It's hitting a ball against bricks... in space?
Soccer Bashi is a game in which you take control of a panel and smack a ball into bricks that are positioned in specific ways. If you’re sitting there thinking “that sounds A LOT like Brick Breaker,” that’s because it is. Except, instead of metal balls, you’re using a soccer ball, and you play on a variety of sports fields.
Soccer Bashi doesn’t really bring anything new to the table. You progress through different levels, which are planets, to reach the end of the game. Throughout each level, you can collect a number of power-ups. The game doesn’t tell you what any of them do, so it’s up to you to collect each one and figure out what they do (aside from missiles, which immediately cause all hell to break loose), which may result in the loss of a life or two.
The best part of the game is the boss battles. After clearing nine levels, you get to face a robotic boss. These bosses can be anything from giant drones to rock robots to metal scorpions. These parts of the game are awesome, but the effort it takes to get to the bosses outweighs the reward. The levels are more of the same as the game progresses, with each level introducing a new element to the game. Getting the hang of these elements is easy enough, but with the trivial lives system that the game has set up, it gets increasingly annoying each time you see the “Game Over” screen and have to start back at level one. Once the first boss emerges, the fun kicks in, but the journey isn’t even worth half of what the destination offers.
There is also a co-op mode that seems like it would be a little different than the single-player, but it is not. Co-op is exactly the same as the other mode except with an added panel for a second player. This mode has very little to do with cooperation and more to do with who can hit the ball first. There isn’t anything that can be done in co-op that couldn’t be done in single-player.
In terms of controls, Soccer Bashi requires the player to hold the Wii Remote parallel to the screen and wave it back and forth. It is an extremely awkward way to play. It would have been more enjoyable if the D-pad was used instead. Additionally, the game doesn’t tell you how to use the controls, or even offer you any kind of hint about anything that would help you master the game.
Luckily, the music has redeeming qualities and is enjoyable. The smooth techno soundtrack feels like it is pulled right out of an ‘80s cop flick in the best way possible. Unfortunately, this is ruined at times with the awful sound effects. At the most random times, you hear a man scream “LEMONADE, anyone want some LEMONADE?” It sounds like a goblin screaming in a blender.
Soccer Bashi feels like a glorified flash game. It’s the same game that people have been playing on their phones for years now. The only way Soccer Bashi mixes it up is by bringing boss battles and annoying people shouting at you to purchase their drinks. For 500 Wii Points, you get what you pay for, but this game plays more as a “while you’re waiting for the bus” game than a “sitting at home” game, which sucks, because there’s no other way to play it.