When you think Nintendo the two characters that first pop to mind are Mario and Luigi. The two go hand in hand, but where does Wario fit in to this equation? Well that has been pretty unclear for quite sometime, but what I do know, is that he has made his way off the GBA and onto the Cube in Wario World, a new platformer that ends up having some issues that hold it back from platforming excellence.
With Mario Sunshine being released quite a while ago, it was time for Nintendo to throw out another Platformer for the Cube, so why not use Wario. In Wario World you are basically pulled into the normal Nintendo plot, where you are off to save someone or something. To put it quite simply Wario is all about his treasure, and one of his jewels, a black jewel is turning all of Wario’s gold into monsters. So you go on your journey to get rid of the Black Jewel. So all in all, the story is just pretty plain, and doesn’t do anything to help the game move along.
Wario World is quite simply a platformer, which is placed in a market that has had some of its best platforming games come in the past few years. With games such as Ratchet and Clank and Sly Cooper (both for the PS2), the bar has been raised for other platformers.
The basis behind Wario World is quite simple, walk around the levels, beating up enemies and collecting coins, with the occasional puzzles, you basically have the formula for a solid platformer. You will be doing a lot of running and jumping from platform to platform to usually end up getting you to a puzzle. These puzzles are never very hard, and usually will only take a few tries (at the most) to complete them.
One of the biggest differences Wario World has from most other platformers is the camera angle in which developers Treasure used to create Wario World. I am not exactly sure what the reasoning is behind this view, and as much as I don’t care for it, but it does work. The game is in 3D yet it does like as though it appears on the old 2D look. The one thing this camera view makes it hard to do is to judge alignment, as to where to jump to the next platform. I found in many occasions that I would miss platforms, mainly because of misjudgment. There are also a lot of times where objects would block your view of Wario and you will literally have to take guesses as to where to jump or even where to go. With that being said this camera isn’t all that bad, but I would have much rather seen Wario World in a few 3D environments.
Controlling Wario is quite simple (with the camera issue aside), and plays like all the other platoformers on the Cube. There will not be much of a learning curve with Wario World and for the most part the controls remind me a lot of Mario Sunshine and for those of you who have played Mario will feel pretty comfortable with Wario’s controls.
What ends up hurting Wario World in the end is not the camera, but it’s the lack of anything new or exciting. Everything in Wario World is pretty standard and fails to make you excited. It would have been nice to be able to try some new things or even give some variation in the gameplay, but things are never changed up and just stick to the same old game mechanics throughout the entirety of the game.
The last problem is that Wario World consists of four worlds, yes four measly worlds, in which really kills the replay value of Wario World because this game is just extremely short. Each of these worlds will consist of two levels, which means about three bosses per world. To put it quite simply this is not a long game at all, which is disappointing because the game could have easily stayed interesting for longer then provided to us in this game.
With the camera angle the way it is, it can be hard to really receive the full grasp of how Wario World actually looks. With that being said there are some good things to say about Wario World and there are some downfalls to the graphics that hold Wario World back from being a top notch looking Cube title.
With the camera angle the way it is, the game still retains a lot of color and really has a lot of variety in most of its levels. The environments are pretty well detailed and have some really nice ideas, which does a nice job of keeping things new and not making things repetitive. The character models or Wario looks very detailed and looks top notch, but all of the other enemies could use some help.
What holds Wario World back from being a really good-looking game is that there are a lot of things that need work. Treasure had the main things covered, but it’s the little things that are blurry and that are just not what you want to see in games these days. Overall the graphics have there ups and downs, and Wario World ends up being a pretty decent looking game.
Being a platformer you would expect Wario World to be a lot of fun, but instead it ends up being just another platformer that fails to do anything new or exciting for the genre, which ends up hurting Wario World in the long run. Along with that being said the problem with the length of the game is quite depressing. All in all there is fun to be had but it’s not long enough and there isn’t enough new to keep you happy anyways.
Wario World has the name, has the graphics, and even has the basic gameplay down, but it fails to do anything new or exciting to make this a ’must buy’. For most of us, we will be able to complete Wario World in a rental period, and unless you are a huge Wario fan I wouldn’t really recommend buying this one, because there is little to no replay value.
The owner and editor-in-chief of Darkstation.com. I've been apart of the website since 2002 and purchased the website in 2010. Owning and running Darkstation is a dream come true. I love video games and I love writing and talking about them even more.