My cow is named "Cowsauce".
Nickelodeon's Barynard is a single player adventure game, but with a large
portion of mini-games. As an amazing bipedal cow, the player embarks on a
quest to win the recognition of the other farm critters and become the
"ultimate party animal."
Starting as the new cow in town, players can select the gender,
appearance (from about five cow breeds) and name of the character. Now
placed in the barnyard, the cow is free to talk to other characters,
smash crates, pick flowers, churn butter from milk directly from its own udders, and various other marginally productive shenanigans.
To make real progress, missions from other characters must be accepted.
These, much like me and my cohort's endless World of Warcraft jokes, start
at characters with big yellow exclamation marks over their heads. They're
easy to find, so getting stuck not knowing what to do in Barnyard is nearly
impossible, and after getting the
epic mount bicycle, it's even more
convenient to go from mission to mission. Some of the missions are just
fetch quests, but many are actually fairly fun mini-games. After completing
these, they are available for play from the main menu, and the game tracks
and saves high scores as well. The downside to mini-games is that they're
only single-player, even though many of them seem perfectly ideal for
multiplayer. Go figure.
The best mini-games seem to be inspired by Gary Larson's The Far Side. Teasing the mailman
by dancing around behind his back and reverting to all fours when he turns around is pretty funny, and taking the farmer's truck for a street race
is fun stuff, too. My personal favorite is the whack-a-mole mini-game, pretty
much only because it has the best hoe-down banjo dance music in a game since
Blast Corps. It's true, I replayed it numerous times just to listen to that
music again and again. I am also a complete psychopath.
There's another side goal, too. Coins earned or collected can be spent at
the gopher's shop. By purchasing furniture, games like pool and darts, etc.,
these items can be added to the happenin' barn/night club. How very Animal
In the category of things that suck about this game, the graphics are fairly
choppy, and the load times are strangely long and also cause a lot of noise
from the disc reader for some reason. The game also froze on these loading
screens a few times, and without auto-saves, that's definitely an extra
helping of suck. Also, like every other reviewer on the internet, I'm pretty
much obligated to tell you that the male cows have udders, and a portion of
the game is spent blasting other characters with them like some
sort of god-awful bukkake party.
Barnyard isn't really the kind of game I could see readers of this site
buying, but some fun can be gleaned from it. It would be an all right buy for
younger kids if they really, really like Barnyard or 3D adventure games that
aren't too complicated.