Published on March 4th, 2010 | by G. Bargas, Managing Editor
Endless Ocean: Blue World Review
Release Date: February 22, 2010
Platform: Nintendo Wii
Endless Ocean: Blue World is the second installment by Arika. The exploration starts right away and keeps you looking for more throughout the title. Endless Ocean: Blue World, or “Forever Blue” as it is known overseas. The gameplay in EO:BW seems to hit right on the fence. There are times when it could literally drift either way. Although it does right by many, it does leave you with a few slight disappointments.
Endless Ocean: Blue World is the story of a young diver who is out to study the “Song of the Dragons.” When selecting your diver you are given the option to change simple characteristics like complexion, sex and facial features. They are simple customizations, but nothing to resemble yourself or get too excited about. After this opening scene, it’s time to meet the dive team and get right in.
The controls in endless ocean are very simple. You will only need your Wii remote for this deep blue exploration. Aiming your remote in the direction you would like to go is traced by a bright lit cursor on screen. Pushing the B trigger moves your character. The A button is used to interact with items, animals, or to simply zoom in. The – button is used to both go to prior menus or to cancel a current action. The 1 button is used to pull up your map. The directional pad is basically used for all of your stocked items you have and navigate through menus. For those of you who are up to the challenge, there is an expert diver swim mode. Just when you thought it couldn’t get any better, it did.
Canceling items and moving back to swimming or walking does seem a little tedious. As well as selecting items or tools from the menu. It would seem a little easier to have the nunchuck in one hand and have the option to navigate this way. One positive aspect of selecting items would be the ability to have the map semi-transparent while you swim. This makes it easy to select the map but still head in the direction of your destination. The out of water experiences though do seem to suffer from such stiff movements and interactions. The game itself is almost like playing in one big interactive stiff, encyclopedia.
All of the creature information may interest the little sea monkey in your house as well as keep them busy by unlocking new achievements. Wii Speak is also bundled in this package. It is in the hopes that you have another friend to play with over the Nintendo Wi-Fi connection, but even for Nintendo, this seems like it may be stretching the hopes a little. Why not spend ample amounts of time discovering, collecting, and exploring? But who knows, playing by yourself and sifting through endless amounts of text that the game does have to offer may fill up your time in itself.
The graphics in the game are probably one best attributes Endless Ocean has to offer. The close up intricacies of smaller fish, inhabitants and level design show that a lot of care was put into these models. The sound quality of the game does really bring this aquatic atmosphere to life. If I were ever that close to a humpback whale in real life, that’s exactly what it would probably sound like.
Endless Ocean gives the feeling that you might want to be familiar with the first title or share something in common with the games concept. Whether it be the first title of the series, aquatic life, or exploration of new places that get you excited to point and swim, it just didn’t get my dingy a-rockin’.
+Great graphics and sound
+Exploration is creative and expansive
-Endless Ocean offers endless text