Movie tie-in games are universally regarded with suspicion. Often, their development isn’t motivated by the need for creative expression, but rather a cynical opportunity to piggyback on a Hollywood marketing campaign. There are exceptions, like Despicable Me: Minion Rush, a fun licensed game that has racked up an incredible number of downloads. But Anchorman 2: Scotchy Scotch Toss is a paltry app that is much less fun than the film that inspired it.
We reviewed Anchorman 2, the movie, and found that it’s an enjoyable, lightweight comedy with a fantastic cast. This tie-in app features only one Anchorman, Ron Burgundy himself, so it’s missing the film’s goofy interactions with other characters. In each of four scenes, which you can select from at any time, Ron is sitting by himself, occasionally with his dog Baxter or other mute companions. Your job is to flick a piece of ice into his drink.
Scotchy Scotch Toss features a cartoon version of Ron Burgundy, voiced by Will Ferrell, and it feels more like a collection of audio quips than a proper game. You can even access a soundboard from the menu to hear all of Ferrell’s recorded insults and exclamations (“By the rhythm of the gypsy!”). We suspect players will have more fun listening to the audio than actually playing the game.
Flicking the ice is supposed to evoke quick-play arcade games like Paper Toss, but it’s a miserable diversion. The ice flies out from your finger with catapult force no matter how gently you move. Hurricane-like winds will whip your ice cube around in different directions each time, even if you’re in a presumably wind-proof location like an apartment, studio, diner, or Winnebago. If you do sink a shot, the game doesn’t keep track of your high scores or give you any goals. There’s no way to win or lose– you’ll just waste some time, without a feeling of satisfaction from being entertained.
Scotchy Scotch Toss wants you to integrate your Facebook account, so that you can send challenges to your friends, and virally market the film and app. However, we would urge you not to bother with this feature– it’s not a game that your friends will enjoy, either.
We can think of a dozen more interesting uses for Ron Burgundy and the world of Anchorman 2 than this pathetic tie-in game. If it was a free download, we wouldn’t have cause to complain, but $1 on the App Store will buy you a far more entertaining action, arcade, or physics-based game than Scotchy Scotch Toss. For goofy, good-natured humor, try Icycle, Cut the Rope 2, or Colossatron on your iOS device, or just see Anchorman 2 in theaters and forget about this tiresome licensed game.