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Crap! I'm Broke - the crushing horror of real life has never been so fun

For: iPad

So no one told you life was gonna be this way?

Product: Crap! I'm Broke: Out of Pocket | Publisher: Arcane Circus | Format: iPad | Players: 1 | Version: Europe
Crap! I'm Broke: Out of Pocket iPad, thumbnail 1
Take it from someone who knows - being broke and deeply in debt is no fun at all. How you could turn a dire life situation into a video game is frankly beyond comprehension.

But the makers of Crap! I'm Broke have certainly given it their all, by turning the monotonous act of counting coins into a frantic, mini-game fuelled arcade game.

It's stressful and hard - just like real life - but it's also incredibly charming in a way that makes it near impossible to put down.

Your job's a joke

The basic set up is simple. You have no money and mounting bills, and have to run around picking up odd jobs while making sure you don't starve to death.

Jobs take the form of mini-games that have to be played quickly and efficiently to earn the most cash, and screwing up means you get sacked.

It's all easy stuff - you'll be washing dishes by rubbing the screen, tapping burgers to cook and put them together, swiping cans into the right bins, and so on.

But you'll also have to deal with random bills each month, jobs not being available when you want them, and some intense time limits.

Fail to earn enough money or get home in time to pay your bills and your debt starts piling up. Leave it too long and you'll be evicted, and its game over.

You're broke

In the early days of the game, it's exceptionally tough. You'll die of starvation one month, only to try again and be evicted because you ate just a little too much.

You can spend money on perks to make jobs pay more, or long-term items that may help further down the line if you're willing to take the plunge, but oftentimes you won't be able to afford the damn thing, which is incredibly frustrating.

Stick with it, however, and you work out routines and ways of being efficient. You learn the tricks of the mini-games and where you need to go and when. You speed up, and the game starts to open up.

There's a bunch of neat little additions here and there too to spice things up - jobs will offer challenges, you'll have to complete New Years' Resolutions, and so on.

And a special shout-out needs to be made to the Cubist art style, which is unique and eye-catching, and gives the game a really strong identity.

Your love life's DOA

Crap I'm Broke! isn't going to be for everyone. The frantic pace required to play well, along with the endless failures throughout, may prove to be frustrating.

But what it does brilliantly is condense simple minigames into one ridiculous title, oozing with charm and with plenty of challenge to keep you pushing yourself.

If you have the dexterity and stomach to face off against the initial rocky start, you'll find yourself having a whale of a time doing all the mundane things you hate doing in real life, but on a small screen instead.
Crap! I'm Broke - the crushing horror of real life has never been so fun
Reviewer photo
Ric Cowley | 11 October 2016
As crushing to get used to as real life, Crap! I'm Broke rewards dilligent players with a frantic fun time. Just like real life
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