Monday, December 18

Scrooge Review: Youda Safari

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Youda Safari is a ‘point and click,’ management style arcade game from Youda Games. The base concept of the game is to run a safari park. This involves picking up passengers from the gate, guiding them to see the animals they want to see, and then taking them to exit. Obviously, there are minor challenges involved in this and you can buy additions for your park as you go along. The game does not vary at all from the general formula for this type of game, and honestly, it very quickly becomes monotonous; even moreso than other games of the basic time-management formula.

When I say monotonous, I mean that at one point I found myself more concerned about fetching some vegemite on wholemeal toast for brekkie than I was about the game. This is not exactly a coup for the game as I’m not usually a breakfast eater, or a wholemeal bread fan. Make of that what you will, but personally I found it extremely difficult to care if my character in the game succeeded or not and ended up fetching the toast with hopes that the fictional park would die.

The very first thing that caught my eye about this game was on the initial map screen. There is a map of the world with all the locked and unlocked parks marked. There is one park available for every continent of the world, except, Australia. Possibly it’s a spot of nationalism on my part, but I find myself tremendously perplexed by this omission. Especially considering that in the real world Australia garners mass amounts of tourism based on its unique wildlife. Why they would do every continent on earth, and not Australia, I have no idea. But, I suppose Aussies can take solace that we are at least visible on the map, as New Zealand and the rest of Oceania don’t even seem to have been given that amount of credit for existing.

The next thing I noticed was when it came to buying upgrades. It’s a fairly common fault in this type of game, but even if you’ve collected all the expert levels, every bonus, and completed every optional challenge – you can still really only afford to upgrade what the game dictates you must in order to continue. I ask, why not just give it to me at that point? Clearly I’m just buying, what the game says I must. There is no point to making it my choice, if I cannot actually choose. I have an insane amount of the tokens required, but the game limits the amount of coinage which is also required so that I cannot chose more than the item required for the next level. Extremely pointless, and this makes it not worth the effort of bothering with bonus points and challenges.

This game can be played online, and the Youda Games website records 4 out of 5 stars. Having said that, I tried to vote it down as I thought it was worth a 2 at absolute best, and it seems to have recorded my vote as a 4 also. Given this, I advise it’s probably best not to trust the ratings for games on the Youda Games website.

So, for the scrooge rating. Is this worth paying for on a limited budget? No. Any entertainment value available from this game wears out long before the online trial dents your internet data. Personally, I’m not convinced that this game is even worth the cost of your data.

Advice for the scrooges: If you feel you really must bore yourself with this game, then just play the online trial available on the Youda Games website.

Where to find Youda Safari:

http://www.youdagames.com/Youda-Safari-game-info-4560

http://www.reflexive.com/YoudaSafari.html?&CID=0&related=12

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