There are a lot of great games for the Wii, but honestly, there are games for the Wii that receive far more love than I feel they deserve. Games whose popularity puzzles me as much as the popularity Tom Hanks, Titanic, and American Idol. They aren’t all terrible games - some are okay games masquerading as brilliant ones – but they are all games that I just don’t get. Here are the 10 games whose acclaim most perplexes me.
10. Just Dance
This one isn’t overrated by the critics, who acknowledge its poor scoring mechanics and haphazard gameplay. But for the casual and first-time gamers who make up so much of the Wii’s constituency, Just Dance was the most fun they’d ever had dancing in their living room. It’s like someone who has never seen a movie being blown away by Catwoman. All I’m saying is, just because you had a good time being silly with your friends does not mean this is a good game.
I thought the GameCube title Metroid was a great game, and found the sequel Metroid Prime 2: Echoes even better, but when Corruption came out for the Wii it left me cold. The game had a macho, action-game sensibility than its more thoughtful predecessors, the story was silly, and it shoehorned gesture gaming into places where it just didn’t fit. I had really been looking forward to this game, but it wasn’t terrible, it was a huge disappointment.
The passion people have for retro gaming has always puzzled me. To me, games that seemed awesome in the 80s pale in comparison with the games that have come out in this century. My first video game love was text adventure games, but I certainly wouldn’t play one now. BIT.TRIP COMPLETE had some fun sections, most notably RUNNER, but lacking nostalgia for old arcade games, I just couldn’t get terribly excited about a game that tried to recreate them.
7. Cave Story
Here’s another WiiWare title (ported from the PC) that requires a lot of nostalgia to enjoy. If you believe the critics, then this is an amazing epic RPG that is the epitome of indie games. But if you believe me, it’s a flaccid, uninteresting game whose boring retro graphics are the least of its faults.
Studies have shown that people tend to assume those who are very attractive are smarter and nicer than the rest of us. Something similar seems to have happened in the case of Madworld, a pedestrian beat ‘em up that garnered positive reviews based not on its gameplay but rather on its stunning visuals. Without its singular looks I can’t imagine anyone giving this game a second thought.
I spent a lot of time thinking about why I didn’t care for MSG2. One of the most highly acclaimed games ever released for the Wii, it is good looking with well-designed gameplay. And I had fitful fun playing it. Yet the game just didn’t work for me. It’s like a song with an okay intro where you keep thinking, in a minute the singer’s going to kick it into high gear and it’s going to be awesome, but eventually you realize this isn’t an intro, this is what the song is going to be like all the way through.
If I ever need to prove to someone that, in spite of running a site devoted to the Wii, I am not a Nintendo fan boy, all I have to do is say, “I don’t like Super Mario.” I don’t hate Super Mario, but I find Nintendo’s 2D platformer series far less interesting than other series like Donkey Kong or Kirby. I can’t even say I didn’t care for New Super Mario Wii because I don’t like retro games; I didn’t care for Super Mario when he was a new thing.
I just don’t get the Monster Hunter thing. I just don’t. I know it’s got a huge cult following, I know people look forward to each game like it’s an undiscovered Beatles album, but I just don’t get why people like it at all. Everything about it annoys me. I don’t hate Monster Hunter Tri; I just don’t understand why anyone likes it.
See what I said above about Super Mario Galaxy 2? Well, I feel the same way about this one, only more so. I don't care how many people love it; I was flat-out bored.
No one hates this critically acclaimed WiiWare title, except for me. Its lowest score on the review aggregate site Metacritic is 70/100. But I found this game infuriating, a game that just made every simple thing agonizingly difficult. I feel like I must have been playing an entirely different game that just happens to have the same title and look exactly like the critically acclaimed version.