Fabulous: Angela’s Fashion Fever (Gamehouse)
After Angela quits her job and leaves her husband, she finds herself competing on a reality show hosted by the one and only fashion designer, Truly. The prize is a chance to become the next big fashion designer. Does Angela have what it takes to win?
Do you remember the cliffhanger at the end of Sweet Revenge where Angela thinks she might be pregnant? Well that gets resolved in the very beginning, she’s not. It makes the whole game and its cliffhanger null and void. The only important events from the first game are that Angela doesn’t work for Yum-Mee anymore and she’s single, giving her all sorts of potential love interests. The first one is the cop who helped her in the first game, who makes a cameo appearance in this one. The second one shows up later in the game. I don’t know if I already talked about this, but I think that the designers had to get rid of Jimmy. If you’re not familiar with the Delicious series, Jimmy is, or was, Angela’s husband first introduced to us in Emily’s True Love. Jimmy functioned in the series as comic relief, Angela’s glorified sugar daddy and a possible connection to the mafia. Now that Angela’s found her own way as a designer, she’s outgrown him. However, if Angela divorced Jimmy in order to pursue younger and more attractive men, it would cast her in a shallow light. Therefore, they had Jimmy cheat and Angela can dump him without looking evil.
The designers went so out of their way to get rid of any connection to Jimmy that they tossed a plot device brought up in the first game out the window. Personally, I feel that, if you drop a bombshell this huge, you need to be prepared to follow it through. Otherwise it’s all for nothing.
The plot line has similarities to the Delicious game, Emily’s Taste of Fame. For those of you who never played it, the game is about Emily getting an offer to host her own cooking show. Along the way, she meets the colorful characters of Snuggford and helps them with their problems. When Emily finally gets on the show, she realizes that the life of a TV star isn’t for her, quits and goes back to her humble life in Snuggford. In this game, Angela gets her chance to be on a reality show and travels all around the world.
Unlike Emily, her sister, Angela loves her life of fame and craves it the way an alcoholic craves liquor. She even forgets to send a text to one of her friends on her birthday in favor of signing autographs for her newfound fans. This illustrates the differences between the two sisters as Emily is more of a homebody who runs her restaurant and is content with her humble small-town life. Angela craves a wilder lifestyle and loves being the center of attention. The tone of their games further drives this point home, as Emily’s games are more along the lines of shows like Modern Family while Angela’s games are more along the lines of How I Met Your Mother.
I’ll admit that I’ve always felt more drawn to Angela rather than Emily due to the former’s nature that is more carefree. However, some of Angela’s behavior in this game is truly disgusting. I understand that the game is trying to illustrate Angela’s corruption by the famous lifestyle. However, the writers never address one issue. Be warned that this paragraph contains spoilers so read with caution. Truly’s show is a sham as she schemes to eliminate each contestant and competes under the alias Lori. She even goes so far as to blackmail one of her models, Eric, into seducing Angela. Eric is, for lack of a better term, Truly’s whore and the game does not portray it for comedy or make light of the situation in any way. I should explain that one of the rules of Truly’s competition is that the designers are not allowed to get involved with models. If Truly finds out about Angela’s relationship with Eric, she has reason to kick her off the show. However, when Angela finds out that Eric is Truly’s boyfriend, she does not question why Eric is unfaithful to her. Later in the game, Truly invites Angela’s friends to come see her. One of them, Jenny, becomes a model for Angela and flirts with Eric at a club. Jenny has no idea that Angela and Eric have a thing and apologizes to Angela when she finds out. At no point in the game does Angela confront Eric about this. Instead, she takes all her anger out on Jenny by stealing her dress and using it to get Eric’s attention. Understandably, Angela’s friends are angry about this and leave but still come through later on when she needs them. As for Truly’s scheme, Angela does get her revenge. This is another illustration about the differences between her and Emily. When someone wrongs Emily, the people she helps throughout her adventure return to help her overcome the one who wronged her and, if possible, tries to make amends with them. When someone wrongs Angela, she takes matters into her own hands by getting revenge in creative ways.
The game play is similar to Delicious with clothes instead of food. Angela makes outfits, jewelry, gets cosmetics for her customers or models, and checks them out. Some of them visit the changing room or, in some levels, get their hair done at the mirror. Angela has to clean up after that for extra points.
Some levels even require an extra activity for Angela to complete and get more points. Each level has their own mouse and, unlike Delicious, offers cleaning bonuses. The layout of the second game is rather different from the first due to Angela not marking each level with her own Facebook posts. I have to admit, I rather missed that aspect. Angela also gets her own pure activity levels throughout the game, though they’re the same in each section. Pick a dress for Angela to design, draw sketches for it, move the box of supplies, collect the supplies and finally sew the dress.
In the second venue, you have to chase the different contestants away from your dress so they don’t sabotage you. Believe me it gets repetitive after awhile. You can also buy upgrades for each venue and even purchase entertainers and checkout clerks. Though you have to buy the latter two every single level, another aspect that’s rather grating.
This game is fun but needs improvement. I give it 6 out of 10, a nice distraction but rather lacking in both storyline and game play.