Do what Frobisher says, you don’t want him to get mad!
Frobisher Says! is a cute compilation of button mashing and quick response mini games all wrapped up into a “Simon Says” package for the Vita. The collection of mini games is reminiscent of the WarioWare games, being quick and simple.
The overall objective in Frobisher Says! is basically to complete a selection of micro-games as quickly as humanly possible. Different micro-games will use different aspects of the Vita’s control functions in different ways, some of which will require the player to have room to move. There are two game modes to select from; single and multiplayer. The single player mode offers a selection of quick hit random games that generally only last a few seconds, whilst the multiplayer mode, which locally supports up to eight players, will see you passing the Vita around as points are earned. The player with the highest score wins the game.
The micro-games themselves can be a bit confusing to begin with as it is not always obvious what you are supposed to do in each given scenario. There is a small Vita diagram at the bottom of the screen which supposedly explains what is expectd, but even these can be a bit cryptic until you work out, through trial and error, what your objective is. The player can try either sudden death or a fixed length mode in single player, but success in either will only come after a few attempts, by which point the player will understand what needs to be done.
The games make good use of the various Vita functions. One minute you’ll be touching the front screen to pull a plug out of a bath, and the next waving the PS Vita back and forth like a fan. Sometimes, you will be delivering a pudding via a toy train, and the next fighting with a bear. Most of the games are only a few seconds long and are incredibly varied. The games all have an almost “children’s TV” style of animation and artwork which makes even such games as “poking an Otter with a stick” look good. One of the games will have you smiling for the camera, so playing the game in good light is essential, whereas another will use the back camera and have you searching for a particulr patch of colour within your environment. Each game is quick, bright and colourful, and accompanied by some bizarre music.
I feel that I should just mention the voice of Frobisher himself. Not only is it somewhat annoying that he has to say “Frobisher Says!” between each of the games, but also the way he says it is a little bit creepy, maybe even disturbing. I am sure it is just my warped mind, but I actually found it distracting. I would not have been surprised to hear him say “Frobisher Says – hit the person next to you!“
The fact that the games are not always obvious to begin with actually enhances the game in some ways, keeping the player on their feet and making them come back and try again. The overall style was also enjoyable as it didn’t stick to one theme, there was even some 8-bit style thrown into one of the platforming levels, where you were a crocodile looking for a flan. I know it sounds strange, but that’s because it is strange.
Whilst there are over 50 micro-games included, they won’t last very long and hopefully some more will be added further down the line. However, this is a game that will leave you giggling and will provide a quick-hit to players. It won’t keep you occupied for hours on end, but you will find yourself smiling and entertained for a short while. The fact that it will be free to download means that there will be nothing stopping you from trying the game for yourself when it appears.