Viva Pinata DS hung for holidays

THQ bringing Rare's Pocket Paradise to Nintendo's portable later this year; redux original includes seven new critters, Playground mode.

As part of Microsoft's Gamers' Day event in San Francisco today, the publisher said that it has tapped wholly owned studio Rare for a new Xbox 360 installment in the outfit's papier-mache garden franchise, Viva Pinata: Trouble in Paradise. With that game scheduled to arrive this September, Rare is exhibiting busy candy-filled beaver qualities of its own right, as THQ said today that the Nintendo DS edition of Viva Pinata will also be coming later this year, sometime during the holiday season.

Initially revealed last July, the DS edition now sports the title Viva Pinata: Pocket Paradise and will carry over its gameplay from the original Xbox 360 version of the game. Aspiring horticulturalists will build up their virtual gardens by creating an attractive living environment for wayward pinatas. The game will feature a redesigned interface and control scheme made more suitable for the DS.

Not a direct port, the DS edition of the game will offer a variety of tweaks to the 2006 original. Seven new pinatas have been added to the game, each with distinct environmental requirements and cutscene sequences, and Rare has also packed in 12 full-motion tutorial clips that tie into the Fox 4Kids TV series. Pocket Paradise also features a new game mode, Playground, where players can accelerate development of their gardens, and the DS edition will also feature local wireless functionality, where pinatas can be swapped between two separate systems.

While a Microsoft-owned studio releasing games for a competitor's platform via third-party publisher may initially sound odd, the arrangement isn't without precedent. While Microsoft picked up the UK-based outfit from Nintendo in 2002, Rare has released a fairly steady stream of games on the Nintendo's portables, most recently Diddy Kong Racing DS in 2006. Further, several of Rare's portable efforts since being acquired by Microsoft have been distributed by THQ, including Banjo-Pilot and It's Mr. Pants for the Game Boy Advance in 2005.

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17 comments
_em_
_em_

I've been wanting to play Viva Pinata, and now I won't have to buy an Xbox360 just to do so (though I do want one eventually...)! I just hope it turns out well.

twoism
twoism

I love Viva Piñata! I hope this will fare better than the original version (which was sadly overlooked because of its "kiddie" graphics) - can't wait for the 360 sequel too, co-op should be a blast!

juggalo
juggalo

A good game on the DS that isn't Castlevania....NO WAY...I may actually have to dust off the little brick and shelve the shiny PSP for the first time in 2 years!!

The_Dude1212
The_Dude1212

Meh, Pokemon be better, but that's IMO. Speaking of Rare... BRING BACK GOLDENEYE TO THE Wii FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!! I highly doubt I'd be the first to shout it...but it'd be scary if I did.

gnbfd
gnbfd

Make more Banjo! Except on the DS!

unreal_master
unreal_master

aww it didnt have a cool Ds name like Advance wars : Duel Strike

cooldude03
cooldude03

Finally Viva Pinata at home where it belongs, with Nintendo. This would be cool with the Wii Remote. It'll never happen but it would fit with Nintendo's lineup.

sidious
sidious

I'll buy it for myself and maybe my wife and niece. we all loved the X-Box game to death and got so happy when we heard about the sequel hitting X-Box 360 later this year.

teknicz
teknicz

Candy filled beaver sounds terrific.

fmprodguy
fmprodguy

This is a win-win for gamers... The DS Crowd gets an amazing game (as to I for my little DS) ... AND, more people will find out how great this game is!!!!

Generic_Dude
Generic_Dude

If the DS version is even half as good as the 360 and PC versions, then it will be worth double what it costs. Viva Pinata is one of the better family games I've played in a long, long time.

Tenjikuronin
Tenjikuronin

Its good to see the Viva Pinata series coming to the DS.

Dizinger
Dizinger

I was hoping to play this game. I don't own a 360, and haven't been able to justify the expense of buying one, not when I don't have time to play the games I do have. The DS games are nice because I can take them to work and play during breaks and lunch.

Super-Mario-Fan
Super-Mario-Fan

Nice to see that Rare is still developing for Nintendo's portables.

pennydad
pennydad

Finally a game that might be good for long road trips where you don't have to focus on tiny screen details.