Get your ADD on!
For those who have been indoctrinated in the WarioWare games, Four Second Frenzy should be extremely familiar to you. For everyone else, read on.
Have you ever played a game and thought to yourself, man, if only this game could be shorter? Not like just shorter, but I mean REALLY shorter, as in only four seconds long?
If you have, Four Second Frenzy was made with you in mind. If you haven’t, don’t be so quick to run away.
I’ll be the first to admit that the micro game genre is not exactly everyone’s cup of tea, but it does fit exceptionally well within the realm of casual games. In fact, it would seem to be the very epitome of casual gaming, given the fact that few games will last you much longer than a couple of minutes.
What makes these games so fascinating? I’m sure there are a million and one reasons for it, but I think it’s a combination of two primary mechanics at work.
The first is that you have to learn what you are supposed to do and then accomplish that goal in a matter of seconds. You have to learn, the controls, the physics, the motive and the endgame in less time than it would take you to read the first sentence of an instruction manual.
Thus, the challenge in games like this is a little different than in most games where you A) get plenty of time to sort things out, and B) are generally given a better idea of what you have to do.
This also manages to increase the game play level since some of the mini games will take quite a few attempts before you can get a decent grasp on what is going on.
The other thing that I think makes the micro game genre work is the fact that you are getting a sneak peek at hordes of games, each of which could themselves feel as though they could be their own stand alone title. As a result you can get the thrill of playing a major game in just a few seconds, and then it’s off to the next.
For this latter mechanic at work, I think the professional commercial games are more successful primarily because they have the advantage of using licensed material. Warioware has, for instance, the luxury of using snippets of popular Mario games to give you the impression that you are actually playing Super Mario Bros. even if its only chopped up in seconds long fragments.
In any case, I’ve always felt the micro game genre was incredibly fun. Everything is nicely frantic and the constant changes in game can really draw you in and keep you on your toes.
In this particular game, you are assaulted with over twenty micro games, all of them put together by an array of different independent casual game designers. After you have successfully negotiated your way through a set number, you meet the final “boss”.
So, forget the mouse, get your fingers warmed up, and enter the Four Second Frenzy.