Five reasons why Trauma Team deserves your attention

Trauma Team is absolutely packed with the kind of overwrought, emotional interactions we expect from a dramatic anime series, but even considering that sort of terrain, we were surprised by some of the bizarre antics and back stories attributed to the doctors in this game.

For example, consider your hero in the standard surgery campaign. Known only as CR-S01, the youthful doc is a convicted bioterrorist recruited by the FBI to shave time off his 250-year sentence by performing advanced surgical procedures. Oh, and he's an amnesiac (who wears a metal mask inside his refrigerated jail cell) that can't remember how he became such an amazing surgeon. Of course he is. And we can't forget orthopedic surgeon Dr. Freebird, who comically moonlights as a caped crusader but often ends up earning bad press in the process. It's weird, but they're certainly a lot more entertaining than those Grey's Anatomy dolts.

A liberal helping of blood and other gooey substances naturally comes with the territory, but Trauma Team isn't sanitized family fare. Granted, nothing in the game would make the creators or avid fans of MadWorld of House of the Dead: Overkill blush, but the anime-stylized narrative cut-scenes do include a peppering of expletives, some partial (non-surgical) female nudity, and risqué subjects including drug dealing and smuggling, as well as suicide, terrorism, and murder.

Again, with a "Teen" rating from the ESRB, it's nothing especially intense, but it is nice to see a Wii game tackle some mature subjects without pushing the rating to a place where only adults are allowed to purchase it.

Trauma Team's core surgical actions don't diverge significantly from those of previous iterations, but expanding the types of specialized procedures allows for even more ways to use the Wii Remote and Nunchuk to save virtual lives. Whether suturing with zig-zag movements of the Wii Remote or hamming pins into bones with a few strong downward motions, Trauma Team does a great job of mimicking a variety of unique actions without getting too complicated.

And like in Trauma Center: New Blood, many of the procedures can be tackled with a local co-op buddy, granting you a surgical assistant during your time of need. In co-op, each player chooses a handful of surgical tools (or picks a certain number of patients in the first responder missions), giving each doctor a few distinct actions to focus on, thus letting you work in concert to rescue patients. Or (let them) die trying.

Apr 23, 2010