Pilotwings Resort

Game review by
Marc Saltzman, Common Sense Media
Pilotwings Resort Game Poster Image
Enjoyable flying adventure shows off the graphics of 3DS.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

The game is all about flying around an island to accomplish various goals, so the message it sends is that practice makes perfect.

Positive Role Models & Representations

You can play as your own Mii character, created on the Nintendo 3DS, but you don't really see your character in this game. Instead, you see the plane or behind the hang glider or the back of your character with a rocket behind. You work hard to accomplish the game's many goals and behave admirably throughout.

Ease of Play

The game can be a bit tricky if you're not familiar with past Pilotwings games (or aerial arcade games as a whole), but a decent tutorial, free flight mode, and increasingly difficult missions help players ease into the game mechanics.

Violence & Scariness

The game is based on the same Wuhu island as Wii Sports Resort and Wii Fit Plus.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Pilotwings Resort is an aerial flight game with no inappropriate content for young gamers. But parents need to remember that Nintendo is warning parents not to allow
kids age six and under to view the graphics in 3D because that viewing
"may cause vision damage." The Nintendo 3DS offers parents the ability
to lock out the use of 3D graphics in the system's Parental Controls. However, with this game, the 3D images make navigating the challenges easier, so the game is best played by kids ages 7 and up.

User Reviews

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What's it about?

It's been 20 years since Pilotwings first soared on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES), and now the series has made its 3D debut with the launch of the Nintendo 3DS. PILOTWINGS RESORT lets you fly around WuHu Island -- the location featured in Wii Sports Resort – in order to compete in a number of aerial challenges. The three main ways you can fly the friendly skies are in airplanes (from prop planes to fighter jets), hang gliders, or rocket belts (think jetpacks). As you'd expect, each of these modes of transportation handle very differently, so you need to take this into account as you maneuver around obstacles and through checkpoints.

While the game only has about 40 flight challenges in the Mission mode,

Is it any good?

Pilotwings Resort is good, but you must like flying games. The analog stick -- the first time on a portable Nintendo system --
feels great to control much of the action. For example, you might have
to fly through 10 rings within a specified time. Or shoot at balloons in
the sky, on bridges, and through tunnels. Unlike past Pilotwings games, the game can be played in 3D, without
needing glasses, and you do get a remarkable sense of depth while
soaring the skies. But after playing the game after a short while, it felt like there was
little reason to keep going. Sure, you can unlock more parts of the
island, take on more difficult missions or look for goodies in Free Play
mode, but there was little incentive to do so. Perhaps if Pilotwings
offered a wireless multiplayer mode or an augmented reality
feature (imagine flying planes against a real backdrop, like your
backyard or family room), the game would have more replayability.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how Nintendo likes to reintroduce the same games on multiple platforms. Is this a good thing because people love their franchises -- like Super Mario, The Legend of Zelda or Metroid -- and they want to enjoy them on every new platform that debuts every few years? Or is Nintendo simply recycling old ideas, characters and game mechanics?

  • What do you think about playing games in 3D? Did it make playing this aerial challenges game easier? Are you looking forward to exploring other 3DS games?

Game details

  • Platforms: Nintendo 3DS
  • Price: $39.99
  • Available online? Not available online
  • Developer: Nintendo
  • Release date: March 27, 2011
  • Genre: Simulation
  • ESRB rating: E for N/A
  • Last updated: November 11, 2020

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