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T (Teen)



Q2 2008



- Good one for kids that don't know any better

- Multiplayer can offer some quick fun



- Showed up originally in 2004; glad to see all that extra development time paid off



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Emergency Mayhem

Score: 2.5 / 10


emergency mayhem           emergency mayhem


Emergency Mayhem is little strange by the fact it's a Teen-rated game - that is, suitable for ages 13 and over - that should probably have received an E +10 because its content is so cartoony and full of nonsensical happenings - a slight bump of other vehicles often flip them out of the way - that it will likely bore the hell out of the "Teen" audience.


Inspired by the likes of Crazy Taxi, Emergency Mayhem presents players with a time limit; once time clicks to zero the game is over.  To earn more time players




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can run over time icons or complete various tasks around the environment activated by stopping inside a pillar of light; so, while driving a fire truck, police car, or ambulance.  Markers on the city streets indicate what vehicle the player needs to be in to undertake the mission, which boil down into three categories: race from point A to point B in a time limit, undertake a mini-game


to complete a random task, and race from point A to point B without crashing into too many things.  Along the way the player can collect icons littered throughout as well as monkeys, "patients" and criminals.  (When players are driving the fire truck they collect escaped monkeys. Really.)  These tasks are undertaken to lower the overall "Mayhem" of an area.  Complete that and the player is "promoted" to the next area of the city which features the same kind of tasks that were just worked through.


emergency mayhem          emergency mayhem


The mini-games are the only differentiating aspect of the game, but none of them make any kind of sense. Among other things, as a paramedic, players will control a fly out of a patient's intestines; as a cop players will repair traffic lights and shoot balloons so the idiots holding them don't fly away; and as a fireman, mini-games include pumping water onto dumpster fires and turning off hydrants.  They're nonsensical to say the least even if they do supply some fun competition in multiplayer.


To work though the course of the game takes a few hours at most on the middle difficulty.  That is, if you have even moderate gaming experience.  For kids - in other words, not Teens -  it takes a little more time and they're much more forgiving of the game's repetitiveness.  They laugh when cars flip out of the way or pedestrians are knocked out of the way, but this is hardly Grand Theft Auto levels of violence so I'm still wondering why this is rated Teen.  Maybe I've successfully desensitized myself to all by the most extreme violence, but I have no problem letting my 9-year old niece play because she belongs to the audience that this kind of repetitiveness and simple play mechanics won't turn off.


D.D. Nunavut

(August 13, 2008)


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