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Wario Ware Inc. Minigame Mania Game Boy Advance

Published by Nintendo
Developed by Nintendo
Released - Out Now
Price : £29.99

You can always rely on Nintendo to give us something unique. Having been virtually the sole masters of the handheld gaming scene for more years than I care to remember, Nintendo have created a game in Wario Ware Inc. that is perfectly suited to gaming on the move and in short bursts. It's a game that wouldn't work on any other platform because of it's limitations. As we shall see Wario Ware Inc. Minigame Mania is not a game for everyone.

The introduction shows us that Wario is bored and needs something to do. He's watching TV and sees that game sales are going through the roof and it's all because of the latest GBA game selling by the lorry load and decides, in his wisdom, to make his own game company and get a successful title out and to do this he'll enlist the help of a few friends. Wario's friends Jimmy, 9-Volt, Dribble, Mono and others are all here and have a pile of minigames for you to play.

As the title would suggest the game is all about minigames. In fact they are very small minigames. Each game only lasts around 5 seconds. The objectives for each game are not known and you have to work out what you need to do and do it within the small time frame given. You needn't worry though as you're only required to press the directional pad or the A button. Most of the time you only have to perform one action such as jumping out of the way or firing a gun. Occasionally you'll have more bizarre challenges such as having to tap the A button in order for a girl to suck the snot back up her nose (these kind of games make you laugh the first time you see them).

There are eleven stages to beat and each stage has a particular genre (I use the term in the loosest possible way). Each stage ranges from 10-25 games and at the end of this, if you manage to complete the games without losing all of your four lives, is a longer, more challenging boss game that will see you completing the stage if you're successful. In total there are over 200 minigames in Wario Ware Inc. The pick of the bunch for me has to be the games you play on the 9-Volt stage because they are taken from classic Nintendo games such as Zelda, Mario, Dr. Mario etc. and they all look excellent. As you complete the various stages you also unlock vs games that two players can play on one GBA.

Graphically Wario Ware Inc. is really difficult to assess. Never before has a game contained so many variations in graphical quality. The games range from excellent to prehistoric (in the electronic entertainment industry anyway) stick men. The beauty though is that this mix of styles works excellently and only adds to the appeal of the game. The cutscenes, with their cartoon quality, look fantastic for the GBA and shows what the console is capable of.

There aren't any problems for deaf gamers with Wario Ware Inc. The cutscenes are subtitled and the subtitles are very easy to read. The game itself has little need for text. Most games will provide a one word clue as to what to do and this is of course shown in text. Occasionally there is the odd bit of digitised speech (no more than the odd word) which isn't shown in text but it doesn't harm the gameplay in any way.

In many ways this is a superb GBA game however there is one big problem and that is the length of the game. It only takes a couple of hours to complete the game. If you decide to unlock every game that there is you're only going to be spending a further couple of hours playing the game so you looking at around 4 hours in all to complete everything. You can always go back and try and beat your best scores but how long is that going to remain an inviting prospect? If you are the kind of gamer who only gets five minutes here and there then Wario Ware Inc. is simply a superb choice. However if you're the kind of gamer who likes to relax and put 30 minutes to an hour into a game, then you're going to feel disappointed. The disappointment will be at the length of the game though and not the quality.

Overall Game Rating: 8.0/10
Providing you play in short bursts Wario Ware Inc. seems great. However with the game being finished in around 4 hours it isn't a game that is going to last long with extended play. It's a great title for young gamers though.

Deaf Gamers comment:
Wario Ware Inc. is excellent for deaf gamers.