Sure, itâ€™s the game everyone has because theyâ€™ve decided to pack it in with every Wii system sold, but it wonâ€™t always be like that. Some day soon gamers will be buying Wii Sports based on its merits as a good game. Being that itâ€™s the first game a vast majority of Wii owners will play itâ€™s probably the best demonstration of what the Wii is capable of and an even better demonstration of its potential. Included on the Wii Sports disc are Golf, Baseball, Boxing, Bowling, and Tennis. All of them can be played with anywhere from 2-4 players and make for a great party game as well.
As a demonstration of the processing power of the Wii, Sports isnâ€™t the best indicator, but thatâ€™s not its intentions. Itâ€™s all about putting yourself in the game; you can take your created Mii character and place him or her in it to represent you. If you prefer you can create a Mii to look like your favorite celebrity and you can host a doubles match celebrity tournament. The possibilities are nearly endless. The lack of cutting edge graphics, I think, is to make the game more appealing to the non-gamer. The type of person who covets graphics above all else in their video games is not the person Nintendo is hoping to convert into a believer. Instead very low-tech graphics are used in order to achieve the desired effect.
Speaking of low-tech, the audio may in fact be even lower than the graphics. However, the saving grace is the speaker built into the Wii remote. Play tennis and youâ€™ll hear â€œthwackâ€ as you hit the ball back and forth, in baseball bats â€œcrackâ€ as you hit one on the sweet spot of the bat and they sound completely different when you hit one off the end of the bat. Very cool stuff indeed. My guess is that Nintendo expects you to be in a group of people and not care what the game sounds like since youâ€™ll be too busy laughing at everyone else overdoing the gestures required to play the game. Still, while thereâ€™s nothing special about the audio, aside from the sound effects in the remote, itâ€™s acceptable since this isnâ€™t a full fledged sports simulation. Plus, it beats the annoying and repetitive commentary that usually accompanies sports games.
Now, what makes Wii Sports so much fun is what makes the Wii so different from anything else weâ€™ve ever experienced on a console. The motion sensing Wii remote turns what would be an absolute bomb of a game into an absolute gem. Like I said, you donâ€™t exactly need to go through all of the motions of the real sport, but it is way more fun if you do. Pretending to be holding a bat in your hand while taking pitches out of the yard is more enjoyable if youâ€™re going through the entire motion instead of just flicking your wrist, just make sure to hold on to that remote. Pretending to play the real sport while playing a virtual one may not be everyoneâ€™s idea of fun, but to the average gamer and to the non-gamer itâ€™s pretty cool.
While thereâ€™s a lack of a full featured sports simulation there is a whole host of mini-games, called Training mode that you can play through, all of them to increase your skills in the game. The aforementioned home run derby is one of them, as is power strikes in bowling, speed bag in boxing and putting practice and several others to choose from. Some of them are more fun than others, but theyâ€™re all cool and beating your personal best is always a challenge.
Another option is to do the Wii Sports Fitness Mode. In this mode you play a variety of the mini-games and they calculate your fitness age based on your performance. Itâ€™s similar to how Brain Age calculates your mental acuity based on your quiz taking ability. The goal is to get a fitness age of 20. Wii Sports will keep track of your age over time and show you how much youâ€™ve progressed over that length of time. The games that you play are from Training mode, so youâ€™ll be familiar with them and theyâ€™re completely random, so youâ€™ll never know what to expect.
Overall, the game really could have been better had they made these full fledged games and jazzed them up a bit. Still, itâ€™s more fun than many of the other sports games Iâ€™ve played over the past couple of years and when they decide to make a sequel to this I can only hope it gets better. The sports chosen are all fairly popular, so maybe they can either make them deeper and include some of the more fringe sports (perhaps Curling?) just to keep the game fresh. For now, you donâ€™t have to worry about buying it if youâ€™ve gotten one of the launch systems, but theyâ€™re not going to leave it as a pack-in game forever. So, for those of you waiting for a system this is a must have game, so donâ€™t hesitate too long or youâ€™ll have to pay for it.
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