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Wii Sports

Developer: Nintendo | Publisher: Nintendo
Players: 1 to 4 Player Game | Release Date: 11/19/06 | Genre: Sports

Packed in with each new Wii console is the game Wii Sports, which is designed to not only give value to the package, but also introduce the new control scheme Nintendo has centered its new console around.

Players take one of the Mii’s that are created on the console and place them in:

Tennis
Only a doubles game is present. No “one on one” play available, nor different court types. Only a forehand or backhand style of stroke is available. The return is determined by the timing of the stroke – if the ball arrives before the full stroke is realized it will go to the right, while if the racquet is already in full swing before the ball arrives it will veer to the left side of the court. Players don’t even get to control the movement of their in-game character, or have the ability to determine how hard to hit the ball. No soft lobs or overhead smashes really takes a big bite out of what could have been really fun.

Bowling
The most complete of the sports on offer, sadly there isn’t the option to use different weighted balls. Players use the D-pad to place themselves along the lane as well as the aim. Players are also able to give a little bit of a “spin” to the ball as it hurtles down the lane.

Golf
Only 9 holes – not 18, and only one course. Players use the Remote as if it were a golf club – swing too hard and you run the risk of chipping the ball. Actually, this is perhaps the closest of all the Wii sports to its real-life counterpart. Sadly it is just so … lacking. There are three clubs to choose from, which is fine, but playing the same 9 holes over and over again is boring.

Boxing
Required the nunchuck add-on to the Wii remote. Players hold their hands up towards their face in a blocking position and jab with either the left or right. This is wrong for a number of reasons. There are no alternate punches (uppercuts, roundhouses, etc.) and no way to move the player’s head to dodge a blow. Sure, players can “lean” to the left right or forwards in order to “move” the in-game character, but that’s not anywhere near to being the same thing. If this is supposed to get more players playing together, why aren’t there two remotes and nunchucks packed in?

Baseball
Only 3 innings on offer – no more, no less. Players only have one option for batting (no bunts) and it’s all a matter of timing, in exactly the way that Tennis operates. Pitching gives players a few more choices, and the speed with which the remote is used determines the speed of the ball. Fielding is automatic, which is fine, but the lack of anything other than pitching and batting in a very limited fashion hampers this.

Not only does the Wii come with just one remote and nunchuk, those two items are sold separately from each other and as such even further purchases are required in order to get what Nintendo is trying to do with Wii Sports – get more people playing. For Tennis and Baseball extra Wii Remotes are needed, and Boxing requires each player to have a Remote and Nunchuk. If Nintendo wanted to really introduce the new gameplay mechanics to a wider audience, two remotes would have been included in the Wii, and Boxing wouldn’t be included here, instead waiting to be placed in a second round of Wii Sports.

By Daniel "Monk" Pel... - 11/27/06
ESRB Details: Mild Violence
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Screenshots for Wii Sports

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