Follow the OctopawThe good news however is that you can play with either the Nunchuck or the classic controller! I’d be surprised if anyone didn’t take advantage of one of these options. A few subtle twists and flicks of the Wii-mote would have been a welcome addition, but the thumb-sticks of both the Nunchuck and classic controller do work extremely well and flying becomes a continuous, flowing and enjoyably addictive motion.
Though I don’t doubt for one second that the younger generation will thoroughly enjoy the colourful missions in NiGHTS and the characters that they’ll meet along the way, anyone who is familiar with the likes of ‘Sonic The Hedgehog’ and many other platformers will be familiar with quite a few of the regurgitated gameplay ideas.
From the main hub, you’re presented with a row of doors. After walking through a door you can participate in five missions. You inevitably end up partaking in a chase mission where you jump into the body of NiGHTS, fly around a restricted (linear) course on the chase of a bird carrying a key. You fly through the golden hoops, picking up blue chips along the way, para-looping to pick up multiple chips and using the boost function at the appropriate times, whilst racking up link combos which ultimately determine your grade at the end of the level. There are some great looking courses, including one where you fly alongside a roller coaster car and another where you transform into a dolphin and dive into a lake; it’s undeniably good fun snaking your way around the levels and despite the lack of freedom to explore, the flying missions are the highlight of an otherwise average platformer.
I still found the chase levels repetitive though; annoyingly so at times. This was due to the fact that you had to repeat the bird capturing process three times to complete the level and even if you succeed in capturing two of them, but failed to capture the last one, you have to start again from the beginning.
There are also link challenges, where you need to chain of set number of links together to succeed. This involves following a creature called the Octopaw, who flies through the sky dropping golden hoops behind him. You simply need to fly through as many hoops as possible before the timer runs out. Once again it’s entertaining, controlling NiGHTS is fun, but if you’ve played Sonic or even taken to your broomstick in one of the Harry Potter games, you would have seen it all before.