until a preset point threshold has been met by any given player, who is then declared the winner.

That’s it. It’s actually really fun, and you can get some really interesting combinations from the red and green cards and a little creativity.

The digital version of Apples to Apples does a really good job of recreating the board game. With various options, you can do local or online play. The one flaw with multi-player is that, as red cards are played, you can tell who played which card, and cheat the scoring system because of it. Having the cards shuffled before being displayed would take that out and result in the best card winning regardless of how the points stand. The single player is similar…but not similar. It’s a word find that has three words in it. You try to find the word that best matches the green card you are provided. Unfortunately, at times, the definition of “best match” is fairly arbitrary, and you end up with a wrong answer from a perfectly good answer.

The single player is a bit off-kilter for the game, and has some flaws. The multi-player can be cheated because of the flawed card submission display. On the other hand, the single player inclusion provides you value beyond simple multi-player and is entertaining in its own way. The multi-player is an incredibly accurate recreation of the board game in digital form. Apples to Apples provides a good casual gaming experience for a reasonable cost.


Multi-player is faithful
recreation of board game.
Multi-player can be cheated
because of how the results appear.
Single player is inconsistent.
75 out of 100
I'm the Ambassador of Kickyourassador. I am the Walrus. I'm on a highway to the Danger Zone. I am the Kwisatz Haderach.I do things with words that have a generally geeky gist.

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