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     " Let it ride the gutter, kids…and don't cry when it's gone. "

      Title: Strike Force Bowling by Crave

      Format: Console Bowler

      Reviewing Monkey: Mojo Jojo

      The Hype: As surely as the seasons follow each other, when your system's been around long enough to warrant budget titles the bowling games will start to roll out. Aimed at that venerable $19.99 price tag, Strike Force Bowling (SFB) hopes you're enough of a bowling enthusiast to want to play at home.

      What This Monkey Thought...

      Graphics: Truth be told, I'm all for value titles. There are a ton of game engines out there that you can't justify paying fifty bucks for but will jump on at twenty. Now, that being said, I do expect it to at least be appealing for my two dimes…after all, you shouldn't just be dusting off an old game but giving it a little spit-polish so it's earning my extra cash. Unfortunately, I can't quite say SFB falls into that category.
           Really primitive, the limited animations, relatively featureless models, and barely dynamic environments take me straight back to my 16 bit days. Lacking any kind of visual sparkle at all, it's hard not to get bored with the visuals in the first few seconds…and considering that you'll really be looking at the same thing over and over again for as long as you play, getting bored 4 seconds in is a very, very bad thing. 2 out of 5

      Playability: Using a basic rhythm tap against power bar system, SFB really does little to capture any of the mood or ambiance of real life bowling. Spinning the ball, gauging your power, applying English…it's all more an exercise in timing than strategy and so does little to capture any bowling luster you might have. Worse yet, the game lacks any kind of trick courses or special levels, and so once you've successfully mastered the basics there will literally be nothing new for you to do except repeat it all ad nauseum. Which is really too bad, since a lane editor, some trick levels, and a more intuitive control scheme might have kept this fun. 2 out of 5

      Multiplayer and Replayability: Up to four players can challenge or play some interesting variant games, which is cool. But, unfortunately, the total lack of extra goodies means only the most hardened of bowling-philes will give a damned after the first game. 3 out of 5

      The Verdict:

       Even as a lover of the budget titles I found this one too sparse to pick up the spare. Dull, lifeless, and almost totally without innovation, you'd have to be a real hard core bowler to get much joy out of Strike Force Bowling…in which case you shouldn't have any more excuses to sit on your ass anyways.

      The Good: Some cool multiplayer modes.

      The Bad: An old title repackaged with little or no updating.

      The Overall Ugly: A little more effort would have at least made this interesting.

      What it's Worth: Let it ride the gutter, kids…and don't cry when it's gone.

Buy it for the PS2 from

Buy it for the Xbox from

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