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Deal or No Deal

About a year ago, at 4:15pm every weekday (sometimes even the weekend), housewives and children would dash home from work and the school pickup, sit down in the living room with a nice warm ‘cuppa, ready to watch their favourite new game show: Deal or No Deal. It was a show that was strangely hypnotic, I myself found it extremely exciting watching contestants win large sums of money, and I found it even more amusing when they squandered it all, driven by their own greed and dreams of grandeur. The problem with Deal or No Deal is that this kind of excitement just can’t possibly be achieved through the medium of videogames. There is no consequence to losing ‘vast’ sums of virtual money, because who in the hell cares? Just try again next time, unlike in the real show, being in the contestant’s chair is not a once in a lifetime opportunity.

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Those of a weak disposition should not play. The excitement may be too much for you.

“The problem with Deal or No Deal is that this kind of excitement just can’t possibly be achieved through the medium of videogames.”There are two main game modes to choose from. The first and –if this is even possible- more attractive option of the two is ‘Contestant Mode’. It follows the basic structure of the TV show; players must pick a box at the start, and then go through other boxes in the hope that the big numbers won’t rear their ugly head too early. Now I haven’t watched the show in a good while, but I’m almost certain that there was never something called the ‘3 box trick’. You’re shown three boxes and a mug is placed in one of them. They then begin scuttling slowly across the screen, swapping places and such in an attempt to confuse the player. But with the aid of the stylus, it’s so painfully easy that you’ll just want to fail on purpose so that the ordeal is over that much quicker. None of this is helped by the sheer stupidity of the game, you know there are problems when you’re left with either 1p or 10p, and the banker offers you a pound. It’s laughably bad.

“you know there are problems when you’re left with either 1p or 10p, and the banker offers you a pound. It’s laughably bad.”So what’s more tedious and depressing than playing Deal or No Deal? Watching the computer play through it all. ‘Banker Mode’ puts players in the role of the infamous banker, which involves waiting around as the computer randomly picks boxes and you’re occasionally asked to make the player an offer. It’s the same game mode from a different, far less interesting perspective, and all the money you make goes towards unlocking games in the ‘Forfeit Mode’. Certain milestones allows players to play Deal or No Deal with friends using their own stipulations, however, it requires playing the game for an extended period of time so I strongly suggest against it. In fact, please don’t, just forget all about ‘Forfeit Mode’, you’ll thank me when you realise that there’s better things to be doing – like watching paint dry.

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Not really…

I can’t – not just as a gamer, but also as human being – possibly recommend this to anyone out there. When you’ve gone through it once, you’ve seen everything there is to see. The visuals are drab at the best of times; the soundtrack while authentic to the show has a horrible tint quality to it. This may be because of the DS’s poor quality speakers, but I like to think it’s the game’s fault somehow (it makes me feel a little better). You’re ultimately paying good hard cash for a game that can be played for free on the Internet, and for imaginary money, too. You lose if you buy Deal or No Deal, no matter how many times the game may say otherwise.

1 out of 10

The author of this fine article

is a Senior Staff Writer at Thunderbolt, having joined in May 2007.

Gentle persuasion

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