You know what makes a really bad premise for a Wii game? How about a PC game that you simply lift from one disk and chuck onto another with optional wiggling moments? The world of Dream Pinball is one that moves at a mind numbingly slow pace and one that was never going to be suited to the Wii. Even the very select market of people who like to play pinball on their TV will struggle to enjoy this shockingly sparse offering. When the game's very title boasts '3D' you know you are in trouble. 3D shouldn't really be something to shout about in the year 2008...
The game is split into a number of tables, but not a great number. How does six sound? Not great. Whilst we enjoy a bit of pinballing as much as the next man, woman or armadillo we can't help but think that something has gone oh so very wrong with Dream Pinball. We didn't think you could get the idea of pinball wrong, but somehow this game does it. The tables themselves are dull and painfully slow to play and lack any sort of invention outside the overly camp 1980s themes. Neon lighting, fake breasts and cheesy pseudo-gothic elements plague this title from start to finish.
The menu system is quite simply hideous. We'd like to say it is deliberately trying to be kitsch and stylish by being ugly and cumbersome, but it is just plain ugly. It looks like a budget PC game, it plays like a budget PC game and it sounds like a budget PC game. Everything about this title is half-arsed and vaguely pointless. What's even more grating is the physics. The ball never quite feels like it is on the table, which leads to it floating around at a fairly mundane pace and not behaving itself.
The aim of the game is simple, play some pinball and try not to get annoyed by how terrible it is. You can try and get high-scores on all the tables and even play against a friend if you so desire. Aside from that you can view the game credits, change some options and use the disk as a coaster. Whilst we realise that pinball is a somewhat limiting focus for a videogame, there could easily be more tables, more options and more diversity on offer. Instead we're left with a very mundane title.
Utilisation of the Wii is insulting at best. You can nudge the table by flicking the Wii remote or the nunchuk and you fire the ball into the table at the start by wafting around the Wii remote. Aside from that you just press buttons. Fact is, you can buy the PC version for half the price and you'll have a vaguely OK and entertaining pinball title that you can mess around with every now and again if that's your thing. On the Wii it is just a terrible pile of tripe and further evidence that Nintendo's 'seal of quality' means absolutely jack these days.
It does play pinball, which is indeed the aim of the game, but it doesn't do it very well and it makes a pretty terrible attempt to utilise the Wii's innovative hardware. The occasional flick just isn't good enough, especially when so much more could have been done. The physics are bizarre and the whole experience is just plain boring and slow.
The menu system looks hideous and the overall style of the game is pretty dire. There are some nice lighting effects (as the box boasts) and the camera angles are sort of alright. We're really struggling to be nice here...
It'll make you want to sever your ears from your pretty little head.
The PC game costs half the price and is probably less lamentable. Go figure.
This game makes a number of key mistakes. The first (and biggest) is that is doesn't hide the fact it is a budget PC title very well. It looks horrible and the presentation is just plain vile. When the folk behind the WiiWare title LostWinds pointed out that £7 was good value for their three hour long title they stated that some full priced Wii games offered worse value for money. This one is £20 and it is still a total rip-off. If you like pinball so much that this is tempting just turn on your PC and play the free pinball game that comes with Windows. Much better, much more fun and not a total waste of a Wii game.
i ahve the PC version and it sucks just as bad. Slow and everything else you said.