Crispy Gamer

Games for Lunch: Dont B Nervous Talking 2 Girls

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Developer: Silver Dollar Games
Publisher: Microsoft
Release Date: Dec. 8, 2009
System: Xbox 360
ESRB Rating: N/A
Official Web site

0:00 I haven't been nervous talking to girls at least since I met the woman who would become my wife close to 10 years ago. That said, when I heard that there was an indie game with this title on Xbox Live, I knew I had to try it out. Plus it only costs 80 Microsoft Points. That's a freaking dollar. For that price, I'm relatively sure it'll be worth it.

0:01 Two badly hand-drawn women, a blonde and a brunette, hold placards with the title of the game. A blonde girl in a tight green sweater appears on a small video in the corner. "Welcome to Don't Be Nervous Talking to Girls. You'll be presented with multiple challenges. The goal of each challenge will be to get my number and make a new friend." Yeah ... I don't think "making a new friend" is really what "getting her number" is usually about, but whatever.

0:02 On to "How to play: Your goal is to get Jessica's phone number at 8 locations." Uh ... isn't getting it once enough? Maybe she keeps changing her number? Shouldn't that be a sign that we're not meant to be together? Am I actually a stalker?

0:04 Let's start with Stage 1: The Library. A blonde in a yellow top with a thin waist holds an iPhone and looks at me expectantly on the intro screen. Then another video of the green-sweatered girl. I can tell we're in a library because there's a stack of books in the back, even though she's just standing there. "Hey, how's it going," she says in a friendly, non-threatening manner. The potential answers are "Good." or "Never better. What book are you reading?" What do I do? Which should I pick? WHY AM I SO NERVOUS TALKING TO GIRLS?!

0:05 I ask about the book. "Oh, I was just doing some math homework. But it's not going too well." This despite the fact that she has no visible book or math papers in front of her. But whatever... I go the cocky route and tell her "I'm a whiz at math."

0:06 "Well, math whiz, what's the answer to this: 4 + 7 - 1 x 7." Did I accidentally download Don't B Nervous Doing Basic Math Problems? Also, the girl in this video looks college age at least. Why is she doing second-grade arithmetic? I choose the right answer from four multiple-choice options (Multiple-choice? Really? The problem isn't easy enough?) "Awesome, thanks," she says. I wonder if she'd know if I gave the wrong answer. And if so ... how?

0:07 My next choice: "Hi my name is KyleOrl," or "I can help you with other stuff too if you want." My name isn't actually KyleOrl (it's my Gamertag), so I choose the second one. A big red "WRONG" appears on the screen and an unseen crowd goes, "Awww." "Thanks, but I think you're a little creepy." says the girl. Creepy? For offering to help with stuff? I didn't even make any inappropriate innuendo about helping her in the bedroom or anything!

0:09 Luckily, I don't have to start over from the beginning, I just go back and introduce myself as KyleOrl. I can introduce myself this time. She tells me her name is Jessica. My choices: "So, do you think I can call you some time?" or "I think you're pretty cool." Both of these seem pretty creepy to me, actually, but I pick the less-threatening option about how cool she is.

0:10 "WRONG." Jessica is indignant. "I am pretty cool, but aren't you going to ask me for my number?" Apparently, helping someone with basic arithmetic and introducing yourself is all it takes to get a phone number. But offering to help with other stuff is totally rude? Who the hell wrote this?

0:11 OK, I ask for her number this time. "Well, you seem harmless enough. Sure, here's my number." How do I seem harmless enough? I could be a serial killer who happens to know arithmetic!

0:12 "Jessica is about to tell you her phone number. You will only have 5 seconds to memorize it." Has my character never heard of paper? 3777277318. I just typed the number in right there so I wouldn't have to memorize it. Then an Xbox message prompt pops up and I have to retype it. "RIGHT" appears in big green letters! My performance grade's a C, apparently. Let's see if I can improve that.

0:14 Now that I know what to say, I blaze through the library scenario in under two minutes and get an A. Replay value is obviously not this game's strong suit. I'm still tempted to see what happens if I give her the wrong math answer, though...

0:15 On to Stage 2: The Coffee Shop. "Ummm ... do I know you?" Jessica says with a bit of attitude. She's still wearing that same damned green sweater. I tell her she doesn't know me, but she should. WRONG! "You should ... get the hell out of my face." Funny ... when I said I was a "math whiz" she seemed to like my cockiness.

0:17 Apparently asking to take a seat right next to her is the correct option. I ask her what brings her here. WRONG! "What do you think brings me here? A coffee! You're a smart one, aren't you." The delivery on this line is truly awful ... not nearly sarcastic enough. Also, Jessica is kind of being a jerk. Why would I even want her number? Oh ... right. The tight sweater.

0:18 When I tell her "This is a little forward, but my name's KyleOrl." She tells me she likes people who are forward. Except when I was forward a few seconds ago and she told me to "get out of her face." If girls were this inconsistent and nonsensical in real life, I would be nervous talking to them.

0:19 She needs help shopping for a friend, and wants to know the birthstone for the month of May for a friend. I answer correctly: emerald. "So how does someone like you know something like that." "Google" is not an option, so I tell her "I know a few things." WRONG! "Don't play Mr. Smooth with me, 'I know a few things.' You can do better than that." I ... buh ... whuh? I wasn't trying to be Mr. Smooth! I do know a few things! Either Jessica is incredibly touchy or I'm missing some of the subtlest double entendres ever.

0:22 Apparently I was supposed to say I have a friend who is into gemstones. So "knowing a few things" is bad, but having friends who know stuff is good! Who knew there were so many rules to talking to girls!

0:23 She says it's "Lucky for both of us" that I have a knowledgeable friend. I respond "I'm lucky I ran into you." WRONG! She says my luck ran out because she's "getting bored with [me]." Is this woman schizophrenic or something? She's all sweetness and light, I make an innocent comment about being happy to have met her, and she turns snippy. Don't be nervous running away from girls like this, people.

0:25 Oh, if I tell her I'll leave her to her coffee, she tells me not to be hasty. "Maybe I can call you sometime?" This game is trying to teach videogame nerds to play hard-to-get? I really don't think that will work in real life. Anyway, I say "You wish" just to see the reaction. "You are a huge jerk, you know that." Oh yeah, baby, I love it when you call me a huge jerk. Do it again! *hits X button* OH YEAH! CALL ME A JERK BABY! *X button* YESSSSSSS!

0:26 4392421704. My second number. Is it too much to ask that the game use real area codes? Or to format the phone number in a readable way? It's just seven digits, like I just wrote out.

0:28 Two more minutes and I get through the coffee shop again, with an A grade this time. 5396198486. I dare you to call.

0:29 I start a conversation at the park with "Good morning. Lovely day, isn't it?" WRONG! Apparently it's incredibly rude to remark on a lovely day, because she threatens to use bear spray on me. So I go the rude route, telling her she's in my seat (in a public park!) She's angry, but the game continues. When I tell her the seat it has my name on it, she threatens to "call the police." For what ... trying to get my seat back? That's a crime?

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0:31 I tell her I sit there every morning after my run, but she says she sits here every morning before work. "Nice try." Yet the game still continues. I tell her to "Get the hell out of my seat," and she responds "Help! This stranger's attacking me!" OK, this game just crossed the line from annoyingly inconsistent to unintentionally hilarious.

0:32 OK, I turn down the rudeness and tell her I just want a chance to talk. She introduces herself. "My name is poo poo head," I respond. She gets all self-deprecating. "Why do all the crazies want to talk to me?" Hey, maybe my name really IS poo poo head, you JERK!

0:33 OK, I introduce myself properly as KyleOrl. "It's good to meet you. How many times does your heart beat in a day?" Huzzah-wha? At least the other trivia questions made some sense in context. Who the hell asks about heartbeats to some crazy person they just met?

0:34 It takes me three multiple-choice guesses before catching on the right answer. "Because you just made mine skip a beat." Not two seconds ago you were mad at me for being rude ... now your heart is skipping a beat? I must be the best-looking guy in the world." "*haha* How corny was that?" she asks. I know this is wrong, but I just have to tell her the truth: "That was pretty bad." Apparently, this was the correct response. "Yeah, it was, but do I get any points for trying?" Wow.

0:35 I try my own hand at self-deprecation. "I'm trying to get to know you, but I'm really bad at this." Now she thinks I'm sweet. "Well, I'm not so bad at this. Here's my number. Call me." Apparently this game should have been called, "Don't be nervous talking to girls because you're an amazing hunk that will have women falling all over you no matter how awkward and rude and stupid you are." Number get: 8224987261.

0:37 Going back through the park scenario, just to see the other responses now. When I tell her that her corny line wasn't so bad, she upbraids me. "Yeah, it was the stupidest line ever, and if you found that funny, you're not very bright." I'm not very bright? YOU'RE THE ONE WHO USED THE STUPID LINE, YOU IDIOT! I was just being polite. What's your excuse?

0:39 If I ask for her for her number directly at the end, she says, "No, because I don't talk to strangers. Bye!" 1) I'm not a stranger. I introduced myself and we've been talking for two minutes now. 2) Will you offer me your number if I pretend to be all awkward and fumbly? You will. But ... I'm still a stranger. 6013688750.

0:41 I suffer through the park scenario a third time just to maintain my A average. What can I say ... I'm a completist. 5264613538.

0:42 At the amusement park now. You can tell because there's a green-screened rollercoaster in the background and the same light guitar music as in every other scenario. When I start with "Greetings from planet Earth," she tells me, "Oh, I'm sorry, there's no geeks allowed at the amusement park. You must have missed the sign." The message to the geeks playing this game seems to be: "Hide who you really are completely, and maybe hot girls won't openly insult you. But don't be nervous!"

0:43 Jessica inexplicably asks me what the tallest rollercoaster in the world is. I'm too lazy to even Google it, so I just go down the list. Then we introduce ourselves and she tells me she's afraid of rides. "I've actually been trying to build up enough courage to go on this one." Wait, you're afraid of rollercoasters, but you somehow know the exact height of the tallest one in the world? Sounds like geeks ARE allowed in this park, if they let you in.

0:46 I tell her I come to the park for the games, and she says the water-gun game is her favorite. I have to go with the truth: "Actually, that game totally sucks, but whatever." She can't handle the truth. "You know what? You totally suck. See ya!" The emphasis obviously should have been on the YOU in that sentence, but she delivers it with absolutely no emphasis. Back to vocal training classes with you, Jessica.

0:47 So I lie about the water-gun game and she says it "seems like we have a lot in common." It seems like we have one thing in common, but whatever. Number gotten: 5094818541.

0:49 Going back through the amusement park to try out the wrong responses. When I try to reassure her that "there's nothing to be afraid of" on the rollercoasters, she jumps down my throat. "So are you saying I'm being ridiculous? YOU'RE being ridiculous." I can't decide if the author of this game is intentionally trying to make Jessica a touchy, unlikeable jerk or if he simply has no experience with actual human interaction. Oh wait, I can decide. It's the second one.

0:51 Stage 5 in the Pub opens with "Hey, what are you drinking." WRONG! "Hey, can I buy you a drink?" is right. BECAUSE GIRLS LIKE IT WHEN YOU BUY THEM THINGS DUH!

0:52 She says she doesn't drink, and when I tell her I was just trying to be friendly, she tells me I'm "smelling up the place with my bad conversational skills." Wow ... you don't drink AND you're rude. Who could resist you?

0:53 So eventually I order her another soda and introduce myself. She gives me one chance to impress her. My options: "A horse goes into a bar and the bartender says..." "Why don't aliens eat clowns?" "Two muffins are in the oven..." and "What's blue and fluffy." I feel I have to know the answer to that last one. "Pink fluff holding its breath," Jessica responds with a laugh. "Yeah, I know that one. Not bad." So, she's impressed with old jokes about pink fluff? Also, what is pink fluff? Is that like cotton candy in some alternate universe?

0:55 When I finally get her name, I tell her, "Jessica, I like that name." WRONG! "Well, I don't like yours, so please leave me alone." OH, I'M SORRY FOR COMPLIMENTING YOU ON YOUR NAME PLEASE FORGIVE ME FOR MY SMELLY CONVERSATIONAL SKILLS!

0:56 "You're going to ask me for my number now, aren't you," she says out of the blue. I guess I have to. It's 6182005301.

0:57 Wow ... apparently everything but the pink fluff joke is "WRONG!" according to the game. Are they all dirty jokes or something?

0:58 Still working my way through the pub, seeing all the responses. Instead of asking for her number when she asks me to, I tell her I was just coming over to say hi. She gets indignant. "You're a liar and I hate liars! I know what you're trying to do here. Get OUT of my FACE!" Note to self: If a woman asks me to ask her for her number, I'd better do it!

Would I play this game for more than an hour? No.
Why? This game is a crime against humanity.

This column is based on a downloadable copy of the game purchased by the columnist. He wants his dollar back.

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