NINTENDO DS REVIEW: WHERE DO BABIES COME FROM?
Speaking of blow, other mini-games require you to blow into the microphone to perform different tasks. This isn't as dirty as it sounds. In other mini-games, such as the Hullabaloo multi-player mode, you'll quickly pass the DS around to other players in a Twister-style mini game that you perform with your fingers.

Some games require that you hold the DS at different angles - including sideways and upside down. This is done to mix up the feel a little bit and put the controls in different positions. Holding the game sideways, the two screens combine to extend the screen horizontally which increases the scope of the playfield. The effect is more of a novelty than a necessity.

The purpose of the game according to game director, Takumi Yoshinaga, is to make connections with people, both virtually and in real-life. The single-player mode lets you make love connections with a virtual girlfriend while the multi-player mode facilitates players to get together to have some fun. The connections that you make from there are entirely up to you.

"We want to bring people together and have fun," Yoshinaga says. "We really want gamers to enjoy themselves with the unexpected world of The Rub Rabbits"

The game has a nice, artsy look to it. It appears very fashionable with surreal backgrounds and shapely, lithe, feminine outlines. There are some monstrous robots to fight and some snowball fights that will keep the boys happy but there is an overall sweetness to the game that reminds one of being in love for the first time. The humorous aspects are somewhat intelligent and ensure that the appeal of the game will transcend the demographic that read Seventeen magazine.

There are very few voiceovers in The Rub Rabbit. Most of the sounds are groans, squeaks and pips that manage to communicate pain and pleasure. The music is uptempo but there isn't enough new music and what we hear repeats too much. This isn't a long game, and you could probably finish it a few hours which may be why the developers didn't add more tunes.

I'm a little too old to experiment with virtual relationships but I'm sure this game will find its audience. The mini-games are varied but they remind me of a poor-man's Wario Wares games. There aren't as many games here but since they are more involved they last longer than five seconds. It's worth a rental to see what you make of this game. It may even help to kickstart your social life.

Features:

  • Innovative gameplay: Hold the DS sideways, upside down, or hold it with a friend for co-op and battle play.
  • All-new "rub comedy" adventure: With new music, art, and characters, you get double the content with over 35 episodes in the Story Mode alone!
  • 7 unique gameplay modes: Play through the story, test your touch-screen skills, or match up with a friend for a round of "Twister"!
  • Full customization! Enter Customization Mode to unlock music and create your own unique character.
  • Multiplayer Wireless Play: Compete in a myriad of multiplayer contests with up to four players.

By Cole Smith
CCC Staff Writer

Rating out of 5
The Rub Rabbits (DS)
4.3
Graphics
The graphics are understated but fresh. They look like an ad from an avant-garde fashion magazine.
3.3
Control
Some of the mini-games are hampered by a loose control system.
3.0
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
The music is repetitive and there are no voiceovers to speak of - excuse the pun.
3.5
Play Value
The multi-player mode is useful for getting people together but you better think of something else to do after half-an-hour. The main game is very entertaining though.
3.5
Overall Rating - Good
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.
2
Preview by Vaughn Smith

Sega's follow up to their highly original Feel The Magic XY XX is called Akachan wa Dokokara Kuruno, which translated into Engrish, I mean, English, is "Where Do Babies Come From?"

I should know the answer to this...give me a minute. Okay, screw it. I don't know. All I can tell you is that my wife and I were getting along one night, having some laughs and 9 months later our first child was born. It must have been because of the laughs.

Your goal, much like the first game, is to win over the woman of your dreams. You'll need to use that DS stylus in some very creative ways and conquer some wild challenges such as croc infested waters to get her all mushy and gushy. I don't know why Sega doesn't just let you order the chicks out of the newspaper like a normal person....

Sega hasn't revealed much about the game, aside from the screens, but they have said there will be twice as many mini-games this time around and 4 player simultaneous play. Just what you need: Competition!

We haven't received word on a North American release but we're expecting it any day now. We do suspect that Sega will retain the title from the first game and some hotshot North American marketing whiz will earn his $500,000 per year and call it something inventive like "Feel The Magic II". Stay tuned for more details as they appear.

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Review Rating Legend
1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor
2.5 - 2.9 = Average
3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
3.5 - 3.9 = Good
4.0 - 4.4 = Great
4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
5.0 = The Best