70 of 76 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Carnival Games - Nintendo Wii (Video Game)
I had no intentions of buying this game, but after seeing so many glowing reviews I decided to give it a shot. I'm glad I did--Carnival Games is an incredibly fun collection of mini-games that are fun to play and remind you of a real carnival, though with much less potential damage to the wallet.
Carnival Games features over 20 carnival style games, most of which will probably be familiar to most people. There's an Alley Ball game (Skiball), dart throwing, a shooting gallery, frog launching, a dunk tank, and many, many others. There are also unlockable "super" versions of some of the games, variations which don't give prizes but instead record a high score. An example of this is the game where you knock over milk bottles--the super version has you knocking over enormous stacks of bottles. It's silly and an interesting twist on the original.
Each game you play rewards prizes in three sizes--small, medium, or large--and gives tickets which act as a sort of currency in the game and allow you to purchase unlockable items for your character (like a bike helmet or a guitar) and access other activities like the love machine and a fortune teller. In each game you can trade prizes up just like a real carnival--4 small prizes for a medium, 3 medium for a large, etc--in pursuit of a jumbo prize in each event. The prizes are nothing special at all, and they're really just a way of keeping track of how you've done in the events.
As I mentioned before, Carnival Games features a slew of unlockables for your character, which can be customized to your liking. Customization is pretty limited, however, at least until you unlock the silly accessories for him or her. What a shame the game does not allow you to use Miis--this seems like a major oversight to me and would have added quite a bit to the fun of decking out your character.
This is a great party game, but unfortunately the multiplayer options are somewhat lacking. The head to head and competition modes allow up to 4 people to play against each other, but few of the games actually allow for simultaneous play (the horse racing is one that does). This detracts from the fun of play since with four people you end up waiting for the other three to whack their frogs before you get another chance to whack yours. Again, it's an unfortunate shortfall to the game.
The game is still a lot of fun, however, and the simple fact is that the games are great regardless of the game's few shortcomings. It's great for all ages--even my preschooler was able to play many of the games well and enjoyed it quite a bit. One thing the Wii does not lack is collections of party games, but this one stands out as well worth checking into.