Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Wario: Master of Disguise

Developer: Suzak
Publisher: Nintendo
Release Date: March 5, 2007
System: Nintendo DS
ESRB Rating: E10+
Official Web Site

In a nutshell: Wario plays dress up.

0:01 There's a "Fresh Wario scoop!" on TV. He's picking his nose! Must be a slow news day. Then "The Silver Zephyr" comes on the air. "A good way to kill an hour, I guess," Wario says. I hope we can say the same about the game.
0:04 Wario invents a Telmet to get on TV. "Television... teleport... also it's a helmet!" The first level is called "Episode 1." Cute.
0:06 Wario picks up a wand dropped by the Silver Zephyr and finds out he has the power to transform. He's now "The Purple Wind... silent but deadly." Groan.
0:09 Interesting controls scheme. The d-pad moves Wario, tapping touch screen performs attacks and actions. Why don't more games combine the two control methods like this?
0:11 I have to complete a simple coloring mini-game to open chest. Back in my day, you could just open chests with the press of a button. And we walked FIFTEEN MILES in the snow to get to school, too.
0:12 My new transformation lets me shoot lasers in any direction with a tap of the stylus. Nice floaty jump too.
0:15 I fail to open a chest twice after some confusing mini-games. I eventually get a lunchobx worth $298! Wow!
0:18 The gameplay so far is mainly a series of increasingly frustrating box-opening mini-game. I can't figure out why I fail at a tracing mini-game.
0:20 Zapping seagulls with a space laser = fun!
0:21 OK, the Zephyr keeps showing up randomly and asking me to return his wand. I keep refusing and running off the screen. Is there a point to all this?
0:24 The characters use little word balloon faces to express emotions. Cute, but slow-paced.
0:26 The game is giving out hearts like candy. I don't even come close to needing them all.
0:29 The enemies drop little gems, but I have no idea what they do. They don't increase my money count or health or anything.
0:32 I die trying to bounce on a seagull to reach an out of the way chest. The penalty seems to be... nothing -- just back to the start of the level.
0:35 The enemies don't hurt you unless they're actively attacking. Otherwise you can just walk through them. On the one hand, I like this nod to realism (enemies aren't radioactive, after all). On the other, years of games have trained me to expect different.
0:38 I'm ashamed to admit it, but I'm stuck on the first level. Everywhere I go seems to be a dead end.
0:39 Ah... I have to go through a seemingly solid wall. I find an excavated T-Rex skull is worth $29? That seems... low.
0:42 I'm stuck again... yet another dead end. Groan.
0:44 Turns out I'm an idiot. You just have to push a box and get on top to push another box and move on.
0:46 Boss time. He's actually tough, even though his weakness is glaringly apparent. Using the d-pad and stylus together is challenging, but fun.
0:52 I win after quickly working my way back to the boss. "SMELL IT!" Stay classy, Wario.
1:00 I spend the last eight minutes of my hour playing an increasingly hard roach smashing mini-game with the stylus. It's actually the most fun I've had yet with the game.

Would I play this game for more than an hour? Maybe
Why? I feel like I haven't really seen what the game has to offer, yet, but I also fear and suspect the rest of the game will be as slow paced and dull as the first level.

This review based on a retail copy rented from GameFly.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Hmmm...doesn't sound like my cup of tea. I'm glad I passed on this when I saw it in the bargain bin at my local video store.

Another great review Kyle!