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Wii Review: Rhythm Heaven Fever

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Rhythm Heaven Fever for Wii is a simple game in which players tap along to a rhythm in different mini-games in order to earn medals. The medals unlock more games and special features. The game is an update of Rhythm Heaven, which was previously available for Nintendo DS. The concept is probably better suited for the handheld format. Rhythm Heaven Fever can be challenging, but it is so simple in its gameplay, the full console experience makes it feel like a game for little kids. There are 50 mini-games that are all new to the Wii version, though some use some of the same characters and concepts from the DS version.

Rhythm Heaven Fever uses the standard Wii controller. Players tap either the A and/or B button accurately to pass each challenge. If the buttons are not pressed accurately enough players will either fail the challenge or pass with an “okay.” To earn medals players must get a “superb” rating to earn a medal, though they can advance to the next mini-game with just an “okay.” While the controls are easy to use, the games themselves are not as easy as they appear. In the first game you must swing a golf club at a golf ball tossed by one of two monkeys. You must do this in time to a funky rhythm that plays in the background. Sounds easy enough, but the challenge comes when the Mandrill (the larger monkey) hurls a fastball at you with a distractingly loud grunt. Fail too many times and the game tells you the Mandrill is feeling sad. Guess what happens when the Mandrill is sad? You have to do the level over until he is happy.

Not being able to get the rhythm down is a great source of frustration and can be a deciding factor on how much fun you think this game is. If you can’t beat a level you don’t get to see the next one. What’s best about this game is the charming simplicity of the mini-game graphics. They are like old-fashioned cartoons. The drawings are simple, but creative. The games themselves offer a lot of visual variety. There are robots, samurai, and all kinds of fun animals. The downside of the game is the repetition of movement. Hitting only the A and B buttons is monotonous, not to mention a little tough on the wrists. The repetitive motion can wear out your hand pretty quick.

I think this game would be fun for kids and a good way to introduce them to rhythm. It’s also a good time passer for anyone looking for a simple game you don’t have to invest much thought or time into. The mini-games don’t last long once you can get through them. It’s a treat to get to see what is coming next. All the scenarios are very creative and unexpected. What’s missing is any use of motion. It would have been nice to move around a little instead of just hitting buttons over and over. It is fun to try to learn the rhythms and get things right, so you can see what is coming next. Overall, this is an okay game that is a mildly fun way to pass some time.

Rhythm Heaven Fever is rated E (Everyone) by the ESRB for Mild Cartoon Violence.

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About Sherry Lipp

Sherry Lipp is an entertainment and food writer who specializes in film and television reviews. She has published the gluten and grain-free cookbook Don't Skip Dessert.
  • Rob

    Small factual correction: after the first level, failing a level three times lets you skip it and move on to the next. Visit the Cafe once you see the little speech balloon next to it.