Friday, 14 January 2011

The King's Speech

Genre: Simulation/Adventure/Education
Format: Nintendo DS
Publisher: Nintendo

You would have thought that The King's Speech, a historical drama movie about King George VI's struggle with a stutter, was the last movie that would generate a 'game tie-in'. You would be wrong. 

Nintendo, shrewd as ever, foresaw the Golden Globe nominations, Oscar buzz and growing cinema audiences  and bring us a game that they hope those throngs will be dashing straight from the cinema to buy. But will they?

The game follows the movie plot fairly closely. You must guide King George through a series of state occasions (starting with his speech before the Empire Exhibition in 1925) and sessions with Lionel Logue, his Speech Therapist. The better you play, the more points you get and the King's stutter becomes less pronounced. The final test is the 1939 radio speech given on the declaration of war with Germany. Mess this up and England is a laughing stock, succeed and the British Empire will defeat the Hun.

King George and Logue having a row
Essentially, the gameplay is just a matter of selecting the words that appear with the stylus as quickly as possible. However, there are some mini-games where the user must attempt to emulate the King's stutter (using the DS microphone) in order to win more 'Therapy Time'. These 'stutter tests' border on bad taste, but are quite fun.

So, will the mostly adult cinema goers be flocking to Game, Amazon and Gamestation to buy this game after attending their local Showcase or Vue? We highly doubt it.

VT Rating: 7/10