Written by  :  Ben K (23938)
Written on  :  Nov 08, 2006
Rating  :  1.6 Stars1.6 Stars1.6 Stars1.6 Stars1.6 Stars

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From the people who brought you 'Catwoman'

The Good

It's a pretty cool concept - collect totems, and as you do, more layers of music play. The fact that it's free is also attractive...but of course, nothing's free, is it?

The Bad

See, the thing is, the gameplay is horribly, horribly flawed due to the rotten controls. Because the game has to exclusively use the Xbox Live Vision camera for game control, your control of the character is extremely limited. There are two waterfalls on the sides of the screen, and the idea is that you lift your arms to raise logs on the waterfalls, and that's how you control your character. Sounds simple enough - but it isn't.

In desperation, you'll begin to wave your arms around in vain so that they simply register movement, but that doesn't work either. So off you go, careening into one of the game's many pools of water, because of course, this all takes place on an island, and the player character (who, I might add, is a TURTLE) cannot swim. And then you begin to see the floating beds peppered around the level. Pick one of these up, and what does it do? It rewards you with brief rest. Call me crazy, but when the game rewards you with the ability to take a break, I think there might be a slight flaw with the control method.

The Bottom Line

Simply put, TotemBall is a rotten game. While the concept sounds cool (and it's FREE!!), the execution is terrible, leaving the player with nothing but a sense of frustration. And that's not what playing a game is all about.

Recommended for masochists, soccer goalies, and robots.