Mini-games typically are fun. Super mini-games that only last for a few seconds are a great pick-up-and-play concept ... if executed well. WarioWare showed us that these attention-deficit-disorder-catering games allowed people to play for a few minutes and feel like they accomplished something. Turn It Around is a similar game in concept, but the execution is a little different.
The idea of the game is that you have a collection of 24 mini-games that are supposed to be controlled by a wheel on the touchpad. Most games are simple enough so that most of the time, spinning the wheel with the stylus as fast as you can allows you to finish the mini-game. Some of the other games have you timing the turns to achieve the goals. The issue is that the stylus turning the wheel control rarely works as well as intended. Luckily, they offer button and D-pad controls to backup this base control scheme, which seems to work more reliably than the wheel.
The game includes some old favorites mixed in the mini-games, such as Araknoid and Fishing Master, which some might recognize from older Taito releases. These are by far the most polished and fun games in the mix, although some of the others are entertaining if not fun.
The game offers two main modes of gameplay: single player and multiplayer. Within the single-player game, there is a challenge mode in which you are trying to finish all the mini-games with decent scores, or a mode in which you can just play the games one at a time to attempt to beat the high scores. The multiplayer game seems fun, although it requires the other player to have his or her own copy of the game. There is no multi-cart and this hurts the ability to have your friends join in the fun easily.
The scoring system is an issue for me as it doesn't seem to make much sense. Basically, when you play a game, you are trying to beat the high score from previous plays, and that part works well; but they also throw in a rank based on your performance. This is represented by a title, such as "Rolling Master" or "Zero," that doesn't seem linked to your actual score. I was unable to find any correlation to my score and my title.
Visually, the games fine, but not as flashy as those of the big-budget titles. The design is very Japanese on many of the mini-games, and this works within the style of the overall design. The sounds match the effect well with what is going on in the game and the music being decent and fairly unobtrusive as not to distract the player too much.
The game has some value in the quick and easy sense but failed to capture my attention as much as many other games on the market. The different controls are amusing at first and then frustrating later on, until you switch back to the secondary controls. Overall though, as a sub-$20 title, it's picking up.