Pretty good Thanksgiving break, if you don’t count the car leaking antifreeze and heading into the shop. The highlight – six hours with Chris Chandler’s Nintendo Wii. I’m a recovering game geek (I don’t plan on replacing my G1 XBox for a few years, and only own six games), but Wii absolutely rekindled the feeling of discovery I felt when I first played Super Nintendo. Of course, it’s infinitely better than the SNES.
As you might know by now, the Wii has a controller interface that’s radically removed from anything a large-release system has tried before. You set up an extremely wide-ranging radar thingie, and grab a wireless remote that you move up, down, forward, back, etc. For example, the system comes with five sports games (Boxing, Bowling, Tennis, Baseball, and Golf) that utilize the controller in different ways. In Bowling, you hold down a button beneath the controller, swing the controller, and release, and the ball goes flying. In Boxing, you attach a “nunchuk” to the wireless controller so both of your hands are holding something, and then you beat the snot out of opponents by swinging the controller, ducking while holding them, moving to the side with them, etc. Add to this that you can customize your own character, and that the Wii can hold a seemingly infinite number of customized characters. We played Baseball with teams composed of polygon versions of our friends and I boxed Dave Weigel up to professional status.