Published on December 31st, 2012 | by Dembonez193
Review: Nintendo Land
Developer: Nintendo EAD
System: Wii U
Release Date: November 18, 2012
If there is any game to make sure players are well-adjusted to GamePad controls, this is it. Nintendo Land does an excellent job of integrating the Wii U’s GamePad with the older Wiimotes to have them work together in really cool and unique ways.
All of the mini-games, taken from a variety of Nintendo series, use different controls from one another so that players are never forced to do the same thing multiple times. Since there are a total of 12 games to choose from, many with multiple levels or stages, it is obvious the GamePad has a lot to offer. Nintendo Land provides a preview of what we can expect with video games in the Wii U’s future.
Before entering any mini-games, however, you are introduced to your hostess: Monita. She behaves as the guide within the park and the games providing information, hints, and even extra players if need be. The park itself is pretty compact giving you the ability to view your surroundings with the right stick and make it easier to choose where you want to go with the left. Everything is made even more easily accessible with a menu of all the mini-games and their types if you wish to enter a mini-game immediately.
In the center of the park, there is a machine with a mini-game of its own. In order to dress up your own personal park by earning gifts and listen to music from each mini-game’s soundtrack, you must use the coins that you earn playing the mini-games in the center structure of Nintendo Land for an opportunity to add mini interactive structures to your park. Since you are never guaranteed a gift when you play, you can think of it as Nintendo Land’s version of the crane game. It’s a very simple concept, but it is addicting just like all of the other mini-games.
When it comes down to the mini-games, there is no way that I can list all of the things you can do with the GamePad and the Wiimote without forgetting something. Seriously, there are a lot of ways to play with this new gadget, and in multiplayer mini-games, whoever is using the GamePad has a completely different experience than those playing old school. The roles are completely different for the players using different controls, so if your entire family is looking for a fun party game, Nintendo Land would be a great choice.
That said, there are more single-player games than multiplayer ones. Some games that allow for multiple players also support single players, like the Pikmin mini-game. In this case, Monita provides another player for you. While not all mini-games can be played this way, it was a smart move by Nintendo to have more single-player options. It can’t be expected that everyone living under the same roof enjoy playing video games, and while this makes a great party game, it is equally a great single-player game minus a few missing attractions.
No matter which mini-game is chosen, your Mii is given a cute costume to wear. This helps designate roles, but it is a nice detail tying the Miis into the different series.
Nintendo Land also has a direct connection to Miiverse. Anyone posting about Nintendo Land in the community could appear inside your park. The players cannot actually see your park. That said, you can’t visit someone else to play around with their gifts, but this is a great way to ask for help and provide assistance to anyone else asking. It also provides a nice forum for random chit-chat.
Outside of Miiverse, there is no other online support. That said, if you think you will play this alone, there is no chance of you playing with your friend from another country. Nintendo Land was made to be a local party game so that the family can play together much like Hasbro Family Game Night, Just Dance 4, Mario Party 9, and Wii Sports. All of the mini-games are easy enough to pick up but difficult to master. This gives everyone in the family a shot at top scores.
The bottom line is that anyone can pick this game up and have a great time playing all of the mini-games. It is much more fun to play in groups to up to five, but even the single-player games give a lot of variety to the GamePad and what it can do. This was the perfect game to bundle with the Wii U Deluxe to show what this new kid can do.
+ Easy to pick up and play
+ Fun for the family
+ Direct Miiverse interactions
+ Utilizes various GamePad functions
– Inability to play some multiplayer mini-games alone
– Steep price for single players
Final score: 4 out of 5