#737 Wii Sports

Posted: 29th April 2015 by Jeroen in Games
Tags: , , ,

421st played so far

Wii_Sports_EuropeGenre: Sports
Platform: Wii
Year of Release: 2006
Developer: Nintendo
Publisher: Nintendo

If there is one game that defined Nintendo’s success with the Wii, it’s Wii Sports. It’s what made the console acceptable – and even a must buy – to most casual gamers, and while it drew the ire of some hardcore gamers for it, it also was the reason the Wii became such a resounding success.

Of course we both played it (less for me than Peter, but still), but for me it wasn’t a game I got into as much. It was a nice tech demo, but… well, there was just too much to play. With the blog dictating the more casual gaming time, it’s probably good I can finally get to this one.

Our Thoughts

Yeah, of course, first of all, there’s something delightful about playing well known sports, in the comfort of your own home. It’s  accessible, easy to learn and just fun to play.

It’s the Nintendo charm, really. Use of Miis in the game, with their cartoony looks and exaggerated reactions, makes the game feel more engaging than games trying to look more realistic. Even if the game were as difficult, it just doesn’t feel quite as bad, it feels more like you’re just having fun.

Coupled to that is how well the game uses the Wiimote. You’re actually swinging when playing tennis, actually swinging a bat when playing baseball. Sure, it takes shortcuts, but it feels like the player on the game almost perfectly mimics your actions. Although a lot of it are broad motions, it never stutters or reads the wrong motions. It feels really solid and real.

The games are fairly straightforward and obvious for a game like this – tennis, probably the best-known minigame, works incredibly well with the Wiimote and is one that broke out later. Baseball and golf are as intuitive, with golf showing how the game works okay with smaller moves, but not great – you need a bit more movement than is natural early on. Even bowling works quite well, although more things are set up before you actually make the motion.

Stranger is boxing. You actually have to physically do the action, which is fair enough, but it also involves ducking, dodging and deciding between punching high and low. It’s fairly complex, but still simple enough to pick up quickly. However, more telling is how exhausting it is. You’re constantly holding up the controllers and moving around. This is the case with most games as it gets more intense, but it seems far more here. It’s good fun, but partially unexpected.

The game starts off pretty simple, but the ramp-up in difficulty is clear. The game keeps track of your score over multiple games and as you do better in the game, it goes up, presumably making it a lot tougher. It ramps up in the gentle Nintendo way that doesn’t become overbearing to soon, still keeping it playable.

Final Thoughts

You can draw some similarities between this and Wii Fit, keeping you active through various minigames. But where Wii Fit‘s focus is still quite a lot on fitness, with the game aspects being second, Wii Sports keeps the fun first. It can wear you out and it requires you to get up to play, but you’re invited to have fun first of all. The inclusion of multiplayer obviously helps with that, playing against your friends making everything a lot more fun.