Wii

North America

FlingSmash

by Neal Ronaghan - November 4, 2010, 2:47 pm PDT
Total comments: 18

5

Controls smash!

FlingSmash, oddly, reminds me a lot more of Yoshi's Island than anything else. The story and map design involve an island, which is presented much like it is in Nintendo's seminal Super Nintendo classic and its DS sequel. The levels are generally easy until you try to get 100 percent on a level by collecting the five medals, different power-ups, gems, and more. The comparison to Yoshi's Island isn't that out there, especially since developer Artoon was behind the DS version. Unfortunately, FlingSmash is based around a control method that is cool in theory, but ultimately fails, as the main challenge of the game is whether or not your flings are accurately recorded by the game.

The game is basically a pinball platformer. You control Zip, an energetic ball-shaped hero, and the gameplay consists of bouncing him around the screen while collecting points. The goal of each level is to obtain three medals to unlock a clam shell so you can get a pearl. In addition, there is a high score mechanic where you have to find the optimal path to go through a level, collecting all sorts of score-boosting goodies, so you can get an A or S rank. This adds to the depth of the game, but the auto-scrolling nature (right-to-left or left-to-right depending on your handedness) of the game makes it ultimately very frustrating. The game also requires a great deal of precision to do well, and the inconsistent controls don't help with this at all.

The way this MotionPlus-required game works is that you need to have your controller fixed on the sensor bar. This is your neutral position. Then, you have to fling your character from this base neutral position. You can continue to knock the character around, but that usually just makes the required return to the neutral position even more difficult, a problem that is even more recurring when the game gets hectic. You can't even sit back and make a well-executed move because you have the constant threat of being eaten by one of the many dragons that patrols the backside of the screen.

If you can get past the controls, there are a few fun gameplay variations throughout the game. In one world, you're transformed into a heavy, metal ball, and in another, you're shrunken down. Both of these alter the way you play in interesting ways. Sadly, they're limited to one world each.

The co-op is amusing in a chaotic way. It's difficult to tell who is who when the action picks up, but for the most part, it's better than playing it by yourself, chiefly because you have a second person to help you pick up items. Even so, there are sections of the game that feel like they didn't plan for a second player.

FlingSmash is a very short game. It has eight worlds each with three levels and a boss fight. The boss fights don't amount to much more than 'bounce around the screen and hit a certain side of this ball-like foe.' According to the game clock, I finished all of that in about three hours. There is some replayability if you're into getting high scores. Luckily, it's a little worthwhile to do this since there are unlockables for getting all A or S ranks on all the levels in a world. You get iterative mini-games for getting A ranks, and extra stages for getting S ranks. Still, you'll be fighting the controls more than the enemies to get these high scores.

FlingSmash is full of interesting gameplay ideas that would've been a lot more fun if the game controlled well, or at the very least, compensated for the poor controls by being a little more forgiving. The unpredictable controls come dangerously close to breaking the game. Most gamers will likely get frustrated by the controls, and most young kids will probably get frustrated by the precision required at times. Unless you really want a Wii Remote Plus and/or feel you can work with the miserable controls, you should stay away from FlingSmash.

Summary

Pros
  • Co-op is more fun than single-player
  • Occasionally fun level design
  • Worthwhile unlockables
Cons
  • Awful, fickle controls
  • High scores can be frustrating to obtain
  • Very short

Talkback

Eek. Think I'll save ten bucks and buy the Remote Plus by itself.

TheFleeceNovember 05, 2010

It's a shame that I'm going to wait for Skyward Sword to experience Motion Plus since every game that comes out using the feature just falls short of getting it right. Shame.

Mop it upNovember 05, 2010

I can't help but wonder if the control issues are environmental, I'll wait and see if other reviews echo the same sentiment.

Maybe FlingSmash just hates me, but I tried everything I could. I used the Wii Remote Plus we got with the game. I used a Wii Remote with the MotionPlus attachment. I tried it in different lighting. Every time, I got the same inconsistent result. Occasionally it would work, and then it would just kind of crap out when I needed it most.

StratosNovember 05, 2010

Quote from: TheFleece

It's a shame that I'm going to wait for Skyward Sword to experience Motion Plus since every game that comes out using the feature just falls short of getting it right. Shame.

Red Steel 2 and Wii Sports Resort don't appeal to you?

greybrickNathan Mustafa, Staff AlumnusNovember 05, 2010

Quote from: NWR_Neal

Every time, I got the same inconsistent result.

Yeah, that kind of thing always never happens to me as well.

TheFleeceNovember 05, 2010

Quote from: Stratos

Quote from: TheFleece

It's a shame that I'm going to wait for Skyward Sword to experience Motion Plus since every game that comes out using the feature just falls short of getting it right. Shame.

Red Steel 2 and Wii Sports Resort don't appeal to you?

Not really no. I've been holding out for a full on Motion Plus experience. Though I will admit that Wii Sports Resort is the superior Motion Plus title.

KDR_11kNovember 06, 2010

Quote from: Mop

I can't help but wonder if the control issues are environmental, I'll wait and see if other reviews echo the same sentiment.

The Motion Plus does not rely on the environment.

StratosNovember 06, 2010

Quote from: KDR_11k

Quote from: Mop

I can't help but wonder if the control issues are environmental, I'll wait and see if other reviews echo the same sentiment.

The Motion Plus does not rely on the environment.

It does in the sense that it relys on the light coming from the sensor bar. If you have another form of IR entering the room it can wreak havoc on the remote. I recall it destroying some people's ability to play Boom Blox on this thread a while back.

Mop it upNovember 07, 2010

Quote from: KDR_11k

Quote from: Mop

I can't help but wonder if the control issues are environmental, I'll wait and see if other reviews echo the same sentiment.

The Motion Plus does not rely on the environment.

This particular game appears to use the Sensor Bar for centering.

KDR_11kNovember 07, 2010

I think we can reasonably assume that any long-time Wii owner has made sure the freaking sensor bar works fine.

StephenSSANovember 08, 2010

Eh. Probably wouldn't have bought it and now definitely won't. I need a new remote but this isn't worth the extra tenner.

ThomasONovember 12, 2010

IGN also said the game was crap (gave it a 4), but they didn't say the controls were broken, they work but lead to an extremely repetitive and tedious game. Apparently, Wii Play is a better deal, but since you get both the Wii Remote and the M+ it balances out I guess.

ThomasONovember 15, 2010

The Bit Block gave the game a 7. They did not find any problems with the controls, aside from a few hiccups (they specifically said not to induce any waggle and the game does not take the power of your swings into account). They thought it was a good short game, given its arcade-style gameplay; the length more or less justified the overall $10 price. They did say that if you're not into buying the Wii Remote Plus, it's best you stay away from purchasing the package.


Hmm. I already have four Wii Remotes and two MotionPlus accessories... maybe I'll sell one or two of my remotes and replace them with WR+. My Wish List grows even longer...

UncleBobRichard Cook, Guest ContributorDecember 02, 2010

Wow.  I got this from Amazon for $30.  Good thing it came with a Wii Remote Plus, because it's just not that fun.  Perhaps in short bursts, it's better... I just played through the first two "worlds" and I have to say, I just don't care for it much.

I missed the Amazon deal while stuck in an offline void. :-(

UncleBobRichard Cook, Guest ContributorDecember 02, 2010

$32.00 with free shipping right now...
http://www.amazon.com/FlingSmash-Wii-Remote-Plus-Black-Nintendo/dp/B002I0I85Y/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1291274302&sr=8-1

TJ SpykeDecember 02, 2010

What a shame, it looked like a fun game when Nintendo showed it off at E3. I can't even use the Wii Remote Plus as an excuse to get it since I don't need another controller.

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Tataitae Hazumu: Smash Ball Plus Box Art

Genre Action
Developer Artoon
Players1 - 2
Controllers

Worldwide Releases

na: FlingSmash
Release Q3 2010
PublisherNintendo
jpn: Tataitae Hazumu: Smash Ball Plus
Release TBA
PublisherNintendo

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