|System: Wii, DS||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Destination Software||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Destination Software||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: July 5, 2007||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|
by Maria Montoro
Chicken Shoot is nothing but a remake of an already existing game released in 2005 for the GBA and PC. The levels are almost the same, gameplay is the same nothing has really changed. However, the idea of a shooting range simulator for the Wii sounds like it could be fun. We have all learned to love Duck Hunt, or at least the idea of it, and Chicken Shoot is nothing but Duck Hunt in disguise! Sure, the level design is much more interesting and varied, and the chickens don't all look the same, plus there isn't a dog laughing at you, but it's still a game where you point and shoot at flying things - in this case, chickens. Poor guys! What did they do to us?
Of course, you won't see blood splatters on the screen or anything like that, since the game is rated for Everyone, 10 years and older. The way the chickens die is more comical than anything, they just go to heaven Good for them!
The game has two types of gameplay: arcade and classic. They're both basically the same; in the first one, you'll try to get as many points as you can while shooting down the required quota. In classic mode, you'll be timed instead and you'll shoot until time is up. There's also a multiplayer mode for two-player, split-screen action. It's fun at first, and it may be fun later, after a few weeks (or months) without playing. Egg Catcher mode is a minigame where you'll have to stay alert and pick up eggs that drop from one side of the screen or the other. It's very reminiscent of the old Root Beer Tapper and other games of its kind.
However, Chicken Shoot is not a winning title; it's not even a title you should consider putting your money towards. The control design is fairly inaccurate, and this translates into frustration and laughter; laughter because the game is just so bad and amateurish that I could have made it myself in Flash. And that's exactly how this game started, actually! It's certainly not a title that should be slapped into a disc, hoping for a decent amount of sales. They would have been better off keeping this one for the future Wii Ware service, where we'll be able to download games of all kinds (not just classics!). The fact that a game is in a disc creates a different level of expectation, and this game is far from the lowest standards, unfortunately. I'm glad it's not sold at full price though! That would be like a shot in the face! In my opinion, the most money one should pay for a game like this is $10, and the game is being sold for three times as much. (Not good!)
The visuals of the game are surely the best part. It doesn't look like an everyday console game; the images are hand-down two-dimensional, and there's a good amount of detail in them. The chickens are very cute, they fly from one side of the screen to the other, and some of them just chill in the lower part of the screen, knitting, reading the paper, or listening to music. They're comical, especially at first, when they're new to your eyes. Of course, later on, you'll continue seeing the same guys doing the same stuff, because these things just don't change from one level to the next. Chicken Shoot has 11 levels, and each of them is different; it starts at the farm and continues in the woods, then in the Wild Wild West, later in Antarctica Even though the design is simple and quite stereotypical, it's charming and nice to watch while you play.
You'll be able to move your cross hair from one side of the scenario to the other, always looking for the next bird soul you can shoot at. The problem with this is the lack of accuracy in the controls. You have to be really smooth in order to move from one side to the other, otherwise everything gets stuck and you can't move. Some players will have real difficulties with this and will just wish they never started playing this game. Also, you'll find yourself shooting at the same bird five times before it finally goes down. This doesn't always happen, but it does happen often enough to bring the game experience down to another level. It's just not a good game! If the sloppy control design had been addressed before release, things would be different.
The soundtrack added to this game is catchy and has a good rhythm, accompanying the original scenarios of each level; certainly you're going to hear banjoes in the Western level and so-on. The sound of the gun is not only heard through the speakers, but also through the Wii-mote. This adds that extra layer of reality to it, letting you realize that when you're holding the Wii-mote you're not that far off from holding a real gun. Just wait until the Zapper attachment is released and you'll see! Also, there are a few different guns you can use, if you snatch them away from some of the chickens that fly along the screen. Each weapon sounds differently and also performs differently. Who wouldn't think it's fun to shoot at the birds with a cool machine-gun?
That's about all there's to know about Chicken Shoot. Give it a rental, aim for a few hours of entertainment, and then move on. Hint: There are many good flash-based games out there that you can play for free; just go to their website through the Wii's Internet browser!
CCC Co-Site Director