With MotionPlus at the head, Resort is an entertaining and remarkably precise collection of sports games.
Wii Sports Resort is essentially a collection of sports-themed minigames, much like its predecessor, however the offering is much more plentiful and diverse this time around. There are twelve sports offered and each has at least two types of games available to play, so even within each sport there's a bit of diversity. For example, within Swordplay (one of the game's fortes) there is a Duel mode where players try to knock each other off a platform, Showdown mode which pits gamers against a horde or other Miis, and a Speed Slice mode which is a competition to cut an object in a particular way as quick as possible as a test of reflexes. The numbers and diversity is refreshing and enhances the game's overall value significantly.
Each and every game in Wii Sports Resort makes use of the new Wii MotionPlus accessory, which comes packed in with the game. This is Wii Sports Resort's main draw: without it, the game would have been pointless. MotionPlus is a remarkable little piece of hardware that attaches to the bottom of the Wii remote and significantly enhances the accuracy of the game's motion controls. MotionPlus brings motion controls one step closer to being 1:1 with real life, which is especially evident in games like table tennis, which almost perfectly mimics your hand's motions, and archery, in which the remote becomes a bow that is aimed not by pointing at the screen, but by actually holding the remote like a bow. Other games such as basketball and air sports would have been complete duds without the MotionPlus accessory, but with it they are strong, solid minigames.
Resort has a number of highlights, and I think it's only fair to mention a few of them in detail. Archery features some of the best control design by making the player hold the remote and aim it just like a bow, then using the nunchuk to draw the arrow and fire. It is remarkably accurate and goes much deeper than any shooting game that merely involves pointing at the screen. Table tennis (my personal favorite) is remarkably accurate in its translation of players' movements by allowing the player to put topspin or back spin on the ball. Frisbee is also very accurate, though sometimes a little frustrating. Despite the more memorable moments there are also several forgettable games as well, namely the predictably bad games of Canoeing and Cycling.
Despite all the simple fun Wii Sports Resort offers, it gets old pretty quickly if one tries to go it alone for a long time. Collecting some of the game's stamps (achievements) adds a lot of solid bonus objectives, and achieving pro status can also be rewarding, but other than that the game runs itself dry on single player. The game was designed for multiplayer, and it sure offers plenty of fun in that area. Resort is a great game to pull out and play with a friend or family member, and whether or not they are a gamer doesn't matter much seeing as it's easy to pick up and play right off the bat. The only disadvantage is that to play multiplayer, an extra MotionPlus accessory is required. Some minigames that involve taking turns, such as bowling and archery, do allow for trading off one remote between up to four players, which is great for those who don't want to lay down another $10-$20 on accessories for their Wii.
Presentation-wise, Resort has little to show and little to complain about. The menus are laid out very nicely, and transitioning between games is a breeze. The graphics are pretty colorful, but they look far too simplistic to appear vibrant or to even stand out. The sound design is equally simplistic, but the effects do a satisfactory job in conveying the actions they represent. So despite the sheer simplicity and lack of anything remotely impressive, Resort's presentation isn't worth complaining about because for a game that's designed around such fun and accurate gameplay, it just doesn't matter unless you play games for graphics only. If that's the case then you bought the wrong console.
In the end, Wii Sports Resort is really all about the remarkably accurate and entertaining experience with MotionPlus. Much like the original Wii Sports was basically a demo of the Wii, Resort is a demo for MotionPlus, but it goes much farther than its predecessor did by being bigger, better, and just a little deeper. If you are a casual gamer and you have a Wii or are just looking for a solid and fun multiplayer experience, then be sure to buy this game in the near future. If you're a hardcore gamer you should appreciate everything MotionPlus does for the game and still be entertained by the simple but highly entertaining gameplay.
+ Ample and diverse set of games
+ Simple, accessible, and entertaining all around
+ MotionPlus greatly enhances the game as a whole
+ Solid multiplayer for all games
- Several forgettable minigames
- Lasting appeal is minimal with only one player