|System: Wii||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: THQ||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: THQ||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Apr. 20, 2010||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-2||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone 10+||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
It is fairly telling that the most fun to be had in this title is waving around a virtual fighting stick. There is nothing to do in this game, and even though the story mode has something of a plot, it is just so poorly delivered (through bad voiceovers and plot scenes that feature stoic character outlines) that you will probably elect to skip them. The whole experience of the game is just a mix of boredom and frustration, and the game is definitely one of the biggest missed opportunities in recent memory.
However, if you are a glutton for punishment, you can check out the other modes. There is a challenge mode that lets you practice your moves, and a move creation area that allows you to string together basic and advanced moves to form custom attacks. Both the challenge and the move creation modes feel like extensions of the story mode and don't offer anything new to players. The one mode that does offer something new is the multiplayer where you can use your karate moves against a friend. Of course, with the waggle-based controls, the multiplayer quickly becomes a contest between which player can out-shake the other.
I think my main issue with All Star Karate boils down to how the potential of this game was squandered. It takes minimal effort to produce a game with waggle mechanics and a paper-thin story, but unfortunately, All Star Karate fits into this groove a little too well.
Creating a worthwhile karate or martial arts sim on the Wii would have been a great idea, but unfortunately, all you can expect from All Star Karate is a bunch of waggling of your hands and shaking of your head. It may be worth mentioning that this title does fall into the "budget" category (MSRP is just under $20), but this game's poor execution can't be excused at any price.
Amanda L. Kondolojy
CCC Staff Contributor