Review: Pub Darts (WiiWare)

Downloadable darts — just as pointless as it sounds

Pub Darts is puzzling. Not that it’s a truly horrid game, but it’s just so basic that you have to wonder why you’d want to spend a lot of time with it. People like to play darts in bars and pubs because it’s a great excuse to get tipsy with your friends and throw sharp objects really fast at the wall. Occasionally there is yelling.

Holding a Wii Remote on your couch while sober is the exact opposite of what Pub Darts draws from. And while not everyone legally can or even wants to drink or set foot in a pub, we’re still left scratching our heads as to why this is a good idea for anyone.

On paper it seems like it’d be a good deal: there’s multiplayer support, it teaches you how to play five different games (501, Cricket, Around the Clock, Killers and Baseball) and has a functioning motion-based control system for about the same price as a decent sandwich. But then you load it up and see just how bland everything is.

Big Blue Bubble looks to have taken the path of least resistance. There’s a neat jig of a theme song, but actually playing darts is a fairly silent affair. Instead of music, we get the ambient sounds of a restaurant’s slow lunch. Sound effects boil down to a swish, plokk and a ping. Serviceable, yes. Exciting or interesting? Pfft. There’s no widescreen support, and the only animation you’ll ever see is the dart flying across the room. No people, hands or anything like that. No stat tracking. And while it teaches you how to play, the tutorials aren’t any more than reading a set of instructions.

But hey, five games, right? Hope you like those five games a whole lot since there’s no Free Play option to let you use the board for some other game, or even practice. Not that you need to practice too much, as throwing a dart comes down to aiming with the pointer, holding a button and making a throwing motion. Unless you have wild muscle spasms mid-toss you’ll likely hit very close to where you aimed. So skillful.


It’s only 500 Points so you get what you pay for, but we’d almost rather Big Blue Bubble go back to add more content and up the price a few hundred points to give us more reason to play. Useless unlockable dart designs, new games, something. You’re better off spending the money on a cheap dart board or, failing that, a few boxes of sharp pencils to throw at the wall.

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