Review by paleselan

"Best Party Game Ever?"

Everyone wanted a new Zelda game. Everyone wanted a new Metroid game. Everyone wanted a new Donkey Kong. Although not what people expected, Nintendo Land takes all of these games and combines them into one with twelve different mini games for people to play. It's easy to pass by Nintendo Land, completely disregarding the game, since it looks like a casual title. I would urge those gamers to take a moment to reconsider. Nintendo Land is an unexpected gift from Nintendo, and a strong contender for the non-coveted award of best mini-game collection ever.

Nintendo Land takes 12 different Nintendo franchises and turns each of them into a mini-game. Nine of the games can be played single player and six can be played multiplayer. Some games, such as Metroid Blast, can be played both multiplayer and single player. Each mini-game features much more depth than would be expected from a mini-game. Games like The Legend of Zelda: Battle Quest have more than ten levels for players to traverse, each with different enemies for players to defeat. Donkey Kong Crash course, an obstacle course game, has many courses for players to complete. Takumaru's Ninja Castle has players killing tons of ninjas across diverse environments and multiple levels. This is just a few examples of the depth featured in the various games available to play in Nintendo Land. This is not your standard mini-game collection that one would come to expect. Each mini-game has an unprecedented amount of content that can take players many hours to complete.

Apart from the single player, multiplayer is of course available. Six of the games can be played multiplayer, three of which are cooperative and three are competitive. These games feature the asymmetric gameplay that Nintendo has been boasting about for so long. In competitive games, the player on the gamepad competes against the four players on Wii-remotes. In Luigi's ghost mansion, for example, the four players on Wii-remotes must work together to track down the player on the gamepad, who plays as the ghost. Don't fret if there aren't five players available, the game does a great job evening out the field so that one against one is just as fun as four against one.

Cooperative multiplayer play is also available for some mini-games, extending the idea of asymmetric play. A great example is in the Zelda mini-game. The player on the gamepad uses the bow and arrow to shoot enemies from the back, while the players on the Wii-remotes use a sword and a shield, similar to Skyward Sword, to defeat enemies in the front lines. These modes are incredibly fun to play with multiple people, in both gaming and non-gaming crowds. The best part about Nintendo Land is that when there aren't others present, the single-player experience is just as good as the multiplayer one.

Further extending gameplay is pachinko and stamps. Pachinko, Japan's version of pinball, allows players to use coins earned in various attractions to win prizes and memorabilia. These prizes can then be proudly displayed in your park for others to see. Not only is playing pachinko very fun, but decorating your park is nice too. Coming into their park, players are greeted with a pretty barren landscape. This process extends gameplay and makes your Nintendo Land, the park, look better. Stamps are also available to earn in the game. These are Nintendo's version of achievements. Many fans are already familiar with stamps, since they were first introduced in Wii Sports Resort. Although not incredibly important, stamps give players extra things to do in mini-games and reward players with coins that can be used for playing more pachinko.

Overall, Nintendo land is the hidden gem that nobody expected to come out of the Wii U launch. Single player attractions hold their ground against multiplayer ones, providing many hours of play. Playing multiplayer is always a blast, which makes Nintendo Land ideal for party settings as well. For all those looking for a great first-party game to play on their brand new Wii U, either by themselves or with their family, make sure to pick up Nintendo Land today.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.0 - Great

Originally Posted: 12/10/12

Game Release: Nintendo Land (US, 11/18/12)

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