Hands-on with Wii

While Wii games such as Super Mario Galaxy and The Legend of Zelda attracted most of the interest of those attending this year's E3, it was a small collection of tech demos that best displayed the potential of the Wii controller.

We managed to get access to the VIP area of the Nintendo booth and spent some quality time with the Wii remote in hand. We've begun to learn how to manipulate the controller for the best results.

Available to play were three tech demos that are unlikely to be released as games but offered some interesting gameplay experiences all the same. First was the obstacle course demo, which had similarities to the GBA game Kuru Kuru Kururin, but instead of guiding a spinning stick through a level, here you guide a sleeping man. No, really.

The napping fellow always stayed flat, but twisting the remote caused him to spin around on an axis. The challenge was to guide him through the level collecting floating coins without letting him hit the walls; if you fail, he wakes up and starts flailing around, making him far harder to control. A potion could put him back to sleep, assuming you could find one.

Making the challenge even harder were a number of different hazards such as a sliced-up pizza, octopi that sprang from the walls and tiny planes that buzzed about the place.

The game was as difficult as it sounds, mainly as many of the gaps you had to guide the man through were barely bigger than he was. Consequently, only miniscule movements could be made with the remote - even breathing affected the control. It was a real test of concentration and control.