Mean Girls DS (lost build of cancelled Nintendo DS game based on film; 2009-2010)
Mean Girls DS is a video game made for the Nintendo DS, intended as a tie-in for the 2004 comedy film Mean Girls. The game was developed by 505 Games and was released in Europe on September 11th, 2009. A United States release was scheduled for April 20th, 2010, but was canceled at the last minute. For unknown reasons, the game has not resurfaced digitally or physically since its release, and no copies have been accounted for.
Little is known about the gameplay, though the plot is presumably similar to the movie, in that the player acts as a new student at a high-school. Kotaku described the game as being "some kind of Puzzle Quest ripoff", which would make it similar to its PC counterpart, Mean Girls: High School Showdown. However, according to the ESRB, it was an adventure game where the player interacts with characters through text-based conversations. It is also possible the game differs from both of these descriptions, as neither of them seems to match up with the available screenshots, which make it look more like a series of minigames.
The game was noteworthy for not including Lindsay Lohan in the cover, despite her major role in the film. Apparently, the official explanation for this was that it was due to a monetary dispute, though many speculate that the actual reason was the actress' poor reputation at the time.
It appears that the game was a financial failure, and very few copies were printed; previously announced tie-in games such as the Pretty in Pink and Clueless games were either made PC-download-only or, in the case of the latter, cancelled entirely. Though the US release of Mean Girls DS was cancelled, it still has a UPC code, and the game has been sold online at least once before.Here is the description of the game, from the Walmart website:
- Go up against plastics, jocks, art freaks and mathletes, as you work to play the cliques against each other and become the high school prom queen!
- Unlock new mini-games and environments
Despite recent search efforts, no ROM images have surfaced, and no copies have been found currently for sale. There are no known scans of the back cover, though a total of 5 screenshots were found on an obscure Italian site.
Official Response from Development Team
On April 24th, 2017, LMW user Flutter contacted developer 505 Games, and received the following message:
Thank you for contacting 505 Game Customer Support. We've been getting a consistent flow of tickets about this game, mostly from the Lost Media Wiki. Everything that's listed there is all that we know, and all that is publicly released. The game itself never made it to market, so there are no additional details that we have to offer, as this is a cancelled title from over 7 years ago. My apologies for the inconvenience."
505 Games Customer Support
This confirms that the game's release was indeed cancelled.
- Wikipedia page for the film that mentions Mean Girls DS. Retrieved 30 Sept '16
- GameFAQs page for the game. Retrieved 30 Sept '16
- Kotaku article about the game. Retrieved 30 Sept '16
- The game's ESRB rating justification. Retrieved 30 Sept '16
- Page for the game on The Hunt. Retrieved 30 Sept '16
- Walmart page with the description of the game. Retrieved 01 March '17
- Screenshots for the game, on Multiplayer.it. Retrieved 30 Sept '16