A letter I received with my copy of “Game Party 2” for the Wii said, “Warning: Many have noticed that playing ‘Game Party 2’ is even more fun when intoxicated.”
I beg to differ.
Being intoxicated is probably the ONLY way “Game Party 2” is much fun at all.
As the name implies, Midway’s “Game Party 2” is the sequel to – surprise! – “Game Party”, a mini-game collection that was released not even a year ago on the Wii for the budget price of $20.
“Game Party 2” does little other than add new mini-games. It adds five of them, in fact, as the rest of the 11 were present in the original game.
There’s a fair variety in the mini-games, and you’ll end up playing such classics as Darts, Beanbags, Horseshoes, and Ping Cup, which is essentially Beer Pong without the added bonus of alcohol.
There are a lot of problems with these games, one of which being that they don’t actually play all that differently from each other. You play Skill Ball the same way you play Horseshoes, and you play Ping Cup the same way you play Hoop Shoot.
The other major problem with the gameplay is that it never really feels right. Most people would probably be familiar with the game of Skill Ball – AKA Skee Ball – but chances are that they won’t ever be able to get the ball to go where they want it to in this Wii incarnation.
In fact, the only game that really manages to avoid this is Trivia. You simply point and click on answers. Amazingly, Midway didn’t find a way to screw up the controls for that one.
The game also boasts character customization for players’ avatars, but this, too, is disappointing. The look and feel of these characters is definitely reminiscent of Nintendo’s own Miis, but the list of options for their appearance (even after unlocking items) is severely limited and not very appealing.
The entire aesthetic look, in fact, is a disappointment. While the Wii has never been one to lay claim to amazing looking graphics, the way character models, objects and environments look leaves much to be desired.
“Game Party 2” does, however, make good on the “party” aspect of its title. All of the games are meant to be played with multiple people, and the game sports a Tournament mode for up to 16 players.
Despite Tournament mode sporting a fair amount of customizability, it’s really only useful if you want to bring down an enjoyable night with you and 15 of your closest friends.
Perhaps I’m being too harsh on “Game Party 2.” In all honesty, it could easily be worse. However, it’s hard to say that the game does anything well when many other Wii games have done it all better.
The Wii is full of mini-game collections. A lot of them are bad, but many are easily more enjoyable than this game.
On the upside, “Game Party 2” is a budget release at $30.
On the downside, that’s at least $20 too much.
“Game Party 2” is available now for the Nintendo Wii, but if you see it on the shelf, do yourself a favor and let it sit there.