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Wario Ware: Twisted! review

Excellent
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AT A GLANCE
  • The mad, addictive and fun minigames
  • Twisting your GBA
  • Brilliant bonuses
  • The torturous method for unlocking the bonuses
  • The simplistic graphics in the extreme...
  • ... but that's kind of the point

Like the Chocolate Strawberry Creams in a box ofQuality Street, Nintendo leaves you with a bitter aftertaste, but you can't help but keep coming back.

If we had any resolve whatsoever, we'd stubbornly and righteously boycott Wario Ware: Twisted! for Nintendo lazily bringing it to these shores 15 months - 15 months! - after Japan.

But, of course, it's such a brilliantly barmy barnstormer of a game that we're already in love with The Big N all over again. Grrr!

The opening screen warns you to twist the GBA to play, rather than your whole body. Is this a joke? We hope not, because it sets the scene perfectly for another bewilderingly mad microgame mash-up. This instalment is Twisted - literally, of course.

A spinny gyro sensor inside the cart senses when you tilt GBA (or SP, or DS) left or right, so the minigames are mostly about spinning things or moving them around. And like all Wario Wares, it only takes a few minutes of three-seconds-at-a-time insanity to laugh like a chimp on a seesaw, by which point, you're hooked.

Banish all those painful memories of Yoshi's Universal Gravitation - the spinny magic in Wario Ware: Twisted! works brilliantly well. There's a sort-of rumbling clicky physical feedback that accompanies every twist, so you can actually feel each degree of turnitude.

That takes the randomness out of trying to find the exact angle to pot a golf ball into a hole, or swing Wario away from a crocodile's mouth. And even the slightest twitch is detected - the minigame where you keep eggs intact by holding totally still is tough work.

The game sometimes asks a bit much, such as spinning a full 180-degrees to shake a man's hat off, but it's easy to forgive when you've got brilliant games like Circular Super Mario Bros (Super Mario Bros in a circle!) and The One Where You Wake the Cat Up.

These aren't just silly ideas with tilty-twisty play grafted on, either. Somehow, the hilarious bizarreness is always the perfect partner for the tilt techniques. Whether you're swinging GBA to stomp on little men, feeding cars through cheese graters and flipping ice blocks away with 'jazz hands', it's funny because it works.

And the extras? Genius. After every batch of games and its corresponding 'boss' game, you get something sweet and fun out of a ball machine. Could be a Space Boomerang. Could be a mini drum kit. Could even be a complete minigame like Excitebike ripoff Wariobike.

There are 142 in all, and while we wouldn't have minded a method of unlocking them faster than playing entire groups of micro-games over and over again, it makes Twisted a hell of a package.

So, is it better than Wario Ware: Touched!? Yep. Better than the original Wario Ware? Yeeeaaa... no. Brilliant? You bet.

And if you really want to follow the game's nutcase spirit, slot it into a Game Boy Player and play it by twisting your GameCube around. Waaaaah!

More Info

Available Platforms: GBA

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