Zack and Wiki for the Wii letting you ring a monkey like a bell - the best game feature on the Wii yet?

I picked up a game called Zack and Wiki - (some sub title I forget) for the Wii at the end of last week and it seems to me the best yet use of the Wii's capabilities to make a fun reasonably light game.

The story revolves around Zack a up and coming pirate and his flying golden monkey sidekick wiki. You are on a quest for treasure and fame and have to recover the body of a cursed pirate that for some reason has been made into treasure. The story is fairly forgettable and random serving merely as a framework to wrap the rest of this essentially puzzle game around.

Game play itself reminded me a lot of old school point a clicks in that you effectively use the wiimote as a mouse clicking to interact and move Zack around with Wiki flying around behind you you can interact with the world by clicking with the pointer and Zack can carry one item at a time. Where it gets a little weird in that you can shake the wiimote to use your monkey companion as a bell which in turn causes nearby animals and enemy's to turn into usable objects and in some cases vice versa. As a for instance centipedes turn into a saw, bats turn into umbrellas, and spiders become tennis rackets. You can then use the items in the world often by performing some sort of motion with the wiimote like a sawing motion with the centisaw it to cut through certain items, turning handles, poking things, shaking things, slotting in puzzle pieces rotating them and so forth.

The level structure is build around areas with a theme so ice, jungle, and lava areas are ones I've seen so far. Each area has a main "Boss" area that you have to unlock by doing slightly smaller less challenging areas first. Each level Boss or not revolves around getting to the chest to extract it's treasure avoiding enemy, traps, and obstacles by applying various tools at your disposal. Each small level rewards you with a piece of the cursed pirate and the boss level usually unlocks another more challenging area.

The puzzles are usually challenging enough that they require a little thought but not so hideous you get stuck. There is a fairly good hint system for if you do have no idea what to do. Sometimes you can wreak a level so badly it can't be completed but each level is fairly bite sized so it's never usually an arduous task to go back to the beginning and try again.

The mix between motion controls logical puzzling and the occasional action element make it a fun little game and the small level structure means it is very pick up and play. The graphics are colourful and stylised in a sort of animé cell shaded sort of style and it looks pretty good. The puzzles are good and with ramping difficulty to keep you coming back with some replayability to get top scores.

This is definitely a game to own if you have a wii some of the puzzles are a treat to do and figuring out the way to get to the treasure is good fun. It's probably the best use of the controls on the wii I've seen so far with the motion and the pointer working together to allow you to manipulate the world in a fairly satisfying manner. It's the sort of thing that makes me wonder what could be achieved on the machine with an old school point and click adventure and a really creative developer.


Thanks for the excellent review. I shall definitely be looking into it. It sounds like the sort of game Kate and I might enjoy. :)

Some IGN screenshots.

Edit (Byrn): Changed link to html ;)
Edit (Rob): Doh! Pillock. Thanks Byrn.

brainwipe's picture

there is now a flash based version of one of my favourite levels on the official site

under gameplay link then demo level

Evilmatt's picture