Developer: Hwee Boon Yar
Price: $4.99 Download on the App Store
Big Deuce - For all of you Vegas aficionados that love playing offbeat and obscure card games, MotionObj has developed an iPhone application that speaks directly to you. Big Deuce is a game that replicates the card game of the same name originated in Eastern Asia. While there are several mainstream card games that have been successfully ported over to the iPhone, Big Deuce can carve out a niché for itself as there isn’t another card game like this on the App Store.
The premise of Big Deuce is simple. Your goal as a player is to get rid of all of your cards. Games are played with four players and the goal is to progressively one-up other players using various poker hands (e.g. two pair, three of a kind, full house, etc.) while getting rid of your cards. In the scenario depicted in the photo, our player can’t play a higher hand than the opponent, so they have to pass on their turn.
The intricacies and strategic approaches to Big Deuce are detailed and complex and, in turn, you’ll want to spend a significant amount of time reviewing the rules here. Unfortunately, Big Deuce doesn’t have any tutorials or information detailing how to play the game, so reviewing the rules from an external source is the only way to get up to speed on the game if you’re new to it. I’m not sure what MotionObj was thinking to release such an obscure game without any direction on how to play it, but maybe that will be addressed in a future update.
The execution of the card game in Big Deuce is shockingly bad. Though the actual gameplay works most of the time, I experienced a frequent bug that causes the game to freeze or crash while trying to move my cards.
On top of the sporadic bugs, there aren’t any extras in this game. There isn’t any sound for anything, no multiplayer, boring visuals and Big Deuce does nothing extra to make playing the game an exciting experience. To give you some context on how lacking this game is in its presentation, Solitaire from Windows 98 easily trumps what you’ll find in Big Deuce which is saying a lot.
Kudos to MotionObj for trying to bring an interesting and unique card game to the iPhone. The problem is that Big Deuce is on par with something you would have seen released in 1999 instead of 2009. For hardcore fans of the game, I’d recommend this title as it’s only a dollar. Outside of that specific scenario, I can’t encourage the purchase of this title for casual card game fans.