Surviving High School [rating: 4/5]
For someone who never had to survive High School, not because I dropped out or was home schooled but because I went to school in the UK, my understanding of High School is based on what I’ve seen on TV and movies. So from what I’ve seen it’s all cheerleaders, football, heartbreak, drama, comedy and even the odd superhero but knowing that the reality is probably far away from it’s interpretation on TV I was intrigued to see how EA’s Surviving High School would be pitched.
The first episode of Surviving High School let’s you take the role of a new student as he arrives at his new school and is immediately thrust into the balancing act of managing relationships with all the different groups. The nerds, jocks, outsiders the popular kids, they are all here either vying for or ganging up against you. I guess that depending on how your experienced High School could have a direct impact on how much you enjoy this game.
The game play takes place in a comic book style and it’s beautifully done. The storyline moves along at a good pace and immediately you’ll be making multiple choice decisions that will build or break relationships. The storyline in this first episode see’s your character, who you get to name, fight for a place on the football team while also striving to keep up his GPA. Not only are these storyline’s played out via the comic book conversations but also through a variety of mini-games including football, word games and quizzes.
One of the main mini games in this first episodes see’s you playing a football game against a variety of opposing teams. The method of this playing this mini game is simple enough, on offense pick the longest pass or run while avoiding the fumble and tackle while on defense attempt to minimize the opposition gains and even force a turnover. This and the other mini games are a fun addition to the storyline although anyone buying SHS for the football will definitely feel a little short charged.
Keeping up your GPA also has consequences and you will be richly awarded by your parents if you keep them high. Focusing on any one strength though will not always benefit you as if you study too hard and not watch enough TV you won’t have anything to talk to the girls about which won’t help your popularity.
The game is a polished one but this initial episode will only keep you going for a few hours and the success of Surviving High School will be in it’s ability to keep providing engaging episodes at an appropriate price as EA say that every week a new episode will air for free for 7 days. Previously “aired” episodes will be available for purchase in the ‘On Demand’ section as well, with never-before-seen stories & next week’s episode which can be purchased in advance (or you can wait until next week to play it for free)
The sound and music in the application are satisfactory and don’t take anything away from the game. If you prefer you can also listen to your own music via the options menu.
Surviving High School is an engaging game and while a little short will provide a good degree of entertainment while it lasts.
- Engaging storyline
- Good variety of activities
- Weekly episodes to keep the story fresh
The Not So Good
- Short initial episode
- No confirmation on cost of future episodes
Reviewed By: @CraigWillis
Review edited to clarify how the free weekly episodes work. Thanks Meghan and @OTGamer