User Review

5 Reviews


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Posted:
2011-02-26

flamingo

Newbie

6.7

Mario already did a lot of sports, and he’s rather good at them. Now he tries four new ones – dodgeball, basketball, hockey and volleyball.

This has the same setup as some of the prior Mario sports games such as Mario Tennis, but is incomparable to the others in terms of its depth and level of difficulty. However, the games here are still tolerable and still quite enjoyable to play. The game offers you a choice to play either in an exhibition or tournament mode, and modes are further split to three cups – Mushroom, Flower, and Star, each of which has three matches to play. All of these modes can be played either alone or with a friend or two, which rather is one of the facts that make it enjoyable to play. If you play it alone, you will fight with the game’s AI, choosing between different characters with different abilities in terms of speed, power, and overall ability. If you play it with friends, you can have different characters, of course.

The dodgeball is played by dodging balls from your opponents to hit them back, once the ball hits them, it will either reduce their life bar or completely knock them out. This is a team play, and the goal is to win two sets to complete a complete match. The only problem in this game is the fact that there is only one ball, and it does not automatically switch the ball to the next team whose turn it is.

I didn’t like volleyball that much. It is just the typical volleyball game without any unusual challenge or variety offered. But don’t worry, everything is functional here.

There is ice and tarmac hockey which is rather more physical than just sporty, cause they made fighting and violence legal according to the rules. I personally didn’t get amused much by it, as I had to make extra movements to either attack or avoid getting hurt.

Of all the four games, Square Enix almost perfected basketball, maybe because they already got Mario Hoops 3-on-3 before. This mode is really awesome and incredible with all the moves you can execute – the dunks, layups, three-pointers, and alley-oops. Definitely an amazing game addition.

This game boasts simple controls for all sports, but don’t worry as they did not forgot that they’re playing with Mario – you wouldn’t miss the stars, shells, and even the jumping to hit a ? block to either get a coin, point, or Mario’s beloved fireball. The only thing I did not like at all is the fact that I had to finish each game to unlock more. But well, it’s part of the game.

Mario Sports Mix is best played with friends and family, and it is definitely recommended for everyone to try, especially if you still can’t get over Mario and his Mushroom Kingdom. Don’t expect too much though, and just enjoy the game while it lasts.

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Posted:
2011-02-09

flamingo

Newbie

6.4

If you love Wii Sports and cannot find anything to match it, then you can definitely try Sports Island. It is a variation of this game, but produced by a third-party – not Nintendo. It is called Deca Sports outside Europe and is currently doing well in sales, as Wii Sports 2 is still yet to come.

If you’re looking for quantity or variety of sports, then you should definitely try this one. It has built-in games on 10 different sports, such as badminton, motocross, karting, snowboarding, football, basketball, curling, archery, ice skating, and beach volleyball, that can be played in different modes and number of players. Two-player games are basketball, soccer, and badminton, and archery, beach volleyball, motocross, kart racing, curling, and figure skating can support up to 4 players.

This game is overall enjoyable. The menu screens and graphics are pretty simple and good, as is the gameplay. The variety of games are timed well so you can be able to play each and every game – the downside of which is that if you would focus on a single game, for example the motocross, you would finish the whole course quickly as it only has few laps. Kart racing only has three tracks, figure skating only has 3 programs with the same plots, and archery has the same targets on just different angles.

The game’s system of scoring is also a downside, suggesting the game has a terrible AI. Examples of which are in the sport figure skating, wherein the skaters who have the most falls have higher scores, and in badminton, sometimes the “computer” gives up and just lets you have a point. Beach volleyball however was one of the games I was impressed with as the sand really looked realistic, together with sand movements as the player’s foot falls.

The simplicity of the controls was one thing I liked here, and though they are simple, the game mechanics were well balanced. Steering in the karting and biking were better than the other games of this sort, even kids can control them. Really recommended for the family. Thumbs up!

In terms of quality, it isn’t as good as Wii Sports or other leading games on the market. Some games are limited, but then its overall fun presentation makes up for it. The audio and voices are actually quite repetitive in some games, but this is tolerable. I am also concerned at the fact that the sports are actually mixed bizarrely and do not quite accentuate each other. Another thing that disappoints me is the price it is currently sold for, a little bit less on the price can make it a value for money, since this is a third-party game.

Overall, while being fun and family-friendly, Sports Island lacks depth and complexity. This is great for a game or two, but would bore you once you complete all the game modes. I would recommend this if you just want to have a quality time with friends and family, and not the real gamer type of person.

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Posted:
2011-02-09

flamingo

Newbie

6.5

It could have been the most perfect game that you can ask for – from the depth of usual adventure of searching a priceless artifact that Indy goes around, to the challenges to fight with enemies, the mind-blowing puzzles, the great visual style and the graphics – except for one simple thing – LucasArts (together with A2M) may have forgotten to what platform this game is for. They have developed a game with excessive motion controls especially during combats that are definitely a no-no for Wii. With this, it might be more often that you find yourself struggling with the controls than struggling with the enemies on the game.

The game proper itself is great, effective, and indeed very interesting – especially when played in its PlayStation 2 and PSP version. The interface that will welcome you is much like Indy’s own office together with his journal. The whole plot is set to look for the lost Staff of Moses where the journey brings him to San Francisco, Nepal, Central America, and Istanbul. You can skip on most of the story telling parts, however there are scenes where you cannot skip and will have to watch it completely (and you actually have to watch it all over again during flashbacks).

The story proves to be interesting and thrilling but only on paper – not in actual play. These parts are very difficult to pass through as controls are very hard to do with the Wii remote. It is very unresponsive and even malfunctions at times, which is actually intolerable. The puzzles and battles don’t make up for these shortcomings either – as they are not well thought upon and are rather uninteresting with no challenge at all.

Good thing the main game – excluding the problems with the control – makes up somehow. A2M and LucasArts have managed to do a fine job to put interesting and lovely sceneries to explore with very interactive challenges. There goes Indy swinging across a broken bridge with the help of his ever-famous whip, then he goes breaking a wall by pushing a statue down a hill (much like in Tomb Raider), he goes on a biplane escaping the enemies canyons, then he goes on a gun fight in San Francisco, and then he goes running again for his life to avoid a weakened ceiling falling upon him – much like the Indy we knew and loved.

You might have not been having problems with the control yet, but wait until you get into the gestural combat. Using analog stick in PlayStation 2 is the best way to get through this phase to avoid waggling endlessly in all directions, hoping every time that your movement is recognized by the system or else, you will repeat it over and over again.

Overall, I find Staff of Kings to be a great, fun, interesting and thrilling game except for the fact that it is oddly controlled by motions and gestures throughout. This is not acceptable for this kind of game, and if only had it had an alternate control, it would be better loved by gamers overall, especially us who love Indy and his quests.

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Posted:
2011-02-12

flamingo

Newbie

8.2

When I first played Pro Evolution Soccer 2008, I found it really disappointing, until I got he Wii version. Now this was a surprise. After getting disappointed in the other platforms, it was surprising that I even enjoyed this game at all.

Pro Evolution Soccer 2008 was developed by another team although still under the umbrella of Konami. This particular edition was specifically designed for both Nunchuck and Wii Remote. It should be important to mention that the online mode is really fantastic and it does not lag. This makes the game work very well indeed. Although the game modes are a little too short for my taste, still it is surprisingly satisfying and quite innovative for an introductory version on Wii. This gives it an extra edge regarding its competitiveness in my opinion, so don’t ignore this one.

The Pro Evolution Soccer 2008 has a long name and the introductory tutorial is just as long. Even for those who have already played this type of games will find the tutorials necessary though for in a Wii platform it is a different game to experience altogether. For one thing, the players are controlled by a cursor, unnatural for some purists, yes, but natural for those who like computer games.

Then there are the buttons. The buttons getting tapped will get the players to move in different ways. For the first time user this can get a little confusing but after a while the system which is designed well allows the user to perform the same moves as in the other games.

The game can obviously be played online, however, Wii sort of has a bit of trouble regarding this and it may be difficult to find other online players to play the game with you. However, once you have found another online player, playing online is just the right thing to do. The only thing that could disappoint would be if the internet service is slow. It would definitely help if the internet were a high-speed one.

In terms of appearance, well this series is not known to be aesthetically attractive. But this Wii version is definitely an upgrade. The menu is logically arranged and it is quite easy to navigate your way through it. In fact, the whole game play is quite logical and straightforward, so no confusions here. Graphics-wise, this has a much better look than the PlayStation2 version.

Some critics may say that Konami was risky to develop a Wii version of a usually disappointing Pro Evolution Soccer 2008, but I have to say that the risk they took was well worth the effort and money in developing this. The controls are easier to manage which makes it easier for the player to have fun and enjoy the game flow.

This would not be a review if there were no downside mentioned. The game is not flawless; I doubt that any game is that. But despite all the glitches and hitches that is to be expected in online games, this one passes muster and does not disappoint. There are later editions of this title on the Wii, my advice would be to go with the later editions.

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Posted:
2011-02-26

flamingo

Newbie

7.0

Electronic Arts has now again released the second set of their Sports Active workout series. If you have tried the first version and got irritated with the hard-to-control Wii nunchuk and the loose thigh strap, you’ll be happy to know EA has already fixed it in this new version. The strap is improved and is now rather fit and stable. There’s also this new heart rate monitor which comes in the form of a forearm strap. Having both arm and leg straps means you may need to use the controllers less than you’ve used it before, as both your upper and lower movements are already tracked. You only have to use the remote for certain sports, such as basketball and boxing.

The exercises were so intense that you will feel like you went to a gym and did lots of workout. I tried it and it caused me pain, well it was mainly because it had already been quite a long time since I last did a workout. I find this really great since I don’t go to the gym quite often, and if you’re like me, it would be great for you too, as you can plan, make, and design your own workout programs. There’s also this new 2-player feature, so now you can exercise with a friend alongside.

To achieve maximum results with the Sports Active 2, you must make sure the sensors are properly placed on the corresponding parts of your body. If you fail to do this, the AI would have a hard time reading your movements. There’s also this new “trainer” (just through a voice though) who will continue to motivate you to go on, though the trainer would not accompany you on the exercise. If you definitely follow all to the instructions and advices by the game, you will definitely shed those pounds and tone muscles right away.

Sports Active 2 is not a game in actuality, but it definitely lets you have fun while doing the necessary measures to keep your body active and healthy. It even has a diet tracker which can definitely help you change your lifestyle. If you are too busy that you don’t even have time to prepare, to travel, and to spend time in a gym, this will make a great alternative.

Imagine the ability to work out within your homes, without those boring and tiring workout videos you might have used to watch. Imagine having the ability to set your own goals and target specific areas to lose weight, and let the program track your progress. And by the way, it also has an online feature, where you can upload your stats. This always adds up to the motivation to continue, doesn’t it?

So if you’re definitely one of those who desperately want to shed pounds, this program is definitely worth a try! You might find some downsides, but advantages definitely outweigh them.