Dragons’ Den. It has provided entertainment for millions of viewers of the BBC 2 programme and success for the elite who actually gain an investment from the business Dragons. Products and services are now available that would not have been without the show. Thanks to the BBC, addiction to Reggae Reggae sauce exists!
It would understandably be challenging to turn Dragons’ Den into any videogame, let alone a game for the iOS. The sales pitches and presentations are really what make the show something special and trying to emulate this in any videogame isn’t an easy task but it’s something that 2Way Traffic have taken up. Let’s not forget that there’s licensing issues around the use of the Dragons and it would depend to which series of Dragon’s Den 2Way Traffic use.
The game starts with the option to choose a Dragon, who gets the chance to make or break a person’s dreams. Unfortunately, the characters have no likeness to the Dragons in the UK and they are fictional. However, their business portfolios have a striking resemblance to the Dragons we know and hate. Depending on which Dragon is chosen will depend on which bids are successful as the game is very logical. If your Dragon is a retail magnet, then naturally those who are trying to open up a retail outlet will go for their offer over someone in the holiday industry.
Potential candidates can only leave with the amount of money they ask for, just as the television show. Much like Dragons’ Den on the TV, when making an offer the Dragons can put up half the money and ask for as much equity they think is reasonable.
Dragons’ Den pitches previous business ideas from history and it is up to the Dragons to invest or leave the idea alone. The success of the idea then determines how much profit is awarded or how much of a loss is taken. To not give the game away, 2Way Traffic has cut down the pitch to 4 or 5 lines of text, which the Dragons have to base their decisions on. This can be very misleading as it feels like something has been missed and investment have to be done purely on guesswork. The descriptions should have been longer and this would allow players to get a greater understanding of their potential investment.
All of the original TV music is in place, as well as the general look and feel of the Den itself. Fans of the series may find Evan Davis’s narration in their heads to give it the genuine feel to the game! Graphically, the game presents with decent looking 3D characters, reminiscent of the original PlayStation character models.
An investment decision is all about taking a chance knowing the facts and as much of them as possible. Playing the game is more like a game of chance. There is so little information given to make an informed choice of where to invest it is more pot luck in succeeding. When the investing is done, the game turns into a history lesson when it is revealed what the Dragons have put money on. Dragons’ Den is a brilliant concept for TV with up and coming inventions but on a game where pure luck and chance are the key factors to save the day, it doesn’t translate very well.