Ever wondered what it would be like to be a father with a danger obsessed baby? Try this game and you'll know for sure.
Daddy loves Baby, Baby loves knives
Slip into the shoes of an incompetent dad, one who litters his home with batteries, bleach, and full bathtubs
The Alpha setup included a typo. It’s the lack of attention to detail that shines through from beginning to grisly end. Play this game if you have nothing else to do. Go, do the laundry, mop the floor, take the dog for a walk, or start a daisy chain. Anything, absolutely anything, is better than this drivel.
The main menu of this game will remind you of The Sims 2, from the low poly blue banana and salt shaker prints on the wall to the stack of glasses on the boxy kitchen cabinets. Daddy and baby, however, don’t rank high on the fun and adorable pixelated scale.
There are no meters to fill, no secrets to unravel. The point of this game is to keep baby alive, at least, if you fulfill the role of “clueless” Daddy while rushing around completing chores. Contrary to basic human instinct, Baby is trying to die the fastest way possible. Note to Baby: skip the oven and the bathtub drowning -- it takes too long.
Sound morbid? It is. The goal is obvious, but the purpose of this game is unclear. There are too many simple ways for the baby to commit suicide, such as eating batteries or sticking a fork in an outlet. The problem is this: there are batteries everywhere and the fork is somehow always within reach. Much of this game is memorization. Look in drawers and the bathtub and the oven. Remember those places for later and then use them to your advantage. Be faster than the other player. Repeat, repeat, repeat. But still, no matter how hard you try to save your baby, the baby will win most of the time. Where is the fun in that? Oh, wait. There isn’t any.
Daddy moves with too loud footsteps. Daddy clomps through the two-story home to complete a dizzying (and boring) array of safety-related chores. Daddy slaps on outlet covers, finds pills to heal Baby, and installs cabinet locks to keep Baby out of harm’s way in the fast-flying four minute rounds. Baby can hide out of sight without a problem.
Fast Connecting, Faster Dying
Jumping into this game is fast, provided you can find someone else on the server. Since Who’s Your Daddy offers zero solo options, and no local multiplayer, you are dependent on the game server. Once in the game, you will use WASD keys and the mouse to achieve your goals of keeping your precious bundle of joy safe and sound before Mommy arrives home. Are you up to the task?
Meanwhile, Baby crawls, with odd clawing hand motions, faster than any baby you’ve seen. Baby can climb into a tub and drown, eat broken glass, and chug down a bottle of bleach in the blink of an eye. You know things are not going well when Baby turns a hideous shade of green. Fruit or medicine may save the day.
Baby has nothing to do but try to entice death. Daddy, meanwhile, must finish chores in-between keeping an eye on Baby. If Daddy succeeds in completing chores, power-ups are his big reward. These special effects give Daddy superhero powers, if only for a moment. Being able to see through a wall makes finding Baby much easier.
For a game depending on the quick life-saving movements of Daddy, it is clunky and jumpy. Objects sometimes soar through the air. Lags happen on occasion. One of the characters may get stuck for no reason. If you do rope in a few friends to join in, create a private server from the main menu. Add a password and let the baby-saving games begin.
Is there a better alternative?
Rearing children and maintain a balanced home life aren’t often the main theme of a video game. Still, there are titles that focus on family life and that do it far better than Who’s Your Daddy. Earlier versions of The Sims feature toddlers and teens who need encouragement. Otherwise, they wound up developing awful life-long characteristics. You do still need to feed and shelter the children.
For a deeper game exploring the meaning of family and work and fulfilling your dreams, take a look at The Novelist. For a not so down-in-the-dumps gaming experience, Babysitting Mama for the Wii offers better game play in a much prettier package (at the sexist exclusion of a male playable).
These games don’t always have multiplayer options or, if they do, you can still choose to play solo and aren’t dependent on finding someone else in the mood for a turn at caregiver.
Run, don’t baby crawl, away from this terrible waste of time. Without local servers, you can’t play if no one else does.
Should you download it?
Yes, especially If you enjoyed the “dancing baby” on Ally McBeal reruns, then you may want to consider downloading Who’s Your Daddy. It is free, after all. For everyone else, skip this nightmarish monstrosity and do something, anything, else with your time.