8.5

WarioWare is a solid game that relies on its humor to succeed.

WarioWare would seem like the perfect fit for the Wii -- the controls of the Wii-mote are simply made for mini-games. But only die-hard mini-game fanatics or those looking for a great drinking game will come away happy. If that doesn't fit your market, then be wary -- the game has its moments -- but varying by the person, it could either disappoint totally or please you endlessly.

Smooth Moves is a somewhat incoherent mesh of mini-games, much like the rest of the games in the WarioWare series, which prior to this game, had been featured most prominently in handhelds (the Gamecube version didn't turn in that well), and has found some success there. Smooth Moves looks to emulate the random story, hectic-ness, and down-right craziness found in the other games -- and it succeeds in that respect.

One of the even stronger parts about the game is the overall quality (and hilarity) of the relatively short story mode. The animations prior to the set of minigames are phenomenal (sometimes, I found myself re-playing some of the minigame sets just to catch the little things in the background), though it's where the minigame gameplay comes in (the point of the game) that Smooth Moves falters.

The gameplay of Smooth Moves is basically a few series of different mini-games -- as you progress further and further, the mini-games get faster, and tougher in general. Normally, you would believe this would lead to a fun experience, but often, it's simply frustrating. Of course, part of the game is trial and error -- but as you stand there in "The Cheese" position, leaning back like an idiot, you begin to wonder if you should do something else for awhile.

It's quite possible that this would be a perfect hit for (drinking) parties. Each time you screw up, chug down another glass. For those mini-game purists out there, this would definitely be a must-buy.

One point that has to be brought up again though, is the one undermining strength of the whole title -- the humor. The game knows that it's completely ridiculous, so it plays up its part by adding in lines and tidbits that seem wholly ludicrous. The videos introducing each of the different "forms" you hold the Wii-mote in are terrific, and the mini-games each have their sense of humor to them, whether they make fun of WarioWare itself or games of old.

The forms themselves are... rather interesting. Whether you hold the Wii-mote on your head like a mohawk, or in "The Elephant" form (... it's interesting), WarioWare by far offers the most varieties of how to hold the little remote in your hands. The only problem with this is that someone could just as easily cheat by simply ignoring the instructions -- the game can't register whether you're holding the remote at your nose or at your chest.

So, while you could cheat through the whole thing (and be a very boring person) and wing it, WarioWare wants you to enjoy the smaller details that were put into this one, whether it be the not-so subtle humor or frantic gameplay pace. Just be sure when you buy it that you'll have a reason to use it -- and not to let it acquire a nice coating of dust on your shelf.

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