Wii: Suzumiya Haruhi no Gekidou Impressions

Being a popular anime in Japan has it’s perks, it allows the series to get its very own game produced.One of the most anticipated titles is Suzumiya Haruhi no Gekidou which brings motion controls which will allow players to dance to their favourite Haruhi Tunes. Though there was a time where there were reports of this to be false or that the dancing was just a small mini-game, little did they know that the whole game is actually completely based around it. Having played through the first few hours of the game, there’s alot of things to like and dislike about it.

The story follows the SOS Brigade, led by the wacky Suzumiya Haruhi and her fellow comrades as they begin on another round of promoting their club. This time however, Haruhi rushes into the Club room with a Poster advertising a Dance competition which she forcibly enters. The result is 12 chapters, each with their own song piece to which players are required to mimic motions to. Fans of the show will be pleased to know that your favourite SOS Brigade Characters are featured in full 3D dancing to each of the respected songs on screen during the dance sections. Dancing is done by the Wii Remote held by pointing up the Remote in a vertical orientation and moving it up, down left, right following the directions given on a bar moving across the screen aka DDR with gestures. Performing each of the gestures correctly will allow you to chain combos and earn points for unlocking special features and items. Of course, if you have a couple of Haruhi fans at your side, you can opt to play with up to 3 players on a single song with a variety of multiplayer modes unlocked as you progress through the story mode.Dancing isn’t all that players will be doing as there are a few mini games which break up the long line of tedious dancing.

The game has just released in Japan and is proving to be a very unique experience, but it lacks the depth of gameplay and control found in Bandai Namco’s Happy Dance Collection which uses more advanced motion detection for the dances which I would recommend for a more comprehensive “Para Para” game.

Wii: Let’s Tap Impressions

Demonstrated at the Tokyo Game Show 08, Let’s Tap is a Wii exclusive from Sonic creator Yuji Naka’s studio Prope utilizing the Wii Remote in a brand new way. Let’s Tap uses the Wii Remote face down on a surface and detects vibrations using the remotes accelerometers. The game features a variety of mini games such as Tap Runner, Rhythm Tap, Visualizer, Silent Blocks and Bubble Voyager. Each game focuses on a particular way of tapping such as light tapping for running and hard tapping for jumping.

Having played abit of the game, the package feels more like a demo than a full featured game. The Visualizers are only there for a look and Tap Runner and Rhythm Tap feel more like demonstrations of the technology involved. While there are a few multi player modes and a battle mode for Bubble Voyager, there isn’t really any depth to any of them. Some of the games do suffer from tap sensitivity issues, Rhythm Tap seems to register Taps no matter how soft or hard it is and miss firing seems to occur too often in Bubble Voyager. Navigating through menus using the Tap controls is a chore, as often the game will register a single tap instead of double. The visual style of the game looks great though simplistic akin to the Rez feel and there’s never any slow down. The soundtrack is also lively and completely original with the large amount of songs used in Rhythm Tap. Overall the package has a fair amount of modes but the lack of depth and control issues hinder it’s experience. Let’s hope they fix this for the final release in our territories sometime next year.