Wii 2009 Awards
Quick note: Only games that I’ve played / am excited to play soon will be eligible to win awards.
Best Platform Game – New Super Mario Bros. Wii
NSMB is a good Mario game. It does what you expect in that it takes an established formula and adds new elements to it including local multiplayer and a little motion. Some of the motion is implemented well, like the tilting platforms. Some is annoying to use, like the helicopter hat jump. Overall the game is fun, it just didn’t blow me away, plus I found it to be too picky and frustratingly difficult, which isn’t new to the Mario series or this genre of course, but it hurt my enjoyment as I just wanted to blast through the levels just having fun.
Best Racing Game – F1 2009
There hasn’t been a new F1 game for several years, and as someone who has become a huge fan in recent times, it was a bit disheartening. F1 2009 isn’t HD, it doesn’t have online and the default controls are the ever-awful motion steering. It even comes with a cheesy Wii Wheel plastic housing for the remote. However, as long as you play this with the classic controller, and you enjoy driving fast cars, you will almost be guaranteed to love this game. You get an intense sense of speed and great driving mechanics which on default settings feel satisfyingly easy to get to grips with, while also giving you enough of a challenge where you really feel as if you’re on the edge a lot of the time. Turn the driving aids off and you get a much more hardcore racing sim for the more hardcore player who’s waiting for the HD version to come out next year, or hardcore Wii owners. Aside from F1 2009, Excitebots (if it had come out here) would have been right up there with it fighting for best racing game, but as we know, it wasn’t released here, which is a real shame.
Best Shooter – Modern Warfare Reflex Edition
While Dead Space Extraction is generally a better game, I don’t really enjoy light gun games so I didn’t play that game. Modern Warfare Reflex therefore wins best shooter by default, in a similar way to how NSMBW won best platform game, without any competition. MW was a pretty good port of a two year old game and to its credit, did have very good online for a Wii game. Especially when compared to The Conduit, which was a big let down in the online play. It practically never worked. It then got shown how to do it by a two year old port. I just find that to be particularly sad. Not only this, but this year I also learned that I don’t like playing FPS games with the Wii remote IR pointer because Dual Analogue is just so much more comfortable and precise. My brother summed it up when he said that he would have come back to the game a lot if it had included classic controller support.
Best Sports Game – Tiger Woods PGA Tour 10
Sports games is a genre the Wii is able to excel at, and it’s where I had the most fun with the system this year. Tiger Woods 10 uses motion-plus in a way which shows off what the peripheral is capable of. It works great and is really enjoyable to play, and very satisfying. Grand Slam Tennis I also enjoyed a lot. Despite the fact that the motion-plus wasn’t utilised as well as it could have been (it doesn’t track the location of the remote constantly, like in Wii Sports Resort Table Tennis for example). Regardless, the game was very enjoyable and shows a lot of potential for next year’s game. Wii Sports Resort is fun, but doesn’t in my opinion falls short of producing the magic that the original Wii Sports had. There are some fun additions though. My personal favourites are basketball 3 on 3 and table tennis. Archery is impressive as a tech demo for motion-plus but isn’t something I would go back to.
Also notable: Wii Sports Resort, Grand Slam Tennis
Best Visual Quality – Grand Slam Tennis
This may seem like a weird choice, but when you talk about Wii graphical quality, not a lot springs to mind in the last 12 months, at least of games that I’ve played. Grand Slam Tennis though has a very cool, cartoony art style which is very aesthetically pleasing.
Best Use of Sound – Modern Warfare Reflex Edition
Seeing as this is a port of the epic 2007 game CoD4 Modern Warfare, this version also brings the franchise’s staple chaotic but fantastic sound to Wii. Turning the sound up really heightens the excitement and the atmosphere.
Best Multiplayer – Boom Blox Bash Party
The original Boom Blox was one of the first console games that my Mum really got into, and we had a lot of fun playing it as a Family. While MW Reflex has great online for a Wii game and NSMBW offers the never before seen up to four player mario experience, Boom Blox has to take this award for how well it suits the Wii platform, and how it can appeal to almost anyone. There were other good multiplayer games too, but none match up in my opinion. Boom Blox can go down in Wii history as a casual game done right.
Also notable: Modern Warfare Reflex Edition, New Super Mario Bros. Wii, F1 2009, Wii Sports Resort, Grand Slam Tennis
Best WiiWare Game – Swords and Soldiers
Swords and Soldiers is a very unique, stylish, side scrolling RTS game which has been really well received critically.
Wii Game of the Year – Tiger Woods PGA Tour 10
Sports games don’t often win awards outside of their own categories, if ever, but I’m going to buck that trend, even if 3DG isn’t exactly a huge site to say the least. Regardless, Tiger Woods 10 is a complete package, well designed and is a great example of how motion-plus can make Wii’s motion control useful for games other than Excite Truck / Excitebots.
Also notable: New Super Mario Bros. Wii
Up next: PC