As previously mentioned our household acquired a Wii the other day – that most intriguing of new game consoles from Nintendo. Of course as with any games console, it’s no good having the console without having some games so I’ve now picked up the top two games of 2007 – Super Mario Galaxy, and Resident Evil 4 – both of which are very good indeed. These games are about as polar opposite as you can possibly be, with one being a cartoony romp around the galaxy, collecting brightly coloured star bits and killing the cutesy enemies by bouncing on them – and the other being a tense, heart poundingly suspenseful shoot-em-up through dark, mist filled towns populated by zombie-esque townsfolk under the control of an evil overlord. I’ll leave it as an exercise to the reader to work out which is which, suffice it to say that Mario does not require you to prove you are over 18 to enter their website.
Anyhoo, both games make great use of the Wii motion sensitive controllers – albeit in very different ways, and it’s fascinating to have to work out the completely different body movements needed to play each. Resident Evil is slightly more realistic, with a slashing motion required to quickly use the knife and the ability to point at the screen to aim your gun, but Mario makes up for this by having a wider range of motions to learn. Both are highly enjoyable to play, but one requires me to play loud music at the same time so I don’t have a heart attack whenever a zombie villager jumps out as the game soundtrack is intensely atmospheric and creepy.
I’ve had Super Mario Galaxy a week or two longer and find it much easier just to play when I want to relax, as you really have to be in the mood for Resident Evil. I guess this is why I’ve just managed to finish Super Mario Galaxy all the way through – at least as Mario – with only a few days of practice needed to defeat the ridiculously tricky ‘Purple Luigi’ level at the end. Now I get to go back and find all 120 stars again, this time playing as Luigi… assuming the zombies don’t get me first. Uuuhhh….