It helps, of course, that We Ski is a game of considerable charm. As in SSX 3, individual ski courses are jettisoned for one free-roaming mountain, the Happy Ski resort. It’s not the most graphically complex of, um, complexes, but clean edges, zero loading times (bar mission start ups) and delightfully powdery snow make for a real easy-going visual treat. A happy style matched by the visitors trotting around the peak - built from the game’s customisable chibi avatar system.
You’d be wise to rip the head off these bodies and plonk on a Mii noggin, for that personal touch. With yourself/Satan/Borat2 on the slope you can free-ski or chat to skiers for tasks. Slalom, stunt requests, item recovery, races against a mysterious rival clad in red; little that hasn’t been seen before (bar the rival clad in red), but perfectly pitched for the balance board learning process. Even better, up to three others can join in this free-roaming adventure, going about their own journey until someone starts a mission and everyone is warped to the same point for a spot of competition.
Those with an ear to the multi-console ground will know a similar drop in, drop out game was a much lauded part of the recent Burnout Paradise. Here, it’s simpler, but no less a brilliant idea. The real appeal however? Skimming the mountain from tip to bottom - even more spectacular when you play god and turn day to night. Forest weaving, carving snow into tourists faces; that expert board command is needed to do so elevates minor moments into grand hurdles to be leapt. If you felt Wii Sports was mastered too easily, then We Ski should provide a tad more challenge - should you stick with it.
Remote wobble may have more creative possibilities than the balance board, but We Ski is perfect proof of the immersion Nintendo’s wallet straining piece of kit can offer. So, balance board on trial? We Ski acquits the blubbery priced blubber-buster with style.
May 13, 2008