In Barnyard, the gaming environment lets you explore two farms. You can walk around and interact with other Barnyard characters like Otis, the laid back cow whose interests consist of swimming in the pond and playing gopher golf; Ben, Otis father, who usually brings around a clipboard containing chores to track and occasionally keeps coyotes and raccoons in check with the use of his milk squirters; Peck the chicken, who has a fascination with flying and oftentimes solicit help from other animals to achieve flight; a bunch of cows who enjoy bike racing and at times ride the cars of the farmers for the fun of it. There is a mini game in which you take part in one of these cows pranks, making fun of the mailman behind his back. You can also ride a bike and travel in between the farms and nearby areas. As additional fun, you can perform tricks while riding your bike just for the heck of it.
Other mini games featured include gopher golf, maneuvering Peck as he flies through the air, squirt gun action with the use of your udder against raccoons and coyotes which incorporates bullet-dodging-matrix effect and several others. The mini games arent too challenging, however, they are quite entertaining to do. Theres also an in game monetary system where you get gopher bucks by trading in prized tokens and food items that you obtain by accomplishing parlor game objectives. There is a gopher shop that takes in gopher bucks to purchase upgrades for your bike or other barn decorations.
Graphics-wise, the game environment is a 3D rendition of the Barnyard world and its realistic enough with details such as animals blinking and smiling when you interact with them, the sky being filled with passing clouds and having a sense of day and night during the game indicated by the presentation of the sun, moon and stars in the sky. Even flowers and bushes shake when you tread among them.
Comparing the GameCube version from the Wii, there isnt much difference with the functionality of the controls. The Wiis motion based control, however, is just more fun to play with compared to a typical button pad control. You get to be more immersed in the game as you try sway and shake your controls to simulate the movement and action of your character in the game. The Wii also runs in a higher resolution as compared to the Gamecube making the game look cleaner, a bit more defined and pleasing to look at. Price-wise, there is a significant difference between the GameCube version and the Wii version as the Wii is priced $20 more than the GameCube.
With only slight improvements done for the Wii, one could hardly say its worth paying $20 more. However, if youre not so bothered with spending an extra $20 and want to experience a more physically engaging gaming experience of Barnyard, then you should opt for the Wii version.
The gameplay is based entirely around driving, with no on-foot action at all! Controlling vehicles is done by holding the Wii Mote or by using other Wii peripherals. The gamer plays as Zach Harper, a somehow ousted emergency hero in the city of San Alto, He was forced out of the city after a training accident that killed one of his colleagues. Eventually, or rather, predictably, is then called back when a gang, led by a mysterious figure, (You can guess who) starts terrorizing the city. While the plot unfolds, you could almost accurately guess what happens next.
Emergency Heroes features some of the most predictable plotting, one-dimensional characterization, and crappy dialogue ever in a video game. The game controls although is functional. However, vehicles suffer from poor handing and even worse, all vehicles available to play in the game all handles the same! Very bad AI and realism feel to the game. As the smallest police car is able to smash a huge civilian truck off the road. And theres no punishment for crashing to every car in the road. Go ahead and just close your eyes and drive!
The game then progresses to 40 preset missions, repetitive, unending, boring missions. However, there is still a little bright light. As there are some missions where you can do something else than sleep and drive, like: putting out fires, saving civilians, or inflicting enough damage on an enemy car to knock it off of the road. Though the lack of variety through out the game of 40 missions will eat through your veins and quickly become so boring, you might just eat the Wii Mote for fun.
Yes, it is an open-world game and what games like that mean is you can drive around, smash more vehicles (since you cant get out of your vehicle and go on-foot). Keep smashing and crashing and doing it over and over again. The big problem is, the display is insanely low tech, and the graphics is just a touch better than crap, and the city of San Alto somehow lacks landmarks, pedestrians, and general points of interest like jumping your vehicle on something worth jumping over. There is such a huge list of bugs and design flaws in the game too, your vehicle might bounce of another car, GPS might sometime point you to an entirely wrong place, and characters' heads pop up in the middle of the screen and block your view of the road, for no other reason than to offer up another line of meaningless dialogue.
The multiplayer mode make the already long five-hour single-player game much longer, and worse is they use the same mission type and surprisingly as boring with friends as they are alone. The game supports two players via split-screen mode, and has seven multiplayer game modes in total once you've unlocked them by playing through the single-player game.
The Chronicles of Narnia released in 2005 was a great success so the developers thought they could cash in on that success after the film The Golden Compass became a blockbuster and worldwide hit. However, the designers were probably banking too much on the film and forgot or avoided to apply creativity and gameplay into the Wii version. From the very start, the obvious inferiority of the game revealed the rushed and mishmash feel of the gameplay.
Those who have never read the book or even saw the movie are warned to steer clear from this game for there is no introduction. The gamer plays the character Lyra Belacqua who needs to look for and rescue her friend Roger from the Gobblers who kidnap children and separate them from their daemons. These daemons are the psychic link of soul of the humans and without them the humans get zombiefied. Lyras daemon, Pantalaimon or Pan accompanies her throughout her adventures and they are joined by the warrior-polar bear in armour, Lorek.
Lyra controls the althiometer, or the golden compass, and she alone can use it and gain the answers. It is this ability to control the compass which makes her the target of the Gobblers and other baddies in the book, movie and game.
However, regardless of the ingenius plot, the developers royally messed up with the gameplay. During the exploration there is a lot of wasted time looking for the clues; the tasks may include mopping the deck of the ship or hiding under furniture, until the end is reached. In the end, the game is simply a mediocre attempt to oblivion and boredom.
The controls do not help in the least. They are too loose and can cause the gamer to lose control, frustrating if there are a lot of tasks to do. The camera makes everything worse; this also cannot be controlled properly and can cause the eyes of the player to cross, literally. The camera jumps all over the place especially in the middle of jumps. So cross-eyed first, cursing second, reloading constantly, third. Add in a little bit of active cursing directed to the developers and you get the gist of The Golden Compass game for Wii.
With the extensive plot of The Golden Compass it was quite surprising to see such an underdeveloped and confusing, if not frustrating, game play. The controls which are considered the key to winning and playing are terribly confusing and loose, plus the cameras jumping at the most inappropriate times can disconcert, frustrate and anger.
The storys main character, like in the book is Hercule Poirot. He is a famous detective from Belgium having a vacation in the Seadrift Island while staying in a hotel near the ocean. What was supposedly a nice rest turned out to be a case to solve when there was murdered in the area. The game started when the case is already close and solved. The time when Poirot is narrating the details of the crime to his friend named Arthur Hasting.
Instead of playing the character of Poirot, the player will be playing the character of Hastings. It maybe a different idea but it somewhat fits to the game play. The player as Hastings will relate to the things that Poirot done to solve the case. He will only reveal the details when it is uncovered. He will let the player unravel the mystery like what he did. The set up is truly unusual but it just adds to the excitement level of the game.
The bad thing about the game is that there is no particular catchy feature that will engage the player from the very beginning. Its main feature is the classic point and click just like the old games in 1995. The player will be at lost on what to do from the start. He will not be guided on what to do. Because it is a mystery game anyone will think that the main purpose for the game is finding clues but it is not. The murder takes place only at the middle of the game.
The player will end up clicking almost everything just to find some relevant ideas to make the game progress. But at the end it is really hard to guess on what will the player needs to remember and save as an important clue. There is also a tendency to keep on returning because some things will appear which are not there before. The player will be introduced to different other characters but since he does not have any idea what to look for, it will be pointless to remember them all.
The setting and animation is as old looking as its story and somewhat confusing. However, the voice being dubbed is great as opposed to the poorly written storylines. At least the player will not have to read text boxes all the time. The entire game might have a hidden mystery spark but the features are outdated and very slow in terms of pacing. To those who like puzzling puzzles this might be the answer but to the majority, this is not their kind of game.
The game begins with you investigating a haunted house with no more than your trusty flashlight. Its in this first level that you begin to realize just how important a flashlight is when dealing with denizens from the afterlife, as your flashlight battery is almost immediately at a level where you need to find more batteries, now. As you wander around the ghost-ridden house trying to find more batteries, there are scares to be had, such as hands that appear from nowhere and try and grab you, or ghostly figures that appear on your screen.
Even though the scare tactics that are tried in the game quickly become second nature to deal with, that doesnt stop them from causing a momentary fright when they are upon you. Its those little frights, happening over and over again, that will keep you playing through the game all the way to the conclusion, ninety minutes later.
The combat that is in this game is essentially nonexistent. Sometimes, a ghoul will grab you out of nowhere, usually with the musical soundtrack actually kicking up right then. You have a couple of seconds to shake the Wii Remote or else the creature will get you, but that is the extent of combat in this game. Other than that, the highlight of the game is moving around with your flashlight slowly running out of juice, looking for keys to unlock the next area. Honestly, if it wasnt for the zombies and ghouls that look so similar to those in the movie, this game could have been called KeyQuest and the title would have been just as descriptive.
Its actually a good thing, probably, that combat is so lacking in this game, because if combat was a large part of it, then the difficulty of moving about the game with a camera that is as finicky as this one is would probably make it impossible to play. For those that remember the original Silent Hill, you know what Im talking about. This is even worse, with the Wii control directly controlling the camera with its twist, and so therefore a small movement can have a huge impact.
This game is a horror adventure that is loosely based on the movie. The gameplay and story are nothing to write home about, but the game does do a good job of unnerving a player with the creepy visuals and audio. While its not quite as creepy as sitting and watching a scary movie would be, if youve got a night alone to sit and play a game in the dark, this could be the right one for you.