Product Type: Sega Wii games
Newest Review: ... from the Mario and Sonic games or your Wii mii character. There are lots of Sega and Nintendo characters to choose between includin... more
Winter Olympic Fun with Mario & Sonic
Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Winter Games (Wii)
Member Name: loulou22
Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Winter Games (Wii)
Advantages: Energetic, fun and addictive
Disadvantages: Dream events
** Mario & Sonic at the Winter Olympic Games **
I received Mario & Sonic at the Winter Olympic Games for Christmas in 2009. Throughout my gaming life I have always enjoyed games based around the Olympics and being a big fan of winter sports in general made this a great gift to receive and also a nice surprise as I had somehow missed out on hearing about this one being released.
Mario & Sonic at the Winter Olympic Games comes in a normal white Wii box, the size of a DVD case, contained inside the box is a game disc along with an instruction manual for the game and also a separate manual containing safety instructions. The game instruction manual is written in English and is clear and simple to follow.
When you first play Mario & Sonic at the Winter Olympic Games you will need to create a new profile, this is simple as you only have to enter your name and select your country. After creating your profile you will be given the options of Single Player, Party Games, Olympic Games, Multiplayer, Shopping and Options.
There are 15 events in total, they include 6 skiing events split into subsections of freestyle, alpine and ski jumping, 2 snowboarding events, bobsleigh, curling, ice hockey, figure skating and various lengths of speed skating events. There are also numerous Dream events to take part in, although personally I don't like these at all. They are very unrealistic compared to the proper events and I find them quite difficult to control. Before each event you are given the options to view the rules and look at the controls for the event as they do vary a lot from one event to another. There is also a practice option for you to have a practice before you take part in the event for points.
You can choose to play the game as either a character from the Mario and Sonic games or your Wii mii character. There are lots of Sega and Nintendo characters to choose between including Yoshi, Sonic, Amy and of course Mario.
Choosing single player is a good opportunity to practice all of the events at your own leisure and also a good chance to build up some bonus points for your shopping card. The shopping card is displayed after each game and is an accumulation of points you have earned from taking part in the events. Shopping points can be spent in the shopping area of the main menu and can be used to purchase items such as new outfits for your mii if you are choosing to play as your mii character, music tracks from various Mario and Sonic releases and also books from the library which give you an insight into the history behind the real Olympic games and some interesting facts about them too.
If you choose to play the Olympic Games I would first of all make sure you have a lot of time to play or be prepared to save your game and return to it at a later date as it does take a while to play. The Olympic Games mode is set over a certain amount of virtual days. On each day you must take part in a combination of either events or training for events. Most days have 2 parts to them, either 2 events or an event and a training session, but some days will have a bonus event to take part in against a rival, these events are usually a bit tougher and can take a few attempts to clear. There are a couple of days during the games that are days off with no events or training to do, I simply skip past these as I'm not really sure what the point in them is. So far I have never actually completed the Olympic Games mode, I have got as far as day 7 and as yet I haven't gone back to complete it. I would estimate it has taken me around 2 hours of game playing to get this far. I like the fact that it takes a while though as this stops the game from being completed in no time and then becoming repetitive.
The game features an auto-save mode after each event or day at the Olympics, so you don't have to remember to save the game yourself.
Mario & Sonic at the Winter Olympic Games is also compatible with the Wii Balance Board. I have a balance board and the first Christmas that I had this game I remember the whole family sitting round taking it in turns to sit on the balance board to control the bobsleigh and try to beat each others score. The balance board is also great for the ski and snowboard events and being a snowboarder I was quite surprised to find how accurate the board is with respect to the way you stand and lean to control the snowboard down the slope.
There is a multiplayer mode in the game, my friends and I have had many evenings of entertainment laughing at each other and getting very competitive over the events. I think our favourite event to play in multiplayer is the bobsleigh as it is quite comical to see 2 people sat on the floor holding a Wii remote and swaying from side to side trying to stay in the centre of the track.
** Controls **
The controls of the game are in general pretty easy. Each event has the option to view the controls required before the event starts as well as the option to have a practice too. There are some events that are more complicated than others to get to grips with the controls, such as the Speed Skating, I always have issues with this as I still don't get when I should be shaking the wii remote faster and when I should be gently swinging it from side to side. My brother enjoys playing the Figure Skating event and will often dance around the room with the wii remote in his hand doing the dance as well as the required actions for the skating. My brother, by the way, is 8 years old and he can do most of the events including Speed Skating, a lot better than I can so this shows how easy most of the controls are.
** Graphics and Sound **
The graphics in the game are great! The whole game runs really smoothly and the events are bright and the characters in the game are very well animated. The sound is also great, the music in the menus is quite gentle and doesn't drive me insane when it plays over and over as the menu has been left on by a certain brother of mine! The sound effects during the game are realistic and the games characters each have their own little catch phrases which vary from the cute Yoshi to the funny reactions of Waluigi.
** Price and Availability **
Mario & Sonic at the Winter Olympic Games is currently available from Play.com for £19.99 with free delivery.
** My Experience and Opinion **
I really enjoy playing Mario & Sonic at the Winter Olympic Games. I tend to play mainly in single player mode as I like to pick and choose my events and just play at my leisure. The game and most of the events included in it are really good and they keep me busy for hours on end so overall I would recommend this game for both adults and children alike.
Thanks for reading :)
Summary: Time for some winter sports fun