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Joystiq impressions: Rayman Raving Rabbids TV Party

Zack Stern

The Rabbids are back. We liked the original, thought they dozed on the sequel, and hope the combination of randomness and fun returns for TV Party. More than 50 mini-games are shipping with the new Wii game, most of which will be playable with four people. About 30 percent of the games will be able to use the Balance Board, although the fad device won't be required.

We played three mini-games at the Nintendo Media Summit and are hopeful that this will be the best version yet. We'll know for sure after the November 11 release.

Gallery: Rayman Raving Rabbids TV Party | 5 Photos

We liked an updated dancing game most, although we were apprehensive about the controls. A range of dance moves appear in time to one of seven licensed songs. (We got Jungle Boogie.) The motions track Remote and Nunchuk gestures, such as waving both hands in the air like you just don't care, or rotating both hands in a circle. As the song progresses, the pace picks up, although key movements land on beats.

The mechanic felt fun, especially in multiplayer. However, the game didn't register our gestures properly at certain points. We improved accuracy by snapping our wrists with certain moves, so hopefully, that kind of simple adjustment will make a difference.

Otherwise, we sampled two Balance Board games. In a sledding race, we sat on the board and leaned to steer. The setup worked well, as we glided down the track and over jumps. While airborne, we followed on-screen gestures with the handheld controllers to score bonus points.

In a space game, we stood sideways to surf through rings. We leaned forward to dive, back to climb, and to the sides to steer. Like in Tetris Party, a short hop/squat activated an extra function. Here, our rabbid launched his lowest-common-denominator fart-thruster to move quicker. Both Balance Board games were simple and clear.

We also learned about an online mode but mention it here to keep you from getting your hopes up. Players will be able to "pimp their rabbid," dressing up in outfits and uploading the creation. That's pretty much it; all multiplayer games work only with a Wii in the same room.

Otherwise, TV Party seems to maintain the established humor and style from the previous games. Brief interludes parody TV shows, while in-game moments kept us smiling.

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