I now have a reason to ignore my PS3 and Xbox 360. The Wii finally has a decent “next-gen” shooter thanks to High Voltage and Sega. I hate to backtrack, but let’s take a step back for a second before I dive into this review.
Developers have typically taken a different route with the Wii since it launched many moons ago, and for good reason. First-party titles weren’t that great, and the WiiWare catalog pretty much stunk on ice for a long time. And then there’s the fact that the console sold like hotcakes because it was “accessible” to the masses or the “casual gamer,” as it were. If you had a decent game it was probably going to sell well. Development for the console in the early days could have been funded with a neighborhood bake sale. You see where I’m going with this, right?
Well, this year is shaping up to be a “rebuilding year” for the console. Not that Nintendo needs it (Or so they think. A heart rate monitor? Really?), but the gamers and developers desperately need it. With the advent of WiiMotion Plus, we’re definitely going to see some worthwhile titles coming out this year. That much is apparent with the likes of Tiger Woods or Grand Slam Tennis. There’s also Red Steel 2 and Wii Sports Resorts to name a couple others. The next couple of years will be fantastic.
With that being said, High Voltage did a pretty damn good job with The Conduit. It’s a viable FPS for the not so next-gen console. The level of control customization available to a player is astounding. PC gamers have been privy to such customization since the dawn of time. This is where High Voltage and Sega really shine. The storyline is pretty ho-hum but I personally think the graphics look great for the Wii. When Greg and I were roaming the floor, we passed by The Conduit booth to get in on some multiplayer action and Greg had no idea it was running on the Wii. A direct comparison to the graphics capabilities of the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 is unfair because it’s not High Voltage doing a shitty job. They’re working with what they can and- let’s face it- the Wii doesn’t have much going on under the hood.
Let’s get back to the controls for a hot minute. While I think the control customization is great, it takes quite a long time to get it just right. Maybe it’s because I’m not much of a PC gamer, but it took me hours to figure out the right setup for my WiiMote flailing ways. My arms hurt the day after I previewed the game a few months back. But, like I said before, once you get it right, you’ll be rolling through the game in no time.
Again, I hate to make direct comparisons to the other big boy consoles, but High Voltage really hit it out of the park for multiplayer mode. Sure, it pales in comparison to what we’re used to on the Xbox 360, but The Conduit’s multiplayer on the Wii kicks some serious ass.
Kudos to you, High Voltage, you’ve relegated me from being the lazy gamer that I am to a flailing buffoon. So, is The Conduit worth buying for a Wii owner? Hell yes. What about a Wii/Xbox 360 and/or PS3 owner? Hell mothaf’n yes. You’d be crazy not to. Do you really just want to play Wii Sports all day?
Oh, one more thing. High Voltage/Sega, when’s the sequel coming out?