The Dog Island

Happiness is a warm puppy. And an inevitable punch in the face...

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Given that the controls don't use the nunchuk at all, they actually manage to cram a fair amount into the remote, and it all feels very natural and - prepare for Wii buzzword - intuitive. A is for action around objects and other animals, but when held down enacts your puppy's ability to sniff out special items and secrets.

Your sniffing is governed by a sort of "hotter/colder" meter, which lets you know when you're going in the right direction. This actually works quite well, and you still have a nice sense of "ooh look at that" when you catch scent of a brand new item you might have walked straight past and missed. Still, if we're running with Zelda comparisons, it's kinda like playing a whole game based around the Link Wolf digging up sparkly crap from under ground.

But wait, we forget, there's the highly charged adrenaline encounters with other beasts that roam the land. Well, actually they don't so much roam the land as bob up and down in exactly the same place on the land. Whilst boredom-inducingly predictable, it makes them the perfect target for your little puppy to sneak up behind and howl his tiny lungs out with the minus button. This way you can stun your enemies, and often they give up a special item they've been hoarding. Unfortunately this gets really tedious fast, and seeing as you can avoid most of the animals, there doesn't seem to be much point in bothering to fight them.

It's not a tricky game, but it has very endearing moments. It's about as complicated as the boardroom sum that came up with: cute + dogs = cash. Will you want to play this? Probably not. Will very young players find it adorable? Almost certainly. Do we feel sick again? Most definitely.

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The verdict

Vom-inducing adorable RPG-superlite that will be a good way to introduce younglings to the genre, whilst simultaneously making everyone else want to sneer at dogs on the way home.

Nintendo Wii