Friendship Enders: Wii Sports

Cast your minds back with me, my friends. Back before this dark and dismal time that is 2022. Back before the only way we could get a PS5 or Xbone Series X was by sitting up on our roof with butterfly nets and the naive hope that we could solve the quantum mechanics required to catch one of these shooting stars.

I’m talking about even before the PS4 and Xbone One (I’m going to keep saying Xbone until it gets a laugh) pulled us into the eighth generation kicking and screaming.

Yes, we’re going back to 2006 when this little company called Nintendo released one small console that led to an epidemic of broken TVs, massive property destruction, and tendonitis around the world. For those of you that missed the title of this article, it’s the Wii, and more specifically, the tie-in launch game, Wii Sports.    

They tried to warn us… but we didn’t listen.

Yes, our family managed to secure a Wii for my dad's birthday. In the short time it took us to set the console up and find enough batteries, we were in the future, playing tennis and golf and bowling; oh my. In the beginning, we were all overcome with just how realistic it was swinging the controller in our living room and having the mii character swing the racket on the screen at the same time.

After a while, our parents stopped playing as much as they used to, whereas my brother and I continued our careers in Wii Sports. We each picked one of the sports and began the arduous ascent to the top of the ranking system and that sweet, elusive pro-level ranking.

Pictured above: The final fight.

Now I won’t say that we pursued the goal of going Pro because we measured our self-worth by that damned erratic skill graph. I won’t say that because it makes it seem that much sadder out loud (but no less true).

Anyway, my brother picked bowling, and I, being the patriotic Aussie that I am, chose the classic Australian pastime, baseball. 

Pictured: Australian Baseball

After a while, we played Wii Sports so much that we began to notice some shortcomings. Mainly with the motion tracking in the controllers not being quite 1:1. This, of course, turned the gameplay from elegant swings of the Wiimote to flailing the Wiimote around like there was a spider on the end of it (one of those big wolf spider fuckers). Eventually, playing the game amounted to us using as little effort as possible to get the game to work. 

Don’t get me wrong. It’s not that we didn’t love playing the game. I loved playing “the sportsball” without having to leave the house and face my nemesis- the sun. It’s just that moving my arm to control the remote gets tiring after a while, and my life is a tug of war between laziness and stubbornness.

We even had a ritual in my house called the Wiimote hokey pokey that goes like this.

  1. You shake the Wiimote left.
  2. You shake the Wiimote right.
  3. You shake the Wiimote left.
  4. You shake the Wiimote right.
  5. You shake it all about becausethisgoddamncontrollerisn’tworking yetagaineventhoughIswearIcalibrateditthistimeandwhyisyoursworkingfinewhenmineobviouslydoesn’t.

After a while, the inevitable march of time ravaged the Wiimote as the motion tracking got less and less responsive… well it was either that or the infamous Wii bowling incident of 2013. 

It was a summer weekend afternoon, as with all great moments in history. I was playing some solo Wii sports bowling by myself in my living room (what a mysterious and suave character), and it was fair to say it was going well. I was on track for a new personal best and decided to give this next throw a bit more “oomph.”

Now, the mysterious and suave character that I am, I wasn’t wearing my wrist strap. As is the case with the karmic justice system of the universe, the Wiimote slipped from my hand. I swear I could hear my ancestors reveling in my misery as the Wiimote sailed through the air and smashed into the wall.  

From top to bottom: Top of controller, B button & bottom of the controller.

Now coming back to 2022, we’ve got the spiritual successor to Wii Sports in Switch Sports. Now the Wii, this great console, and its innovative game Wii Sports have been relegated to the display cabinet of history. Just remember to use the wrist strap, and hopefully, we get some sort of staff attachment further down the track.

What’s your favorite Wii Sports moment? Did you ever achieve that converted Pro Ranking? Let me know down below.

Monthly Update: July & August 2021 Game Releases

Summer is in full swing which, unfortunately, means not too many big game releases. However there are still many new games for the months of July and August and some are worth checking out if you are itching for something to hold you over until fall.

July’s Highlights

Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin - July 9th (Switch)

Monster Hunter Stories 2 is a spin off of the popular Monster Hunter series. Offering RPG Monster Hunter fans a rich storyline and unique experiences set in the Monster Hunter Universe. Players will assume the role of a young rider who sets out on a sprawling adventure where you hatch, train, and live alongside Monsters. Think Monster Hunter meets Pokemon. Collect various monsters and add them to your team to battle your way through an emotional and expansive journey.

 

Death’s Door - July 20th - (Xbox, PC)

Reaping souls of the dead and punching a clock might get monotonous but it's honest work for a Crow. The job gets lively when your assigned soul is stolen and you must track down a desperate thief to a realm untouched by death - where creatures grow far past their expiry. In this Zelda like action RPG, you play as a Crow working his day job as a reaper, you know fighting monsters, collecting souls, reaper stuff. With some light Dark Souls influence, battle intense boss fights, earn souls, and power up your crow reaper in this offbeat and humorous adventure.

Microsoft Flight Simulator - July 26th (Xbox Series)

Take to the skies in the latest edition of the long running Microsoft Flight Simulator, now available for Xbox Series S and X. Choose from hundreds of planes and fly to anywhere in the world in this deep and realistic simulator. Even train on how to actually fly a plane. The acclaimed PC game is now available on Xbox with a free Top Gun expansion available this fall and available on day one to GamePass subscribers.

The Ascent - July 29th  (Xbox, PC)

The Ascent is a cyberpunk themed action RPG. With twin stick shooter gameplay and deep RPG elements that fans of Diablo and Hunter the Reckoning will enjoy. You are an Indent, owned by the corporations, working to live in this grimy city run by the corporations. Go it alone, or play Co-op with friends online and couch co-op. Customize your character to your play style by spending skill points where you want them, equip weapons and armor, and try various augmentations. Will you rise up this July, in the Ascent?

 

August’s Highlights

Ghost of Tsushima Director's Cut - August 20th (PS4, PS5)

Ghost of Tsushima Director’s Cut sees the Game of the Year contender released with additional content, including a whole new island to explore and PS5 updates. For those that wanted this amazing action adventure game, now is the time to grab your katana and avenge your people with the addition of Dual Sense controller functionality and 4k 60 resolution targeting. Those that already own the game can upgrade for an additional cost.

Aliens: Fireteam Elite - August 24th (PS4, PS5, Xbox, PC)

Aliens: Fireteam Elite is a new 3rd person survival shooter where you and 2 friends fight to survive against waves of horrifying aliens. Create and customize your own Colonial Marine, choosing from an extensive variety of classes, weapons, gear and perks, battling overwhelming odds in this heart-pounding survival shooter experience. Choose from five character classes, each with their own unique perks and special abilities.

Psychonauts 2 - August 25th (Xbox, PC)

The sequel to the beloved Psychonauts is finally here after 16 years. Picking up where the first game left off, you play as Raz, a gifted psychic and acrobat, who wants to join the international psychic espionage organization known as the Psychonauts. Fans of the original have a lot to look forward to in this classic style action platformer which is set to release for Xbox and PC August 25th as well as PS4, Mac, and Linux at a later date.

No More Heroes 3 - August 27th (Switch)

Travis Touchdown is back in No More Heroes 3 exclusively for the Nintendo Switch. This zany series from famed director Suda51 has you battling a slew of evil aliens, but first you might have to mow the lawn. Travis Touchdown is the #1 assassin and now he has to stop some of the most powerful aliens in the universe. Are you up for the challenge?

The complete list…

July

 

Oddworld: Soulstorm Day One Oddition (Physical Release) - July 6th (PS4, PS5) 

Monster Hunter Stories 2: Wings of Ruin - July 9th (Switch)

Worms Rumble: Fully Loaded Edition - July 13th (PS4, PS5, Xbox)

The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword HD - July 16th (Switch)

F1 2021 - July 16th (PS4, PS5, Xbox) 

Hotline Miami and Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number - July 16th (PS4)

Observer: System Redux - July 16th (PS4, PS5, Xbox)

AKIBA'S TRIP: Hellbound and Debriefed 10th Anniversary Edition - July 20th (PS4, Switch)

Cris Tales - July 20th (PS4, PS5, Xbox, Switch)

Death’s Door - July 20th - (Xbox, PC)

Pokemon Unite - July 21st (Switch)

Last Stop - July 22nd (Xbox, Switch)

Blue Fire - July 23rd (PS4, PS5)

Orcs Must Die! 3 - July 23rd (Xbox)

Microsoft Flight Simulator - July 26th (Xbox Series)

Hell Let Loose - July 27th (PC)

The Great Ace Attorney Chronicles - July 27th (Switch)

NEO: The World Ends with You - July 27th (PS4, Switch)

Samurai Warrior 5 - July 27th (PS4, Xbox, Switch)

Spiritfarer - July 27th (PS4, Switch)

Tribes of Midgard - July 27th (PS4, PS5)

Blaster Master Zero 3 - July 28th (Xbox, Switch)

Chernobylite - July 28th (PC)

OMNO - July 28th (PS4,Xbox, Switch, PC)

Disgaea 6: Defiance of Destiny Unrelenting Edition - July 29th (Switch)

Fuga: Melodies of Steel - July 29th (Xbox, Switch)

The Ascent - July 29th  (Xbox, PC)

 

August

 

Spiritfarer - August 3rd (PS4, Switch)

Zengeon - August 6th - (PS4, Switch)

Foreclosed - August 13th (PS4, PS5, Xbox, Switch)

Hades - August 13th (PS4, PS5, Xbox)

PAW Patrol: The Movie Adventure City Calls - August 13th (PS4, Xbox, Switch)

Greak: Memories of Azur - August 17th (PS5, Xbox, Switch)

Ghost of Tsushima Director's Cut - August 20th (PS4, PS5)

Madden NFL 22 - August 20th (PS4, PS5, Xbox) 

Monster Harvest - August 20th (PS4. Switch)

Aliens: Fireteam Elite - August 24th (PS4, PS5, Xbox, PC)

Hoa - August 24th (PS4, PS5, Switch)

King's Bounty II - August 24th (PS4, Xbox, Switch)

RiMS Racing Sim - August 24th (PS4, PS5, Xbox, Switch)

Psychonauts 2 - August 25th (Xbox, PC)

American Fugitive - August 27th (PS4, Switch)

No More Heroes 3 - August 27th (Switch)

Tormented Souls - August 27th (PS5)

The Forgotten City - August 31st (PS5, Xbox Series)

Rustler - August 31st (PS4, PS5, Xbox. Switch)

Song of Iron - August 31st (Xbox)

KeyWe - August 31st (PS4, PS5, Xbox. Switch)