Last night on the way home after picking Hannah up from school, I made a pit stop at EB Games and surprised her with a copy of Viva Piñata. She’s been waiting for this game for months and has been watching the TV series every Saturday since it started airing back in September. Needless to say, she was crazy excited and spent the majority of her evening playing it. Shortly after she hit the hay and a couple missions in Call of Duty 3 later, I jumped on to check it out. 3 hours fly by and suddenly it’s pushing 1am, I’m totally hooked and questioning my manhood. Wait a second, what the shit just happened?
Somehow, the game that I’ve been anticipating as a home run with my wife and daughter has got me so engaged that I’m having a hard time putting down my controller while I struggle to see through glazed over eyes. Hannah’s playing it as I type this and have dinner on the go and I’m wishing I was in there trying to attract new breeds of Piñata to my garden. Seriously, WTF?
Underneath the layers upon layers of cuteness is a ridiculously fun and addictive game. It’s super easy for youngsters to pick up with step-by-step walkthroughs for everything accompanied by full voice-over instructions. But it’s not too simply that someone like myself, who is normally shooting people’s faces off will tire of it in an instant. It’s absolutely stunning visually and the sound effects and atmospheric music are beautiful. The basic premise of the game is that you have been given a garden to make your own where you try and attract Piñatas. Different Piñata are attracted to different things and you need to meet their requirements in order to get them to visit and ultimately become a resident. Some times this involves sacrificing another Piñata as a meal, which Hannah was not happy about but I totally got a kick out of.
I expect Viva Piñata to go the same route as Lego Star Wars II and provide my little family with hours upon hours of enjoyment. If you’ve already written Viva Piñata off as a kid’s game or one for the ladies, you might want to reconsider. You may just be pleasantly surprised… or you may totally hate it. So be sure to rent it. Looks like I have another game on my list to review. And speaking of which, expect some fresh reviews to start rolling out next week.