Friday, July 23, 2010

Wii Party - Two Player Balance Boat

I had a blast watching all the Wii Party gameplay videos on Youtube.  A few gamers played nearly all of the many game modes in this party game anthology....and there is a lot of content.  Much like Wii Sports Resort, I suspect everyone will have their one or two favorites

Balance Boat is a two-player cooperative game.  In this mode, you must balance Miis on the masts of a boat, trying to keep the boat from tumbling over.  The goal is to survive ten turns.  Each turn begins with a mini-game, where both players work together towards a common goal.  If you win the game, then your Miis will be the same size; if you lose, the pair of Miis will be mismatched, making balancing the boat more difficult.

I really love these cooperative mini-games.  There is one where you must run through a haunted house, shining flashlights on the ghosts.  There is another where you and your friend share a bicycle copter and must stay airborne.  In another, you must work together to assemble robots.  One especially inspired one involves working through a 2D platform-style obstacle course.

Microsoft is touting whitewater rafting as the star of Kinect Adventures, yet here is Nintendo with a rafting game of their own, and it seems to be more fun.  The Wii Party version is far more dependent on teamwork, and I can see it becoming wildly funny.  The joyous chaos of multiplayer in Super Mario Bros 5 is evident on these co-op mini-games.

I can foresee Balance Boat becoming a favorite of Wii Party fans.  There used to be co-op video games all the time back in the NES days - Bubble Bobble, Contra, Double Dragon 2, Balloon Fight, Ice Climber.  Heck, what about the original Mario Bros?  Those were the days when kids and families would gather together to play and watch.  Those were good days.

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