GBA REVIEW: HERBIE FULLY LOADED

Editor's note: I'm pretty sure the only thing fully loaded around here was Cole, just before he wrote this review - Vaughn

Von thought that it would be fun to let me review Herbie: Fully Loaded, knowing that I would hate it and run it into the ground with some humorous and psychotic diatribes. He knows that I don't do "cute" and I absolutely hate that Lohan chick. The planets appear to be lining up for him but to everyone's surprise there is an unexpected shift in the direction of the galaxy.

I totally fell in love with Herbie - both the movie and the game. Not only that, but I found Lindsay Lohan's acting to be disarmingly wholesome if not a bit scintillating. Even the comedy bits had me rolling on the floor in hysterical laughter.

I've seen the movie more than 40 times - no make that more than 400. My bank account is in arrears, but I don't care. I love Lindsay. She's a god to me. I just know that she feels the same way about me. She's the most powerful being in the universe and I know that if I stand in front of a moving bus she will protect me - unlike I would have protected her just a few weeks ago. She won't let me die. I know that. I love Herbie too but in a different way.

Maybe you don't know me too well. Let me explain something. I'm over 40 and I'm overweight - not fat like a sloppy nerd but fat like a bad-guy wrestler. Unlike most videogame players I have had girlfriends. Except now, because I'm married. I've got no kids because they bother me. I don't like things that are manufactured to be "cute" and I hate stupid people. I make fun of people a lot because it allows me to dissipate my anger so that I don't explode and kill them. I can be really unsympathetic to pathetic people. I tell things like they are and I don't like people that disagree with me even when I'm wrong. Other than that I'm a hell of a likeable guy. Oh, did I also mention that I'm somewhat prone to sarcasm? See the first three paragraphs for more on that.

To say that I hated Herbie: Fully Loaded would be an understatement. But these reviews aren't always about me. This game wasn't designed for an old dink like me. I can see that it might appeal to some young kids and the odd simpleton out there but in the grand scheme of things it's just another example of a cheap movie-inspired game designed to separate a parent's money from their wallet. That's another reason I don't have kids - I can't afford it.

There are only eight tracks to unlock in this game, and while there are three modes, Free Race, Story and Championship, they all use the same tracks. Only the AI racers change.

To unlock the tracks you have to come in first place, but it's not at all difficult. It will take a little time to get the hang of Herbie but the controls are very forgiving. Not to mention that the AI has really been dumbed down. You can accelerate quickly and negotiate turns while the other NASCARS are languishing in the mud and the muck.

You can unlock all of the tracks in less time than it takes to watch the movie - and that includes leaving halfway through when you just can't take it anymore.

Herbie has a few tricks up his trunk which makes the gameplay a little more interesting. You can activate his turbo, high jump, reverse and tire throw move by collecting stars on the tracks. Too bad Herbie doesn't have a self-destruct button.

I have to give the game credit for the 3D graphics. They aren't amazing but they do have a better draw distance than most racing games and it's actually quite smooth. Herbie is large and well rendered. It's no problem identifying him from the pack - which is good news if you're a sniper. Lindsay Lohan makes her appearance and displays a few words of text-based encouragement while managing to keep her boobs in her blouse. Just seeing her skanky face makes me wish this game was a shooter.

If this game were available for free in a cereal box I still wouldn't recommend it - but it would make it easier to swallow.

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System: GBA
Dev: Buena Vista
Pub: Buena Vista
Release: June 2005
Players: 1
Review By Cole
RATING (OUT OF 5)
OVERALL
2.0
GRAPHICS
4.0
CONTROL
2.5
MUSIC/FX
3.0
VALUE
1.50