It's nice to see games that make use of the Nintendo DS's touch screen in interesting ways. WireWay is one such game. In it, players will use the stylus and touch pad to pull back stretchy wires and fling a character across a multitude of stages in a puzzle-meets-platformer style of gaming. The biggest problem is one of scale. The stages are so large and the camera so zoomed in that it is often impossible to tell where you're aiming the little guy.
That's about all you really need to know about WireWay: it's a fun concept that doesn't quite work as well as it should. The game stars a little alien fellow named Wiley on his quest to collect little stars called Elan. Each stage has these stars scattered about in the sky and the only way to reach them is by using the various wires and bumpers floating about to send the alien critter flying. As you move through the story, a love interest is introduced, boss battles must be fought, and increasingly more difficult stages are offered that feature everything from electric baddies to spiked walls.
Alongside the story mode is a limited multiplayer game and a small series of challenges. Some of the challenges are even more exciting than the main game. They'll test players either with using a limited number of wire flicks or with drawing the wires on themselves. In the latter, higher scores are awarded for using less wires. It's a nice concept and a quick way to pass a few minutes.
The problem with all of these modes, as stated before, is that the camera seriously hampers the fun. The first problem comes with the fact that the action is spread across both screens, leaving a gap in the middle. Players can use the d-pad (or face buttons if they are left-handed) to move the camera around a little bit, but the situation isn't ideal for targeted small moves. When you're trying to move farther, however, you can't see anything. The camera is so close to the action that any larger flicks are done blind. It turns the entire game into a series of trial and error flicks, and that isn't very much fun.
It's too bad the camera makes things so frustrating. The concept isn't bad and the goofy Internet brand of humor works well for the cast of characters. WireWay just isn't very fun, not at first try and not after several hours of blindly flicking your way through levels.
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