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457 of 490 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Overall does not disappoint, but is flawed in lack of provision for lefties
We are a two adult, no children household. We look for Wii games that are suitable for many players (we like to have friends over to play), and that are very engaging, and fun. We don't like war/shooter games or games that are too juvenile. We also try to find games that are structured around the unique Wii experience. (Ie, we don't buy racing games and others that...
Published on November 19, 2007 by Jennifer W

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67 of 77 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fun, But...
I had high hopes for this game. When I learned it was coming out, I couldn't wait, and I bought it the day it was released. I'm a HUGE Sonic and Mario fan (and I LOVED Wii Sports) so naturally I had to have it.

Let me start off by saying the game is fun. The graphics are great, and the option of playing as so many different characters and so many different...
Published on November 20, 2007 by dustymonkey


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457 of 490 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Overall does not disappoint, but is flawed in lack of provision for lefties, November 19, 2007
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games (Video Game)
We are a two adult, no children household. We look for Wii games that are suitable for many players (we like to have friends over to play), and that are very engaging, and fun. We don't like war/shooter games or games that are too juvenile. We also try to find games that are structured around the unique Wii experience. (Ie, we don't buy racing games and others that require you to use the Wiimote like a traditional controller--we'd use a traditional system for that!)

We're a big fan of the Wii Mario games so with that and our other game criteria in mind, we purchased Mario and Sonic at the Olympics.

The basic premise of the game is that you select a character to compete against either other people or AI characters in various Olympic events. You have your choice of 8 classic Mario characters, 8 Sonic characters, or anyone from your Mii Village. Each character has different strengths and weaknesses, though what those precisely are is revealed only through game play. Out of the box, you know which characters are generally more speedy, powerful, skilled, or all around talented.

The events include several variations meter dashes and relays, long, triple and high jumps, swimming races and relays, trampoline and vault activities, skeet shooting, rowing, archery, fencing, hammer and javelin throws, and table tennis. All of the activities are not immediately available for play but become unlocked through game play and success. I can't give more specifics because we've not yet successfully unlocked any games. Some of the activities like the trampoline and triple jump require precise control and timing and other activities like running and swimming are larger, more generic movements.

There is also something called "Dream Events" that are awarded on a merit basis but we've not yet unlocked them so I don't know what they are. The game does allow for 4 separate saved profiles so you can save your progress as you work through the game. Additionally, you can constantly vary the type of game and number of players within 1 profile, which is nice.

Straight out of the box, the unlocked activities are: Trampoline, Javelin Throw, Fencing, Hammer Throw, Long Jump, Triple Jump, 100m Dash, 110m Hurdles, 100m Freestyle and 4x100m Freestyle Swimming, Skeet Shooting and Table Tennis.

The game has several modes of play. Single Event mode allows 1-4 players to compete in any of the unlocked events.

Circuit Mode allows 1-4 people to compete in one of 4 circuits, each containing 3 preselected events. Alternately, you can select "Free Circuit" and choose the events yourself. 8 players play each round so anywhere from 1-7 spots are filled by AI COM players. The way events are scored varies by event. You are ranked according to the performance in the event and then each rank is assigned a numeric point value. The highest point total wins the circuit.

Mission Mode is for 1 player only. Each avatar character is eligible for different challenges, which are specific goals within a single event. For example, Yoshi's swimming challenge is to complete the 100m Freestyle in 48-52 seconds. Each character has different challenges. Clearing all the missions for all characters results in a prize--so far, I don't know what that is.

Gallery Mode is a mode for mini game play that unlocks Olympic trivia. We have not yet played this mode so I have no further comment.

So far, we've played it one time for a couple of hours. We played in Circuit Mode, on the Beginner setting, with 2 players. I've also played a few individual rounds and we've tried about 5 different challenge rounds.

A lot of the mini games are still locked so we have not played all of them. So this review is based on the 12 or so mini games that are available out of the box.

First, we enjoyed the game. We found it interactive (with each other), challenging, and fun. Some of the activities require quite a lot of steps and coordination so I enjoyed that even as an adult, I was challenged. I think some of the activities would be too difficult for children and others would be just fine. There is a handicap setting that I suppose you could adjust for children. Our favorite events are swimming and the trampoline.

The graphics are better than any other Wii game we currently own or have seen. However, this comes at a price. The time to reload between rounds or between circuits is 5-10 seconds long. The graphics are not competitive with other systems that specialize more in graphics, but they're great in comparison to other Wii games. Characters have full bodies and move fluidly than in previous games. Backgrounds are detailed and complex. Attention has been paid to detail such as reflections, shadows, sparks under feet to indicate speed, skids, etc. We haven't noticed any problem with pixelization or fuzziness.

The sound is clear. A human voice welcomes the player to the Olympics. Each player makes its own character-specific sounds and utterances in response to success, failure and exertion. The accompanying music is clear and appropriate for the Olympic theme.

We also noticed that Nintendo did a better job of programming when it comes to panning and keeping up with the avatar movement. With Wii Sports and Wii play, we noticed that sometimes, especially in a game like tennis, the ball would go off the side of the screen and the "pan" feature wouldn't catch up in time to actually return the ball so the play would be dead before the camera ever moved over to where the ball was. That was markedly improved in the sports in this game, leading to much less frustration!

This game experienced is enhanced if you have the nun-chucks. All of the games have an option to play without a nun-chuck so they are not "required" but some of the movements such as swimming and fencing have more options with the nun-chuck (ie different swimming strokes, etc). We found ourselves always opting to use the nun-chucks because of the expanded capacity.

This game truly does use the Wii as it was designed to be used. None of the games are played by using the Wiimote as a traditional controller (unless you don't have a nun-chucks). The Wiimotes are used to run, jump, throw, lunge, swing, swim (6 different strokes, each performed by using the Wiimotes a different way), twist and clap, depending on the event. Moves are executed through a precise sequence of Wiimote manipulation. For example, dog paddling in swimming is performed by holding the wiimote in one hand and the nunchuck in the other and shaking them alternately, up and down horizontally. On the trampoline, you shake the Wiimote up to jump, and then press A, B and/or twist the Wiimote to perform different twists and flips. The precise sequence for each game varies in both actual execution and complexity.

One significant oversight on the part of Nintendo is the failure to include an option to set a player as left handed. My husband is left-handed and in the games where the movement was conducted with both the Wiimote and the nun-chuck simultaneously in a specific sequence, he found himself handicapped because he was not able to use his dominant hand for the dominant movement. He still enjoyed and was able to play the game, but did find that aspect frustrating and disappointing.

This is a great game for multiple players. A lot of the mini games are played in "Party Mode" with all of the players playing simultaneously. I especially liked that in some of the games, Nintendo did not split the screen and all players play on the full screen simultaneously. Other activities have more down time as you wait for each person to play the round individually but the down time was really only too long in one circuit that had two championship structured games. The other games in other circuits were short enough that no one was bored for too long watching the others play.

One significant improvement is the ability to skip through the extra animations, replays, computer movements, etc. One thing I've always hated about Mario Party 8 is the amount of down time as you listen to the narrator, watch the AIs move, etc. This game allows you to skip through all narration and replays, and there is no watching of the AIs at all so there is a lot less down time overall.

Some of the instructions before each mini game we found to be either confusing, incomplete, or both but in most of the games we found we picked it up easily enough. One thing we noticed was the absence of a "practice" feature that some other Wii/Mario games have. We would have appreciated that but again, we were able to pick up the games easily enough, without. One thing that is NOT clearly explained is that in the swimming relay, you swim for all 4 teammates, even though your Avatar is only one of them and the others are characters that are played by AI through the entire rest of the game.

Overall, I think we will enjoy the game. The minor annoyances are offset by the general enjoyment this game evoked and the quality of the activities and challenges. It thus far is a game that appears to have a lot of game play. One game of playing through all 4 circuits on Beginner took us about an hour and a half and we didn't unlock anything so we will need to try again. So I am confident that there are many hours of play in this game before the game is beat or all levels are exhausted. If the game had a provision for left handers, I'd give this a 4.5 or 5 stars, but overall, we're happy with our purchase, even at the 4 star rating.
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115 of 123 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Addicting, November 10, 2007
By 
Thomas (Starkville, MS, United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games (Video Game)
A few comments:

1) It is fun to compete against your friends/family.
2) It is fun trying to break your own records in single player.
3) I have 2 sons 7, 4 1/2. Both like the game. The 7 yr old has more success across a wider variety of events. The 4 yr old has found events he can be successful at.
4) You can play as your Mii. That is fun.
5) Graphis - okay. I have 50" DLP TV. Mostly good, some jaggies, though you don't notice this during the events because you are too busy.
6) Its you against the world on the online leader boards. You can scroll though every score uploaded, see the top 30, or see the few around your score (and see your exact rank in the world). You can not limit the leader boards to you and a few friends who also have Wii.
7) When you start the game you type in your name. All records uploaded to the online leader board take this name, even if the record was set by your friend while playing a multiplayer match. Thats kind of annoying since we have 4 people playing all together, but all are leader board entries say my oldest son's name, even though they aren't all his records. They do get the correct Mii picture beside them if you set the record with your Mii (as opposed to a Mario/Sonic character).
8) Sonic can't swim? He wears a life jacket when in the pool and runs along on the bottom of the pool. That's odd.

Overall: I really like the game. My kids like the game. My wife is even playing (first time since Wii Sports).
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63 of 68 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars VG cultures collide in Wii sports on steroids, November 14, 2007
By 
P. Webb "Trajedi" (Bozeman, MT United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
= Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games (Video Game)
Anyone who fondly remembers the EPXY Winter Games Summer games series and grew up in an era of these two videogame mascots has to at least want to give this a rental for nostalgias sake alone , the thing is this is one of those rentals that is hard to let go of. Once the controls become second nature(and the aches in your shoulders and arms go away) it becomes clear that this title has some of the strongest legs in the replay department that the Wii is currently offering. The usage of Miis is remarkable(unlike say NBA 08) they look good and can be used in Circuit and Single Event Mode- for record setting and unlocking goodies. This being basically a multi mini game experience hard wired into the Summer Olympics the events represented are done so in exceedingly fun and accurate representations (Archery and Table Tennis are reasons enough to own this title) When the game does veer from the more realistic events you are offered things like DREAM RACE a Mario Kart style footrace that is loads of fun particularly in multiplayer mode. The Wii controls are excellent once you read either the manual or the in game control tutorials and after a day or two of practice should become second nature, some remain tricky once learned however and increase in difficulty as you proceed through the circuits. The gallery offers five minigames with five levels of difficulty with OLYMPIC trivia scattered throughout.
I haven't even mentioned the character specific missions which require specific tasks during events. The controls require real muscle behind them and kids will need some patient adults and the right characters on their side to succeed and enjoy this title to its fullest. After spending five days with this game I am really impressed by my desire to keep coming back and besting my records and unlocking everything.
The only real negatives might be that a ranking system is the only online feature and the slightly non kid friendly controls- also the fact that you NEED the rubberized Wiimote covers currently included with the console just to a get a proper grip on the controller for alot of the events. If you have a plethora of Miis in your Wii to experiment with as well as a love for the Mario and Sonic worlds you are in for a very fun, VERY PHYSICAL Wii Sports style workout that rewards the gamer around every turn.
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67 of 77 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fun, But..., November 20, 2007
By 
= Fun:3.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games (Video Game)
I had high hopes for this game. When I learned it was coming out, I couldn't wait, and I bought it the day it was released. I'm a HUGE Sonic and Mario fan (and I LOVED Wii Sports) so naturally I had to have it.

Let me start off by saying the game is fun. The graphics are great, and the option of playing as so many different characters and so many different events is enjoyable. And I actually LIKE having to move around with the Wii Remote.

The problem is, some of the controls are hard to use, which makes the game frustrating. For example, it's next to IMPOSSIBLE to win the swimming and track. I've had the game since it came out and I've yet to win those. The Skeet is also difficult, and the trampoline is just plain frustrating.

If you're having a party or want a way to pass a rainy day, RENT this game. Then if you like it, buy it.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Rented it first - we bought it after, December 2, 2007
By 
rhodeymark (Newport, RI United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
= Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games (Video Game)
Having bought the Wii almost exclusively for multiplayer fun, we are looking for titles that provide good head-to-head entertainment for the money. We rented this title with "Game Party" (1.5 stars) and after two days had almost all events unlocked and were convinced to buy. The sheer variety alone makes this a title a) worth the money, and b) good for replay. The graphics are nice and the music is pleasant enough, and the physics are fairly accurate and challenging. The table tennis alone was such an upgrade over Wii Play that we were captivated, and the characters are so much fun that we stopped importing our Miis (although you do need to be aware of the strengths and skills ratings for the characters).
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun update of NES Track & Field, November 27, 2007
= Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games (Video Game)
Some people apparently find it difficult to use the controls. I did not have this trouble, although a few of the events had a minor learning curve (3-5 tries to get decent at them), but nothing frustrating. Even my 3 year old was able to play many of the minigames (in fact, he was better than me at the triple jump haha).

Several reviewers said their arms hurt from playing this (because running requires you to move the nunchuck and wiimote back and forth). This was true for me at first, but then after messing around a bit I realized that you don't have to forcefully move them to run fast. You can use small, quick, gentler motions to get to a good speed. My 3 year old doesn't get to full speed, but he consistently gets the blue signal that he's running fast...and he does not even hold them right. Don't get me wrong; you definitely get a very minor workout and will probably sweat a little :)

Several of those lower rated reviews also compare this to Mario Party, which is a bad comparison in my opinion. This game certainly is not trying to be Mario Party. This game is more like an updated NES track and field with Wii Controls.

The only negative I have is the misleading Wi-Fi tag. You cannot actually play others online, which is what I assumed. You can upload your records and see how your records rank against the world which is nice, but online play would have been fun.

I enjoy the "Circuit" mode which makes you compete in 4 events against the computer. Winning these adds trophies to your collection, opens more circuits, and opens more Olympic events.

I also enjoy the Mission mode where you have to take finish meet certain goals for 6 different events. I have not completed one with all 6 yet as I still have to open up a couple of minigames. It'll be fun trying to complete the goals for every character.

One of the low reviews also mentioned that there was no replay value. This is hard to comprehend since I have found a ton of replay value. Trying to master the events, set world records, rank higher than online records, completing circuits to open up new events/circuits, and mission mode are extremely fun and you are replaying events over and over. Not to mention getting family or friends to play with you so that you can compete against each other.

My favorite events so far are: Trampoline, Skeet Shooting, Javaline, Hammer Throw, and rowing (scully or something). I like the running events, especially the 400 meters where you have to focus on the character's stamina to keep him from slowing down due to being tired. Archery is fun. I have the most difficulty with table tennis, long jump, and triple jump (the jumping events my 3 year old can beat me at heh).

Overall, I really enjoy this game. Online play would have put this over the top for a 5 star rating, but there is a lot to do without online play. I too am a Mario Party fan (I give Mario Party 8 four stars also). Don't expect this to be Mario Party, but a sporting event at the Olympics and enjoy!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars By far my favorite Wii game, December 30, 2007
By 
Julie (San Francisco, CA) - See all my reviews
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games (Video Game)
My husband and I just got this as a holiday present and we can't stop playing it. Some of the moves take some time to become comfortable with, but it is utterly addicting and thoroughly exhausting. We mostly play this game and Wii Sports, although we also play others. The beauty of this game in my opinion is how many different sports you can compete in - you can unlock several beyond those initially available. I highly recommend this game to anyone who enjoys moving around!
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lots of Events Makes For a Fun Game, November 7, 2007
By 
= Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games (Video Game)
I got this game today, and while I didnt have time to go through everything this game has to offer, I did see enough to write a more positive review than the other review given so far.

This game offers about 20 different events and each of them gives great on screen instructions for how to use the Wii controller to compete at the different events. There is individual and group play. I would guess that group play could get very entertaining and competitive. In addition to that some of the events will def. get your heart rate going(All the races come to mind). Which is unique to the Wii console.

I played many of the events but the ones that I think help compare this game to something else are Ping-Pong and Shooting since both come on Wii Play. These two games are both fun and very superior to the Play versions. Ping Pong allows you to hit forehands and backhands and also hit chips and smashes which will probably take awhile to master but makes the game much more complex. Shooting is not as playful as the Play version(it is suppose to be a Olympic event) but it is clay pigeon shooting at a very challenging level.

While this may not be considered a great game by serious gamers it most def. will appeal to all kids under at least 14 years old. And the use of 16 characters with make each of these events more enjoyable. I would imagine if you like Mario Tennis, Golf and Stikers you will likely find this game is for you.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For once, believe the hype, this game is aweseom, November 15, 2007
By 
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games (Video Game)
For once, a super hyped game actually turned out to be super fun. Seriously worth every penny. From the realistic archery, ping pong, to the soar arm races and jumps, it's just non-stop fun. This is not just made for 3yr kids, I'm over 30 and still find this to be very fun.

Wii has a bunch of titles with mini-games, like mario party, playground, those were really let downs. The mini games just felt too short, too simple, or too bland.

Mario & Sonic Olympic is the perfect mix. The mini games are reasonable length ( approx 1 - 2 minute each), tons of different characters with truely different skills, not just the graphics, even the Miis are used perfectly here. With the amount of different events, unlockables, it'll keep you busy until the christmas gatherings when the big party begans and everyone can huddle around and start your own family Olympics!!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Awesome party game!, December 8, 2007
By 
Shyam Sundar (Seattle, WA USA) - See all my reviews
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games (Video Game)
I just got this game yesterday because I thought it would be a fun party game. My friends absolutely loved it. It even got 50 year olds going. I think it's a great party game. I guess, if you want to play single player, this game falls short a little bit. But you got the Wii at the first place, for multiplayer fun.
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Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games
Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games by Sega Of America, Inc. (Nintendo Wii)
$49.95 $39.54
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