Reviewed: July 17, 2007
Released: May 13, 2008
Have you ever wished that you could compete in any type of Olympic Games? Or maybe you want to be a BMX rider? Well Hudson has brought all of this to you through your Wii in Deca Sports.
In this title you get to impress judges with pirouettes and triple axels, or bump, set, or spike your way to a victory in the sand, you could also slam an overhead shot right past your opponent, and last but not least you can rev up your engines and make your opponents literally eat your dust as you pass them on the mounds.
For all of the winter sport lovers out there you get to experience figure skating for the first time on a game system. You really have to focus and pay attention to all surroundings to truly score well in this event. On the top of the screen you have an indicator bar that lets you know where you are at the present time and also it shows you where you need to be with the music icon.
When you sync these two up and perform many different types of moves depending on the color circle you get, you score much higher on the technical score. Some of the things that bothered me though, were that you only had to lift up on the remote to perform the desired task. It would have been a lot cooler if you had to do some kind of button combination to do a different type of jump move, or when you do spins you can twirl your remote.
Beach Volleyball was the biggest thing I was looking forward to when I saw the package. Unfortunately I was a little disappointed about how they put it together. The first that that bothered me was the camera angle was not the best one you could have picked. You get this angled view that makes it a lot harder to see where the ball is going and where you need to be to try and block an incoming slam.
The next thing was that all you did was lift up the remote to bump or set the ball. You really didnít have that much control on where it went. I would have liked to have seen you have to do the set motion to make it a little more realistic. When it came to spiking the ball they were almost there. You get a red indicator to let you know when you can really but your weight behind it and you are hardly ever blocked.
There are a few times the computer teammate got blocked and you will never with the point if your super spike is blocked.The problem here was that you had to anticipate the red indicator and even if you whipped your remote forward when the ball was red you didnít always get the super spike. I would say it really only worked about 30% of the time.
Finally, the motion sensor didnít always work with the speed you wanted to hit at or the direction. Depending on how fast you swung your remote indicated where on the court it would go. Fast equals deep and slow equals short. Then you also have to swing your remote left or right to get the desired position. Yeah I never got the ball to go left or right on purpose and even when it did go it didnít go as far as I had exaggerated.
Badminton was the most fun I have had playing a Wii game since Wii Bowling. With a demo you are going to have things you donít like and there were some in this game as well. The big issue was the camera angle. I think a straight behind look would be much easier on the players and allow them to see where the opposing play and the badminton are going or coming from. The only other problem was the direction in which you wanted to hit the birdie. Like volleyball you have to swing your remote in the direction in which you want the birdie to go. It worked better than volleyball but not anything to really brag about.
Some of the great things were that it was easier to control the super smash. Like volleyball you get a red indicator telling you when to unload a forceful shot. This time it was easier to anticipate but still a little too hard to perform. A great feature is that in true badminton you can still get a good jump on a smash and it isnít always an automatic point and in this game it still isnít.
The final demo game you get to try out is Supercross. I have to admit this was not my favorite. There were a lot of things wrong with this one. First, you have to touch controls. You make drastic sharp turns by just barely tilting the controller that you turn sideways. Next, you can never go out of bounds on the course. So you hit this invisible wall and you keep going.
There are no rewards to be daring by cutting a corner on a jump to try and get ahead of your opponent, or on the other hand no penalty for not being able to stay on the course. Finally, there is the fact that you canít do anything off a jump other than lift the nose of your bike up or down. This is important though because you can lose some ground if you donít land right. Even in races motor cross riders do some kinds of wheel turns for the crowd. It just gets boring going through the small course over and over again.
Just like the Supercross game you have Go Kart racing. To tell you the truth there is not a lot of difference between the two. Once again the turns are super sensitive and you turn way too hard when you just want a slight turn. Then to frustrate you even more when you want to make a really sharp turn you canít. After the first lap I realized you have to drift. Having played Mario Kart a lot lately this racing tool was just a nature thing to try. I am in an age group that this game is not really created for and someone in that age bracket might not understand that drifting is a much need tool in these races.
The nice thing about the Kart racing is that you can play up to four players at one time. If you donít have four players the computer will fill in the rest for you. After you have your number of players selected you can chose the difficulty of the computer if you have less than four human players; weak, normal, or strong. You then have three levels of courses you can choose from as well; beginner, intermediate, or advanced. The harder you course you pick the more drifts are involved and the lengths extended. Finally you get to pick if you want your race to consist of one, three, or five laps.
In another lazy attempt to add a racing game you have Snowboard Cross. It is just like Supercross and Go Kart. You have the exact touch controls and the same pixilated graphics. There is really no difference except that you are going down a hill instead of around tracks of asphalt or dirt. The last thing is that to speed up or slow down you point the remote up or down.
The most surprising mini game in Deca Sports is Curling. You are put into three man teams that work together to get the most stones in the middle of the scoring target. I always have had an interest in watching this game in the Olympics and was excited to play this game first. You have some sensor problems with the fact that when you thrust forward the sensor doesnít read it every time. Then you have the fact that when you want the stone to turn left or right after you release it you have to tilt the Wii remote in the opposite direction you want it to go.
I was a little bit iffy on playing basketball and I wasnít too happy when I started to play it. You use the remote with the nunchuk and there are far too many problems for a youngster to deal with. The common theme here is that the sensor is horrible at picking up your movements. This becomes a problem in dealing with passing and shooting. Another problem is that if you are in any type of crowd you will never get past the defense because they always take the ball away from you. Two good things about the game are that they are real to form in the fact that if you are under the rim and try to shoot you will hit the bottom of the rim instead of magically moving sideways and making the layup. Second, you really do have to time your shot at the top or you will not make it. This is really hard to master due to the horrible reading of the sensor.
Soccer is the same as basketball. You have a hard time in passing and shooting for a goal. This is also a game played outside on grass but has no out of bounds and no off sides. It is pretty much playing an indoor game. I do like those issues being in the wrong. They help the game move smoothly and keep it interesting. The biggest fall of this game is scoring. I played a 3 minute game that ended up lasting for over 45 minutes and the computer head butted one in.
I saved the best for last, Archery. This was the game I constantly went back to play. The sensor reads the best in this game but is still a little off. The nice thing is that it doesnít really hurt you. It is really easy to aim and get the hang of. You start at 30 meters in the first round and shoot 6 shots and then back up to 50 meters and shoot six more. You take the total points of both rounds for and see who was the best. It does get a little harder to gauge the wind further back you get.
Every game was really really pixilated. If it was any other system other than the Wii this would be so much lower. One great bright point was with the Snowboarding. You really got to see displacement of snow. When you made a turn left or right you saw snow spraying up the opposite way. Also, the snow falling was a great touch too. Other than that you have a great looking soccer field, good scenery in Go Karts, but other than that there is nothing too special.
You really donít pay a lot of attention to the sound. There are parts that do stand out. You have the revving of engines in the racing, the howling of the wind in downhill snowboarding, and you have indoor sounds of a real basketball game. You donít get blown away by the sound but for the age group it is a nice touch.
There is a lot of replay ability in every game. The problem is that some of the game will get you so frustrated that you will not want to go back and play them. There were four really great games to play with you did get the handles down; Archery, Curling, Go Karts, and Badmitten. For a thirty dollar price tag this is still a little overpriced but doable.
All in all Deca sports sounds bad but it really wasnít. You can play alone or with up to four people. Then you get to choose from eight different teams to play as. And after all that you get to pick from eight different games to play like the four I talked about as well as snowboarding, curling, archery, soccer, basketball, and go kart racing.