NINTENDO DS REVIEW: PING PALS

What's that you say? You want to develop a chat program for a system that already has a chat program built into it and make people pay for it? Come again? You want to include a single player chat feature which will enable people with no friends the opportunity to chat with rudimentary artificial intelligece? You want to reward people for chatting by unlocking items that they can use to "fancy up" their Ping Pals interface?

There is no reason in the world to own this product when Pictochat basically does everything at least, equally as well. You can play games which involve sending a smoking bomb back and forth between users or a Pictionary type game where you'll have to guess what your buddy drew, but it's useless busy work when it would be so much easier to just turn off the DS and fire up Halo 2 for more run and gun action.

If you're the only one insane enough to buy Ping Pals, your other DS owning friends will be able to download the software directly to their system. Up to 16 people can instant message, play the games and generally waste up to an hour of their lives fooling around with this digital redundancy.

Granted the use of color is nice and in that sense beats Pictochat at it's own game. But if I want color I can read a Superman comic or look outside. I can live with the black and white of Pictochat if it's going to save me cash in the long run.

Some of the text features don't even work that well because you won't be able to read it against the wacky background selections included. Certainly Pictochat won't go down in the annals of history as being the best Instant Messaging software but it works reasonably well enough to render Ping Pals 100% completely unecessary. Make that 110%.

Click For Media
System: DS
Dev: Way Forward
Pub: THQ
Released: Dec 2004
Players: 1 - 16
Mini Review by Vaughn
RATING (OUT OF 5)
OVERALL
1.5
GRAPHICS
3.5
CONTROL
3.5
MUSIC/FX
1.0
VALUE
1.0