Slog News & Arts

Line Out

Music & Nightlife

« And the Betty Bowen Winner Is.... | “Thanks to their flexible lend... »

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

bit Generations = Art Style

posted by on September 30 at 15:54 PM

I’ve gone Microsoft-heavy with my gaming lately, and for good reason: the Wii’s release calendar for the foreseeable future is a motion-controlled mess. Other than this fall’s Mushroom Men—a decent-looking Mario clone, but still not that original—it’s looking like another year of cheaply made family games that mimic the best of Wii 2006.

The exception, I suppose, is the online Wii Ware store, where the past few weeks have seen fanboy fare like a new Mega Man and some Homestar Runner point-and-click adventures. Fine on both of those—and their respective fanbases have been served solid, authentic fare at a nice price, based on my playtime—but it’s hard to get excited about yet another Trogdor joke.


Then yesterday, the Art Style series landed with no advance notice or hype. Not sure why they were so silent; I would’ve piled on the hype. Nintendo called it bit Generations in Japan, and I fucking loved it. It’s as if Nintendo hired some garage developers to make stylish, thoughtful games that could hold their own without having Mario awkwardly slapped on the box—incredibly refined Flash games that even Mom could dig.

From the sound of Nintendo’s press blast, they’re releasing three of the seven bG titles on Wii Ware by the end of October. No word on the final two yet, but first up yesterday was Orbient, in which you use only two buttons—attract and repel—to pilot a little star around a bunch of other stars, each with their own orbit. The push-pull system becomes imprecise as the game chugs along, but with zillions of easy retry chances and a relaxing, spacey presentation, there’s charm in floating around in this one—like a cosmic version of the PS3’s flOw. And at $6, it’s a steal compared to the older—and simpler—import version. The loving care given to this Wii update bodes well for the rest of these bG-into-AS titles; fingers are crossed for a 2-player version of the bizarre Digidrive.

Up next either this week or early next: Rock Band 2. The game and the updated “instruments” showed up earlier today, and I’ll wear ‘em out to learn whether or not pretending to be in a band has gotten any better this year.

RSS icon Comments


What in the world does the phrase "motion-controlled mess" mean? Is this a good thing? Is it a bad thing? Putting the phrase into the google, this blog post is the only search result.

Please, when you make up your own phrases, could you include some sort of context so people can figure out what you are trying to say?

Posted by brappy | September 30, 2008 4:19 PM

Thank you SOOO much for doing some technology/gaming posting on Slog. I love these posts, and they are very helpful.

Posted by Simac | September 30, 2008 4:31 PM

I assume you're not reviewing the Wii version of Rock Band 2, are you? Because what I really want to know is if they have figured out some way to give us DLC, or if I'm going to have to ask for an Xbox 360 for Christmas.

Posted by litlnemo | September 30, 2008 5:02 PM

@3: I have the Xbox 360 version, but you're in luck. The Wii version will support downloadable songs and online play, according to EA. Source:

I can't confirm if Wii's DLC will be gimped or not; I assume it'll be comparable, at least, and I certainly wouldn't throw down $300+ if you only want an Xbox for that game... RB2 is already pricey enough.

Posted by Sam M. | September 30, 2008 5:18 PM

I'm not going to believe DLC for the Wii until I actually see it. Thanks, though -- that's newer info than I had seen already.

RB1 on the Wii is fun, but I'm getting sick of the songs. The track pack isn't much fun since I have to play it as a separate game, and can't include the songs in the main game. So DLC is what is going to make RB2 a must-purchase for me.

Posted by litlnemo | September 30, 2008 7:05 PM

You really should take a peek at what's going on with the PS3 from time to time. Wipeout HD is a blast, and the sublime Little Big Planet beta is in full swing.

Posted by DM | September 30, 2008 7:29 PM

@6: I played WipeOut HD at PAX for a while, and I was wholly unimpressed. It was pretty enough, sure, but my few minutes with the game felt identical to the WipeOut I loved in 1997. Wuz the point? LBP, meanwhile, I may talk about soon, though probably not as sweetly as you'd apparently hope.

Posted by Sam M. | October 1, 2008 12:28 AM

Comments Closed

Comments are closed on this post.