When Nintendo came up with the WarioWare franchise, little did they know its popularity would rival that of other Nintendo franchises such as Zelda and Pokemon. WarioWare is so much fun because it's so frenetic, taking you outside of your comfort zone, which is exactly what the Wii version does, only to an even higher degree. This is the game that is going to make you look incredibly stupid, but you will have one of the best gaming experiences ever while doing so.
Smooth Moves really is the first time that the series has tried to put a proper storyline into the game and it revolves entirely around the Wiimote controller. Basically Wario went on a trip to an ancient civilization and discovered what this game calls the "Form Baton" - a magical item that can be used to move things. It's kind of interesting that Nintendo went the way of a storyline and tried to even give the Wiimote development some weird fantasy history, and it actually works really well in WarioWare. It doesn't keep you interested in the game, but it's a nice side thing that works well on the Wii version.
Basically for those of you who are new to the Wario franchise, the series puts together a huge amount of micro games for you to play. The difference between this Wii version and other versions is that the games come randomly one after the other and last a maximum of five seconds each. The Wiimote has really allowed the developers to try some new crazy stuff, and in an age where game originality is a rare commodity, it is entirely refreshing.
The Wiimote is used in many ways while playing this game, such as swatting, driving like a car, moving from side to side and perhaps our favorite and a game that will have you in hysterics is "hoola hoop". One of the boss characters in the game tasks you with doing the hoola hoop. So you stand up, hold the Wiimote on your side and hoola hoop. This game single handedly gave me a big boost of confidence in the Wii system.
It isn't all glory though, as there are a few things against the game as well, but they can be easily overlooked. First of all, there is only one game mode. In this mode you go from character to character beating their mini games and learning about their back story such as Mona who you discover was previously a cheerleader. On top of this, the game is short, extremely short in fact, but the replay value is extremely high because it's so fun. This is most definitely a game you will put out with some friends and just laugh so much at each other. Also, because this game is primarily single player, one Wiimote is enough because the game just tells you to pass the Wiimote control between players. It is possible to finish this game in about four hours, but you will be playing this for months to come when amongst friends.
The visuals of the game are really nicely done as well. Rather than go for a full three dimension realistic setting, the cartoon feel has been retained and because of this, it is easy to forget that the Wii does not compare at all to the power of the PS3 and Xbox 360. Nintendo has gone on and on about how the Wiimote will change the way you game and this really is the first game to show that in a big easy to see way. The cartoon feel of the game just works so well with its quirkiness and it just adds to the experience.
WarioWare: Smooth Moves is the first game you should buy when you buy a Wii, if you haven't already. This is the game that really shows what the Wii can do and it is a huge shame that Nintendo did not have this game ready for launch as even more units probably would have walked out the door. Even though the Wii is underpowered, it will not surprise us to see Smooth Moves being talked about when GOTY 2007 comes around. You simply must play this game, even if you don't have a Wii.