Wii Music

Orchestra pit or just the pits?

We don't like to blow our own trumpet (unless it's Wii Music's imaginary horn, that is) but Nintendo's Japanese Wii Music adverts don't hold a promotional candle to our Ellis/Castle effort two issues ago. A demure lady playing a fake violin in office clothes is no match for two grown men gooning around with invisible bagpipes. Alas, Nintendo didn't agree, promptly binning our modelling proposal.

A hands-on with Wii Music, however, cheers us up. Multiplayer might be something of a cacophonic calamity, but the music creation angle is flourishing in single-player. Each track is built from six strands of music - pick one strand to play and your performance will replace that track on a subsequent performance. Play through six times - adding tweaks and flourishes that spice up basic instrument gesturing - and the composition genuinely becomes yours.


Okay, music 'creation' is a tad generous - this is music fiddling. But it's fiddling of the highest order. Particularly if you air-fiddle a fiddle. In which case it's fiddle fiddling fiddling of the highest order. There's no tune composition - we'll leave that to Guitar Hero IV - but Wii Music still has arrangement possibilities. That said, very few tunes we heard survived six rounds of user interference, the layers of missed notes adding up to make pointless noise.

But what fascinating noise it is. Joining the oddball dog bark and beatboxing instruments is the cat suit, in which your Mii dons a moggy outfit to meow through a selection of hits. We're also quite enamoured with the cheerleader, who simply cheers along with the tune. We just thank the gods that Shigsy didn't choose this as his announcement costume - our Miyamoto obsession is unhealthy enough as it is.

As you're reading this, we'll be limbering up to put together the final verdict on the Japanese game. So if you happen to be passing Bath and hear sweet, sweet music you'll know who it is. If it sounds god-awful? It's probably Edge.