Sawbuck Gamer

Doritos Crash Course 2

Advertising Age

Doritos Crash Course 2 is the best Doritos game you’ll play this year.

By Matt Gerardi • May 17, 2013

Sawbuck Gamer is our daily review of a free or cheap game ($10 or less).

Maybe it’s all Mad Men’s fault, but I feel a disconnect between modern advertising and the products they’re shilling for. Advertising in Don Draper’s world romanticized the product. It took thought and creativity, but at least the product was still at the center. Nowadays, we’re subject to car commercials that chronicle the debauchery of a few bad hamsters—hamsters who also happen to drive the Kia Soul.

Doritos Crash Course 2, the latest “advergame” from the storied extreme-snack maker, follows a similar tack to those hamster commercials. Aside from the title, I didn’t notice a single instance of Doritos appearing in this game, a simple but well-made take on masochistic platformers like the Trials series. There isn’t a chip-based power-up to help your Xbox avatar run and jump faster through the game’s Wipeout-esque themed obstacle courses. Nor is there an anthropomorphized Doritos bag providing commentary for your numerous, comically animated failures.

To open up new levels, you need to spend stars—collected throughout the game and earned by placing in the top three at the end of a stage. Perform well enough and you’ll get the requisite amount of stars for the first 10 levels with ease. After that, though, you’ll need to backtrack. You have to explore stages to find stars you left behind. And you have to spend stars to open up new paths in old levels that lead to more stars. This recursive affair left me feeling greasy and a bit queasy—just like a bag of Doritos. So that’s the connection!

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14 Responses to “Advertising Age”

  1. Enkidum says:

    Well, that’s entirely compatible with the original sentence…

  2. Girard says:

    And HERE is a much more satisfying intersection of advertising and gaming…

  3. Citric says:

    Why are you collecting stars? You should be collecting zesty cheeses and cool ranches. DO I HAVE TO DO YOUR JOB FOR YOU DORITOS?

    As a side note, I miss Chili Cheese Lime flavor, but apparently nobody else does.

  4. ItsTheShadsy says:

    Sure, this might be Doritos Game of the Year. But to my knowledge, there are three other Doritos games: Dash of Destruction, Doritos Crash Course 1, and Harms Way. Which is the best one I’ll EVER play?

  5. Saturn500 says:

    So, you’ll mention this, but not the Kickstarter for the localization of The Tale of ALLTYNEX trilogy that’s been going on for the past month?

  6. duwease says:

    I disagree.. you’ve never played Doritos Box?

    You grab a Dorito every second, and you can choose whether you want to eat it or throw it on the ground.  Once you eat about a hundred, you start spawning tears uncontrollably, and…  well, I don’t want to spoil it.

  7. Girard says:

    And in the spirit of advertising, apparently Amazon is having an INSANE video game sale today, including some games pretty popular around these parts. I’m thinking of picking up a $9 digital deluxe ME3 and a $7.50 Dark Souls…

    • Citric says:

      Doesn’t seem to be translating north of the border, but they are selling a chainsaw for 50% off.

  8. Boonehams says:

    Most of the time when games like this come out, it’s because some independent or smaller developer made a game they don’t know what to do with and their rent’s due, so they fish it out to any and all companies saying, “Yeah, I’ll sell you the code for this and you can plaster your logo all over it. I’ll even modify it to have your spokescharacter in the game if you buy it.”

    What do bumper cars have to do with Burger King?  Nothing, but someone got paid to have the Burger King in their bumper car game.