…and Wii! (A Review)

After much anticipation and a rather odd name change, Nintendo’s next generation console has finally arrived.  A few brave souls endured the frigid Memphis “fall weather” as well as the slings and arrows of Best Buy staff and customers in order to ensure that one of these delicious little consoles would fall neatly into their frostbitten hands.  I was not one of those but I *did* get up HELLA early Sunday morning to  roll the bones in the craps game that is 0-day console acquisition.  Lady Luck was nice enough to blow me a kiss and I walked out of the store with a Wii, Zelda: Twilight Princess, Call of Duty 3 and Red Steel.

The Wii
The out of the box experience was somewhat similar to that of an Apple product.  Once the WiiMote sensor, the RCA cables and power supply have been connected to the console, the initial setup is intuitive and relatively painless.  If you wanna pop a disc in a go for it you can without the need for a messy patch download. If you want to try out some of the online content, grab your DS and fire it up because you’ll have to wait a while.  Now it could be that Nintendo’s servers were just getting slammed on launch day, but it took me quite a while to download the online updates.  At launch, the only “channels” available are the Disc channel (Wii/GC games), the Mii channel (your own anime-cute avatar) and the Shopping channel.  Future channels include the Forecast (local/global weather) and News channels.  While I personally do not plan on getting my daily news feed from my Wii, I am interested in seeing how these features work.  Even though the online content is a bit spotty at the moment, the games play exactly as they should.

Wii Sports
This is the end-all be-all BEST title to be included with a console since Super Mario Brothers for the original NES.  I am not a very athletic guy, but knocking virtual baseballs out of the park with nothing more than my WiiMote had me giggling like a schoolgirl for hours.  It is as satisfying as rawking out to “Ace of Spades” on Guitar Hero.

Zelda: Twilight Princess
I am not a Zelda fanboy.  Honestly, the only Zelda game I ever played was the original, so I am not down with the history of Hyrule.  The game starts with a few miniquests to help you get familiar with the WiiMote and the nunchuck.  Animation is good, but not great – I am betting on the fun factor of this game to render the graphic quality to a non-issue.  The dialog leans more towards engrish than english but it does it’s job which is to clumsily introduce plot points.  I have not hit the combat system yet, but I promise to post a more complete review once I have had more time to spend with this title.

Call of Duty 3
To be perfectly honest, this title sparked my interest more than any other.  The thought of playing a FPS with the new control scheme kept me awake a night – maybe with a WiiMote I would be good enough to actually play online with other humans!  There is a bit of a learning curve with the WiiMote/nunchuck controls (hand to hand combat makes you feel silly and you *will* look like an idiot) but practice makes perfect.  The game itself is exactly what I have come to expect from the CoD series – lots of fun.  Out of all of the titles I have played, Call of Duty 3 has the best graphics so far.

Red Steel
I don’t think that I really have anything to add to some of the existing early impressions of this game.  The control scheme is BRAND brand new and I have a feeling that unless you are this man you will have similar problems executing the incredibly elaborate Wii-Foo that is required in order to smite your pixelated foes.  At the moment, I am not the ninja for the job, but I plan on putting in a lot of practice over the coming holiday.

So there it is.

Your thoughts?

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