Tag Archives: wii

Nintendo Wii: The Bundles & Best Casual Games Reviews

Unfortunately, it looks like we are headed into the 2nd holiday season with Wii’s not readily available. There is nary a consumer electronics store you can go into that doesn’t have a giant pile of PS3′s & XBoxes – both fine systems but who’s got that much time these days – the Nintendo Wii is the perfect FAMILY & CASUAL gamer system.

PS3 & XBox players/gamers just don’t get the Wii … to them, if they can’t spend 400 hours online playing it or if the graphics rival motion pictures, to them – that is the only criteria that counts. The Wii on the other hand takes MINUTES to understand and provides hundreds of hours of FAMILY & CASUAL fun. The most time consuming process on the Wii is waiting and deciphering the start up process … and after you’ve created your Mii (your Wii caricature on screen), theh you are set to go.

That’s not to say there aren’t great time-consuming games on the Wii like Madden ’08 or Resident Evil or even the Godfather but you can read reviews those most anywhere. The problem is that most video game reviews are written for hardcore gamers who only judge a game on its long playability, being able to go online or that the graphics are processed by a supercomputer. They just don’t get why anyone would want to jump online in 2 minutes, play for 30 minutes, not save anything and move on to something else or sure, it sounds stupid to try and rope a barrel by YOURSELF but get 6 friends (drunk of otherwise) or 3 kids (um, drunk only on sugar, of course), and it’s great fun – especially because ANYONE at that party who can wave their arms can jump in and play – no having to play soft so they understand that Right AB Up is to swing or that Right BB down is to engage their weapon … Want to swing at me, raise and swing your arms – IT’S THAT SIMPLE!

If you have friends and younger kids and you want to play along with them, get a WII and check out these games. These are NOT comprehensive reviews but just a sampler for you to read more to decide if you want or to highlight the casual games out there for the Wii.

Perfect for Party/Casual/Family Gaming …

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Mario Party 8

The perfect casual game – 70 mini games – and up to 4 people can play. Nothing really new but something for everyone and kids who are 5 can compete with skilled gamers …

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Carnival Games

25 “carnival” games – games everyone knows how to play. (sold out in lots of places).

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Rayman Raving Rabbids

Now valued priced – an even better deal – weird humor and dozens of mini games.

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Playground

Not as many games as Carnival Games and maybe not as much fun for everyone at a party but still a pretty good choice – you get to relive your schoolyard days playing Dodgeball, Tetherball, Wall Ball, Kicks, Slot Car Racing, Paper Racers, Dart Shootout, and more …

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Boogie (Microphone Included)

Less game and more just singing and making your own videos so great for young teens or really, really drunk adults :-) (includes microphone).

A Little More Involved – Not so Much as Party Game But Fun For Kids/Family

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Backyard Football

Play the NFL as a the little kid version of real NFL stars – Brady, Manning, Tomlinson, Urlacher, Alexander, McNabb, Rothlisberger, Young, Bush, etc … Younger kids might have problems grasping what to do but older kids and probably more specifically, older boys should like it better.

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High School Musical: Sing It! with Microphone

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Hannah Montana: Spotlight World Tour

Both these are games that is either a MUST HAVE or a RUN FOR THE HILLS – you know if you want it or you would never want it :-) . It’s EXACTLY as advertised – sing along, sing as yourself, sing & dance with Hannah, etc … again – either exactly the fun you want or not so much …

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The Dance, Dance Revolution includes the mat and uses the Wii controllers to make sure you’e using your arms correctly and of course, swing the Nintendo Wii controller to send obstructions to your opponents.

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Cooking Mama: Cook Off

It certainly doesn’t sound like much but if your kids or more specifically, girls in your family enjoy “less intense” competition games like the pets games and so forth, they should enjoy this … it’s just a fun family game … as with a lot of Nintendo games … it’s like trying to describe why an squat Italian plumber is fun … this game just is for the right kids and families.

Good Family Fun/Harder for Younger Kids

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Rockstar Table Tennis

Surprisingly deep and a little more effort than expected … from easy to master and 19 different arenas, 11 different players and 4 different game modes so you definitely get your money’s worth. Easy access but value for those who want to build and sustain a character.

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LEGO Star Wars: The Complete Saga

Great fun – only thing better is the Wii lightsaber accessory was out. Includes all 6 movies in one game for the first time.

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Excite Truck

Pretty fun truck rally game – driving & flying – not much planning or thinking ahead. Be nicer if it came with a steering wheel but works pretty well with Wii remote.

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Cars: The Game

Pretty fun – though definitely for fans of the movie and in particular, younger kids – because you can just drive around the twon and explore without it being some intense competition. Nice & cute – not great but still fun and now valued priced at $19.99, a great deal. There is a new Mater-National CARS game that is mostly racing. Just coming out so you can check it yourself.

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GT Pro Series (With Wheel)

The wheel doesn’t clamp down to a table and it feels a little weird in the beginning but eventually you forget. Not a great game but value priced and boys and guys who want a driving game without too much thinking required & is pretty fun.

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Mario and Sonic: Olympic Games

Parts are fun but it’s actually hard work and some competition is not very easy to grasp for casual/party gamers or young kids. 20 events to master with dumb unlockable stages (how about we get the entire game we paid for?). It’s okay but more complicated than it should be – we’re running as a hedgehog not Carl Lewis – why so serious about keeping score & competition? Can be a good workout but not much too hard for party/kids gaming. Disappointing.

Me’h – RENTAL is okay for the following …

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Brunswick Pro Bowling

The bowling portion of WII SPORTS (included with your Wii console) is pretty nice and too realistic (somehow, the scores are EXACTLY like my scores in real bowling! I can roll a 201 followed by a 63 with the greatest of ease!) … so you would think a full game devoted to bowling would be even better and more fun but this one is pretty dull. If it were priced like the PS2 version at $14.99, I would say – not great but worth $15 but the Wii version is priced at $39 – um, no thanks. Rental if your party is a bowling theme.

ALSO CHECK OUT

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Hooked

Haven’t played it so I can’t say either way but it does come with the fishing reel accessory.

ACCESSORIES

Controllers

Our other post covers bundles accessories & well as Wii bundles.

Wii Controller

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You can plug up to 4 “Wiimotes” into your Wii. You get 1 with the console.

Wii Nunchuck

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You can plug-link 1 Nunchuck into each Wiimote – up to 4 Wiimotes and/or 4 Nunchucks.

Wii Zapper

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The Wii Zapper is a gun peripheral that allows the user to insert a Wii Remote and Nunchuk, both sold separately, into either end and play a compatible game. The control stick on the Nunchuk controls player movement (on stages that allow player movement), while aiming the Wii Zapper moves the targeting reticule on the screen. The Zapper comes with Link’s Crossbow Training, which helps to familiarize the player with the Zapper in a shooting gallery style game. Link’s Crossbow Training contains three game styles: target shooting, defender and ranger. DOES NOT COME with Remote or Nunchuck.

Gun

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While you don’t really need a Gun for most of the casual games, if you plan on playing Resident Evil 4, Call of Duty 3, or Metroid Prime 3: Corruption – you might need a gun, this gun, or this one, or one with a target laser.

Wheel

From Core Gamer or from eforcity. The only table top wheel for a Wii so far.

Cables

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If you are connecting to an HD set or most sets, you’ll noiced the improved picture quality with component cables – either of these choices are fine:

Madcatz or Nyko.

USB Adaptor

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The Nintendo Wii has built in WiFi and its sense, search and setup process is VERY Apple like – mistake proof – once you plug in your Wii, you are set to go after a few minutes.

HOWEVER, if you do NOT have a WiFi hub/network in your house – you will need this which converts your wired internet access to an unwired version through your USB hub. You DO NOT need internet access to use your Wii, you do lose the ability to upgrade your Wii, you cannot access the oldies/classic store and stuff like the weather or sharing your Wii (the actual internet access requires an additional fee) so if you don’t want to set up a wifi hub, you can use this stick to create a wireless wifi hub. It does not work with every PC (because of your setup or firewall) but it might be better than nothing …

So again, if you have WiFi in your house, do NOT buy this.

Keyboard

The latest upgrade activated the keyboard feature so if you like, you can add a keyboard for web surfing. It’s definitely not a necessity unless you plan on spending a lot of time online with your Wii (the Wii Opera browser area is a separate paying area). While most low-end USB keyboards should work, here are two that have been tested (not be me) with claims that they work with the Wii:

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The Logitech Classic 200

& the Kensington 64370 Keyboard

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If you’re interested in the business angle of the video game console fight, here’s our take on it.

Of course, the holiday Wii buying guide.

Also – Older Nintendo Wii owners, Nintendo is offering a free Wii Remote Jacket so the remore controller isn’t quite as slippery. It’s free with free shipping. Log in with your serial number to this website.

Your serial will look something like this on the side of your Wii.

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Filed under Gadgets, Media, Retail, Toys, TV, video, Video Games

Nintendo Power: The ‘Future Switch’

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Nintendo Power magazine, the house organ of Nintendo (please make your own joke here) will now be published by FUTURE out of SF. Future Publishing, not exactly the Conde Nast of publishing when it comes to budgets, is not likely to offer many relocation benefits to the current staff … and not to be rude but Nintendo Power could be written by some monkeys with a head cold and a couple dozens Macs. Though its writing style is reflective of Nintendo – for a company deeply involved with fun, frivolity and wacky games involving monkey balls and a fat plumber – Nintendo is surprisingly humorless and seems to think they operate charter flights for the CIA & Blackwater Security. They would rather punch your spleen several dozen times and leave you to die a slow death than reveal that the next Mario game might feature a level where he wears a yellow carnation … and Nintendo Power reflects that – dribbling out bits of info that most real journalists have uncovered 6 months ago … however, it is a colorful mag, nice stock and the only place where Nintendo info and its Wii system isn’t dismissed as child’s play … though as we point out, #1 in the hearts and #1 in sales

FUTURE already publishes the Official Xbox Mag which is equally as dull with its “corporate-approved” editorial content and with shabbier stock and low res screenshots … so, Nintendo must’ve been impressed by their … well, something … something … though the video game mag industry is not what it once was so it hardly matters (psss, the answer is ‘the internet’ in case you’re wondering why the video game mag industry is in its doldrums) but you could also argue that the American video game industry mags have not advanced very far in the past 15 years … and its most intelligent take on the industry folded (NEXT GEN) while its literate and smart cousin, EDGE MAGAZINE continues on in the UK … that we have never had a ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY or WIRED for video games in the US – that is another debate that seems pointless to start because no one will take up that mantle, gauntlet or some other weaponry like methaphor … instead of writing to the real average of gamers as a 33-40 year-old … most of the screenshots and writing is aimed at 14-year olds … and not even smart 14-year olds.

And of course, with covers like these … why wouldn’t a literate 32 year old think the content might be juvenile and jejune …

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Pinched from this GAMES.NET feature.

Here’s the letter from NINTENDO that perfectly encapsulates Nintendo the company …

“Dear Nintendo Power subscriber,

We’re excited to inform you that Nintendo has partnered with
Future US, Inc. to publish Nintendo Power starting with the December
issue, Vol. 222! If you don’t know Future US by name, then you may be
familiar with some of its other industry-leading magazines, which
include PC Gamer, Official Xbox Magazine, and Playstation: The Official
Magazine.

What does this partnership mean to you? Not much, really. Most
importantly Canadian and U.S. subscribers will continue to receive
Nintendo Power with no gaps in your subscription.

You will receive issues each month until your current 12 issue subscription
is fulfilled. Subscription renewals (and new subscriptions) will be
offered for $19.95 in the US and $27.95 in Canada (payable in US Funds)
for 12 issues, and Future US will be sure to let you know in advance when
it’s time to renew so you won’t miss a single issue.

And what about the magazine’s content? The editorial team at Future US
will continue to work very closely with Nintendo to provide the same
high-quality magazine that readers love. In addition, Future US plans
for a bigger and better nintendopower.com. Over time, the Nintendo Power
staff will look for ways to evolve and improve every aspect of the
magazine.

We would also like to reassure you that Nintendo will continue to protect
your personal information in the manner we always have. Future US will
utilize subscriber information only for the servicing of Nintendo Power
subscriptions and is committed to following Nintendo’s high standards in
regard to privacy when handling your personal information.

After October 15, 2007, if you have a question relating to your
subscription, please contact Future US at:

Nintendo Power
Customer Care
PO Box 5770,
Harlan, IA 51593

or send an email to Nintendocustserv@cdsfulfillment.com, or call
1-866-941-8368.

You can also send letters, art, and photos to nintendopower@futureus.com.

Thank you and we hope you continue to enjoy Nintendo Power for many
more years.

Sincerely,

Nintendo of America Inc.”

Though people who hate FUTURE PUBLISHING when it was IMAGINE go way back :-)

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Filed under Advertising, Computing, Design, Financial, Internet, Marketing, Media, media companies out of shape, Retail, TV, video, Video Games

Nintendo Wii Bundle: Is It a Good Deal? (Winter 2008 UPDATE)

We have moved to TakeFiveADay.com – we have moved this post over.

just click on the logo to be taken to this archive post.

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Filed under Computing, Gadgets, Internet, Media, Toys, Video Games