Review – Endless Ocean

In case you haven’t noticed, I like to spice up my BioShock, Rainbowendlesso.jpg Six: Vegas, Rock Band, and other grown-up games with games that can best be described as “cute and quirky.” I admire imaginative gaming – and feel these kinds of casual games are very good for kids. I also believe gaming is all about doing things you can’t normally do (fly a plane, drive a race car, combat terrorism, or save the world from various kinds of aliens – zombies – or alien zombies). (Note to self, try and pitch alien-zombie idea to a game developer.)

You’d think Endless Ocean would fit the bill. It’s a diving simulation that lets kids swim through beautiful ocean vistas while discovering and trying to interact with all kinds of fish. It’s educational without being overly dull and . . . it’s nowhere near as good as it should be.

The controls are pretty good if a little touchy. Using the Wii remote you can swim in any direction but the game features a tiresome mission based wrapper that forces you to do things when what you really want to do is explore. It’s hard to maintain an interest in a game that has you constantly returning to the most boring boat ever to talk to a marine biologist (with no personality) who is afraid to swim.

Also, the game oddly has you reaching out and petting fish and sea life to learn about them. Sounds cool, right? Well, as I understand it, reaching out and touching sea life is something they teach you NEVER to do when diving. You know, because of teeth, poison, stamp_6_plus_smlink.gifbeing zapped negative so your skeleton show by an Electric Eel

I love the idea of this game but the gameplay is so boring, so ineptly “gamey” it doesn’t function as a game or a simulation. It’s pretty and my kids loved swimming around – for a brief period – and then they wanted to do something else.

Anything else.

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