After an extended trek through the bloated and tedious middle of the Metroid Prime trilogy, the execrable Echoes, I was more than a little hesitant to start another session with the usually-enjoyable Samus Aran. After the last installment, I felt certain that Retro Studios had run out of ideas and lost the touch that originally brought this famously 2D series into the third dimension with such grace. After biting the bullet and giving it a try, I found that the end result was better than I had expected... though a bit too familiar.
Game Description: Engage the rage with Super Smash Bros. Brawl! The third installment of the incredibly successful Super Smash Bros. series is now on the Wii, The roster islonger than ever, but that just means more butt to kick across over a dozen different, graphic-rich stages with original moves, new modified moves, and a brand-new super attack called Final Smash! Old favorites like Mario, Link, Peach and Kirby are now joined by such exciting newcomers as Wario, Solid Snake and Sonic the Hedgehog. With a variety of new modes, an absolutely epic soundtrack and the ability to play with distant friends through online multiplayer, this is a game you'll have to break your own fingers to put down.
Game Description: Every hundred years a comet passes over the Mushroom Kingdom and rains down stars and stardust, and as Princess Peach and the citizens of the kingdom are celebrating the centennial event, Bowser and his legions attack by launching asteroids at the Mushroom Kingdom and crystalizing the Toads! Knowing that Bowser is after Princess Peach, Mario runs to save her. Things go awry as Bowser summons a massive spaceship, abducts Peach's entire castle and hits Mario with a massive magical attack. The next thing he knows, he finds himself on a mysterious moon high above the Mushroom Kingdom! Navigate Mario through a bevy of exciting new worlds and the depths of space, with all new enemies, power-ups and attack skills, as he collects the Stars needed to save Princess Peach!
It's easy to dismiss Nintendo's Wii as a $250 gimmick. The console's "revolutionary" library is full of muti-platform movie tie-ins and remakes—not to mention the last minute control-swapping in The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. Sure, the Wiimote can make first-person shooters more natural to play; it's also probably no small factor in Manhunt 2's infamy. But the real test of the Wiimote is a game that showcases its unique features while integrating them so deeply into the gameplay that its uniqueness doesn't distract us. There haven't been any games that fit the bill. Until now.
Being a game critic is sometimes a difficult task. Some games are a joy to play and review, whereas a bad game turns reviewing into a voluntary form of torture, like sitting through a Britney Spears "comeback" performance. Where does Corruption sit on the scale?
Game Description: The newest chapter of the Paper Mario story isn’t just out of this world…it’s out of this dimension! What at first glance appears to be a 2-D sidescroller ripped straight from the stylized pages of the Paper Mario universe soon turns into a hilarious dimension-shifting platformer possible only on Wii! 2-D...AND 3-D! Run through vibrant 2-D worlds, stomping on enemies and breaking blocks....then, with the press of a button, flip into 3-D! In the 3rd dimension, you'll find hidden paths, battle foes, and uncover secrets as you explore the previously invisible depth of the 2-D landscapes!
I think it really says something about the maturity and freestanding quality of the medium that there can be a game that derives so much entertainment purely from self-reflexivity. That videogames provide such fertile ground for multi-dimensional satire (no pun intended) is as sure a sign as any of the creative health of the art form.
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