Review by HPFreak623
A Fashion Disaster
Somehow I have ended up with a copy of Project Runway for Wii. I'm not sure how but I did and I decided to take it for a whirl. If you're a fashion enthusiast or even a fan of the show you may think it's a game that you'll like, but how well does the show transition into a game? Let's find out.
Project Runway loosely tries to base itself on one of the seasons from the show. Which one? I can't tell you. I tried to look it up but their website is a complete mess. Not important. What is important is how little production value was actually put into this game. Starting with the main menu, we see Heidi Klum and Tim Gunn standing next to each other and even that looks bad. Kind of looks like they were cut out from a magazine and pasted into the game. The game hardly uses actual game rendered graphics. Either everything is a still picture or video of the show. So essentially they took the easy way out and put forth little effort and it shows.
You have a choice between playing the season or going into the Fashion Studio. There's also the quick play option that allows you to try out different aspects like the catwalk and posing. Heading into season mode will make you choose a difficulty setting and then give you eight clothing styles. This is essentially the entire game in front of your eyes. Once you finish these eight styles you're pretty much done with the game or you have the option of replaying all of them again in a new season.
Picking one of the styles brings you to the working room. The game will tell you exactly the articles of clothing and designs to put on the clothes. They call it the recipe. While designing you have two bars. A green one, which shows how well you're following the recipe and how well your design looks. The red bar is your timer. I did notice the timer falls faster in Hard mode which actually adds a bit of challenge to the game but not much. You follow the recipe, and then you have to take initiative and pick out some decals to help your design bar raise. After you're done with that you move on and get to pick your model. The models are all generic. They're given a name, a brief bio, age and what country. From my play time though it really didn't matter what model you picked they were all the same just different skin tones.
Next you have to put makeup on them. Again they'll tell you what you have to put on the model, then expect you to go the extra step and do the rest to raise your design bar. Applying makeup doesn't take any skill. Say you were applying lipstick. You'd choose the color and then they make a dotted line around the lips. All it takes is for you to scribble all over her lips until the makeup is automatically perfectly applied. I know they're trying to make it interactive but if you're going to auto-apply the makeup after a certain amount has been covered you might as well just only have to choose the color and let them do it. I think it'd be more fun if you had to try and apply it and ended up sending the model out with messed up makeup.
After applying accessories to your mode the next step is the catwalk. The catwalk is probably the most interesting and fun aspect of the game but that really is not saying much at all. You can play the catwalk part with a Wii Balance Board if you have one. Sadly, I do not. So, my experience is straight Wiimote+Nunchuck setup. To start off you'll have to walk. This is done by following the beat and on-screen prompts. Striking poses is also done by following the on-screen prompts but no beat. When you don't have to keep the beat I noticed for the on-screen prompts you don't necessarily have to follow the prompts. I actually air-drummed my way through it to the song on my MP3 player and only missed one prompt.
It's all fairly simple stuff and is rather boring to have to sit through. After your catwalk the judges will rate you. No creativity was put into this as again, like the title screen, the judges are cut out and just slapped onto a background. When the judging is done you'll get a star rating out of five for each section and an overall rating. Hard mode is the only one you have to worry about. If your overall rating is anything but five stars you have to retry the style you just completed. Unfair? Probably but it really is the only challenge this game offers.
As if that wasn't enough, some of the loading times on the game can be terribly long. There's only a handful of audio clips and uninspired music which you'll hardly notice playing half the time. The actual in-game models that use polygons to be rendered look ugly and their animation when walking looks like they have a stick shoved up their butt. The other options aside from the season are just sections of the designing phase that you can play for high-scores. You can unlock some pictures and video clips but nothing special needs to be done to do it. Just play through the season.
Overall, Project Runway is not enjoyable. If you like fashion theres a small chance you might like this game but even when I got my sisters, who enjoy fashion to play, they weren't too thrilled with it. Low production value and unnecessarily long loading times don't help this game. It'd probably be a bit better if the game didn't use so many still pictures and actually rendered everything themselves. I do think a two-player mode should have been added into the mix too. Would have at least allowed for some competition to give the game some replay value because the game has none as it stands.
Rating: 1.5 - Bad
Product Release: Project Runway (US, 06/18/10)
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