Scribble (Wii U) Second Opinion Review

By Nikola Suprak 08.02.2017

Review for Scribble on Wii U

Pictionary is one of those iconic party games that almost everyone has tucked away in a dark corner of their closet somewhere. The creators of Scribble for the Wii U looked at Pictionary and said to each other, "Pictionary is fun and all, but do you know what would be even better? Pictionary!" Thus Scribble was born, the red-headed stepchild no one really wanted. It isn't necessarily a bad game. It's just Pictionary, and little else. A bit more creativity in the core concept here would've done wonders, but as it stands, it is somewhat hard to recommend Scribble to anyone, unless they are utterly desperate for a party game.

Personally speaking, Scribble is perhaps one of the easiest games to review. Enjoy Pictionary? Great, that's basically this. It is quite easy to summarise a game when they're basically just piggybacking on the past success of something else, and Scribble is following so closely in the footsteps of Pictionary that they're basically wearing the same shoes at this point.

People are broken up into teams, one person draws a clue they're given, and everyone else has to guess it. There are some twists here and there that will be covered shortly, but essentially this is Pictionary and almost nothing else. This sounds fine, but the question arises as to why someone would want to buy this and not just get Pictionary. Scribble doesn't have a particularly good answer for this, because apparently, the entire development budget went into "being as much like Pictionary as possible" with very little left over for any original ideas.

This is the sort of game that is more boring than it is actually bad, because the simple mechanics and interface work well for what Scribble is trying to do. The artist for the round uses the GamePad to draw, and the little drawing appears on the television screen for others to shout panicked guesses at. It's possible to change the colour with a simple tap, and in a way, this works better than Pictionary, where everyone needs to crowd around a sheet of paper to try and figure out what is going on. This is one of those asymmetric multiplayer games that the Wii U almost seems intentionally designed for, and the basics here work very well. It's just a shame they didn't do enough to grow the concept.

Screenshot for Scribble on Wii U

The game does offer a couple of interesting twists. The most notable are the mutators; little changes made to the drawing process that make things more difficult. Things like Mirror or Flip alters the way drawing is done on the GamePad, so if the stylus is moved left, the line will show up as going right, or swapping up and down. It sounds simple enough, but it is absurdly disorienting and makes things considerably more interesting. Similarly, blackout will cover the screen in black ink and obscure what is being drawn, forcing the artist to look up at the television screen and hope things are working for the best. There are five of these mutators in total, and they are perhaps the most interesting thing about the game. More of these would've been appreciated, but the ones that are here are fairly clever and, at the least, do the bare minimum to make this feel like an upgrade over Pictionary.

There are a handful of different game modes and a catalogue of 1,500 words, but neither of these things really feels like enough. There are a couple of interesting modes here, including one where teams try to move across a tile grid to the opponent's side by guessing words, but, really, almost all of these boils down to the same thing and that is to draw pictures and have people guess them. That really isn't the fault of the developers here, though, and more an issue with the simplicity of the core concept. It is hard to try and elevate this into something other than "pretty much just Pictionary."

Additionally, while the number of words they give is fairly extensive, they didn't really do a great job at making most of these interesting. A vast majority of them are either usually something very simple, like a kite, with a fair number of complex or abstract concepts that no one has a chance at guessing. There are very few that find that happy medium of something fun to actually draw, and a bit more time needed to be spent making sure the list of words included in the game was a bit more creative or interesting.

Screenshot for Scribble on Wii U

Cubed3 Rating

4/10
Rated 4 out of 10

Subpar

Scribble is a perfectly adequate Pictionary clone, but not much more than that. This is the sort of game that is really only good for a nice, big group of friends, and nothing else. At the same time, though, if a group big enough to make this worthwhile did get together, there are much better games to play. There just isn't enough here to distinguish it from Pictionary, and not enough twists on that established formula to make it a must-play party game. It largely feels like the kind of game that would be on at a particularly boring party, and if someone turns this on, it might be a good time to start looking for your coat because that would be a good cue to leave.

Developer

Bear Box Media

Publisher

Bear Box Media

Genre

Party

Players

8

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date None   Australian release date Out now   

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