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Review: Wii Music - Nintendo Wii

by Steven Williamson on 19 November 2008, 18:05

Tags: Wii Music, Nintendo (TYO:7974), Wii, Simulation

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From Jingle Bells to Mozart

Wii Music is a strange "game". On the one hand, the simplistic controls, the lack of any challenge in the main game mode and the uninhibited arm-waving fun that you may have playing along to the likes of “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” may appeal to young children who are at that phase in their lives where they simply like to make as much noise as possible. On the other hand, the difficult mini-game that requires that you do have an ear for music and the jamming along to the likes “Woman” by John Lennon or “September” by Earth Wind and Fire on the steel drums or sitar are surely aimed at the older generation. To add to the mixed messages that Wii Music gives out,the main game modes, which are supposed to be all about rhythm and timing, don't actually teach you anything about rhythm at all because you're never graded or told whether you've got it right or wrong. You can't get it wrong.

In Wii Music, you can play a variety of instruments and improvise or play along to pre-programmed songs by using the motion-sensing functionality of the Wii Remote controller combined with button presses for certain instruments. Whilst there's a wide array of instruments to choose from, ranging from the guitar to the bongos, such is the simplistic control scheme that the 60 or so instruments can all be played entirely with one of four methods.

“Key type,” requires you to hold both the Wii Remote and Nunchuck out in front of you and alternate between them, moving them up and down with your left and right hand as if you’re playing a piano. “Guitar type” requires you to hold the Nunchuck out to your right as if you’re holding the neck of a guitar, whilst using the Wii Remote to strum imaginary strings - this is essentially the same as "violin type". And finally, the ‘trumpet’ method requires you to hold the Wii Remote toward your lips, whilst pressing the face buttons and raising and lowering it to raise the volume of the instrument up and down. The very basic control scheme makes it instantly accessible to youngsters and it's fun for a while mimicking the movements of a double bass or a saxaphone, but you'll soon realise that you don't actually need to carry out the set control methods exactly. You can practically get away with waving the Wii Remote any way you wish to create the desired effect. We favoured the "sitting-on-our-arse-stabbing-at-the-screen-nonchantly" method.

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