“I’ll sPiN!”

Here we are again, in part two of who knows how many, in my search for the best Wheel of Fortune video game adaptation out there.

Here’s how this works.

I’ll play one game (assuming I can win on the first try), on each games default or medium difficulty. I will judge each game based on aesthetic, accuracy to the game show, and over all fun factor.

Let’s get back into it!

Wheel of Fortune for Nintendo 64

This version of the game, made for the Nintendo 64, was made by GameTek, the same publisher responsible for their earlier Gameboy version.

This version of the game features something that I adore.

FMV.

Although it’s only in very small amounts, Vanna herself is in FMV, appearing on the screen saying things like: “You lost your turn, sorry.” Also in FMV are the contestants, flat FMV images of real people against the 3D polygonal graphics of made by the Nintendo 64. It’s a nice novelty for the game. Naturally they had to compromise a bit to fit the FMV into the game, but for a game such as Wheel of Fortune, it’s not bad at all.

Something I really like about this game is that the contestants talk, saying things like “are there any I’s?” or “I’ll sPiN!” (Yes one of the characters actually says it like that.) I feel this adds more to the ‘Game Show’ feel that the game is supposed to evoke.

The game also includes rumble for the spinning of the wheel, and the buzzer when you guess a wrong letter. You can raise the rumble to outrageous levels when using a TremorPak versus the usual RumblePak. This is a nice little touch that actually surprised me and is very enjoyable.

Another thing to note, this game uses the correct puzzle board for the era, (The game was released in ’97) while the wheel itself is from an earlier era, though I can’t quite date it myself.

Now, onto the round progression.

Something to note. This game runs off of a timer, rather than a strict number of rounds. I’m not too sure how long the game is, but when I had to play a second game, I had an extra round, and a hurry up round that I didn’t get on my first play through.

To keep this from getting to lengthy, I didn’t go in depth about how each round works, unless it’s a new one we haven’t seen. If you’d like to learn more about that, see my last Quest for the Best post.

  • Normal Round
  • Normal Round + $2500 Wedge
  • Jackpot Round
  • Normal Round + $5000 Wedge
  • Bonus Round

Time Permitting (Before Bonus Round) :

  • Normal Round+ $5000 Wedge
  • Hurry Up

As I said before this game runs on a timer. As such if there is enough time left in the game after the jackpot round, the normal rounds with a $5000 wedge on the wheel will loop. Once time starts to run out however, Vanna announces that we are out of time, and gives the wheel one final spin. From here, the ‘Hurry Up’ round plays out identical to the final spin of the past versions of the game that had it.

Onto the bonus round, here it is identical to the Game Boy version. There is no bonus wheel or W H E E L envelopes as there would be in the show at the time.

Overall, I actually quite like this version of the game. Partly because I love it when games include FMV, partly because it was released for the Nintendo 64. This is on my list of games to pull out when I want to chill with my friends and play some Nintendo 64 for sure.

Wheel of Fortune for PlayStation

I hate to say this, but of all the Wheel of Fortune games we have checked out, this is the most mediocre of the bunch. Though it does have some extra bits that the others don’t, it doesn’t especially stand out among the rest the of the adaptations.

Once again, we have Vanna hosting the show, and a distinct lack of Pat Sajak.

A bit of a surprise though for fans of Wheel of Fortune, we have Charlie O’Donnell doing the voice overs in the menus and the intro to the game. O’Donnell did voice overs from 1970 to 1980 and from 1989 until his death in 2010.

Now, onto the progression of rounds

  • Normal Round+ ‘Surprise’ Wedge
  • Prize Round
  • Jackpot Round
  • Normal Round + $5000 Wedge
  • Final Spin
  • Bonus Round

Once again this version of the game features a timer so once time runs low, Vanna makes the Final Spin. The Normal Round + $5000 Wedge would repeat until time begins to run out.

This game features a surprise wedge. The Surprise wedge was used on the show from 1992 to 1998. Landing on the wedge and guessing a correct letter would either award the lucky contestant a cash prize as low as $200 or a mystery prize.

I also discovered that when a puzzle is solved, some may have a bonus question. Such as those with the “Where are we?” category. There will be the puzzle’s solution : “Packer’s Dairy State University in Madison” and you’ll have to answer a question like: “Where is this located?” Of course the correct answer would be “Wisconsin”

Finally, we come to the Bonus Round. Here there is no bonus wheel once again, but finally we get to see the W H E E L envelopes and choose one. I ended up losing the bonus round, but the envelope contained a ‘Worldwide Shopping Spree”.

Final Spin

Overall, these two Wheel of Fortune adaptions are pretty fun. However, my favorite has to be the N64 adaptation. Sure it’s not graphically superior to the PS1 version, but the ability to fit the FMV sequences onto the cartridge and the overall vibe of it, was pretty fun. I also may be a bit biased as the Nintendo 64 is one of my favorite consoles of all time.

Regardless, here are the current standings in the Quest for the Best Wheel of Fortune video game adaptation.

  1. Wheel of Fortune for Xbox One
  2. Wheel of Fortune for Nintendo 64
  3. Wheel of Fortune for PlayStation
  4. Wheel of Fortune for Nintendo DS
  5. Wheel of Fortune for Game Boy

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