Throughout the release of Wii, its games have always been quite fun and enjoyable to play especially with the company of friends. Games such as bowling, boxing, tennis and the rest of the sports on Wii Sports prove to be quite addicting and entertaining for so many people. It’s a good exercise for someone who really doesn’t exercise that much too. And then there’s Wii fit. It’s really the workout regimen you’ll probably need at the end of the week. It similarly proves to be addictive and engaging as well. And now, we have Wii Music. Understandably, some people may skeptical about this game release in the Wii console, but those skepticisms may prove to be quite real because Wii Music if you want to call it as such is a huge disaster.
Along with expectations of fabulous music selections, players definitely expect that the songs be presented in very high quality. But Wii Music unfortunately left those expectations unsatisfied. The songs are in MIDI format proving to be second-grade and cheap quality. There are plenty of MIDI format tracks out there that are quite good but not the ones found in Wii Music. Generally, a MIDI soundtrack is not really that bad. It has some great advantage especially that it has spontaneity and you can easily add or remove instruments from a piece. But Wii Music just sounds plain terrible.
Some may feel entertained by the Nintendo game tracks like the theme for the Legend of Zelda and some themes coming from Super Mario Bros.; and then there are quite good contemporary songs including Material Girl and Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go, but expected roster of songs from the present time are noticeably missing; so you’d be sorely disappointed because Wii Music doesn’t cater to the more recent types of music.
Moving on to the mechanics, it’s pretty simple in its strictest sense. You may want to compose a song, which is relatively easy. When you try playing a tune like Twinkle-Twinkle Little Star, for example, no sweat! Even I who don’t have much synchronization to speak of, managed to perfect it. Moreover, I quite enjoyed tweaking some songs a little bit by changing pitches or holding a note for a little while. You can do all these because of the wide array of musical instruments available. But these alone didn’t succeed in getting me glued on to the screen to continue playing the game. The setup could’ve been better.
Kids might find Wii Music entertaining as they can choose whatever instrument they want to play. Although there’s also another hitch here; truth is, some instruments aren’t that easy to manipulate or play with. The drum is one example; there’s just too much stuff you have to hold or press. The gameplay and controls are gimmicky to a certain extent, rather than intuitive. I suppose kids would definitely enjoy making noises, though. In general, the presentation of the game is quite good with the integration of Mii Avatars, WiiConnect24 Support, and music video backdrops which generally shows the excellently polished interface of the game. The graphics are similar to that of Wii Sports, which are too over simplistic to the point of becoming bland. And then, of course, there’s the music. Need I reiterate how truly disappointing it is?
Overall, the game isn’t really that fun. I wouldn’t be so harsh as to say it’s a complete failure, but if Nintendo continues to produce games such as these, why bother if the end result is just getting even more bored than before playing the game.
Arcania: Gothic IV takes you ten years back after the story of Gothic 3; a new hero once again rules the whole exciting adventure of the torn realm of Myrtana (has a bunch of cool twist too). The game opens with the totally new fight and defence systems, assuming the role of the ever erratic King Rhobar III – whose rule over his people is rapidly getting off-hand. Now isolated, the king faces the demonic forces.
Just like other game intros, the opening video scenes will darken then the game proper follows. It is evident that the graphic quality has been properly developed, fluid animation greets every player. Really it looks and feels pretty damn good. The camera spans flawlessly through the castle towns to the lush countryside and into the dungeons and caverns. This is fairly consistent throughout the game except for some minor animation glitches during teleportation on cinematic transitions.
Gothic IV uses the powerful Vision Engine 7 which makes the graphic fluid, and stable perfectly brings players into the realm of imagination. It has a sharp texture resolution which makes self-shadowing excellent thus visually appealing. However, the instant cropping of texture and the immediate disappearance of surrounding components seem too rushed. This remains the only noticeable graphic flaw of the game.
The graphic quality is highlighted by the super character animation. Fight scenes such as casting an enormous magical spell or delivering lethal blows against the enemy results in a magnificent action scene, visually appetizing. However, players may find the generic charactarization of the human inhabitants an annoying part of the visual experience. The unpleasant depiction of support characters proves to be a setback of this supposedly great game.
In terms of the gameplay, it still holds the traditional style of RPGs. I really do like it a lot though. Stats-based plot, storytelling and fight elements are all incorporated into the solid gameplay of Gothic IV.
A great PC game, Gothic IV controls perfectly blends with the two-button mouse making aiming smooth. The game is also equipped with standard hotkey button selection (it feels very natural too). Veteran players of RPGs will definitely find it welcoming as it utilizes the generic WASD controls. The player can easily access the inventory to equip himself with potions and consumable items, it pauses the game for a while when still using the inventory. Kind of like Dragon Age: Origins.
The handy inventory makes the game very accessible even for starters. Unlike the Lionhead’s Fable, fight scenes in Gothic IV are more akin to hack-and-slash adventure. Players upgrade their combo system through increasing their skill points. It is also essential to use blocking and defensive rolling strategies to gain more scores. Rolling is far more accessible in fight encounters than using the shield which, unfortunately, cannot block all attacks. While going through the game, you will find that there are lots of useful weapons which you can loot from fallen enemies. This will make you want to fight more.
In all, Arcania:Gothic IV is another addition to the slim list of great RPG’s. It has properly combined life-like graphics with fitting audio clarity while maintain a unique touch. I would highly recommend this game to anyone looking for a good RPG.
Mario Party 8 Wii Review.
The Mario Party franchise isn't a new concept, and judging by the title Mario Party 8 isn't the first of its kind. You might even remember the Mario Party series released on Gamecube; it was a mild success and was one of the best selling games on GameCube. Well Nintendo decided that they wanted to bring this pretty popular game to Wii. They were looking for a big hit on Wii. Well tough luck because this game is about as boring as watching paint dry.
Seriously, the controls of this game are horrible and bland. It works just as much as it fails which means you are going to have hours and hours of pain and suffering when you pop this game into your Wii console. It is a good concept where you play on a board and then battle it out on series of minigames. Some of the games aren't that bad; like the sawing game.
So whats the big problem with this game? Well for starters it is available in 16:9 widescreen mode. Well, the menus are, but as soon as you get into a mini game the game magically morphs into 4:3. Talk about a load of horse shit! Not to mention the graphics are barely as good as GameCube, and guess what the storyline is in text in bubbles. What fun! Not!
True, there are ton of new boards, and up 60+ characters. Also, choose from more than 14 characters to waste your life away with. Lets face it playing a board game by yourself sucks ass. I tried to play with my friends and guess what the control on this game were so dodgy that we took the game out, and put in Super Smash Bros Brawl instead.
It just seems to be the same old thing we have seen a million times. I thought it would be awesome with the Wii remote. Wrong because in one of the mini games where you go through Lugi's mason with a flashlight. Guess what, the Wii remote doesn't work. Get this you use the D Pad. It is like they make another GameCube game in slapped a Wii cover on it. Don't waste your money with this worthless game.
SEGA is finally joining in the karting game with the Sonic and SEGA All Stars Racing. Sonic and Sega All Stars Racing for the Wii has a variety of racing modes to choose from. A Grand Prix is available of which there are 6 cups comprising of 4 races each with 3 difficulty modes to choose from. The mission mode is a set of 64 individual missions wherein you are to complete a certain objective before time runs out. These objectives can be one of the following, or something else ;) : racing through gates, collecting rings, competing in a 3 – race cup (themed), and knockout rounds, among others. In knockout, every 15 seconds, the last driver is knocked out of the race until only 1 remains. There are other racing modes such as time trial, multiplayer, online and more. They are worth checking out, if you still haven’t done so.
You can also share your game with mates, you can do so as three is an array of split screen multiplayer modes for you and up to 3 of your buddies to enjoy. Single Race mode will have you guys competing in single race events, Battle Mode engages you in an arena where you have to fight to the death, Capture The Chao is basically capture the flash, and King Of The Hill places you in arenas but you have to capture bases as well. Like the above mentioned, there are still other modes worth looking into.
As you play on and win races and beat best lap times, you earn SEGA miles which you can use to purchase new content such as characters, tracks, and music via the in game music store. A robust single player mode with 65 missions and great multiplayer options give Sonic and SEGA All Stars Racing the title of best themed racer.
The Lord of the Rings: Aragorn’s Quest is a combination of all the movie versions or sequels. Freaking awesome! This means that all the challenges and journeys that Aragorn will go through in this game are seen in the movies. So, you will see familiar scenes and situations. And of course, all the popular characters of the films or books are also included in the game.
The game includes lots of challenges and journeys on different level modes for the main character Aragorn. So, your main objective is to control Aragorn and make him win all the challenges that he has to go through to win the quest. Challenges include puzzles, battles, swordplay and other quests that will make you think and strategize. You will also have to overcome villains that you have seen in the film.
The game is long and gives you a lot of time to play and enjoy. As a bonus, you get items and weapons that you can use in your journey as you finish each stage. This game allows up to two players, so you can play with your friend or family and help each other win the quest. Being an animation the graphics are in no way like the magic scenery of the films which was matchless, but the other aspects of the game make up for this. The audio is true to the characters.
All in all, The Lord of the Rings: Aragorn’s Quest is interesting enough and if you are a fan of the films you will certainly find it to your liking. But even if you are not familiar with the movies it is still very much an adventure. It is fun seeing the characters in animation and that you can actually control them well.
You don’t need to be a fan of Lord of the Rings to enjoy the game, but it does help to have an understanding of the characters. Either way, a very good game.
True enough, Nintendo succeeded in proving that Super NES hasn’t died yet. With a Mario-style platformer that feature unique backgrounds and characters, the success translated into 8 million copies sold. And they expect to see more now that Donkey Kong Country has become available for the Wii console.
The gameplay is surprisingly very basic in its simplicity. In gameplay parlance, Donkey Kong is a side-scrolling platformer that uses the two characters, DK and Diddy, with a lot of jumping, running, and swimming through the grueling yet exciting 39 levels of fun. The two characters have both been well-developed but each one has its own distinctive style and abilities. To sustain the player as the challenges gets harder, the two characters continue to show and manifest their abilities. Your character has to explore and try to experiment the peculiarity of the game environment; as the game itself has its own secrets and passageways just waiting to be discovered. Such discovery can help you advance to another (higher) level in a much easier way.
In the initial release of Donkey Kong Country the fans were so amazed at how the game was created. So many colors abound and the amazing combination of sounds makes the game more vibrant and dynamic. Now that the game has reached a new a stage, it doesn’t look like it would disappoint the Wii user population. The characters of the game are so gracefully and realistically animated and each one takes on a personality of its own. The action scenes and surroundings are so vividly portrayed with every aspect of visual effects that include mist, rain and even night-to-day transitions and vice versa. Even stages that take place underneath lakes and swamps are so convincingly done, you could actually see effervescence that makes you feel the existence of water surrounding you.
Even more amazing is the way the creators of the game combined the magic of 3D and 2D applications so that its original concept of side scroller is not forgotten, and still conveys a sense of depth. Donkey Kong’s creators didn’t hold back on the audio in creating the video game either. Besides DK and Diddy sounding like authentic apes, the rest of the animals are made to sound with lifelike hissing noises and grunting. This was made possible by recording real sounds of real animals.
Some critics may think that putting this concept on a Virtual Console may disrupt the graphics producing weird lines and edges. It may come as a pleasant surprised but this game performs on the virtual console without any snags even if played on a high definition set. The structure of the game is not like the structure of previous Donkey Kong’s played in Game Boy Advance. Most Donkey Kongs played in Game Boy Advance contain unnecessary extras that almost always lead to the disruption of its graphics.
Donkey Kong Country for Wii, along with Super Mario World, is one of the crucial platformers of Super NES and one of the main reasons for the continued success of this franchise. Fortunately, the creators understand how to make this game fir in, even in the more modern types of consoles. The game didn’t totally depart from the original formula; instead, they have immensely improved its features. Donkey Kong Country has never lost its appeal despite the passage of time and will most likely continue to be part of the top all-time favorite games ever created.
Pharaoh Gold will bring players to ancient Egypt where they lead a small tribe (and it is a lot of fun). The objective is to organize the village and soon make it flourish. As the player accomplishes this task in one village, he then moves to the next village until he covers all villages. Just like how early Egypt had been founded by their great pharaohs (you actually get a history lesson too). This will soon extend to the whole land making the player the ultimate ruler of the land.
This is not an easy game but the whole feeling of accomplishment is worth the time. For players who want to build larger cities, the game will not end with him being the pharaoh. He can pick a village to watch over as it develops. What is more interesting is the contribution of the pharaoh’s family members; they can be assigned to rule a village thus maintaining his control over them.
There are lots of challenges in the game. For one, farming is very difficult. The Nile River acts erratically, something that Impression has recreated fairly well. The source of water depends on the quality of the annual flood. If it is too high crops will die, for the village to have a good harvest the flood needs to be moderate. However, controlling this is just impossible. But one effective way of having a bountiful harvest is to please the village’s god, which I found to be really fun!
The game incorporates religion in the gameplay. Each village will have a god to appease. Just like in history, the leader needs to build shrines and temples to make their gods feel better. If they happened to be pleased, the village is sure to have a great year. However when the god is angered, that’s where they will rampage the village causing untold destruction and starvation. This makes the game a whole lot of fun. Players can choose from a list of gods and each has its expertise. For example, Osiris is good for agriculture, Ptah is great for industry and Ra makes peoples’ lives better. Players need to carefully select the god which they need to accomplish their goals.
The whole game is filled with an excellent graphic design, fluid character animation, and real life structures that evoke Ancient Egypt. The interface, which uses hieroglyphics, perfectly blends with the ancient theme of the game. Audio-wise, Impressions have done a great job of finding catchy sound effects and superb soundtrack. There are lots of soundtracks and players will never get enough of it. Overall, Pharaoh is a great building game that has loads of fun with it. I really do love this game and rate it 8.8/10!
At the start of the game, you will be able to create and name your own character. You can choose from a number of races like Roegadyn or Miqo’te and from them you can simply add modifications to customize your own hero. Like the previous installments, you will have to pick a class though this is not that important (kind of wish it was). In this game, you will not be stuck to one class so the class you chose will only define your hero until you reach the item shop.
The game opens with mini movies filled with combat and lots of talking. These scenes look very stunning and remain the best asset of the game. It also narrates the tale of the whole game touring you around the land and pre-empting the upcoming events. Cut scenes will continue to show up throughout the missions and this completes the whole narrative context of the game. There are lots of combat options once you’re out of the starting city in Eorza. Magic users may want to use Conjurer while those who love action packed combat can pick Marauder who uses a sword and shield in his fight. The wide range of classes needs the players to find a perfect place where they will feel at ease, but the best part is that you get a lot of exploring to do throughout the game.
To move from one class to another, you simply need to purchase the classes’ weapon type. If you want to move from Pugilist to a Conjurer, you simply switch to a Marauder and then equip yourself with skills so that you will be tougher in combat. There is also the crafting and the gathering systems which also add to the class system. If you add a mining tool, you can find stores of ore and other valuables. Equipping you hero with specialty equipment will make you move from one class to another.
Successful campaigns in crafting and harvesting missions will add more points and make your rank move higher as well as contribute to your physical level. The game also incorporates crafting, selling and buying. All these need to be done by your character, and, once done, you can now move to the tougher game quests or level quests for which there is only a limited time to complete. These quests will prove to be very appealing however as you master the quests it will start to become tedious. However the game is filled with combats and exploration which are unique to it. This makes the game very enthralling.
On the technical side, the graphic quality has been given much attention as evidenced by the gorgeous rendering of the characters and the surroundings. It is also paired with great music and sound effects that sets the feeling of Final Fantasy game. Finally, Final Fantasy XIV offers fantasy lovers a new world worth visiting. This game is the bomb diggity!
As the player, you can choose to be Hiccup or Astrid and be plunged in the Viking world wherein you will have dragons of your own and take with you in one-on one combats. At the conclusion of the game, you will own four permanent dragons which can be used for tournaments. The training mode will warrant experience points which will take you to the dragon’s experience level individually. As a result of the level increase, the dragon will become tougher and more skilled in leading during fights. This is somehow interesting; however, there are things to be considered firsthand.
Primarily, the training is unexciting since it only involves a combination of fighting strategies repeating them many times against an adversary who does not fight back. There is also timing concerns together with the training. The monotony is carried over to the actual fights. When you are in the arena with your dragon, another dragon is present and then you fight. There will be a lot of obstructions from your rivals, thus, there will be a lot of times where you have to wait to do your attacks. But when you are able to defeat an opponent, the other dragon will not be harmed as it makes great effort in landing back to its feet.
After every tournament, you will return to the Viking village and be a human creature for some time. It is only during side quests that you will have good conversations with people. This is the next step in bringing you to another fight. You will have the chance to gather food such as plants and chickens for your dragon prior to its fight to enhance its fighting skills. There are also minigames available just like utilizing the fire breath of the dragon to engrave sculptures made of ice and also the presence of a fighting mode for two players. These, however, are not very striking.
If you have not seen the motion picture, you will find it hard to understanding the occurrences. With regard to the technical issues, the game load is very lengthy and the character has an ugly animation roaming around the Viking world. Frame rate drop can also be visible once you have turned the camera. During the dragon fights, there seems to be an unseen barrier between the fighters. You will swing at the rival and strike it, but in reality, there is no contact at all.
Although, How to Train Your Dragon in Xbox 360 is intended for kids, the entire game is just monotonous. The struggles are robotic and with no impact. In terms of the lasting appeal, the arcade mode is notable but not actually amazing in performance.