That's right folks, Simon & 'Slim' Schuster are at it again. With
such parodies as Deer Avenger and Panty Raider already under
their belt, the next target appears to be ABC's hit game show Who
Wants To Be A Millionaire. Who Wants To Beat Up A Millionaire is
the name of the game and it offers you the opportunity to do
exactly what the title insinuates, give the millionaire of your
choice, the beating of his or her life. Who Wants To Beat Up A
Millionaire plays out like a series of jokes, poking fun at everything
from Regis Philbin's mannerisms to game shows in general. When
all is said and done though, the last laugh is on the gamer.
You begin Who Wants To Beat Up A Millionaire by selecting the
millionaire you'd most like to knock the crap out of. In good ol'
Simon & Schuster fashion, the list of suspects comprises the usual
stereotypical millionaires including the Internet/Computer nerd,
the young blonde who got her millions from her much older and
recently deceased husband, the bratty son who inherited all his
money from his old man, and a sheik among others.
Once you've selected the lucky man or woman, it's time to jump
into the hot seat and answer a series of multiple-choice questions
in order to get the opportunity to wail on the millionaire.
The questions in Who Wants To Beat Up A Millionaire are similar
to those asked in the real Millionaire show. If you get a question
correct, you'll be given approximately 10 seconds to lay the smack
down on your chosen millionaire. If you answer the question
incorrectly, they'll be no punches thrown and the game will be
over. The more questions you get right, the more pounding you'll
be able to dish out. There are an assortment of punches you can
throw including jabs and uppercuts, and once you've hit the
millionaire a certain number of times, they're monetary value
decreases from one million, to five hundred thousand, to two
hundred thousand, etc. Answer enough questions right and
eventually the millionaire will have no money to go along with
those black eyes.
To help you along the way, you're given three lifeboats, which are
the equivalent to lifelines. You can 'Chicken Out' of a question,
after which you'll be given a new question. You can select 'One Or
The Other', which is the equivalent of a 50-50 lifeline. Last but not
least, you can receive a 'Fortune Cookie' which basically lets you
know whether or not the answer you wish to give is on the right
track or not. The lifeboats are actually quite poor considering all
the possible options they could have implemented. They aren't
much different than the regular lifelines found in Who Wants To Be
A Millionaire and they aren't particular funny either. Another item
to help your cause is the addition of Special Weapons. Once
you've successfully answered a number of questions, you'll be
awarded a weapon to use in your thrashings. The items in
question usually have some sort of significance to each of the
millionaires, supposedly making it all the sweeter. The special
weapons are also a bit of a letdown though, as they aren't that
Who Wants To Beat Up A Millionaire boasts approximately 750
questions, so you won't see questions repeat themselves for quite
awhile. The questions are much simpler compared to the
questions in Who Wants To Be A Millionaire, a move obviously
intended to give gamers an easier avenue to the action segments.
I was able to go all the way almost immediately upon trying the
game, so the payoff is quick (if not premature) to say the least.
Who Wants To Beat Up A Millionaire is hosted by a Regis Philbin
look-alike, who features all the mannerisms of his real-life
counterpart. Much of the hilarity (although there's not much of it) is
produced via the game show host as he whips out quick quips
whenever possible. There appears to be about a half dozen
comments for each particular event, so the speech does become
repetitive pretty quick.
In terms of graphics, Who Wants To Beat Up A Millionaire is clearly
made by the same folks behind the Deer Avenger series. The
visuals are all extremely cartoonish, a style that works best for
such a parody. Speech dominates the audio department and
simple keyboard controls are the order of the day in terms of
interface. Multiplayer consists of hot seat with up to 4 players at
one time. Each of the contestants basically takes turns answering
questions, then dishing out punishment.
Simon & Schuster Interactive describes Who Wants To Beat Up A
Millionaire as side-splitting humour. Side-splitting? Let me tell you
something, "There's Something About Mary" was side-splitting,
"Me, Myself and Irene" was side-splitting at times, Who Wants To
Beat Up A Millionaire is not side-splitting humour. That's not to say
the game doesn't have its moments, I did giggle once or twice but
that was about it. Who Wants To Beat Up A Millionaire is simply a
string of jokes, many of which don't work. In the end, the joke will
be on the individuals who actually pay $20 for this game.