| paleface [sys=GBA; cat=Action_Variety; loc=NA] |
|I don't generally go for Nintendo's gadget gim-crackery, but they came up with a stunning number of awesome minigames to go along with the tilt sensor input in this awkwardly shaped cartridge. The sensor is far more sensitive and precise than I had imagined it could be, and it's simply a joy to use. Perhaps because of this, the games seem more instantly intuitive than those of the prequel, Mega Microgame$ (see entry 296), and I find this game far more compelling than that one, which is saying a lot, since I think that one is pretty darn impressive in its own right.|
So anyway, you play through Story mode, doing a dozen or so randomly selected minigames for each of the ten or so characters. Getting through a minigame once in Story mode unlocks it for unlimited replay on its own, but you'll have to do Story mode a bunch of times for each character, since they have more games than they offer in any one go. The single-game replay is really where it's at as far as I can see, though, as you simply play a game over and over, faster and faster, until you experience a sort of cathertic gaming meltdown. Make sure to keep a tight grip on your GBA throughout the twisting action!
I wonder if this game would be even easier to control on the original wide-body GBAs? Or the upcoming Game Boy micro? You tilt the console rapidly side-to-side, you see, and I was thinking that having a wider unit might make this more precise, but who knows.
The packaging says that it is not compatible with the Game Boy Player (see entry 86) but this is a bald-faced lie: it's just that Nintendo doesn't want you to go wiggling your GameCube around like a mad dervish. Oh yeah, in a similar vein, it seems that Nintendo is now including their little "health and safety" warnings in their GBA games at boot-up: every time you power on the game, you have to sit looking at a little screen that tells you that you need to make sure to read the health and safety booklet that comes with your game, implying that if you do not, you may be stricken dead. This is really, really annoying, and I can only hope that whatever executive it was that decided to inflict this torment on us gets fired post-haste.
Presumably the game works both downward in SPs and upright in widebody GBAs (I've only played it in an SP). When you power up the system sometimes, especially if you've just swapped the cart in place of another one, say Final Fantasy Tactics Advance, the game goes through a little auto-calibration phase, and then you're off and playing. The manual also says that it recalibrates after every minigame. I've never seen it calibrate incorrectly, even after shaking my SP vigorously during the calibration phase (it warns you to keep it still), so I guess it works pretty good, whatever it's doing.
I guess I could try describing some of the minigames I've played so far, but they're so darn fast and numerous, not to mention unusually controlled, that I'm not sure I can do them justice. Just check the video for some examples.
|The smoothness of the rotation effects really surprised me, so much so that I almost thought that maybe they slipped an extra sprite rotation in the cartridge. Looks like butter.|
|The cartridge also packs in a rumble feature, providing some nice subtle tactile feedback. You can turn it off if you want, but I think it works very well here--and I'm a guy who usually turns rumble off right away.|| ||