Review: Wii Sports Resort (Wii)

Is Wii Sports Resort the worthy sequel fans of the original have been waiting for?

Basketball

You can choose to play one of two games in Basketball: 3-Point Contest or Pickup Game. The 3-Point Contest will be instantly familiar to those of you who watch the NBA All Star Weekend each year. You're presented with 5 racks of balls around the 3-point line. There are 4 regular balls and one multi-colored money ball. The regular balls are worth one point and the money ball is worth two points. Up to four players can play, alternating turns. You have a 60 second time limit in which to shoot as many of the balls as you can before the time expires. Your points are then tallied up and the person with the highest point total wins. You use the (B) button on the Wii Remote to grab a ball from the rack and then you hold the Wii Remote above your head and flick your wrist like you were shooting a real basketball. How hard you flick your wrist and where your wrist stops determines how far and with how much arc the ball travels. It takes a bit of practice, but once you get in a rhythm, you'll have no trouble making shots at will. But you've also got to remember to be quick or time will quickly run out on you.

The Pickup Game lets you and one other player take control of three characters on each team. You can pass the basketball between them and even tap the Wii Remote up and down in order to dribble around opponents. If you get close enough to the basket you can even dunk the ball. Most of the time your best bet is to pass it around a couple of times and then shoot from the outside. After a missed shot, the ball automatically goes over to the other side. You can pass to the left player using the (A) button or the player on your right by pressing a direction on the (dpad). On defense you can even flick the Wii Remote to attempt to steal the ball when your opponent dribbles it out in front of you. While this game of basketball is very basic in design and can be a bit clunky at times, once you get the hang of it you'll actually begin to see how much variety it truly offers, at least if you can keep your expectations at a realistic level. Both basketball games are quite fun, but the 3-Point Contest is the one most players will likely spend most of their time with.

Table Tennis

Table Tennis offers up two challenges: Match and Return Challenge. Match is basically just a regular game of table tennis that can be played by one or two players. The rules are very standard and if you've ever played ping pong before, you should feel right at home. The first player to 6 points wins, although you must win by two points. You basically use the Wii Remote as your paddle and swing away at the ball as it comes your way. If the ball bounces high enough, you can even perform a smash shot to catch the other player off guard. Your player will move around on their own, the only thing you'll have to keep track of is which side to swing your paddle from in order to keep the ball on the table. Of course with Wii Motion Plus, the control tends to be very sensitive, so you'll have to be fairly accurate in your swinging motion in order to succeed. But this also means that you can impart spin on the ball by tilting the Wii Remote forwards or backwards a little in order to produce topspin and backspin. This can also be a good way to keep your opponent on their toes. Of all the table tennis games out there for the Wii currently, this is probably the best one overall. It's just very well executed and a lot of fun to play.

Return Challenge can be played with up to four players, each taking turns. The object of the game is to return as many balls as possible as the server continuously serves balls at you at an ever-increasing rate of speed. You try to return as many in a row as possible and you'll catch yourself going back for more in an attempt to beat your highest number of returns. While not as much fun as the Match mode, it's still a fun diversion and offers a lot of replay value in the process.