Deep in the sea, deep in sea, lalalalalaaa. Oh the joy of being a virtual deepsea diver. All the pleasure of swimming around with our very ancient cousins without the dangers of a shark needing to taste your whole leg to find out he doesn’t like human flesh to begin with. Endlees Ocean is one of those well chosen titles of Nintendo, just like Donkey Konga. Endless Ocean is one of those non-game games meant to appeal to the widest market possible, also called the Blue Ocean strategy. A strategy that Nintendo has proven to have endless potential if applied right.
Is Endless Ocean a game? Well, what is a game? A game, in my modest opinion, is the following:
1) a software application that
2) generates a virtual world on a electronic device trough
3) an input device a user interacts with, with the results being perceivable by a certain output device whereby
4) The goal is delivering a certain amusement value to the user.
So is Endless Ocean a game? Well, are there people who enjoy diving? I think so. And these people will really appreciate a piece of software like Endless Ocean. Endless Ocean has been defined as a game. But is it a good game? That depends, what do you like in a game?
Do you like shooting down aliens, conquer worlds, beat hard nail end bosses or make your brain hurt with puzzles, then this is a very bad game for you (stop reading this review now and get on with your life).
Now that we got rid of that bunch, I can get to the point that really counts: dolphins! Endless Ocean gives you the opportunity to have a dolphin friend! And you can train him and pet him and feed him and make him do tricks! Why the excitement, blame Nintendogs. It has single tracked my mind on one thing: Nintendolphins! Endless Ocean is probably the closest thing to it yet.
But Endless Ocean isn’t only good for reminiscing fond youth memories about Flipper. It’s also the most relaxing game without reference to any kind of narcotic out there. There’s even an option to make your character lie down on a chair and enjoy the view while you can listen to your favorite mp3s (trough the SD-slot of the Wii). Now you’ll only need a good book and hello vacation mood! But besides this and a dolphin friend there is the diving part.
Now, I have never dived before but this game really makes you want to do it. The floating feeling, the very natural moving creatures to discover, the very varied environment including a cave with pillars of sunlight coming through holes in the ceiling. Breathtaking. Now we only have to wait for the first reports about the huge therapeutic effect of this game on the mentally impaired or the mentally disturbed serial killers.
You control the game only trough the Wiimote where you point on the screen where you want to go and that’s that. Go get yourself a drink, lie down on the couch, eat some pizza, play your favorite mp3 and be blissfull. Visually the game does create a very realistic world. If you stop thinking like a gamer for one second, you’ll be convinced you’re watching a documentary on the Discovery Channel. If you do start to think like a gamer, you’ll see the repetitions in the very fluid animations. The human characters got the least attention with also some minor clipping problems. Also the textures could have used a slight notch in its richness but if you don’t focus on it, you won’t see it anyway. What more, you can also dive online with a friend.
This game is perfect for your mother and your grandmother or anyone else that hasn’t played a game before. No goals, time limits in terms of hours, and they aren’t cynical technogeeks like us.For the older gamer I can also recommend this title, just so you can have something different to do. Some classic music, a full moon night and a big whale just swimming by you which you can pet also. Bliss…