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Repost: America’s Next Top Model Review

It was only a matter of time before the show branched out past the television presence that it has had for so many seasons. Well, that time had come with the release of America’s Next Top Model for Nintendo Wii and Nintendo DS.

It’s not a title most people will play, but the enormous number of fans who might also be game players will enjoy the experience of living through a virtual season of the show.

Plot

If the show has ever been watched, then the plot is known. For those who have only heard of the show, the reality tv series is about women who want to become professional models. Picked from an open casting call, a select group are brought together in a house to live together and compete week by week until one is left and wins the competition.

The Look

At the start of America’s Next Top Model, players can choose from default character models and name their character. From then on, the camera is mainly a 3/4 overhead view of the title except during the various competitions and challenges.

America’s Next Top Model isn’t the best looking Nintendo DS title. The close-up, focused character models aren’t highly developed and look like an early PlayStation title. It is a little disappointing when the title is very fashion based, but the character models are not very detailed. The world environments are a bit bland also and the title only appears to come alive during the different competitions.

The title could have used some polish, but works well enough.

The Sound

The title doesn’t feature much in terms of sound gameplay with sparse music and most the noise of the title coming from the footsteps of the main character. There’s not much to miss though, but the large amount of walking that the title requires could have used an upbeat soundtrack.

Function

While the visuals and sound are average, America’s Next Top Model is impressive on the level of focus on the gameplay for the title. The importance for the model everyday is the appearance, health, and hunger. Through the use of a PDA, which is the menu that shows all the traits of the model, players have to maintain peak levels to remain a step ahead of other contestants.

Mini-games for exercising, photoshoots, and catwalks are all controlled through the stylus, following the on-screen prompts. There are a lot of mini-games and they all effect the success of a player’s character so learning how to perform these well is important.

Purchasing clothes is important for the weekly judge’s evaluation so keeping a stocked closet of clothes is important as well. In some aspects, America’s Next Top Model is a social media RPG because character maintenance is integral to success.

The title accurately parallels the show it is named after and that is most important.

Decisions

If you’re a fan of the show, America’s Next Top Model is a worthwhile purchase to experience the show on a somewhat more “personal” level. It’s not too difficult and caters to the casual crowd well. For others, there’s not much that would be of interest. Social gaming fans would also enjoy the mini-games and casual gameplay that the title offers.

It’s not for everyone, but is a bit of an indication of how gaming and gameplay can be evolved.

Review Copy Provided by Publisher

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