Talk about dividing opinion. As we type these words, Metacritic features just ten reviews of Wario Land: Shake It!, yet already the top and bottom scores are separated by a yawning gulf of 30%. Two things most critics seem to agree on: Shake It! is beautiful, and Shake It! is short. The rest is clearly up for debate:
- IGN (84%) published one of the warmest reviews to date: "It's got its share of modest shortcomings. It's not very innovative -- you've seen all this before in other platformers. The lack of a proper widescreen mode is downright annoying. And the core game is over a little too quickly for my liking. But, you know, it's still a really fun experience thanks to excellent control and fantastic level designs, not to mention a beautiful visual presentation."
- Eurogamer (70%) noted that the title didn't measure up to Nintendo's rich tapestry of platform games: "A game which is good, but not great, and certainly not up to the standard of Nintendo's best 2D platformers."
- GamePro (80%) mentions the "c" word, as dreaded by most blog-reading types: "Despite its simplistic gameplay, the game is still worth playing, especially for the casual Wii gamer. It's fun, it's simple and it's charming, which pretty much describes most Wii games that hit big with that audience."
- Finally, Jeremy Parish of 1UP (58%) heaped scorn on the mustache-twirler's return: "Shake It!'s failure to innovate is particularly infuriating, because it'll only serve to confirm in most people's minds the notion that 2D graphics are synonymous with dated, uninspired game design [...] the staleness of this game's action has nothing to do with the visuals and everything to do with the fact that the dizzyingly imaginative designers who helped make those earlier titles so memorable have moved along to the WarioWare and Rhythm Heaven series."