Wheel of Fortune video games

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Wheel of Fortune is an American television game show created by Merv Griffin, premiering in 1975 with a syndicated version airing in 1983. Since 1986, the syndicated version has been adapted into various video games spanning numerous hardware generations. Most versions released in the 20th century were published by GameTek, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 1998.

Console games[edit]

An Atari 2600 adaptation of Wheel of Fortune was planned by The Great Game Co. in 1983, but ended up being cancelled during development.[1] In 1987 the first of GameTek's many Wheel games was published, with Sharedata as its developer; this version was released simultaneously on the Commodore 64[2] and the Nintendo Entertainment System,[3] and subsequently spawned a second Commodore 64 version of Wheel from Sharedata,[4] as well as a "Family Edition"[5] and a "Junior Edition", both of which were exclusive to the NES and were developed by Rare Ltd.[6] Neither host Pat Sajak nor hostess Vanna White is featured in any of these games; however, White is featured in a later NES game from GameTek and IJE Inc., which was released in 1992[7] and also appeared on the Sega Genesis,[8] Super NES,[9] and the Game Gear.[10] The magazine Mega gave the Super NES and Genesis versions a score of 22%, saying that there was "no challenge".[11]

In 1994, Sony Imagesoft created a game based on Wheel for the Sega CD.[12] Two years later, GameTek made plans to create adaptations for the Sega Saturn[13] and the Panasonic 3DO,[14] but both were canceled during development. On December 2, 1997, Take-Two Interactive released a Wheel game of its own for the Nintendo 64; this was Take-Two's last collaboration with GameTek, as the latter was on the verge of bankruptcy. The Sega CD and N64 versions of Wheel both feature full-motion video footage of White as host. The N64 version, in particular, received a score of 6.4 out of 10 from IGN, which praised it for "[managing] to do a respectable job duplicating the feel of the show, with smooth camera movements and a polygonal spinning wheel".[15]

Artech Studios and Hasbro Interactive produced a video game adaptation of Wheel for Sony Computer Entertainment's PlayStation console on December 15, 1998; this version again features White appearing as host via FMV sequences, and a 3-D engine that allows it to have a presentation similar to that of the actual show. This particular version is compatible with a memory card which allows it to avoid previously played puzzles until the entire library has been played through.[16] On September 12, 2000, Hasbro released a second PlayStation version of Wheel, which features a behind-the-scenes interview with White and a qualifying exam for contestant hopefuls.[17] After this, Atari, Inc. released a PlayStation 2 edition in November 2003.[18] On March 19, 2009, Sony Online Entertainment released a version of the show for the PlayStation 3 through the PlayStation Network; Chris Roper of IGN gave that version a 5.8 out of 10, saying that it felt "empty and lifeless" for not featuring any host or hostess or any voice work whatsoever, and also criticized the graphic quality, saying that the game was "not fully polished".[19]

On November 2, 2010, THQ released video games based on Wheel of Fortune for Nintendo's Wii console[20] and DS portable game system.[21] This set of games is the first to feature Sajak as well as White.[20] In 2012 THQ-published versions developed by Pipeworks Software appeared for the PlayStation 3,[22] the Wii U,[23] and Microsoft's Xbox 360.[24]

Handheld games[edit]

In 1990, GameTek created a Wheel of Fortune game for the Game Boy.[25] Then in 1997, Tiger Electronics released an adaptation of the show for its Game com system, which allows players to use the console's touch screen to select letters.[26] Additionally, Majesco Entertainment once planned a Wheel adaptation of its own for the Game Boy Color but that was cancelled.[27]

Additionally, a number of Wheel games have been released for mobile telephones. On May 2, 2005, InfoSpace's Atlas Mobile studio created a tournament-style game based on the show as part of its "For Prizes" lineup of games allowing players to win free gift certificates; this game is set to a time limit of five minutes and requires players to complete the regular rounds in five turns or less apiece.[28] Subsequent mobile phone incarnations of the show were released by Sony Pictures Mobile in 2006,[29] 2008,[30] 2010,[31] and 2012.[32]

PC games[edit]

Wheel of Fortune has also been adapted for personal computers. From 1987 through 1990, GameTek created five Wheel of Fortune computer games for the Apple II, Commodore 64, and MS-DOS.[33] On November 15, 1998, Hasbro Interactive released a PC version of its own, where White is joined by the then-current Wheel announcer, Charlie O'Donnell (but Sajak remains absent).[34] In 2000 Infogrames Entertainment produced a PC version of the show for Macintosh computers, with MacSoft Games as its developer.[35] That same year, Hasbro released a second PC version of Wheel, which like the aforementioned PlayStation equivalent features a behind-the-scenes interview and a qualifying exam.[36] Atari's 2003 follow-up also saw a PC version of its own.[37]

In 2007 Sony Online Entertainment produced a PC version of the show titled Wheel of Fortune Deluxe, sharing publishing duties with Encore, Inc.[38] Encore followed that up with a "Super Deluxe" version of the game in 2008.[39]

Internet[edit]

Sony Pictures Digital and Game Show Network's interactive division released a free Wheel of Fortune game on Facebook. It combines most aspects of the TV game show and allows players to become contestants competing for virtual currency, called "Wheel Bucks," by playing a "Main Round" puzzle on their own and a "Bonus Round" puzzle that allows them to collaborate with their Facebook friends to increase their winnings.[40] The game was later moved to GSN's "Games by GSN Casino" with better graphics, faster load times, the ability to amass collections and win trophies, and a full-screen mode. It is accompanied at said casino by a "Wheel of Fortune Slots" game that abides by the basic rules of slots games but incorporates aspects of the actual show in various ways, such as featuring a bonus game where players can spin the Wheel to increase their earnings. Neither game features Sajak or White and both games support only one player.

Other games[edit]

A Wheel of Fortune pinball machine was released in the fall of 2007 and was developed by Stern Pinball. It was designed by Kevin O'Connor and Margaret Hudson, and features the voices of Sajak and O'Donnell. Although White does appear with Sajak on the marquee, her voice is never heard in the game.[41]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Wheel of Fortune for Atari 2600". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  2. ^ "Wheel of Fortune for Commodore 64". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  3. ^ "Wheel of Fortune for NES". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  4. ^ Weiss, Brett. "Overview – Wheel of Fortune: New Third Edition". allgame. Retrieved May 26, 2010. 
  5. ^ "Wheel of Fortune Family Edition for NES". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  6. ^ "Wheel of Fortune Junior Edition for NES". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  7. ^ "Wheel of Fortune Featuring Vanna White for NES". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  8. ^ "Wheel of Fortune Featuring Vanna White for Genesis". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  9. ^ "Wheel of Fortune Featuring Vanna White for SNES". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  10. ^ "Wheel of Fortune Featuring Vanna White for Game Gear". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  11. ^ Mega review, Future Publishing, issue 3, page 40, December 1992
  12. ^ "Wheel of Fortune for Sega CD". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  13. ^ "Wheel of Fortune for Saturn". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  14. ^ "Wheel of Fortune for 3DO". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  15. ^ Schneider, Peer (December 5, 1997). "Wheel of Fortune for Nintendo 64". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  16. ^ "Wheel of Fortune for PlayStation". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  17. ^ Carle, Chris (December 4, 2000). "Wheel of Fortune 2 for PlayStation". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  18. ^ "Wheel of Fortune 2003 for PlayStation 2". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  19. ^ Roper, Chris. "Wheel of Fortune for PlayStation 3". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  20. ^ a b "Wheel of Fortune for Wii". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  21. ^ "Wheel of Fortune for Nintendo DS". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  22. ^ "Wheel of Fortune for PlayStation 3 (2012)". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  23. ^ "Wheel of Fortune for Wii U". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  24. ^ "Wheel of Fortune for Xbox 360". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  25. ^ "Wheel of Fortune for Game Boy". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  26. ^ Weiss, Brett. "Review - Wheel of Fortune for G.com". allgame. Retrieved May 26, 2010. 
  27. ^ "Wheel of Fortune for Game Boy Color". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  28. ^ "Wheel of Fortune for Prizes". IGN. May 3, 2005. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  29. ^ Buchanan, Levi (July 20, 2006). "Wheel of Fortune 2007". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  30. ^ "Wheel of Fortune Wireless". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  31. ^ "Wheel of Fortune (2010)". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  32. ^ Thomas, Lucas M.; Davis, Justin (December 13, 2012). "App Store Update: December 13". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  33. ^ "Wheel of Fortune". MobyGames. Retrieved 2010-08-12. 
  34. ^ "Wheel of Fortune PC". IGN. December 1, 1998. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  35. ^ "Wheel of Fortune for Macintosh". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  36. ^ "Wheel of Fortune 2 Preview". IGN. May 12, 2000. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  37. ^ "Wheel of Fortune 2003 PC". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  38. ^ "Wheel of Fortune Deluxe". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  39. ^ "Wheel of Fortune Super Deluxe". IGN. Retrieved December 15, 2013. 
  40. ^ "GSN Digital and Sony Pictures Consumer Products Inc. Partner to Create Wheel of Fortune Game for Facebook". Sony Pictures Digital. September 8, 2010. Retrieved November 2, 2010. 
  41. ^ "Wheel of Fortune Pinball Machines from Stern Pinball Inc.". Retrieved 2010-08-12. 

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