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WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Party Game$ (GameCube) artwork

WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Party Game$ (GameCube) review

"Nintendo always strive for creative and original titles, they have a knack for being able to make money out of anything. They could make the most boring and stupid title and it would still sell millions. They’ve tried so many ideas and the majority of them have been praised highly by fan-boy and sensible gamer alike. Whether it’s silly storylines to platformers or sticking their mascots in a sports game it tends to be outlandish, leaving an impact on the mind of the gamer permanently. "

Nintendo always strive for creative and original titles, they have a knack for being able to make money out of anything. They could make the most boring and stupid title and it would still sell millions. They’ve tried so many ideas and the majority of them have been praised highly by fan-boy and sensible gamer alike. Whether it’s silly storylines to platformers or sticking their mascots in a sports game it tends to be outlandish, leaving an impact on the mind of the gamer permanently.

Which brings us to Wario ware: Mega party game$ on the Gamecube, an almost direct port of the GBA version, but with a few extra modes added and a new multiplayer mode which allows you and your friends to easily join in on the action. Wario Ware consists of over two hundred micro games which compile together to form one big one. Calling these games “mini-games” is a slight overstatement as you’ll find that all of the games here only have a duration of five seconds or less.

The game involves Wario wanting to create his own series of computer games after realising just how much cash they drag in. As we all know, Wario lives for money and, as seen in his past adventures will do absolutely anything to get his mitts on some cold hard cash. After a few phone calls, he manages to gather up a group of his friends to help him create some new games in order to rake in the dough. Of course, knowing the chubby Mario antagonist he’ll end up robbing his pals blind and taking all of that money for himself.

The core of the game allows you to play through different genres of mini-games one at a time. You start off with one set unlocked for you and after you finish the set you will get the next one unlocked for you. Your journey begins in an elevator with the ugly mug of Wario staring at you and in three seconds you’ll be thrown into a micro game, where you will have to quickly figure out what you have to do and actually do it in five seconds flat. If you succeed then, Wario will praise you with a grin and in almost three seconds you’ll be flung into another mini-game and the process is repeated. If you make a mistake on a game then you will lose one of your four lives and go straight to the next one until you either run out of lives or complete all twenty five games.

The actual tasks that you to perform are quite simple, consisting of matching moving a car out of the way of other cars or throwing a basketball through a hoop. To do most of the tasks all you need to do is press the A button, either rapidly or at the right time or wiggling the control stick might be necessary. The time limit is what makes the game hard and entertaining as it gets you on your feet. Wario Ware is the ultimate attack on your senses and reflexes as you will have to discover and complete the task in a small amount of time.

There are a few genres which boast numerous games for you to play. These include Sci-Fi , which include tasks like catching an alien or shooting spaceships in an instant. We also have the nature theme, which holds game such as guiding a mole to the goal and using a lizards elastic like tongue to eat flies. Virtual reality uses a mix of real photography and WW style animation,, which creates games that involve you eating a 3D apple and turning off the heat of a boiling kettle. Nintendo allows you to plat five minute re-enactments of classic NES games like Zelda and Super Mario Bros, presenting seemingly simple tasks such as guiding Link to a door or stomping on Goombas with Mario.

In addition to the main mode, there are a few side games that you can play if you fancy a change. In album mode, you look through all of the genres and play whatever micro game you want to play. If you keep on getting caught out by the same game when you play the first mode, then you can practice that game here and master it. It seems to be not only a practice mode but a option that allows you to preview the action in locked genres which can give you an idea of what to expect in later rounds.

Wario Ware has a nice selection of extras to unlock once you have completed the main game. You can watch various moves that you can also watch at the demo screen and you can read biographies of Wario and his wacked out friends. More importantly, there are two new modes of gameplay that can drive right over the edge. These modes are just like the actual main game except that they take all of the micro-games and compile them into one long match, like the genre style but only with all of the games and a mysterious pig mascot cheering you on. This is a great extra which helps lengthen out the overall lifespan of the game. You only get one life and the aim is to see how many micro games you can complete without messing up. This mode is for the pros and is really only there for you to show off your skills to others.

Although, if you wanted to do that in the first place you could easily get a group of friends and play 2p mode, which offers a variety of games exclusive to this mode. You cannot play any of these games in one player so make sure you have someone to play with so you can show them who is boss. There are fifteen new games on multiplayer and to experience them you must have a pal to play with. Some of the best multiplayer games are teasing the cat game, where you have wiggle your string faster than the other player to win. Another great one is Get the money, where you have to control a little character and get him to grab the falling money before the other players do. These games are fun to play but when you consider it, Nintendo could’ve easily added a heap of new ones in if they had really wanted too.

Which was one of the disappointments of Wario Ware, as 200 hundred games did seem a lot on the GBA but on a more powerful system such as the Gamecube, you would have thought they could have tripled the number. When I heard of the GC release of this game I thought that the micro-games would be well over 500 because I thought it was going to be a new game and not a direct port. Obviously, this doesn’t stop Wario Ware from being a bad game but it does leave you in wonder about the announced sequel.

Wario Ware has bright and bold visuals that are quite different from what you may have seen in some Gamecube games. Obviously, since this a port from a GBA game then the graphics are not striking 128-bit quality. However, they are good at what they aim to be. Wario Ware is extremely bright and cartoon-like, presenting visuals that are almost exactly the same as the GBA. The micro-games have a wide range of graphical quality, from the exact representation of 8-bit games to the use of pixels to create the “reality” feeling. Some of the real pixel photos like the cat and the apple look fantastic, mainly because they are quite true to life. The other graphics follow a 16-bit style of graphics and although they look dated, they achieve the correct purpose of a micro game. Wario Ware’s originality is the way it uses a mix of graphical styles to create the wacky and original feel that only Wario Ware can present.

The music is a tad on the basic side, but like the graphics it still does it’s job well. Most of the tracks are only five seconds long to accompany the micro-game. The tune on the games levels really gets your body motivated to play, and when the “speed up” tune begins to sing, it gives you a feeling that gets you ready for the next bunch of faster micro games. It really gets you going and after playing through ten mini-games your heart is really pumping and when the speed gets even faster , the music seems to attack you with it’s lighting speed. Oddly enough, some of the tracks reminded me of Sesame Street, like the paper plane micro game and the level up music, they sound so jolly that they could easily be taken from a kids TV show. The voice samples sound pretty great at first but they get annoying after a little while, mainly because it’s the same ones repeated over again.

Wario Ware has all of the potentials of a classic, innovative and fun gameplay and a memorable multiplayer mode. Its quirky originality and eccentric style are the works of creative genius and this is coming from someone who used to have a crippling Nintendo bias until recently. Wario Ware is cheap for Gamecube game and you can buy it new for the price of a pre-owned copy so there is no excuse for not having it, unless you don’t have a Gamecube. Then, you can buy the GBA version instead, either way you are missing out on the most original game of the year.

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Community review by goldenvortex (November 25, 2004)

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