(WiiWare)

Soccer Bashi (WiiWare)

Game Review

Soccer Bashi Review

Europe PAL Version

Posted by Henry Stockdale

Own goal

Icon Games haven't had a good track record with WiiWare games so far, with poor attempts in the form of Stunt Cars and Arcade Sports. This time around, they've attempted to combine one of the world's biggest sports, football (or soccer), with the classic brick-breaking arcade game Breakout, resulting in Soccer Bashi. So is this third time the charm? Disappointingly, it's not even close.

Soccer Bashi offers two main modes to play through, Arcade and Tournament. Arcade features 90 levels across 10 zones, each with their own boss battle, and plops you with five lives and a set of continues to keep you going. Once you complete a zone, you can then unlock things such as secret backgrounds for your levels, which are nice little extras but don't really add much beyond a change of scenery.

The aim of the game is simple: destroy all of the blocks across the field using the Wii Remote pointer to move your paddle. A lot of power-ups are hidden among the blocks to both help and hinder you, such as one to shrink the paddle and a ball multiplier. There is also a goal at the other end of the field, which is guarded by the computer that, upon scoring, will instantly take you to the next level. But the computer is too responsive, so it's very difficult to score. There is also a co-operative mode where you and a friend control two different bars at the bottom of the screen. This doesn't elevate the game much either, instead just makes levels easier to beat.

While the main game works fine on paper, the problem is just that it's no fun at all. The biggest issue is that while the gameplay mechanics work fine, the levels are just very bland, and it becomes tedious to beat them after awhile as they tend to drag on, as they often feel rather slow and struggle to keep you interested for long. Another issue is that while the game promotes itself with a large footie focus, it seems like the theme was rather forced onto the game, as apart from the addition of the goal at the top of the field and some background themes, you get the idea that Icon Games only added it to draw in fans of the sport.

Outside of Arcade mode, there are then Tournaments. These allow you to choose whether the types of level being used are custom made or pre-designed levels, whether you choose the levels individually or if they're chosen at random, the number of rounds per tournament as well as a co-operative mode like in Arcade.

Also included is a level editor, which allows you to save up to 100 different creations at a time. You have the same set of items available in the main game, such as the different variety of blocks and enemies, as well as a choice between a different set of backgrounds. For those who are more creative, it adds replay value but there's a disappointing lack of tools available.

One of the few positive points about this game is its graphics, which don't look too bad for a WiiWare game. While menu and loading graphics are a bit ugly at times, the main game is helped by the colourful range of blocks and themes. However, at this time there is no soundtrack at all in the game outside of assorted sound effects such as cheering crowds. This is due to a problem involving an SDK update by Nintendo and Icon Games have confirmed that they are currently working on a fix for this.

Conclusion

Sadly, what we see here unfortunately is a rather bland and dull attempt that will struggle to keep your attention, forcing a football theme into it as a way of trying to draw people in. Despite its budget price point, for those of you looking for a block breaking game on WiiWare, you'd be better off looking at Arkanoid Plus! and Block Breaker Deluxe, which offer much better value for your points. This is one to avoid.

More Stories

Game Trailer

More footage from Icon Games' upcoming Breakout-footballer, Soccer Bashi. Plenty of information and screenshots at http://www.nintendolife.com

User Comments (18)

LEGEND_MARIOID

#2

LEGEND_MARIOID said:

Well I downloaded it and didn't think it was that bad - though I do agree with a few of your negative points. I don't really understand the reasoning behind the soccer theme as it might as well not be there

shinesprite

#3

shinesprite said:

My advice: Get AlphaBounce for DSiWare. According to the official website, it has 25million+ levels. :)
I got the game on Thanksgiving, and have put who knows how many hours into it.
Be warned, this game is VERY addictive. Once I start playing, often the only thing that will make me stop, is when I've completely depleted the battery! (4-5 hours later) This has happened at-least 7 times. Once or twice, I've even played it all day. I DON'T HAVE A PROBLEM! :)
Okay, I feel better now.

Alfred_ENG

#8

Alfred_ENG said:

Icon Games are rubbish. Stop making games full stop. Nintendo needs to stop putting poor games in the WiiWare shop.

SKTTR

#9

SKTTR said:

What is the URIDIUM fighter, the STAR WARS ship, and the GAME BOY doing there? (Look in the screenshots section) Do they have permission to use these licenses or are these levels you made with the editor? One stage looks like THE THING ON A SPRING, and another stage is pretty much DONKEY KONG's first stage.

BulbasaurusRex

#11

BulbasaurusRex said:

How can it be as bad as you say when your only major complaint was slow and tedious levels? Sure, the theme doesn't mean much, but it doesn't harm the game, either. Outside of the opening paragraph, the conclusion, and the review score, the review makes it sound like a decent game.

vaguerant

#12

vaguerant said:

A decent game, except for being boring and tedious? What exactly is it you think is important in a Breakout clone? That it looks nice? That it's bugged in a way which makes it fail to play music? That the gimmick feature is mostly irrelevant and usually unachievable?

The Breakout concept is incredibly simple, to the point where, barring some minor gimmicks, the vast majority of them have the same items, the same goals, even the same visual style. All that's left is the level design/progression, and if they're not fun, neither is the game.

LEGEND_MARIOID

#13

LEGEND_MARIOID said:

I enjoyed Deluxe and Arky Plus equally. Bashi isn't as good as those two games - but if you liked the former two, then you'll find Bashi an ok, 500 point, diversion imho.

segacandy

#14

segacandy said:

Yeah these games became rather stupid and pretty much to be avoided after it was included free in many cell phones.

I don't see how anyone would spend money on these types of games.

Pokeman

#15

Pokeman said:

You could totally just buy puzzle games online or even play puzzle games for free most of the time!! No one likes puzzle games on their TV!!! Hear that Nintendo!! No Tv puzzle games for the Wii! WE all want fun games that let you explore lands.

BulbasaurusRex

#16

BulbasaurusRex said:

@12 No, it sounds like a good game, except for being slow and tedious (it never says boring, and plenty of people find fun in tedious gameplay over short spurts), which makes it decent overall. The sound will soon be fixed, and the goal mechanic being hard to achieve is better than not including it at all. The slow and tedious levels seem like it pushes the score down from something like a 7 to a 5, not a 3.

I don't like puzzle games on WiiWare either, but many people prefer them on a TV screen instead of a dinky cell phone display.

ICEknight

#17

ICEknight said:

"No, it sounds like a good game, except for being slow and tedious (it never says boring, and plenty of people find fun in tedious gameplay over short spurts)"
Except that "tedious" is a synonym for "boring". Only masochists would have fun with something tedious, really.

C-Olimar

#18

C-Olimar said:

Someone whose first language isn't even English has a better knowledge of it than you :S

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