(Disclaimer: review code provided by Sony for review purposes)
The board game-style Chimparty comes to PlayStation in the form of another entry in the Playlink series. Up to four players can take part in this chaotic board game experience. Once again, competitors must download the app on their mobile devices for Chimparty. Once connected to the game on your PS4, players will be assigned a colorful chimp and can snap a photo to go on the scoreboard.
Just like it sounds, Chimparty is meant to be a mix of party-style minigames that players will compete in across a game board. Instantly, the comparisons to the series of Nintendo’s Mario Party games comes to mind. When that happens, Chimparty, widely pales in comparison.
The method of playing the game board is odd. Only one player rolls the dice each turn to move. It is always the player who is in the last place on the board. Since this is a single six-sided die, most times the four players will stay grouped together as they move along the board with the last player always playing leapfrog as the die is cast. Multiple people also can’t be in a single space. So, the player that is moving will just bounce off of any chimps in upcoming spaces in order to move to the next one in succession that is available.
Additionally, the six-sided dice doesn’t actually go up to six possible spaces as there was always a special character on one side of the dice. For instance, one part of the board features ghosts. If the dice landed on the ghost then the players would be forced to move backspaces and a ghost would manipulate the minigame.
So, let’s talk about those minigames. The minigames are single button games that simply require you to push it at the right moment. Sounds easy right? It’s actually not as easy as it sounds. In one game, a gauge will move around your chimp determining the direction and speed of how far your chimp launches in order to try and make a basket. With this particular game, it is pure chaos as all four chimps are trying to make as many baskets as possible. With the previous example of adding the ghosts to the mix, ghosts will fly around and attempt to block or hinder the players’ shots into the basket.
Other minigames will involve the chimps doing handstands and rapidly swaying from side to side. Whichever way they are leaning is the direction they will flip. Hitting the button at the right time is challenging, but not necessarily in a fun way. It actually became frustrating for myself and the other player I played this game with doing these types of games over and over. The mundane action of hitting a single button while feeling tricked by the speed and visual chaos of the game just became more irritating than anything when my chimp didn’t go the way I intended.
All in all, Chimparty was a difficult game to grasp. Half the time it was difficult telling what was even going on with each of the board game’s spaces, and the “leapfrog” method of playing the board was very odd. The minigames felt more frustrating than truly challenging as players are supposed to compete against each other and not, simply, for a handle on the chaotic time-sensitive button. Your time might be better spent with Playlink’s other available titles.
Accountant by day, video games enthusiast by night. Somewhere in between all of that, I’m a husband, dad, and generally a giant man-child, too. If a game is all about action, there’s a safe bet I’m playing it. I started laying waste to virtual worlds as a youngin’ on the ol’ Atari and haven’t stopped since.