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Trauma Center: Second Opinion review

It's just like medical insurance - you've got to have it

Speaking of that first version, do players of the DS original actually need a Second Opinion? Besides the enhanced gear and a few tweaked missions and procedures, you're looking at updated graphics, redrawn character portraits and (mercifully) three levels of difficulty, which you can swap between at the start of any operation.

But the biggest addition to the Wii version has to be a second playable character: Nozomi Weaver, a buxom, gray-haired-yet-29-year-old Japanese babe with the Healing Touch and a dark secret. She has only a handful of missions, unlocked one at a time as you progress through the main story, but they're creative highlights - performing surgery by penlight or twisting the Wii wand to puzzle-piece the broken fragments of a shattered arm back together. Nozomi's story also fills in some of the details behind the origin and spread of GUILT.

What's GUILT, you ask? The answer to that perfectly reasonable question brings us to the game's final strength: an intriguing, charismaticallyfar-fetched story, told via still character portraits, subtitles, and almost zero cheesy voice acting. Things start off normal, but by the end of the second episode, when you treat a young girl whose lungs are being shredded from the inside out, it dives headfirst into Lake Bizzaro.

GUILT, it turns out, is a mysterious virus that can take on any number of forms, each more deadly and puzzle-like than the last. You might find yourself laser blasting living, tumor-causing yin-yang symbols, pumping color-coded serums intoviral crittersliterally doing the backstroke through a lung, or racing to dismantle organic armor plates before they multiply and suffocate a host's organs.

More Info

GenreFamily
DescriptionInteresting characters, tense action, one-of-a-kind mission objectives, and creative use of the Wii controller make this surgery simulation one of the most uniquely playable games on any system.
Franchise nameTrauma Center
UK franchise nameTrauma Center
PlatformWii
US censor ratingTeen
Release date14 November 2006 (US), (UK)
I was the founding Executive Editor/Editor in Chief here at GR, charged with making sure we published great stories every day without burning down the building or getting sued. Which isn't nearly as easy as you might imagine. I don't work for GR any longer, but I still come here - why wouldn't I? It's awesome. I'm a fairly average person who has nursed an above average love of video games since I first played Pong just over 30 years ago. I entered the games journalism world as a freelancer and have since been on staff at the magazines Next Generation and PSM before coming over to GamesRadar. Outside of gaming, I also love music (especially classic metal and hard rock), my lovely wife, my pet pig Bacon, Japanese monster movies, and my dented, now dearly departed '89 Ranger pickup truck. I pray sincerely. I cheer for the Bears, Bulls, and White Sox. And behind Tyler Nagata, I am probably the GR staffer least likely to get arrested... again.