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CONSOLE: Sega CD DEVELOPER: Digital Pictures PUBLISHER: Sony Imagesoft
RELEASE DATE (NA): 1992 GENRE: Video Editor
// review by SoyBomb

Make My Refund.

Let's step back, get jacked, somethin' somethin' flickity-flack, to 1992. Who was sweeping the nation with their backwards-shirt-wearing musical stylin'? That's right, it was Kris Kross, that darling duo consisting of Chris "Mac Daddy" Kelly and Chris "Daddy Mac" Smith. Fans couldn't get enough of these rapping sensations. It was their hit "Jump", featuring their pre-puberty voice talents, that brought them instant stardom; that song alone topped the Billboard Hot 100 charts for eight weeks. Over the years, their popularity slowly waned, and they ventured back into obscurity. They only returned to the spotlight in May 2013 when Chris Kelly was found dead at his home, likely from a drug overdose.

Kris Kross will hopefully be remembered as a fun-loving and rather successful rap group. Hopefully, they will NOT be remembered for Kris Kross: Make My Video.

In 1992, Sony Imagesoft released three separate games in the "Make My Video" series, each featuring a different music group. INXS received the treatment, as did Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch. The third group was Kris Kross. And let me tell you: this is painful stuff. I don't know how anyone could justify paying top dollar for software this pathetic. Before I could go ahead and "make my video", I had to listen to the over-the-top verbosity of a fake video jockey, Boyd Parker, as he spouted out a string of lame, stereotypical rapper jargon, complete with both "diggety" AND "wiggety". It was probably considered cool at the time, but it's just embarrassing now.

Once the great Boyd Parker has wound himself down from taking forever to say nothing, the player can choose to hear from a number of callers who want to request a song from the VJ. Unfortunately, you only get to select between three different songs: "Jump", "I Missed the Bus", and "Warm It Up". Sorry, fans of the rest of Kris Kross' first album. Once you select your "caller", you have to watch another scene with Boyd Parker interacting whoever is calling in. (Also, if you take too long to select a caller, Boyd will complain about it. We should be the ones complaining!) I first chose a guy named Norman, who wanted to hear "Jump". And, in typical early 90s fashion, Norman was portrayed (vocally) as a white person trying to earn himself some "street cred" by using the same dialect as a rap artist. Norman is then berated by Boyd Parker and is now considered "wack".

This is the entire game in two screenshots. The owl is the best part.

Then we finally get into the game. Well, okay, it's not really a "game" as much as a primitive video editor. As the song plays, it becomes the player's duty to splice footage in and out in real time, along with adding some terrible visual effects. There are three different reels of footage showing at the same time. One is of Kris Kross actually singing/rapping, but the other two are just random stock footage dug up from who-knows-where that really have nothing to do with the song's content. By pressing A, B, or C at any time, you can have your video switch between the feeds. At any given time, you can also add effects such as changing the colours, pixelating the footage, or flipping it upside-down, all with the flick of a switch. There's nothing particularly impressive about the editor. Sadly, the actual footage used is so small (the final product, along with the rest of the video, is only several inches tall at best) and of such poor quality, you can't get that much enjoyment out of it.

Worse yet, after you've made your video (requiring you to listen to the entire song and make those edits), Boyd Parker forces you to watch your final product again in its entirety and gives you a grade at the end. He might call it "dope", if he feels so inclined. Then again, he seems easily impressed because the video I made was terrible and would never have realistically made it to air, even with the low standards we've already seen in various music videos throughout history.

And that's the entire game. I wish I could say more, but there's really nothing left in this empty shell of a product! Marred by ridiculously ugly full-motion video and an extremely small selection of songs, Kris Kross: Make My Video is an abomination. Can you imagine if games like Guitar Hero or Rock Band only had three songs? Consumers would be up in arms and start rioting in the streets, smashing storefront windows with plastic instruments. This type of software was relatively new in the marketplace in 1992, so gamers had very little with which to compare it. Did you notice that after each Make My Video release, each band's popularity took a nose dive? You can thank the Make My Video series for that. Even though I'm not personally a Kris Kross fan, I can still say that they deserved better. Just leave this garbage alone. Word!

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