All Talk brings plenty of laughs
The App Store already features lots of digital adaptations (and alterations) for Scrabble, Sudoku, and Pictionary. Maybe that’s why developers have moved on and started giving Hasbro’s Taboo some love. All Talk is a word guessing game that comes from the same bloodlines as another recent App Store addition, Can’t Say That!. There is an important difference, though: In All Talk, you receive and deliver all your clues via voice recordings. This seemingly small gameplay tweak actually changes All Talk’s chemistry enough to keep it out of Can’t Say That!’s shadow.
All Talk is easy enough to play, though the most important thing is to make sure you experience the game in a place where you can hear and speak into your iOS device clearly (preferably someplace where you won’t annoy all the nice ladies and gentlemen that share the planet with you).
Once you’re settled in, you listen to an audio recording describing a certain word. As is the case with Taboo and Can’t Say That!, certain obvious clues are verboten. When describing a chair, for instance, it’s unlikely the person doing the describing will be allowed to say “sit.” If you think you know what the person on the other end is stammering about, you can type in the word when you’re ready. Beware, though: you can only miss (that is, pick a letter that’s not actually part of the word) three times per word.
If you guess correctly, it’s your turn to record a 30 second (max) clue. You can choose to take the Easy, Medium, or Hard route when you narrate. If you choose Easy, all your forbidden words are revealed before you actually start recording your clue. If you choose a harder difficulty, your taboo descriptors are withheld until you actually hit the “Record” button.
You earn coins as you play. The harder the difficulty you choose, the more coins you earn. Those coins go towards opening new difficulties, and new word packs – not unlike how you unlock new colors in Draw Something.
The audio clues in All Talk are actually more fun to play with than the text-based clues in Can’t Say That!. All Talk is, first and foremost, a game for friends. If you’re not self-conscious about what you’re saying, or if you share inside jokes as clues, the game descends into hilarious chaos in no time.
Playing with strangers, however, is a bit more awkward. For one thing, there’s no guarantee that the clue will be audible behind a wall of static, or won’t simply be somebody mumbling. You can use “Key” items to buy hints in those cases, but they’re hard to come by. Also, words seem to repeat a lot. It’s kind of fun to hear different people struggle to describe “Pirate” without resorting to “Ship,” but it gets old pretty fast. Hopefully, either you or your opponent will think to splurge for new word packs, but they cost quite a bit of in-game money.
All Talk isn’t perfect, and you’re not going to be able to really enjoy it anywhere that’s not quiet/private. Playing with strangers might make you self-conscious, depending on your personality, but there’s no doubt that playing with your friends will make you rupture something laughing—unless you’ve all taken a vow to remain straight-faced and solemn for the remainder of your lives.
- Lots of fun to play with friends. Audio clues add an interesting dynamic. Easy to pick up and learn.
- You can only play effectively in quiet or private areas. Clue words repeat often. Playing with strangers can be awkward.