Don't ask us what the "Furu Furu" part of Furu Furu Park means. In fact, don't ask us about the insanely over-the-top visual style of this collection of minigames for the Nintendo Wii, either. All we know is that, at some point, large muscular men wearing wrestling tights and sporting huge afros show up, followed by anime characters so cute they'd make Pikachu vomit. It's clear that Furu Furu Park is utterly Japanese and, after checking out a couple of the minigames during a hands-on session, we could tell that it's worth at least a laugh or two.
Furu Furu Park will come with a number of modes to play, all of which revolve around the 30 minigames that form the core of the game. When playing solo, you can choose free-play mode, where you can play any minigame at any time, or challenge mode, where you choose any five minigames and get scored on your results. In multiplayer, you have options such as free-battle mode, which will let you take on any of the minigames at random; love-challenge mode, which challenges you not to beat your foe but rather test your "compatibility" by trying to earn scores as identical as possible on various games; and panel attack, in which you try to take control of grids of a game board by winning minigames.
Although we didn't get a chance to try all of the 30 minigames on hand, the ones we did see had a style all their own. The first, Swan Runner, had one of those cute anime characters piloting a space ship shaped like a futuristic swan as it ran through a tunnel; your goal is to escape a doomed planet on the edge of exploding. To control the ship as it sped through the tunnel, you simply hold the Wii Remote vertically and then twist it left or right. You could pick up power-ups that would increase your speed or earn you more points. Hitting objects along the way will slow you down, whereas passing gates will successfully earn you points.
In another minigame, Hammer Throw, you participate in an event that is ostensibly like the Olympic competition--except that, instead of tossing a 16-pound chunk of iron, you'll be tossing three of the aforementioned muscle-bound afro-wearers, all of whom are grasping each other by the ankles. It's real weird. The mechanics, thankfully, are not. To build up momentum for your throw, you simply turn the Wii Remote in a circle while holding down the A button. To release the..."hammer"...you simply let go of the A button at the right time and watch your little muscle guys fly. The timing is fairly precise, and it's easy to throw out of bounds, but with a little practice, you'll be making more accurate throws.
Other games in the list include pinch hitter, which uses the Wii Remote as a bat; Sonic Blastman 20XX, in which you play as a superhero preventing the destruction of earth by asteroids simply through the power of his epic punches; super karate, which gives you offensive and defensive moves to beat down your opponent; and puzzles based on classic arcade hits such as Arkanoid and Bubble Bobble. In all, if you've got a hankering for even more minigame action on your Wii and don't mind more than a little Japanese crazy in your gaming diet, Furu Furu Park looks as if it might be a decent option. The game is due for release in November.