We Dare

SwingStar.

The problem with trying to outlaw something is you just end up increasing demand. Ask D. H. Lawrence, the author of Spycatcher or anyone who's ever tried to ban Judy Blume's Forever from a girls' comprehensive.

You also end up giving the thing an air of saucy mysteriousness it almost certainly doesn't deserve. Spycatcher is basically about working in the civil service. Forever is about a boy who calls his penis Ralph. Lady Chatterley's Lover is all billowing flanks and primordial tenderness, which is nothing compared to what you can watch women doing with lengths of rubber tubing on the internet these days.

Which brings us to We Dare, the Wii party game Ubisoft thinks is too sexy for the UK. They blamed the decision on our reaction to that advert - you know, the one where chiselled male models spank hot women in tweed skirts and they all laugh like they aren't crying inside because they know the next rung on the ladder is porn.

The good news - or more accurately, for reasons which shall become apparent, the news - is that We Dare is available in the rest of Europe. You can have it delivered from France direct to your door for less than the price of a fun 20 minutes in the Quartier Pigalle.

Eurogamer purchased a copy from Amazon.fr after Ubi mysteriously declined to send us a promo. There is one user review on the retailer's listings page for We Dare, or Petits Flirts Entre Amis as it's titled round those parts.

I don't understand much French, having spent most of my time at school reading Judy Blume's Forever. But I suspect this excerpt probably sums it up: "De plus, la maniabilité est exécrable."

For oui, mon petite coquilles Saint-Jacques, it turns out We Dare does not in fact offer a series of spectacularly enjoyable and arousing experiences which will leave you and your attractive friends rolling half-naked in the aisles.

Warning: you cannot unsee this.

Incroyable as this may sound, it's just another rubbishy collection of simplistic mini-games. None of them will keep you entertained for more than 48 seconds and all of them are about as erotically charged as an afternoon spent reading out random item numbers from the Argos catalogue.

Perhaps Ubisoft's first mistake (or rather, second, after thinking it's ever a good idea to mix sex and video games) was hiring a crap copywriter. (Although our copy of We Dare came in a French box, the in-game text is presented in English - in fact that's the default setting.)

The mini-games are divided into five ridiculous categories - Enchanting, Persuasive, Naughty, Adventurous and Brainy. Because who hasn't sat around with their friends going, "You know what? I really feel like playing one of those persuasive video games today."

The names and descriptions of the mini-games are similarly laughable. They're called things like Love Storm, Bar Dancing and Like in a Movie. In the Moonlight is explained thus: "When your heart's on fire the smoke's bound to go somewhere, and elegance is the best response." What?

"Follow the mood of this sweet autumn and feel free to move," reads the description for Turn a New Leaf. A more accurate summary would be, "Perform ludicrous dance moves to the beat of some terrible music against a backdrop of some orange trees."

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Female avatar types to choose from include Femme Fatale, Domestic Type and Girl Next Door. Why not just Whore or Virgin?

Turn a New Leaf is supposed to be Enchanting, but it reappears in various guises within the other categories. We Dare commits the cardinal but not uncommon sin of pretending to offer dozens of mini-games, when it actually offers about five mini-games wearing slightly different hats.

None of the variations of this particular mini-game are any more fun than the others. There is a certain number of times you can pretend playing an invisible violin and steering an imaginary car is amusing, and that number is one. Being asked to do these things while your avatar stands on a poorly rendered beach instead of in front of some orange trees does not help.

We Dare features several other slightly different but equally pathetic excuses for dancing games. Some of these see you copying avatars as they gyrate around in fantasy settings, such as Parisian rooftops and the theatre at the end of Dirty Dancing, while you listen to appalling cover versions of tracks like I'm Too Sexy and Time of My Life.

Others present a scrolling series of silhouettes you must copy as your avatar dances on some kind of disco catwalk. The appalling cover versions in this set of mini-games vary but the setting never does. Plus they make you endlessly perform the same rubbishy dance moves, just arranged in slightly different orders.

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