All The Pretty Little Horses

My Horse and Me
Reviewed On
Available For

Cool Kids Game Breaks Out Of Lackluster Mold

Let’s pretend! Let’s pretend that you have a relative or a child or a friend’s daughter that absolutely loves horses. Her room is decked out in horse magazine clippings. She has trophies on shelves and blue ribbons pinned to the sides of her mirrors. What’s more, she just got a Wii and her birthday is coming up, and because you like her so much, you’re going to go out and find the perfect game, the game that is detailed specifically to their interests.

Well, look no further, because Atari has that game!

In keeping with their target audience, no-risk, rush release plan (See Godzilla Unleashed, Jenga, and, to some extent, Dragonball Z Bondeki Something Something 3,) Atari has again zoomed their sniper scope on a particular group of the gaming populous. This time it’s equestrians.

However, as a kind of silver lining to this dark cloud of Atari games, this title isn’t as bad as previous letdowns. It still has its problems, don’t get me wrong, but they are all problems that come with not wanting to play a game about horses. So once you realize that, the game itself tends to do the job it was assigned. In fact, with a full menu of things to look into, My Horse and Me is a pretty engaging piece of work.

Coming at you with an International Equestrian Federation seal of approval, this game’s main features has you competing in several contests around the world and under varying weather conditions. Riding and jumping are this game’s bread and butter, but also, a major part of the gameplay involves you in the caring and grooming of your horse.

Outside of all the main mode game of competition, customization of both horses and players is fairly detailed, and the mini games found in the title are equally engaging and create a sense of fullness. These mini-games are a welcome addition, because without their involvement, the game would be flat as they come, but as you soon come to find out, the term mini-game is a misnomer.

The truth is that these games are just as important to the overall experience of My Horse and Me as the regular game modes. There a few extras that you can pass up outright, such as "Memory Lane," but the overall quality of the game comes across as true to the professional sport it brings to the gaming world.

There are some difficulties with the game’s controls near the opening of the game. Turns are hard to maneuver and keeping on a straight track often proves difficult, but with enough time and interest in the game, this particular hassle can be overcome.

But with this stipulation comes a challenge for the game itself. Time is going to be My Horse and Me’s greatest enemy. If you have an innate need to experience horse riding in a virtual setting, then you’ll get along with this game after mastering a set of very sensitive and, at times, overly labored control schemes. If you’re into this game as a quick play-through into this genre, then you’ll end up giving it up before the title has a chance to shine.

In any case, as much as I’d like to slam this game, I’ll have to admit that if you’re a kid that digs horse riding, you’re going to enjoy this game to its fullest.

However, if you’re looking at the cover and finding a bemoaned sigh coming out of you involuntarily, then you already know what to do: Hope they come out with a game that rivals Fahrenheit soon.

My Horse And Me earns a highly respectable 3 1/2 GiN Gems because try as I might, I just could not hate this game, and the little ones will absolutely love it.

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