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EyeToy: Play Sports PlayStation 2

Published by Sony Computer Entertainment Europe
Developed by SCEE London Studio
Release Date: Out Now
Price: £24.99 (£39.99 with EyeToy camera)

It’s rather funny watching all the hysteria surrounding the release of the Wii and the PlayStation 3 and the hype about motion capture being the next big thing in console gaming. The strange thing is we’ve experiencing it for years with certain PC controllers and of course on the PlayStation 2 thanks to the EyeToy camera. That said it’s been a while since we last played an EyeToy game but we now have several awaiting review. The first of which is Eye Toy: Play Sports.

Given the title of the game you’d be forgiven for thinking this is an EyeToy game that contains a collection of sports games. This isn’t quite the case. EyeToy: Play Sports is essentially a collection of mini-games. Some are sports flavoured; some are not. In total there are just over 100 mini-games on offer for between one to eight players. The game has two modes called Par for the Course and Tag in, Tag out. Par for the Course sees you playing a round of golf. For each shot you’ll get to pick either a long or short club and then you’ll play a mini-game. If you successfully complete the mini-game you’ll successfully complete the shot. Tag in, Tag out has a wrestling flavour to its presentation. The mode allows the players to either play the mini-games individually or against your opponents. Successfully completing a mini-game here (or winning the mini-game if there is more than one player) will earn a point for the player. The first player to get three points wins the contest.

Party games are only as good as the mini-games they contain and it’s here that EyeToy: Play Sports is a bit of a mixed bag. Some of the games on offer are Ski Jump, Racket Restring, Basketball Dribbling, Hang Gliding and Squash. These games are OK but they don’t feel like anything you won’t have played before unless this is your first EyeToy title. Basketball Dribbling for instance simply requires you to tap the ball a certain about of times using an up and down motion with your hand. There’s another game where you have to attempt to sink your rivals boat doing exactly the same thing only higher up the screen (as if you’re tapping a moving rain cloud to make it rain on the boat). There are other games which are very similar to each other. Clay Pigeon Shooting and a game where you have to catch baseballs are also practically identical. Substitute Teacher requires you to test your mental maths skills. You’ll have some sums to work out and then you must tap the football shirt that has the same number as the answer. Knockout Knuckles requires you to hit a punch bag 100 times within the time limit. Some of the games are quite fun, some are dreadful but most are somewhere in between when it comes to quality.

Like all of the EyeToy games we’ve seen, EyeToy: Play Sports is presented in a fairly colourful and simplistic fashion. Onscreen menu selections are placed on rather large buttons to enable you to interact with them, using the EyeToy, with a minimum of fuss. All of the characters in the game are drawn in a simplistic fashion. You’ll take a picture of yourself with the EyeToy camera that is then pasted onto the characters head and this becomes your avatar for the mini-games. Load times are on the longish side which means they are almost as long as some of the shorter mini-games, which is unfortunate. Each of the games come with basic text instructions and an animated character showing how you’ll have to move your body in order to play the game. All of the speech in the game menus isn’t subtitled though. The EyeToy introduction movie (the one featuring the rather energetic old lady) is also not subtitled but thankfully you can skip this.

All things considered EyeToy: Play Sports is a run of the mill EyeToy experience. Those who haven’t tired of the EyeToy experience will no doubt enjoy the game but even they would have to concede that it’s a very similar experience to what you’ll find in other EyeToy games. Whilst it’s great to have 100+ mini-games in the collection, it’s a shame that there are games that are very similar to one another. I would have preferred a smaller amount of games that differ greatly from each other and that were of a higher quality. Still if you’re looking to spend more time using your EyeToy camera you could do worse than give EyeToy: Play Sports a look.

Overall Game Rating: 6.0/10

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EyeToy: Play Sports is a decent if completely unspectacular addition to the EyeToy range of software.