Wii Music

Common Sense Media says

Intuitive game too simple for music gamers.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages
Not applicable
Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

Gamers will see "Wii Music" logos in the game.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this music game doesn't contain any inappropriate graphics or lyrics. It's simpler to play than other music games like Guitar Hero and Rock Band, but it may not provide enough challenge for those used to playing those competitive games.

Parents say

Kids say

What's it about?

A word of warning for Guitar Hero or Rock Band fans expecting a similar experience with Nintendo's WII MUSIC: you might be very disappointed. While you get access to 60-odd instruments, can play songs or "jam" with virtual musicians, and even record your performances for prosperity, this game lacks depth. However, young children and players who love fooling around with music might find the format intriguing, for a while.

You don't actually play any notes in Wii Music; rather you simply move the motion-sensitive Wii Remote or nunchuk controller to create musical riffs. Your movements create an improvisation to a song. There are five ways to play instruments: hold the Wii Remote and nunchuk like a guitar (with hands outstretched) and strum away; play the drums or piano by holding the two controllers like drumsticks (alternatively, you can play drums using the Wii Balance Board for your kick drum and hi-hats, but it's not an easy endeavor); a violin-like control scheme by pressing the B, C and Z buttons while moving the Wii Remote left and right; or trumpet- or flute-like control with the Wii Remote up to your lips and pressing the 1 and 2 buttons.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

For those used to playing the current popular music games where you "play" notes on musical instrument controllers, the play mechanic of Wii Music may feel dumbed-down. Rather than playing notes, you just move around the controls to simulate playing. Players may also find that the music quality and selection is disappointing. Instead of studio recordings, the music featured in the game is MIDI instrumental versions. The selection of songs to jam with doesn't include current music, rather players select from songs like Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, Ode to Joy, The Entertainer, Every Breath You Take, and La Cucaracha. There are also video game soundtracks from Super Mario Bros. and The Legend of Zelda.

Admittedly, Wii Music is more fun with up to four friends or family members jamming together in front of the same TV (each handling a different instrument). Plus, the ability to send a composition electronically to friends and family members who have the game (and who can then tweak the composition by adding new sounds) is a good idea. You can also partake in various mini-games, though some are better than others (sorry, but the one in which you conduct just isn't fun). While Nintendo tried to create a mainstream music game that anyone could pick up and play, it missed greatness because the notes are all laid out for you in advance and the music is a cheesy selection of poor quality songs. We tried Wii Music out with a couple of kid-testers and the game held their interest for only a short while.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about whether or not Nintendo really flubbed with this game. Or is it genius? Perhaps it was designed for children. Do gamers mind they're not playing any notes and simply must wave their arms to the beat? And will players care if these songs are not studio recordings but rather MIDI instrumental versions of classics?

Game details

Platforms:Nintendo Wii
Price:$49.99
Available online?Not available online
Developer:Nintendo
Release date:October 20, 2008
Genre:Music and Dance
ESRB rating:E for N/A (Nintendo Wii)

This review of Wii Music was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

Find out more

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

About our buy links

When you use our links to make a purchase, Common Sense Media earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes. As a nonprofit organization, these funds help us continue providing independent, ad-free services for educators, families, and kids while the price you pay remains the same. Thank you for your support.
Read more

See more about how we rate and review.

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Kid, 12 years old December 7, 2009
AGE
5
QUALITY
 
Adult Written byKrbbup November 20, 2008
AGE
5
QUALITY
 

Great Fun For The Whole Family!

I personally enjoy music, so this game was so much fun for me!! You get to play several different instruments (using the Wii remote and Nunchuck). Some of my favorites were the handbells and conducting. My whole family really enjoyed playing togther trying to best the other in how accurate they could get. I would most certainly recommend this to anyone who loves music or using the Wii remote actively.
Teen, 13 years old Written byrebma97 January 27, 2011
AGE
7
QUALITY
 

Needs more songs

Wii music is fun, but there are some things that I don't like. First of all, you have to do this one player mode thing in order to unlock stuff, which is dissapointing because no one else can play. Second of all, they're aren't that many songs to play. It would have been nice if they had added more. Thrid, they're aren't that many instruments. Also, some instruments you just hold 1 or 2 on the wii remote to play (I.e. the saxophone, the clarinet) which makes it more unrealistic. On the plus side, it's fun to jam out to songs (there's a free mode where you can choose your own song and instruments). It's very clean and contains no suggestive lyrics in songs whatsoever.

Poll

Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?

Digital Compass