IGN Review of Game Party 2
Last December, Midway Games and FarSight Studios released Game Party for the Wii. Apparently it sold so well that they decided the make the same game again. Now here I am, a year later, trying to figure out what I'm going to say about Game Party 2 that hasn't already been said once before. You know, if I recycled last year's review the way Midway recycled last year's game, I'd be out of a job. Just something to think about.
It's not as if I couldn't do it - all the problems with the first game still apply to Game Party 2. There are 11 mini-games this time, only five of which are "new". Shuffle Board, Ping Cup (beer pong), Hoop Shoot, Darts, Skill Ball, and Trivia all return virtually unchanged. Added this year are Lawn Darts, Puck Bowling, Quarterback Challenge, Horseshoes, and Beanbags.
Though they may look a little different, many of the mini-games play identically. In terms of gameplay, there are really only three different games that require three motions; overhand throwing, underhand throwing, and forward thrusting motions make up the majority of gameplay for all 11 challenges. For example, Horseshoes, Beanbags, and Lawn Darts, all require underhand throwing motions, while Ping Cup, Hoop Shoot, and QB Challenge all use overhand motions. When it comes down to it, the new mini-games added this year are nothing more than slightly tweaked and re-skinned versions of existing content. There's certainly nothing here to warrant an additional purchase if you already own the first title.
Just as in last year's game, you'll win tokens for each mini-game, but instead of buying new playable characters, this time you'll use them to buy new types of clothing for your custom characters. You can buy one new set of each item (faces, shirts, pants, etc.). You will likely be able to buy everything the first time you cash in your tickets though, so this doesn't really become any sort of long-term objective.
The same visual style returns, with an extremely basic presentation once again. Different characters are made by re-skinning the same two models (male and female) over and over. There are only a few simple animations and facial expressions for each character. After a while, all the background NPCs start to look alike. As with the majority of shovelware, the graphics as a whole definitely fall short of most last generation titles. No surprise there.
The menus are redone from last year, which I guess is better than nothing. Again very simple, but they do look pretty slick, especially when compared to the rest of the game. IR is used for navigation, but there's a small issue with that. It seems the motion of the cursor is influenced by the horizontal tilt of the remote. For example, if you are holding the remote askew, and move it up, the cursor will move to the side rather than straight up. We saw the same problem in Okami for Wii. It's a bit difficult to describe, and it's not a huge issue, but you'll definitely notice it every once in a while.
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