Developer: Mixamo, Inc
Price: FREE
Version: 1.0
App Reviewed on: iPhone 5
Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★★☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★☆☆
Playtime Rating: ★★★★☆
Replay Value Rating: ★★★½☆

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

charadeparade03charadeparade08Ah, Charades. One of those party games that never seems to go out of style, yet also never seems to get played as often as people seem to think. Or maybe I just go to the wrong parties. Anyway, now we can play Charades on our iOS devices! Without the need to take video of ourselves or anyone else! I’m not being sarcastic, I consider that a big selling point for Charade Parade.

Imagine a game similar to most other turn-based iOS “games with friends” and that’s pretty much what Charade Parade is like. Except with Charades instead of spelling or drawing things. Players are matched up, then have to watch one of a few cartoonish 3D characters act out whatever the word is with body movements and a general category clue at the top as their only means of figuring it all out. Oh, and it’s timed. The faster a player can figure out what the word is and type it in using the letters provided, the higher their score. They also earn coins from playing (and even more from winning) that they can use to buy hints during a given match or unlock packs with even more actions to try and figure out.

I’m not too crazy about the overall style of the characters acting everything out, but I’m definitely impressed with their animations. I mean for a game like Charade Parade to have even a chance of succeeding it needs to display some pretty intricate movements; and that’s exactly what it does. Setting up a match is also nice and easy, although getting other players to take their turn is another matter entirely.

charadeparade04charadeparade06Charade Parade is a clever idea that’s implemented pretty well, but the system for text entry most certainly does not. I’m not sure if it’s due to tiny icons or stringent hit boxes, but actually entering in the word or words I think are correct is a lot more difficult than discovering the answer in the first place. It’s easy enough to remove letters that have accidentally been pressed, but a missed tap here and an undo there adds up to lost time. And it can be incredibly frustrating to wind up with a terrible score simply because the keyboard wasn’t working right.

I still think Charade Parade is a clever and mostly well-implemented idea. It’s just a little tough to stay excited about a game that relies on a timer and has spotty controls. That’s no reason to avoid checking it out, of course, since it’s free, but be aware that it can be more than a little touchy at times.


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