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Title: Wii Sports Review
Posted: December 16, 2006 (01:39 PM)
Wii Sports is a fairly simple game, but it can keep you hooked for hours on end. Players can choose from five different sports, including golf, bowling, tennis, baseball, and boxing. Each of these sports uses the Wii-mote in its own unique way. Wii Sports is a great game to start off with, because it really familiarizes players with the basic functions and motions of the Wii's unique controller.
Tennis is a simple, but fun game. Its probably one of the easier games to master on Wii Sports. It basically involves swinging the controller just as one would swing a tennis racket. You also have to do backhand swings to hit the balls that go to the left side of you. Tennis can have up to four players, which makes for a very entertaining game. A single player can also control both of his players, and although that might sound difficult, it is very easy. Tennis does not use the nunchuck, and the players move automatically based on the path of the ball.
Baseball is an interesting game, since players can bat and pitch. Batting involves simply holding the Wii-mote on your shoulder, and then swinging it when the ball is pitched to you. It takes a while to get used to the timing, but once you figure it out you'll have no trouble popping a few into the outfield, and maybe even getting some homers. When pitching, players just swing the controller foward, at whatever speed he or she chooses. Holding B will result in a curveball, holding A throws a screwball, and holding both A and B lets the pitcher throw a splitter. Baseball is a lot of fun, but I would have liked to have been able to do some fielding as well.
Bowling is my favorite game out of all the sports. Basically, you hold the controller straight up, and then you hold B and swing your arm back. When you let go of B, the ball drops. So obviously if you release the ball at just the right time, it will be more accurate. The most interesting thing about bowling is that the Wii-mote will even detect the spin you put on the ball. This allows players to be a bit more creative with their strategies. I did have a problem when the ball would keep spinning to the left for no reason, but then I figured out that I have to stand directly in front of the TV to make it roll straight. Bowling can have up to 4 players, but if you don't have 4 controllers, you can simply use one controller and switch off as you go.
Golf is one of the more challenging sports, and I think that younger children might have a tough time mastering it. You start off with your driver, and hit the ball within range of the flag. If you hit the ball too hard, it goes too high and can be affected by the wind more easily. Basically, golf is just a matter of getting used to the amount of force you put into each hit. It is sometimes a bit hard to do a very close put, because you have to flick the controller very lightly. Golf is a lot of fun though, because if you press 1, you can see a relief map of the area, which shows the basic curveature of the land. This can be a very useful tool when trying to execute long range putts. Believe me, you'll go nuts when you get your first eagle!
Boxing is the only game on Wii Sports which uses the nunchuck attachment, which serves as your left boxing glove. When you play boxing for the first time, there will be a short tutorial of how to throw different punches. Players hold the Wii-mote up to their faces to block, and thrusting the controller foward is how you punch. You can also dodge punches by moving your body side to side, which utilizes the tilt function in the controller. There are a few different punches you can throw, including body jabs, face punches, left and right hooks, left and right upper cuts, and side punches. There are a variety of ways to knock the other player out; some prefer guarding themselves and hitting hard when there's a good open shot, while others simply swing the remotes in all directions as fast as they can, knocking the guy out in 30 seconds.
Everytime you win a game, or beat your previous score, you will get points. There is a graph for each sport, where you start off at zero, and the highest score is 1000 (pro). To train for these sports, you can either use the game's training mode, or the fitness mode. Training mode offers some basic training for each sport. It also gives you tips, and shows you how to use some different abilities in each game. The fitness mode is really cool because you will have to execute different challenges pertaining to each sport. Based on how well you perform, you will get a "fitness age." I am 34 right now, but you can only play the game once per day. It gets harder and harder as your fitness age drops. Fitness and training are basically just side games to work on if you want to take a break from playing a full game.
One of the interesting aspects about Wii Sports is that it utilizes the Wii's Mii Channel. The Mii channel is basically a built-in mini game which allows people to create little characters. Although the customization options are fairly limited, you can customize the heights and weights, eyes, noses, mouths, and many other characteristics of your player. If you try hard enough, you can actually make some pretty decent look alikes. When you create a Mii, it goes into a while room called the Mii plaza. The more Mii's you make, the more full the plaza becomes. Wii Sports uses these Mii's as player profiles during the games, and each player has his or her own stats.
As far as graphics go, Wii Sports is not the best looking game out there. The characters are very cartooney, and basically look somewhat like 3D South Park characters. But I think that the graphics fit the gameplay well, since it is supposed to be for younger children. Though the graphics may not be this game's strongest point, the game is still a lot of fun, especially when you have friends over to play with you. As far as sound, I was pleased by a lot of the sound effects. The announcer voice is fitting for the game, and I like some of the sounds that come out of the Wii-mote.
Wii Sports is probably one of the better games that has come free with a console. It will provide players with hours of enjoyment. I have to say that even though I had Twilight Princess when I first got the Wii, I still player Wii Sports first, for about 2 hours. Despite the game's seemingly simple presentation, there are plenty of good things to find in Wii Sports. It is a highly addictive game, and clearly demonstrates the Wii-motes abilities.
Final Score: 8.2
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