|System: Wii||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Capcom||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Capcom||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Oct. 23, 2007||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
by Adam Brown
Point-and-click adventure games have been around for quite some time in the video game industry. While their popularity has certainly dwindled since the days when Myst was topping the PC sales charts, there remains a dedicated fan-base hungry for new titles in this genre. With the Wii-mote's user-friendly ability to point and click, the Wii seemed like a logical destination for developers to reinvigorate this seemingly dying genre. Thankfully for gamers everywhere, Capcom has taken full advantage the Wii's controls and made an incredibly unique and immensely entertaining title.
You will play through this title as a young pirate named Zack. Accompanied by his best friend Wiki, a golden flying monkey, he is on a quest to become the world's greatest living pirate. One day, while searching for some treasure, Zack and Wiki stumble upon Barbaros' head locked away in a treasure chest. In exchange for Barbaros' fabled pirate ship, Zack and Wiki quickly agree to help Barbaros become whole again by finding all of his body's scattered pieces and reassembling him. Admittedly, while the story doesn't sound that amazing, it does ultimately succeed in pulling you into the experience and adequately compels you to play through the entirety of the game.
As a Wii game that centers around a young boy, his monkey friend, and an ancient dismembered pirate, one would probably not expect this to be a photo-realistic title. Even with a decidedly anime graphical style, this is easily one of the best looking games on the console. All of the game's characters and environments are vibrant, beautiful, and well animated. Everything from its amazingly detailed bosses down to Zack and Wiki's expressions make this game feel alive and a joy to look upon.
Still, don't be fooled by Zack & Wiki's kid-friendly appearance. While this is a game clearly targeting a younger audience, it is a very deceptive title. Beneath its cute and cartoony exterior lies a beautifully complex gameplay experience. As previously mentioned, it is a point-and-click adventure game, having you pointing your Wii-mote at the screen and clicking the A button to move around and interact with the environment. The objects in the environment that can be interacted with will cause the on-screen cursor to change colors making it slightly easier to figure out the basics of your objectives. While this does make finding items and puzzles a breeze, deciding how best to complete each of these quandaries can still become incredibly difficult.
In the beginning, many of the puzzles are very basic and can usually be easily figured out without much time or difficulty. However, once you've completed some of the earlier levels, the puzzles slowly become quite ingenious and multi-layered. Zack & Wiki does a very good job of raising the difficulty level at a reasonable pace. Instead of essentially just tossing new swimmers into the deep end, many of the game's items and puzzle elements will gradually increase in complexity during the course of the title's many levels.