Pilotwings Resort is of course a fun game for Nintendo to help launch the 3DS with. Great wide views, a nice balance between your own, floating character and the colorful backgrounds and at the same time accessible thanks to the relaxing atmosphere, but also with potential to lure some real “gamers”.
In this new version with 3D images the goal is still the same. You head for the skies, explore, do some missions and enjoy. What immediately gets noticed is that you end up at the well-known Wuhu Island, than also acted as background for your mini-games in the latest Wii Sports.
And we find that a pitty. It may be colorful and the blue sky gives you a holiday feeling, but it doesn’t really make things exciting and up and above the island there’s little to find. You’ll quickly search for more and come back with empty hands.
What we do like is free-form gameplay. Flying around and doing nothing in the free-flight mode, but at the same time we also aren’t afraid of a challenge and the occasional objective that needs to be attained. And that’s where things go wrong. In the challenge mode you get a couple of missions to do for each type of basic plane which let you get used to the craft and afterwards offer some more challenge. You need to shoot balloons and targets, hit them or push them in a certain direction, make sure you don’t run out of fuel, take pictures of certain objects and even guide UFOs.
However, all in all the content remains quite limited and some alternative versions of your basic planes cannot help overcome that feeling. Why Nintendo didn’t put more time and effort in this – think of a second island, more challenges, if necessary even mini-games – remains unclear to me.
This makes that Pilotwings Resort has become a fun little game that relaxes, offers some missions and most of all a setting in which the 3D effect shows its capabilities. It colors the launch of the handheld but in a few weeks, let alone months, it won’t be more than a footnote and a short distraction that you probably have forgotten about by then.