There's been an awful lot of commotion surrounding Sonic's upcoming PS3 and Xbox 360 adventure game. It's attempting to bring the hedgehog back to his fast-paced roots, but after just one play-through of Wii's gorgeous, speedy Sonic Wild Fire, we're already bigger fans of its one-track, racing mind.
There's no adventure to be had here. Wild Fire plops Sonic on a branching, winding raceway that cuts around palm trees, collapsing pyramids and spike-filled traps. All you've got to do is use the Wii remote (held sideways in both hands) as a steering wheel of sorts to guide Sonic through the madness.
Sensitivity with the remote is tight, and for the most part it's easy to make Sonic do what you want. The only other controls you need to worry about are jumping, which is easy enough to remember, and shaking the controller while in the air to dash-attack enemies and destructible objects in the racing path.
If you manage to consistently dodge, weave and bounce through the track, a meter slowly builds up in the lower right-hand corner of the screen. When it's full, you can shake the wand forward to blast Sonic into a blue fireball that rockets through the track, hands-free (basically putting the game on autopilot for a few). The only trouble with this mechanic was that it's the same way you perform the midair dash attack - timing the shaking was tricky, and sometimes had us speeding ahead when we really just wanted to attack the robot in front of us.
Like many other Wii games on display at E3, Wild Fire was extremely straightforward. Other than tilting the wand left and right, there's not much else to do - but that's a concept anyone can get. And more importantly, the game actually flew at breakneck speeds - something so few Sonic games have been able to pull off.