Dollar Dash is one of those games that a person can pick up and play, but not play for too long. This game feels like a mini game, like something that would be more at home in Mario Party, or the older game Fusion Frenzy. However the game is more flushed out than a normal mini game, because there are multiple game types and many different types of power-up that allow for many different styles of strategies. The game has a fun sense of humor and has a very cartoony art style, which both melt over into the gameplay. The game is well-put together, and belongs in the arcade, unlike some other games that could be deserving of retail releases.
The idea behind Dollar Dash is that you are a thief and are committing a heist when another thief tries to get in on the action. The game revolves around getting money off the ground and then transporting it to a location. The other players can stop you from doing this by hitting you with any number of different weapons that drop as power-ups. While this sounds imbalanced, there are helpful power-ups that allow you to lay traps, and get away from your pursuers.
The concept is so simple that if the games didn’t take as long as they do, ten minutes tops, then I would say that it really should be a mini game inside something like Mario Party. I also feel that because there is no story line, that Dollar Dash doesn’t belong as a full retail release, but it fits right into the Arcade.
While the game-play is simple, it is very well flushed out. There is no one weapon that is overpowered and all the weapons can be used in different ways for different gameplay styles. The power-ups are well rounded and fit into almost every strategy. However, a player needs to be adaptable because a lot of the power-up drops are random, and you can’t pick up another power-up until your first one is used up. This mechanic makes it so that the action is constant. Another great thing about such a simple concept, aside from the constant action, is that it can be picked up extremely easily. The controls are simple and because the gameplay is easy a new person can pick up the game and understand what they need to be doing.
Dollar Dash also features a very cartoony art style, which runs over into the gameplay. The art style makes the characters features extremely pronounced and adds a sense of whimsy to the game. Where the art style runs over into the game play is with the power-ups. The weapons that can be picked up are very cartoon-like; you can pick up fireworks, cacti, and even snowballs, all of which are used against your opponents. Seeing the effects of some of the power-ups is comical, and extremely satisfying.
The one issue that I encountered was that the game doesn’t feel like it can be played for an extended period of time. There are other games that can be picked up and played for hours at a time, something like Halo 4, or a good RPG. Dollar Dash on the other hand lacks something— variety in particular. There are several different maps that will vary the way the game is played out. And the game has incentives for you to keep playing, in the form of upgrades and extra clothing options that are earned over time. I honestly don’t know why a person couldn’t spend several hours playing, but I just couldn’t do it, and I picked up the game when I wanted a change of pace from other games.
Dollar Dash has a simple concept, but is executed incredibly well. The cartoon art style makes the game fun to watch. The gameplay, while reminiscent of something that could be found in Mario Party, is extremely well done and allows for many different styles of play that requires players to think on their feet. The one thing that brings the down in my book is that I couldn’t play it for more than 30 minutes at time, and while this amounted to around three matches each session, it felt like the game was lacking something to keep me playing for longer than one sitting. Overall, it is a well-put together game that deserves a look at.
Final Score: Dollar Dash gets a 7 out of 10.
A review copy was provided by the publisher.