Movie buffs, looking for a game you can clean up the competition with? Check out Scene-It. Also looking for a game where you can be challenged? Scene-It's got you covered there. Ever since the the dawn of DVD players, my brother and I have long thought a game featuring movie clips would be sweet, and it's finally here.
Concept and gameplay
Here's the break down, you roll the dice, move your piece and answer questions about popular movies. The best part of the movie selection is that they're pretty recent. At first we were worried that there would be a lot of questions and clips about movies from the early seventies, and earlier that we don't really know much about, but I had scene most of the movies we saw clips from. [Ed note: Effectively answering the question "Scene-It?" HAHAHA, ok, I'll stop]. When I first received the game, my jaw dropped when I looked at the back of the box. The five major studios' logos were on there. 20th Century Fox, DreamWorks SKG, MGM, Sony Pictures, and Universal were represented. That meant there would be a great selection of movies included. I also liked the images used to represent the movies inside. Fargo, Blues Brothers and Shrek, this is going to be good.
The board and pieces
The first thing I noticed when opening the box is that the game board is folded into a circle. Lift it out and you can unstretch it to 3 circles wide. This makes it easy to play a short game or a long game without fooling with extra rules. The playing pieces are die-cast metal and include a marquee, reel, camera and box of popcorn. There is a deck of cards with trivia questions, a deck of The Buzz action cards, and the DVD itself. There are also two dice that come with the game. A six-sided die with printed numbers instead of dots, and an eight-sided die with different symbols on them. The symbols represent which type of question you have to answer. This way you roll both dice, one to see how far you go, and the other to see what question you answer. This is instead of putting the icons on the squares, and makes it more interesting. We found it a little confusing when reading the rules as to how long you keep going after answering one right. It initially appears you can keep going, and essentially kick the others team ass before they can even play. But we played that if you got one right, you could progress spaces the next turn, if not, you could only roll the eight-sided die and answer a different type of question without moving. You can watch a detailed demo of game play on the DVD, but it still didn't define our question.
The Questions There are several different types of questions you answer. The first is called My Play where you select a My Play clip from the DVD menu. This will give you a movie clip and related question, an old yearbook photo of an actor or actress, a title puzzle, or mixed up image you have to identify. These reminded me of those slides they play before the movie at the theaters. We particularly liked the goofed up images... it was a still shot from a movie that had a Photo-hop-esque filter applied and it eventually came into clarity. You have to guess what it was from before it's the on screen timer ran out. I did like how they use an on screen timer, with my family, someone is always forgetting to turn over the hour glass, or we have to sit and wait for it to run out before proceeding. That's usually after I answer a question before the reader is finished heh heh.
The next type of question is All Play where there is the same type of set-up with a clip or on screen puzzle, but everyone is invited to play, and the first person to shout out the answer gets to move. The only issue here was that you had to wait for the timer to run out to see who was right after all. But you could also fast forward on your remote, too.
The next type of question is Take Three. You draw a card and identify the actor, actress, or movie based on the three clues provided. Click on this image on the right, and see if you get the answer to the top question. You should know who this is.
The next is Songs and Slogans, also on the card, there is a trivia question about a soundtrack or slogan for a film. Finally there's Pop Culture that is still about movies, but a bit more broad.
The other deck is The Buzz, that moves your piece forward or back. If you roll the Buzz icon on the eight-sided die, draw the top card and move your piece accordingly. Here is an example: You leaned up against the wet bathroom sink just before your big audition. Move back 2 spaces. There's also cards you can hold on to for the purpose of screwing over your opponents. You were just voted the sexiest person alive! Hold this card and make another player lose a turn when it will do the most damage. These are great, but we would have gotten a little more mean. Your lead just took a side gig hocking long distance 800 numbers, move back a space.
Our recommendations for the DVD
Well here's the important part. We popped in the DVD to give it a test run. After playing, we took the directions' suggestion of doing party mode where you just sit and watch the My Play/All Play clips, yelling out answers. First recommendation: Make this a mode we can select to randomly give us questions in succession. After awhile it got a little tiresome playing with the remote every 30 seconds. [Ed note: Anyone reading this have luck with the "random" setting on their DVD player?] Secondly, we got a little addicted and did this for almost two hours. We didn't see a single repeat during this session. But we took the DVD out, played it again the next day, we got a lot of repeats. Now, I understand, under typical usage, you won't play for two hours straight only looking at clips. And also you don't typically play the same board game a few days in a row. Just be advised that it is easy to watch a lot and then not see any new ones for awhile. Maybe this is a good thing... cheater! So we recommend that they have divided clip groupings. You can play an entire game from the first grouping, and then if you do see some repeats, you go back to the main menu and pick a different grouping that guarantees a completely different pool of clips. By the time you burn through those, you're ready to go back to the other one. Kind of like having multiple decks to draw from in popular trivia games.
Clips and games themselves
We were pretty satisfied with the actual clips and games that came up. There was a diversity in intended audiences so that the film buffs in the audience didn't completely maim the others. Meaning we saw clips from Mystery Men, Planes, Trains, and Automobiles and American President. Also, to fight repeats, there are 10 possible questions for each of the 180 clips... some questions are about what you just saw, others require having seen the movie to know the characters' names. The puzzles were pretty fun and diverse enough to stay interesting.
I had a great time playing this game the first time, and then decomposing into a game-board less party mode. I was a little disappointed when I played the next day and saw mainly repeats. But I have to admit, we diverted from intended game play. The selection of clips and the types of games used are cool(Coen Brothers and Christopher Walken represented). Overall I'm happy with the game and I recommend it for parties where you need something engaging. Since it involved just sitting around watching TV, most of your friends will join in.
Scene-It was developed by Screenlife, but is more widely available after being distributed by Mattel. Get Scene It Deluxe on sale now at Games-For-Less.com
Scene-It is copyright Mattel. Article and all images are copyrighted 2004 MillionairePlayboy.com.