Warioware: Smooth Moves ImpressionsIf you've never played a Warioware game, they're surreal almost beyond description. Think Japan meets Monty Python meets The Cartoon Network. The basic premise is that you will play over two hundred "micro-games", all lasting less than ten seconds. You're shown an image and possibly a one-word instruction, and you have to immediately recognize what you need to do to "solve" the mini-game. It's all about instant recognition and response.
It's a niche premise, certainly, but it's also wacky and colorful and very, very silly. Some of the art is incredibly creative--actually, the entire game is remarkably creative. And adapting the game for the Wiimote is a near-perfect marriage, because the number of gestures and poses possible with the Wiimote are limitless.
Here's an idea of just how silly this game can be. Instead of just having you point the Wiimote at the screen, Warioware calls it a "form baton," and before each micro-game, you're shown a position with the form baton that should be used. Sure, you can play without doing the poses, but you'll miss out on a good bit of the fun. Extending the form baton from your nose ("The Elephant"), or striking any of the other poses (Waiter, Chauffeur, Sketch-Artist, Samurai, Big Cheese, and many others) is both fun and funny, and if you can't make fun of yourself, this is not the game for you.
Among the things you'll be doing with the Wiimote: everything. I didn't see a micro-game for scratching your butt, but I think everything else in the world must be in there. You might saute vegetables. You might shave a beard. You might shoot Godzilla. It's the bizarre, random nature of these games as they're strung together that makes the game fun and keeps your attention.
The problem with a Warioware game, though, is that it's too short--even with over two-hundred micro-games, you'll blast through story mode in less than five hours. Multiplayer mode is fun, but bafflingly, you can't use two remotes. That may have been a design decision to encourage crazy-fast swapping of the Wiimote, but it's annoying.
We've already gotten over ten hours of play, and I'm sure we'll play more, but it's very much a potato chip game. It's an outstanding rental, but fifty dollars is a bit steep for what you get.