Trauma Center: Under the Knife review

  • Best use of stylus controls, ever
  • Tensely-paced surgeries
  • Wacky hospital staff
  • Text logs between and during surgeries
  • Difficult procedures=lots of do-overs
  • No multiplayer

Utilizing the unique DS control scheme to its fullest, Trauma Center: Under the Knife offers gamers the chance to turn their stylus into a scalpel and play doctor in one of the DS’s best kept secrets.

Trauma Center puts you in the long white coat of Dr. Derek Stiles, a young surgeon performing complicated procedures amidst a dramatic backdrop of medical terrorism, miraculous healing powers and loopy, soap opera-like characters - seriously, there’s even a euthanizing, dude-speaking doc.

Despite offering as much character-driven drama than a whole season of Grey’s Anatomy, most of the game - and fun - takes place in the operating room. The DS’s bottom screen serves as the operating table where you'll perform the surgeries, while the top screen plays host to your assistant who'll offer helpful hints and occasional snippy insults. With ten stylus-controlled items and instruments at your disposal, you’ll carve out tumors, laser blast parasites and stitch wounds, all without ever touching a face or shoulder button.

Whether you're removing bloody shards of glass with forceps, slathering antibiotic gel on an oozing wound or massaging a patient’s heart back to life with your bare hands, the stylus adds a tangible layer of immersion that could never be achieved with traditional controls. We never imagined draining goo from a tumor could be so much fun, but Trauma Center pulls it off, providing an experience that successfully takes advantage of the DS's touch controls like no other title.

More Info

Release date: Oct 04 2005 - DS (US)
Apr 28 2006 - DS (UK)
Available Platforms: DS, Wii
Published by: Atlus, Nintendo
Developed by: Atlus, Nintendo
ESRB Rating:
Teen: Blood, Language, Mild Violence, Partial Nudity

1 comment

  • GameManiac - November 6, 2009 5:05 a.m.

    Wow... First comment after FOUR years... Anyway, I'll probably get this game soon. I wonder how it plays...

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