Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Wii Sports

On Saturday, I had the opportunity to play through the Wii Sports package that comes bundled with Nintendo's newest platform. I had previously tackled the Bowling game and it was great fun for a group of people. Would the others come up to scratch?

First up is Tennis. This seemed to be the most widely demonstrated game when it was being showcased on TV but I have to say it doesn't come up aces. I can't picture 4 people playing this game in an average sized living room without continually pummelling the person next to them every other serve. The other problem is trying to make the game hit the ball in the direction you want it to go. Perhaps I was just lousy at the game (which could be the case) but I found it frustrating and it wasn't long before I tired of it.

Next is Baseball. This sport doesn't get a look in anywhere except America and Japan and so the main fun here is throwing and hitting the ball on using the controller. If any game on this package is going to make you lose your grip, sending the remote across the room, it's this. It's also the other two player only game with the bundle although I'm sure they could have made it four player and split each team in two. It's another game like Tennis where I just couldn't get my swing right and after two gos I only struck the ball a handful of times. Once again, it's probably another game where you could improve after a few plays but again, it's not my game.

The Bowling game is a clear party favourite as it's easy to play and once you get to grips, you'll be (half-)striking and scoring three figure games on the trot. There's not much you could add to the game to improve it except for additional features to make it more fun for experiences users. Perhaps being able to choose the weight of the ball or making the alley glow-in-the-dark would enhance the game a little but that aside, it's my joint favourite game.

The Boxing game is the only game to utilise both controllers and once you have a double set, you can K.O. your friend when they come sniffing around. By constantly moving the controllers like you're shaking macaracas like Bez on speed, your arms get very sore, very quickly and it's difficult to see exactly what the hell you're doing. I slowed down my approach and made careful pummels moving the controllers back and forth but unfortunatly this didn't relay to what I say on screen and I feared that the best approach is to attach the controllers to your body, have a fit and convulse on the floor.

Last but certainly not least is the Golf game. At first, another frustrating game but once you learn how to swing the controller, Golf has become the joint first game on the Wii Sports package. It's the flip-side party game to Bowling and a slower but equally fun way to spend an afternoon. My only quibble is there is only 9 holes to play on and I imagine these would become boring over a short period of time. I'm not sure if you can download more courses but I expect this is the case and it would certainly lengthen the game indefinetly if there were several 18 hole courses available.

Overall, the Wii Sports bundle is a great giveaway with the console - as long as you have friends or family to play with you!
As the console is aimed for this market, it makes for a good starting point to highlight the uses for both controllers although I imagine a game like Zelda would untilise all the buttons, especially on the nun-chuk remote. Assuming you can find it for £179.99 it's certainly worth the cost.


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