Do you remember Elebits for the Wii? Well, it was never the most popular game around, but it was always at Gamestop. I would pass by it just about every week. Finally, the decision was made to purchase the elusive game. After that…it sat around in the backlog for 2 or more years. Now, I finally went back and finished it. Was this game extremely awesome? Well…let’s just say that this was not the case!
The plot revolves around a boy named Kai. He dislikes the Elebits and he just wants his parents to acknowledge his skills. The Elebits are really a way of life at this point and they power just about everything with their electrical abilities. One day, Kai’s parents leave and the Elebits all begin to go crazy as they cause a blackout to affect the entire planet. (or city) Kai quickly grabs his Dad’s legendary Capture Gun and sets out to recapture all of them. Still…what could have made them go berserk!?
Kai is the main character and he’s definitely not the next Mario. He has no good reason to dislike the Elebits. Naturally, he provides us with a reason, but it’s not something that I can sympathize with. He may have been alone a lot, but it’s not really the Elebits fault. If not for them, his parents wouldn’t have their current hobby. Kai gets his much needed character development by the end of the game, but I still couldn’t say that he was a likable character. He has a lot of room for improvement and the sequel could help with that.
The gameplay is really what didn’t click with me. As you may be aware, gameplay is the single most important attribute for a video game. You can have terrible looking character models and background while still being a great fighting game. That being said, you can have amazing graphics and die out from the gameplay. This game’s gameplay may not be the worst that I’ve seen, but it’s just not my style. Remember I Spy?
This game is essentially like that. You have to locate the Elebits scattered across the park and blast them with your capture gun. This is the kind of game that many would say was meant to be for the Wii. The truth is..this game would have been better on the PS3 or Gamecube. We are pretty well aware of how the motion controls can make things difficult right? Well, this game purely relies on pointing and turning so that was definitely a little more difficult than necessary.
The thing is…there’s really not much to the game. You spend 29 levels just shooting at the Elebits with the occasional boss battle thrown in. The bosses were actually pretty fun to fight against so I wish that there had been more of them. The game did show a lot of improvement in the second half as well. Once we finally got to leave the house, it was just more fun to take on the Elebits. The areas became pretty diverse as you fight in the streets and outside the park. I wish that the whole game could have been like that. The first 7+ levels you are stuck inside of the house and the levels really aren’t that interesting.
One of the bigger issues with the gameplay is how long each of the levels are. I’m all for long levels, but you need to have some kind of checkpoint system in place. The levels in this game go up to 25 minutes and you can imagine how annoying it is to replay a 25 minute level. It would be like having to start all the way from scratch in Shattered Dimensions whenever you lost a life. One could argue that it’s a good challenge and you just need to learn how to play. One could try to debate this…but I don’t agree. This is just tedious and it certainly doesn’t help the game. I lost my fair share of levels in this game and I was never thrilled about starting over.
The game does give you a lot of content. You can edit each stage, make whole new stages, and even explore the story levels on your own with no time limit. These options definitely make the game a little more appealing in terms of replay value. If the levels had not had a time limit from the start, I’m sure that I would have enjoyed them a little more.
The graphics for the game are decent. The actual cutscenes look pretty terrible since it’s like you’re reading from a book. It’s just a bunch of pictures/stills that keep on going. I can’t say I was impressed on that front. The narration is also really bad. This must be the worst voice acting that I’ve ever heard for a video game. Trust me…it’s not something that you’ll miss! The actual gameplay is pretty good though. You can clearly see an Elebit even if they are on a completely different stage. Moreover, you can even blast the Elebit, which is pretty good on the gameplay side. Usually, it just won’t work because the game can’t read such a long distance action. This isn’t the next New Super Mario Bros, but it looks good enough to satisfy me.
The soundtrack is less impressive. There are at least 29 different tunes in the game, but they’re all pretty forgettable. They’re supposed to be soothing to help with the gameplay I suppose, but I would have liked some fast electronic music. Maybe even a few guitar strums for that epicness factor. We didn’t really get any of that and I would say that the soundtrack is definitely in the sub par category. The insert song during the credits was pretty good, but that wasn’t enough to save this soundtrack.
This is a game that you likely won’t enjoy at first. You really need to let the game grow on you and by level 15 or so, you may actually enjoy it. I can safely say that I was heavily leaning towards a 4 when I first started the game. After picking the game up a few years later to replay it, I still kept the 4 in heavy consideration. I was only able to get through two levels on my first shot before I had to call it a day. Slowly, I began to play more levels per shot. I took on another 6 after that and then I marathoned most of the levels that were left. It’s still not a game that I really care for, but I can see the appeal of it. Trading levels online and trying to beat the custom ones would probably make things a little more interesting.
Overall, This game really isn’t my type. I’m not a huge fan of the controls and the gameplay isn’t very exciting. The stages are really important in this type of game and the opening levels definitely don’t succeed. I prefer to just rush into an arena and throw everything out of my way to find the Elebits. Unfortunately, this way won’t really allow you to win very often so I had to take a more cautious approach. That’s likely a factor in how the game got to be more enjoyable. Still, it goes against my gaming ways! You should enjoy this if you want a challenge for your observational abilities. Personally, I’d rather play a nice game of Bakugan!