Published on December 14th, 2012 | by Kyle Spencer, Editor
Nintendo Land Review
Nintendo Land is one of Nintendo’s flagship titles to launch in conjunction with it’s new console. No other company in history is better at creating fantasy lands that consist of mini games better than Nintendo. The overall land itself is just a hub: think of it as a giant virtual amusement park that lets your Nintendo-loving minds loose, almost what “The Magic Kingdom” does to adults in Walt Disney Land.
The kid comes out of you and you want to run and play with everything that you can get your hands on or stand in line for. Nintendo Land is just that but in video game form.
There are 12 attractions for you to explore in Nintendo Land. Six are for single player, three are for either single player or multiplayer and three are for multiplayer only. When you look at the different attractions you will notice that each of your favorite Nintendo characters play host to their own game.
Single Player Games
In Donkey Kong’s Crash Course, your Mii is placed into a roller, and the objective is to use the Nintendo game pad to steer your roller ball through an obstacle course. You will tilt and move the game pad, and even blow into the game pad microphone to move particular platforms. Even though this game is particular difficult it is actually pretty fun and makes solid use of the Game Pad.
In Captain Falcon’s Twister Race you are placed in one of Captain Falcon’s purple racers and plays as your traditional racer. However, on the Wii U, traditional is not in the vocabulary. The television shows your common behind the racer view as you race through the tracks, while the Game Pad shows an easy top down view that gives you a clear look at the course and can plan for turns and obstacles.
Yoshi’s Fruit Cart is probably one of the best games that makes full use of the new Nintendo Game Pad. Your Mii character is paced in one of Yoshi’s cart and on the television screen you see a top down view of your environment and different fruit that you have to collect. On the Game Pad, you see that same top down view of the map, however you only see a start, end, and platforms. The object is for you to draw a clear path for your cart to go on, and just hope that the path you drew averts obstacles and pit falls.
Octapus Dance puts your Mii in the role of an underwater diver that is trying to keep up with the dance instructor under the sea. Octapus is in the background trying to obstruct your view so that performing some of the dance moves becomes harder. Your left and right thumb-sticks move your characters arms and shaking the game pad performs jumps.
Balloon Trip Breeze is a cool little side-scroller that is simple to play and makes use of the television and your game pad. Your Mii has a balloon attached to his hip and the object is to move your balloon across the screen, averting spikes and other obstacles by using the stylus on your game pad while watching the actions on your television screen.
Takamaru’s Ninja Castle is the on rails game that you may have seen in the commercials. You are a Ninja who storms a castle to rescue a princess, who has been kidnapped. The object to the game is you point the game pad, vertically, at the television screen and you flick ninja stars at cartoon ninjas. The game action is fast paced and becomes insanely difficult as you get further into the game.
Multiplayer / Solo Games
In Legend of Zelda: Battle Quest you can either take on the role of the Bow and Arrow man or the swordsman. If you are using the Game Pad you are the bow and arrow shooter. Pulling back on the thumb-sticks allow you arm your arrow and aim. Releasing the thumb-stick releases your arrow. If you are using the Wii-Mote, you are now in the swordsman role. Think of Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword and that how you play in this role. Most of the enemies you encounter are shielded or guarded in some kind of way, so you will have to plan out how you are going to attack and swipe your sword. The tablet lets you look all through the map
Metroid Blast is a sci-fi shooter than many Nintendo fans will have a blast playing. This you can either play solo or with a friend and if you play with a friend you both have control of a gunship and fight off familiar Metroid enemies and even bosses. Both the game pad and wii mote will be used in the same fashion, just turn the Wii-Mote side ways and play traditionally.
Pikmin Adventure plays a bit like the Zelda game did. The game pad controller takes control of Captain Olimar’s spacesuit and flings pikmin at enemies by simply touching where you want to launch the Pikmin at on the game pad. If you dawn the Wii-Mote you become one of the Pikmin and have to fight enemies head on. There is a solo and Challenge mode, and the challenge mode is actually quite entertaining because you are competing for who can get the most candy while playing in different points of view.
Much like the other games talked about above, the point of view and game play is different depending on whether you play with the tablet controller or the Wii-Motes. The first one I had to try out is Mario Chase, which in a way plays very similar to Luigi’s Ghost mansion. The tablet controller controls Mario, and gives you a overview of the entire map. The Wii-Mote operators are all Toads and turns the game into a big Hide and Seek match. The Toads do not know where Mario is, however, they can tell whether they are getting close to you or farther away, which in turns lets them know how far away they are from Mario. The maps are divided into four different color zones which makes it easier to nail down where Mario is hiding.
Animal Crossing: Sweet Day puts Wii-Mote players in the Animal Crossing world collecting candy. The more candy you collect the slower your character moves. The tablet controller is called the gatekeeper that is in charge of capturing you before you make off with all the candy. When a gatekeeper gains on you, you will have to use quick decision making to decide whether you want to drop some candy to pick up speed or try and keep the candy to get more points.
The final game, which is my favorite, is Luigi’s Ghost Mansion. Much like the Mario Chase, the tablet controls the ghost, while Wii-Mote operators are ghost catchers. The tablet controller has an overview of the entire map and can pick out where he wants to make his move to cause the ghost catchers to faint. Ghost catchers are equipped with flash lights to beam on ghost causing them to flee and loose health. Its a big game of cat and mouse, and as the ghost gets closer to the catchers, with Wii-Motes begin to vibrate depending on how close the ghost actually is.
As you play these attractions you earn coins in which you can spend on playing a simple puzzle game, in which clearing stages unlocks cool Nintendo related items to decorate your plaza with.
The Final Truth:
Nintendo Land is a fun game to play with your family and friends and shows off the capabilities of the new system. My only gripe is the some of the games feel to similar to each other, or play to similar to each other and just re-skinned. Other than that the game was a blast to play. If you got the Deluxe edition of the WiiU, you were lucky enough to score a copy of the game inside the box. If you got the 8GB system I would still look at picking this game up because it is a fun game to play and keep you making return trips to the virtual amusement park.
[xrr label=”Rating: 8/10″ rating=8/10]
+ Amount of attractions
+ Great Family Fun
+ Shows Capabilities of the System
– Games feel too similar