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The Week Ahead - 01/06/07

Feature: Summer's hotting up

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Wario: Master of Disguise (DS)

We include this merely to warn you that it's going to frustrate the hell out of you. On the surface a Wario game from Nintendo should be cause for celebration, unfortunately it wasn't developed in-house and came from Japanese shovelware experts Suzak. What emerges is a game full of innovation, but of the bad sort: innovation just for the sake of it. The main premise is to find a valuable Wishstone by completing levels and beating bosses using a series of disguises. These disguises must be drawn on the touchscreen with your stylus but bad motion sensing results in all kinds of frustrating costume changes. When you add to this some of the dullest mini-games in history and boring level design you have a bit of a dud on your hands. Hardly Nintendo's finest hour.

Smash Court Tennis 3 (PSP)

There are three tennis franchises capable of competing at the top level: Sega's Virtua Tennis, 2K's Top-Spin and Namco's Smash Court Tennis series. Historically, the Smash Court games have always come in last due to a lack of dynamism, not to mention the crucial fun factor. Unfortunately, Namco Bandai's first tennis outing on PSP it looks like business as usual. The main problem is that this series doesn't really know if it wants to be light-hearted and knockabout or a challenging simulation. There are some fun looking mini-games based on the likes of Pac-Man and Galaga but the main game just feels a bit mechanical. From what we've played it lacks the fluidity and flamboyance of its main rivals, especially the virtuoso Virtua Tennis 3. Match point to Sega.

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