A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this camera-based downloadable game for the Nintendo DSi is a safe bet for kids. Violence is limited to players using their hands to swat virtual flies and their heads to break apart digital slabs of rock. Social gaming is facilitated via a two-player mode, in which a pair of friends work together to complete each micro-game.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's it about?
WARIOWARE SNAPPED!, one of the first games to be made available through the Nintendo DSi's new online shop, feels a lot like previous WarioWare games. Players work their way through short series of micro-games that last no longer than ten or 15 seconds each. The shtick here is that all of these games make use of the DSi's internal camera, which captures players' movements. Players wave goodbye, pretend that they are dogs trying to shake themselves dry, and try to grab floating coins. After each set of games we're treated to a series of photos that shows us in a variety of awkward and usually humorous poses. A handful of games can be played with two players in front of the camera.
Is it any good?
Snapped! is a good concept that deserved to be fleshed out a lot more. Most of the micro-games are fun, but with only 20 of them scattered over four short levels, players will see everything the game has to offer in well under half an hour. And with no unlockable prizes, high scores, or plot, there's little reason to play again. Complicating matters is the game's iffy image recognition. There will be times when the camera can't distinguish your face or hands from your surroundings, rendering pointless all of your comical flailing. And since Snapped! can only be played with the DSi stationary and set on a table in front of the player, it feels rather like the antithesis of a portable game. Save your DSiWare points for something with a little more meat and utility.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about what ought to be expected of an inexpensive, downloadable game. You can see everything WarioWare Snapped! has in ten or fifteen minutes, but it offers ongoing value by letting players engage in some of the micro-games with friends. Still, is this enough to get kids or parents want to part with five dollars?
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