With the Wii coming out in T-minus one week, anticipation is high among the Nintendoid set. It’s no wonder, considering that upon release, the new console will have 62 game titles to choose from. Among these, Elebits, one unique offering from Konami promises to take full advantage of the unique Wii controller. Not only that, Elebits has the simplicity of gameplay and colorful cuteness of a Katamari Damacy and is likely to be just as addictive.
The game is named for an alien race of tiny little Pikmin-esque creatures who according to the fiction, provide mankind with all necessary electricity. At the start of the game, the world is in crisis because these sentient little batteries have gone on strike, leaving the world in a permanent blackout. The world can’t do without its electricity so the player’s job is to act as something of an extra-terrestrial truant officer, finding the Elebits and getting them back to work. To do this, the player uses a capture gun that nabs the little buggers by hitting them with a high-powered lightning beam.
The game takes place in familiar domestic environments – inside and outside a suburban home – and the point is to find and capture as many Elebits as possible, in order to power up the household’s appliances. The environment is almost completely interactive and the player manipulates the elements within it using the lightning gun. The Wii controller takes immersion to a new level by having the player make pulling motions to open drawers, twisting motions to turn doorknobs, etc. By opening these doors and drawers, as well as turning things over and throwing things around, more and more Elebits are released. The more Elebits the player has, the more powerful the gun becomes and the more appliances can be activated.
The game features 15 single player levels as well as a four-player split-screen mode and runs in progressive-scan and 16×9 widescreen. Collectors will rejoice that Konami’s rewarding them with an Elebits collectible toy that comes as a gift with purchase if gamers buy from Gamestop, EB Games or Gamecrazy stores. Originally slated to be released simultaneously with the Wii, Elebits has been delayed a few weeks for fine-tuning and will likely be released in mid-December, priming it to be one of the coolest gifts of the holiday season.