A theme in our reviews of the recent wave of PlayLink games has been whether a game is necessary. When PlayLink was revealed last year, it felt like something new: That’s You couldn’t have been made without smartphones, while other titles like Hidden Agenda at least attempted something interesting.
Fast-forward to this year, though, and already the initiative is lacking initiative. The colourful and fun Melbits World was an exception to that, but Chimparty felt like a bog-standard party game and Knowledge Is Power: Decades added pretty much nothing to last year’s game.
Just Deal With It, the latest PlayLink title, sadly continues this trend.
Taking place on the cartoony Isle of Deal, it’s a card-based party game for up to ten players both offline and online. Starting up, Just Deal With It is the usual PlayLink party fare: choose your character, name yourself, take a selfie, and you’re in the game’s world. Unfortunately, as with most other PlayLink party games, the host is obnoxious and plain unfunny. Whether that was Super Punk Games’ intention or not, either way it’s offputting.
Included in Just Deal With It are five classic card games: Texas Hold ‘Em Poker, Rummy, Blackjack, Crazy Eights, and Hearts, all coming with tutorials. As a bog-standard card game it certainly does its job, although of course the PlayLink functionality means that some twists are thrown in in the form of power-ups that cover your opponents’ screens. It adds a bit of fun, but it’s hardly a convincing argument for the game.
Super Punk Games does try to mix things up more by introducing team missions. These are objectives handed to you throughout the game that encourage you to work together with other players temporarily for a points reward. Again, they add a nice little twist to the games, but nothing particularly exciting that uses PlayLink to its full potential.
Just Deal With It’s online functionality is probably the most exciting thing about it, seeing as not many games on PS4 allow you to play such a wide range of card games with your friends over the Internet.
But as a local multiplayer title, it’s seriously lacking. Most of our experience playing Just Deal With It with friends was spent wondering why we should play it instead of just busting out a deck of cards like usual. There are tiny twists, sure, but nothing that gives you a reason to choose Super Punk’s latest over just playing a normal card game.
Just Deal With It is another disappointing addition to the PlayLink library. The online functionality will certainly be a selling point for some, but as a couch party game it fails to add any major draws that separate it from physical card games. It may do what it says on the tin, but that's about it.