He loved it. A little too much. He insisted on being called Mario, and Luca, Luigi. Fine around the house, less so in the supermarket, especially when I’m answering to Peaches.
It was becoming a little obsessional. I nearly crashed the car after a scream from the back-seat of,
“Daddy, watch out! ….. Lava!”
My solution? Pretend the DS was broken and send it back to the factory for repair. See, this is my new easy-life parenting technique. Always the good cop. The bad cops, a string of imaginary characters that now included Mr Nintendo. Oh, and Janet, obviously.
For a week he was relentless.
“Where’s my DS? Where is this Nintendo factory? Has he fixed it yet? Why hasn’t he fixed it? Ring him, NOW!”
So I did. Often. I would pretend to ring Mr Nintendo to see where he was up to, and then tell him off for taking so long. Such is my lack of adult interaction as a stay at home dad that we even became friends. The calls would last far longer than was necessary. I once shushed the boys so I could hear how Mrs Nintendo’s operation had gone?
A couple of weeks later I received an email asking if I’d like to review the new Nintendo Wii U and their LEGO City Undercover Pack.
So I made one last call to Mr Nintendo and insisted that he send Sonny something by way of an apology for not fixing his DS. Do you see what I did? I scored untold daddy points by pretending to be stern with an imaginary factory boss. Put down in writing I can now see just how pitiful that is.
The console comes with a touch-screen controller which is a lovely thing, adding a whole new dimension to the gaming experience. It nicely doubles up as an Internet browser too. It’s also toddler proof. Ours has been dropped, stood on, and even licked (don’t ask), and yet still it continues to work perfectly.
The graphics are a big improvement on the Wii whilst not losing any of their Nintendo edges.
Lego City Undercover is really impressive. The graphics are sharp, the game-play polished, and the city itself is enormous. It’s what Grand Theft Auto would have been had it been made by Pixar. Rather than steal, you politely borrow cars, and as far as I can tell there’s a zero tolerance on Prostitution. It’s Junior Grand Theft Auto.
You play as Chase McCain, a maverick cop. Think any 70’s American cop drama. The storyline and cut scenes are genuinely amusing. I may have chuckled a little more than a man of my age should but still, there are genuine laugh out loud moments. It’s helped in no small part by the many references clearly aimed at people of an age that must surely have more important things to be doing than running around pretending to be Starsky. The level of difficulty is understandably quite low given its target audience, and it holds your hand throughout most of the game, particularly on the earlier levels. It’s hard to go wrong, but if you do what does it matter, you’re made out of LEGO.
With Sonny’s Nintendo thumbs twitching I had to let him have a play as well. It’s frightening how quickly a three year old can pick these things up. In no time at all he was driving one of the many vehicles around, courteously parking in designated parking bays, and wandering around finding all the hidden collectables I could never find in a month of Sundays. There’s many a time when I’ll ask,
“Sonny, why are you rummaging around in those bins …. ooh, superbrick!”
I’m guessing some people may have an issue with the long loading times but I’m of a generation where you were just thankful the game hadn’t crashed six minutes in. Anyway, there’s a funky 70’s soundtrack to pass the time. We dance. OK, they dance, I just add a few extra Wah Wah’s.
I was really impressed with both the console and the game. I’ll never have enough hours this side of a divorce to get anywhere near to completing the game, it’s huge, but if I did I imagine it would be a lot of fun.
…< I was sent the Nintendo Wii U and LEGO City Undercover for the purposes of this review. All the content and opinions are my own >…
The Wii U arrived the same weekend as my nephew was visiting, so I asked him if he’d post his own review. This is what he said…
the wii u is a enticing product with its handheld device ,which can be used for playing games and downloading applications .
The wii u is probably more of a 1 player game but consist of good games ,you can use the old wii controls for multiplayer games .
The wii u is a mix between the tablet and the wii ,it is a big control but still little kids can still reach the controls. Its not for toddlers because they can chuck the control with such force .its a fierce competitor for the video gaming market . Sony and Microsoft will try to improve their products so they can stay with the pace that Nintendo are setting .
Overall the wii u is a stunning device with its easy to use controls.
It is fairly different to the Xbox and the ps3 with it’s controls but all of them still have a home screen which is basically a screen that takes you to applications.
Ben Yang – Aged 11.