Having finally reviewed the Nintendo Wii I feel the need to talk about some of the games I have been playing on the console. The obvious game to start with is Wii Sports, after all it came with the console.
Wii Sports is a series of sporting events (5 in total – Tennis, Baseball, Bowling, Golf, and Boxing) all played, and most likely designed, to showcase the Nintendo Wii’s unique controller (the Wiimote).
Tennis is the best of the bunch by a long way. The premise is simple, hit the ball across the net, but the subtlety of the control is wonderful and the best example of the Wii potential that I’ve seen to date. To start with you will swing the controller around like a loon, but once you get the hang of things you can position the shots, spin, and curve the balls and do all sorts of stuff that you can only dream of on a real court.
I really enjoy the bowling game. It’s basically, um, bowling, but it’s surprisingly addictive. This is the game that is most responsible for broken televisions so make sure you have your Wiimote strapped on securely, and try not to actually let go of the thing. Like Tennis you can learn to spin the ball and once you have that working mastered should be getting many strikes per game. The weak point of Wii bowling is that once you do have the throwing mastered it’s relatively straight forward to “win” every time. That’s the other weak point, unless you play multiplayer you have no real competition to beat (apart from your personal best).
This is the only one of the three to require the Nunchuk controller. It’s also, in my opinion, the most physical of the games. Basically you hold the two controllers and then punch as you would if you were fighting for real. I found the controls to be a little suspect with punches not always registering. Also the way the Wii registers a punch or a block seems a bit iffy, although that could be down to my playing style. It’s still enjoyable to try though.
Golf and Baseball
These two were my least favorite. Golf is a traditional style golf game which, in theory, should be perfect for the Wiimote, but I found it to be very difficult to gauge shot strength. Baseball is just plain boring.
Training, and Fitness modes
There are also a number of training modes; three per sport. These let you practice the sports in different ways (hitting targets, avoiding obstacles etc) and they serve well to add a bit of extra life to the game.
Fitness mode is not dissimilar to the Brain Training game you can get for the Nintendo DS. Basically you play a series of the Training games getting a mark for each, then at the end you are given a Fitness Age (the younger the better).
I should probably also point out that you get to use your Mii’s in the game. At the time of writing this review it’s the only game that makes use of the Mii’s and I think it’s a really nice feature. I’m looking forward to seeing more games make use of them in the future. Another nice little extra is the fact that you get messages sent to your Wii inbox telling you about the personal bests you have beaten and the awards you have received.
The stand out game for me was Tennis, it’s clearly the best, and received the most publicity. I also really enjoyed the Bowling (getting a 91 pin strike is so cool 🙂 ). The other games are a nice distraction but didn’t last me very long. Unfortunately that’s the problem with the entire game. It’s fun whilst it lasts but there just wasn’t enough variety to keep me entertained. That said invite some friends round and it’s the first game that gets fired up for some multiplayer action.
Note: I nabbed the images from IGN – hope you don’t mind IGN dudes.