Has anyone heard of this game before it was free with Gold? Didn't think so. Turns out, there's a good reason for that. Big Crown: Showdown is not an obscure gem nor an unspeakable horror. It's just average and forgettable.
The objective of this game is to race to the finish line and avoid your opponents, who are trying to knock you off the track. It's something you would expect as a minigame from Mario Party. There are a few different levels, with a few gimmicks here and there, but overall, all the levels are fairly similar.
The controls aren't too bad for a game like this, so I really don't have anything to say here.
However, the game's fatal flaw comes from its incredibly lackluster multiplayer settings. You can either play online or locally with real people. That's it. No multiplayer bots. If you only have one controller or you have no one around who is willing to play, you have to play online and hope you can find a match. Before this game was free with Gold, the online mode really wasn't that active, and I'm sure almost no one will keep playing it for long. It's one thing to have badly programmed bots (i.e. too easy or too hard), but even that would be better than no bots at all.
The other major problem with this game is that it gets stale really quickly. It's fun for maybe one or two matches, and then you've seen everything the game has to offer. Considering how you need real people to play this game, that's a bit of a problem. Plenty of multiplayer party games allow you to play with bots, so what's the issue here?
In terms of achievements, there's nothing unusual here, Win a game, collect all the coins from a chest, get a knockout, etc. However, there are also ridiculous achievements like "run 26.2 miles", "knock 1,000 objects off the track", and "buy every hat". Getting enough coins for all hats and running 26.2 miles is going to take several hours, and again, this game wears off much quicker than that. Also, you need to play with four people online (good luck finding enough opponents) and with four people locally (do you have four controllers?). You can always work towards these achievements by yourself and leave an extra controller idle, but what fun is that?
Overall, Big Crown: Showdown only really deserves one star. It just isn't that good. There's just not enough content to justify a $13 price tag. At best, it feels like it should be a Mario Party minigame, and at worst, it feels like shovelware. I would've given it two stars out of five if it had multiplayer bots for those who want to play solo, but this game doesn't even have that going for it. There are better party games out there, and there are better things to spend your $13 on. It's not even worth buying for easy Gamerscore.