Mad Max: Fury Road (Black and Chrome, 2017)

“Colour has done as much damage to cinema as television. It is necessary to fight against too much realism in the cinema, otherwise it’s not an art. From the moment that a film is in colour, it’s not cinema any more.”
Francois Truffaut (1978)

When it was first released in May 2015 there was no denying the breath and beauty of George Miller’s latest Mad Max. Although Mel Gibson had since departed, some believing because of his off screen activities and comments, others because Miller himself stated Gibson fell out of love with the idea of a sequel when a deal to make it couldn’t be reached past 2000; there was no argument that the film looked glorious. Set in post apocalyptic Australia, Max is a fighter, his past a deep buried conflict of emotions and you’d be forgiven for thinking the character has gone mad from years of isolation and solitude. The world is a shadow of its former self, indeed even a shadow of the world presented in the 1979 original, renegades and barbarians cross the deserted wasteland in servitude to the last remaining ‘corporate powers’ hoping to find such commodities as blood and machinery.

Captured and sold as a slave, Max encounters female prisoners, held by a tyrannical ruler named only Immortan Joe. Joe controls The Citadel, the last water pumps used to bargain water for trades with ‘Gas Town’ and ‘Bullet Farm’. The wording used is deliberate, an all too subtle nod to the fossil fuels and arms race whose actives are as propellent today as they were when the original movie saw release some 38 years ago. Actor Hugh Keays Byrne returns to torment Hardy’s Max just as he did when playing ‘Toecutter’ to Gibson’s Max in the original film.

This special cinema and Blu Ray re-release some 24 months later is primarily because the picture has been entirely converted to black and chrome, something that creates a unique opportunity to have a revaluation of a modern blockbuster. Like Rod Sterling and Alfred Hitchcock before him, Miller has refused colour as a medium where it is readily available, instead using this tool as a physiological effort on the storyline. Miller has stated that if it were not for the commercial considerations upon the films original release it would most likely have been released solely this format.

While it’s impossible to say exactly what effect this monochrome effect has on modern film precisely, it is a subject I’ve explored before, albeit in reverse. In an article written for now defunct publication Contributoria in April 2015 I interviewed Barry Sandrew, an internationally recognised entrepreneur, digital imaging expert and visual effects pioneer who invented digital colourisation in 1987. At the time Sandrew told me “A director has to have a good artistic reason to use black and white, and that doing so invokes a particular meaning to the project; it is a genre in its own right so not appropriate for all concepts.”

If audiences feel the need to avoid purchasing this film a second time, or even for the first time, then this would be a mistake. The Blu Ray release gives the option of both films to be made available to the viewer and certainly nothing will be missing from your picture if you opt for this newer version. Kevin Shaw is a colourist, with more than 30 years’ experience in the industry. He believes there is some truth in the notion of a stigma towards black and white on film. “There is a feeling that black and white is ‘missing’ colour rather than being seen as an alternative medium,” says Shaw, “and I believe this inclination persists today.”

At its heart Mad Max is a brilliant road movie, an exploration into the need for mutual trust and cooperation and how that relates to survival. It has little dialogue and instead both the picture and the visual cues are what drives the film. There is no overdrawn two handers or explanations and only a handful of scenes work to the traditional expectations. The removal of this colour has (perhaps ironically) given this film new light and a lease of life with audiences that may have previously shunned it. But super or casual fans should still engage and welcome the films return to screens, a unique chance to see a crisp and polished blockbuster in a black and white format bring some colour into our lives.

A double disc Blu Ray edition of Mad Max: Fury Road is released May 15th 2017

What Being a Journalist Means To Me

Over the last few days I’ve been forced, in a positive sense, to reevaluate what being a Journalist means to me. What exactly is it that I actually want to achieve from my writing, my career and my goals in the field of Journalism. My very first lecturer was a man named Tom Stokes and he told me on the first day in University that “you are a Journalist. Regardless if you never write a word, you need to think of yourself like a Journalist, act like a Journalist from now”

In today’s modern digital age, which has advanced so much further than even where it was in 2003 when I first started studying the field, Mr Stokes methods would probably be taught very old school – or decidedly perhaps a little out dated. But it was his words that stayed with me all these years later, and although ironically I never respected his message much when I studied under him, I think about those classes more and more the older I get and the more writing that I do. I believe that as a Journalist you have to be impartial, as impartial as someone might be in an internet age where everyone is labelled and cataloged online, where potential employers and co-workers can search for you on Facebook before you even start a job to get a sense of the person they’ll be working alongside. They used to say that first impressions meant everything, but now that’s not as true, since impressions can be made even before that. Well before that.

As a Journalist I believe that your writing and your voice defines you. I think you have to have an ability to speak about what you are passionate about and for it to resonate in your writing. If you are critical, you need to attack constructively, you need to formulate and plan your argument as a General might plan an Army’s march into battle. Too often I read lazy online blogs from people who know little to no facts about a situation, have no context about anything, before jumping in and ripping things apart. The indigestion you might feel after rushing a meal could be comparable to the backlash you receive after rushing a blog comment without the facts.

And people have a voice that they are willing to use. That is not something that they will hide behind. I don’t believe in the traditional mantra either, that a Journalist must be the authority on the subject because it was he or she who wrote an article in the paper, it is they who just happen to be lucky enough to write those words and (ideally) get paid to do so.  Too many Journalists have readily hidden behind the name of a good paper or the reputation of a good editor. Too true as well that good Journalist’s put their own reputation on the line every time they write for a new project, whatever it might be, exercising caution that it will not be something which affects their future career.

I believe being a Journalist is about channeling a voice for reason, analytically looking to be that observer and reporter.  I’ve noticed that more and more I tend to be the kind of person who will notice so much about the world around them, less about myself, but will definitely pick up on the cracks in the pavement and be looking for what can fill them in.  I wouldn’t be so brazen to describe myself as a medic but I would say that there is ultimately a need for me to assemble the pieces in the right order before presenting the work. It’s not perfectionism either, or the need to be seen as infallible, it’s simply a chance for me to tell the story I want to tell and get that message across for the reader. As a Journalist I am ultimately a storyteller.

Being a Journalist means a lot to me. It hasn’t brought me fame, or money, or security. It’s yet to give me the tools that I need to have a stable lifestyle or to succeed in raising a family, getting married or moving out of this shitty house. But it’s real and it’s honest. And because I believe in what I do I attempt to adapt as much of my skill in other areas to my benefit. My storytelling and my applicability has probably been the reason why I’ve succeeded in the job interviews I’ve succeeded in and my drive and determination – the same drive and determination that makes me finish an article – are the reasons why I’ve been selected to work for certain assignments, written anything at all and managed to continuously find a way to be noticed.

The confidence of writing articles has meant that, as a writer, I’ve been able to express some of my best work through simple posts and stories. I’ve been able to help myself a lot more than I ever thought I would just by having the focus to finish an article. And I’ve been able to find such a great grasp on the issues in those articles by solving them for the benefit of my alleged readers. There’s nothing I’m more proud of then my writing.

I believe in myself about 30% of the time. But I believe that I’m a Journalist 100% of the time, regardless of whether it means I’m succeeding in life or not, and I’ve so much passion about it and I care so much about it that there is nothing I would rather do. 

The Beauty of The B Side

B-side
noun
noun: B-side; plural noun: B-sides
  1. the side of a pop single regarded as the less important one.

There is something quite special about the single. Primarily a sample of the work to come, it has inherently provided musical artists with a platform to sell themselves to a mass audience, particularly one that might not be familiar with it’s product. In the same way as a free sample of laundry detergent might arrive through your letterbox, the single was packaged either solely or matched with an appropriate music video in duality, to enter your thoughts and mind and ultimately to affect your wallet, spending both time and money learning more about the music therein.

In 2017 the CD single is all but extinct in it’s physical format. The occasional novelty single, particularly in the category of Vinyl, is a useful tool for bands to market themselves in a nostalgic and somewhat independent (in the case of Punk bands, rebellious) format and achieve market penetration. Artists who embrace the single tend to sell these items to fans directly, either through their website or concert, offering a novelty spend that increases revenue and gives the music fan something they can’t just pick up in their usual retailers. The UK Singles chart continues as strong as ever, that is, but in a digital format based on downloads and iTunes statistics rather than actual physical units.

lot of records in sleeves full frame

But for me the CD single has always represented an art piece within it’s own right. Bands I grew up in admiration of, such as Queen, Metallica and Guns N’ Roses provided CD singles in abundance throughout a large part of their career – and I personally love the idea of discovering the singles artwork, it’s hidden linear notes, it’s photographs (which often differ from album artwork and themselves remain unique to that print) and, of course, their potential B and C sides. Often several months, if not years, elapse between the first and last single release from a given album; all a small insight into the personal history of the band. My experience has taught me that for every artist who is asked to sign a copy of their latest album, an artist asked to sign an obscure 7″ or CD single has responded with interest and intrigue, in itself something once considered throwaway and disposable (and in some cases ultimately useless once a consumer has purchased the album) has suddenly become a cherished piece of music memorabilia.

Beyond the physical, however, is another thing that we have lost in the replacement of real singles with digital music. Granted, iTunes will provide you a picture of the singles cover art, and it’s unique liveries on your phones track selection screen, but it will also be much more restrictive than a physical format. True again, is the lack of any additional tracks, which digital singles by their very nature do not contain. And rather than actually asking for iTunes to include B Sides, the point of one is to be as carefully packaged and sided. Designed, almost as much as the single itself, to sell the artist.

The fact is that it’s my belief most artists do not understand the importance of a B Side, and less so today, when such things are considered obsolete. But for those too young to understand what I’m talking about, the explanation of a B Side (and even calling it that), is essentially very simple. A traditional 7″ vinyl, upon which a single was traditionally released, contained an A side and a B side by definition of it’s creation. The A side would always (ultimately always) contain the single – whereas the B side could contain literally anything in the format of another song. Some bands often included another track from their current album, one which was unlikely to become a single in it’s own right, maybe considered a weaker or less commercial track. Others included a live track, either a popular single or not, from a performance which (especially in pre digital days) gave a listener the idea of what a band sounded like live in concert outside the studio.

While both are useful marketing tools, neither contained much creative spirit or use for this side of the record which, during most of it’s commercial life suffered from a continuous lack of use. The Rolling Stones are a band who released no fewer than 11 non LP songs between 1971 and 2009 for example, songs which could only be obtained through the initial single, having both the marketing potential to attract those looking for as much material from the band as they could but also those who really wanted to hear a more experimental song like ‘Cook Cook Blues’ and ‘Jump On Top of Me’. They might not have represented the best of their catalog, or even a song good enough to make the bands latest album, but it was a song which could be heard as an experimentation of their sound; maybe it featured a long time guitarist on vocals or a drummer playing bass.

Artists such as Elvis Presley found that B sides had a life of their own, releasing hits on the “flip side” rated just as strongly as their A side, becoming stronger in their own right. Others took the opposite approach, most notably producer Phil Spector who would encourage artists to fill B sides with on the spot instrumental material which would be unlikely to ever be played on radio; thus assuring no DJ would be tempted to flip the record over. The track ‘I’ve Got Fire’ from Iron Maiden appeared as a B Side single in 1980, to date the only officially released version of the song with vocalist Paul Di’Annio – the song proved so successful the band re released it a year later on the album ‘Flight of the Icarus’ with vocalist Bruce Dickinson.

And there are even more ingenious examples of the beauty of a good B Side. The group Bow Wow Wow released the track ‘C30 C60 C90 Go’ in 1980; with a blank reverse side that was allegedly put there to allow listeners to tape their own music from the radio. The Dead Kennedys EP ‘In God We Trust’ went one step further and included a message directly addressing the home taping of music by fans, claiming that it was time such a practice was upheld. Today you’ll even notice Pirate Bay includes a cassette and crossbones in their infamous logo because of the original anti-Home Taping campaigns of the 1980s.

As a young music fan I was particularly interested in taping over B sides (or indeed A sides) that I didn’t like, creating my own personal cassette single from what remained of the tape. I felt this was such a personalized way to become involved in the artists music – albeit a little unusual – that it encouraged me to buy more. At the same time the cassettes casing and artwork provided me a chance to see something unique that wasn’t on the album. The extra photographs, including one from the inside of Queen’s ‘I’m Going Slightly Mad’ single provided an insight I never expected – a nice surprise. Lars Ulrich’s liner notes until such time as he wrote about having nothing further to write and questioning why the band had released five singles for the same album! It humanized music, made it more personal and less disposable.

Today I truly feel that the music world mourns the loss of the B side. A silent death to which nobody paid any real notice, but which provided so much while at the same time constantly referred too as the “less important one”

Jurassic Park The Game (PC, Telltale Games)

Telltale Games have really been having some fun lately. Not content with bringing us the re-imaging of perhaps their greatest ever creation, in Tales from Monkey Island some years back, they’ve also been busy at work bringing our Movie and TV idols to life – with titles such as Back to the Future, Law and Order, Wallace and Gromit and even The Walking Dead. But they’ve also turned their attention to another, perhaps criminally overlooked franchise, which hasn’t had a decent video game in at least…well, ever! I’m talking, of course, about Jurassic Park.

When a Telltale Developer was talking about BTTF, he mentioned that a lot of those working on it considered it ‘their Star Wars’ and I could see what they meant, but in the same way I’d consider Jurassic Park to be my Star Wars! Because, despite being 9 years of age, I can still remember with clarity where I was and what I was doing (and even what day of the week it was) when I first saw Jurassic Park in 1993. Thus, in preparation for reviewing this game, I didn’t need much convincing to re-watch the original movie (and that wasn’t to jog my memory, as I’d seen it’s return to cinema just a few months back for the Digital Remaster). I’ve even read the original novel a few times in the past decade, so I know all about the alternative storyline and uses for the different characters, and how the film drastically altered that.

It’s at this point I should talk about the game, and introduce Gerry Harding, the Chief Veterinarian of Jurassic Park who serves as one of the games main characters. A little fun fact here, Gerry had a much bigger part in the novel then he did in the film, in the latter he only appeared on screen for a brief scene and was played by Jurassic Park’s producer Gerard Molen. Harding’s hard at work struggling between this and the visit of his estranged daughter Sara. After a mysterious prologue (spoiler alert) we’re then introduced to the main catalyst for the story, and finally discover what happened to the Embryo’s that Dennis Nedry was attempting to steal in the first film. The plots move quick and fast over four Episodic features and you’re tossed from conspiracy to confusion in an attempt to save yourself from an island overrun with Dinosaurs. The plot works so fast, at times, that you might find characters disappear off screen with little to no explanation as to why – and you’re left wondering if it wouldn’t have been a little better if they’d survived and the scriptwriter wasn’t so trigger happy (or should that be Dino happy).

Graphically, this game looks incredible, and the attention to detail (and fan service) meant my Flash Drive has never worked harder bringing it all to life. I can only speculate, but I imagine the developers must have really looked closely at those little extras in the film (the East Dock road sign, the colour of the InGen jacket, the DNA cartoon from the Tour film) in order to faithfully recreate them all here. Dialogue and voice acting is very smooth, with the characters gelling well and arguing where appropriate, and those doing the English voice work sounding as powerful and charismatic in the role as you’d expect. Dinosaurs like Raptors and T Rex are created beautifully – my personal favourite being the Dilophosauras – as we’re also introduced to a brand new Dinosaur. But that would be telling. Suffice to say, they play a big part in the plot, and you’d be wise to pay attention.

The game is split into four Episodes, each of which bring you about an hour of game-play, with the whole thing taking me less than five hours to play on my first run through. Looking at previous Telltale efforts it’s incredibly short, but there’s so much action going on, it’s an absorbing experience. Then you’ve also got a new feature, which means you could die at certain points in the game, unless actions are performed fast enough or accurately enough (or sometimes both) to get you through. In these cases you’re awarded a specific rank or medal after the task has been completed, and if you’ve not managed to get Gold, you have the option to replay the specific scenarios at a later stage. Some scenarios are harder, faster, longer, shorter and more puzzling then others – and there doesn’t seem to be any difficulty rate or progression as you move through the game – with everything at the same level for the casual gamer. Some puzzles in Episode 4, for example, will be easier then those in Episode 1.

Control wise I wouldn’t recommend a Gamepad for the PC version of this title, mainly because you won’t need it, and you certainly shouldn’t seek one out purposely to play it. Mouse controls do a perfect job, using just a few buttons, helping you navigate with ease. There are no options to turn difficulty up or down, but if you are struggling at certain points, the game will (after a few chances) lower the difficulty for you significantly. With that being said, the ending of the game doesn’t bring any great reward, there’s no ranking system – alternative ending for doing better or worse or making a different decision – and while it’s easy to draw comparisons between this game and Heavy Rain for PS3 I think this game has even less interactivity. When you want to move your character to a different viewpoint, for example, you have to actually change the camera angle and the AI moves him for you. Your not going to find a scene where, should you replay the game a second time, something different happens – and if you do the right thing in the right situation on the first run through it can cut out a lot of dialogue that you might want to hear.

Given that in Telltales previous movie tie in, Back to the Future, you could easily control either Marty or Doc depending on where you went and what you did I find this a personally bizarre way to control the character. Having also experienced the console version of this title I know it’s not just a framerate or PC exclusive issue and I’m baffled as to why the game seems to lack such basic character control.

In short, Telltale Games have developed a rather great “Director’s Cut” to the original Jurassic Park film, and although there are a lot of elements of puzzle solving, map quest, action and reaction there just isn’t enough here to justify it being called a game. This title is more like an interactive movie, with gamers doing very little to impact the storyline of the characters their controlling, and with just too short of a game to justify this full price release. I would implore Telltale to also consider releasing another title, in the form of an extra Chapter or a “Director’s Cut” for this game itself where they considering putting some more content in and bulking up the length of the story. That being said, for fans of CSI and Law and Order type point and click adventures, this is a game you’ll want to get a hold of.

Summary:

Pros: For Jurassic Park fans this game is a must, as it’s story alone fills in some gaps from the franchise, and lets you once again revisit the scene of the first film. Graphically this looks and runs amazingly. A good game for those who love CSI point and click adventures.

Cons: Criminally short and extremely non-interactive – with little incitement to replay once you’ve completed it the first time. Given the hype of this title and the success of their previous franchise this is, sadly, a let down. Content needs to be bulked up while the story could have been just a little bit longer.

 

The Last Story (Wii)

In an episode of Big Bang Theory, Sheldon Cooper recounts to a policeman the series of games that had been robbed from his apartment, making special mention of Final Fantasy 1 through 9 (and nothing after). I can personally relate, since the original Final Fantasy is my favourite game of all time, and Final Fantasy 7 was arguably the most pivotal game I’ve ever played (sorry Scott). Once Final Fantasy 9 had drawn it’s credits to a close I doubted they would ever repeat past glories. I mention this because when the man who created Final Fantasy, Hironobu Sakaguchi, and it’s iconic orchestral scores, Nobuo Uematsu, reunited for an original title on Wii I knew it was going to be something special – The Last Story is just that!

The game begins on the seemingly innocent setting of Lazulis Island, shortly after a period of Civil War, that has seen their Empire on unsteady ground. Enter a group of Mercenaries hired at the bequest of Count Arganan (the ruler of the region) to clean up some monsters in the area. Jumping right into the action it’s here we begin our quest, as you control Zeal (Elza in the Japanese version), one of the Mercenaries in this rag tag collection of friends. They hope that their unique service to the Court will eventually make them Knights and they plan on gaining honour, prestige, treasure and alcohol along the way. The characters are all as unique as you’d expect, and although you only play the majority of the game as Zeal, you will come to know each of them in their own special way. Whether or not the title refers to a hidden text that Sakaguchi had submitted, or had rejected, for a previous Final Fantasy remains the subject of conjecture – either way – this is a powerful and emotive script. Without taking too much from the major plot points, this story isn’t the most original thing you’ll see, doubtless this matters however, as it’s still a compelling and intimate adventure. No far reaching wilderness or majestic roaming of the Globe contained herein.

Those familiar with Final Fantasy will really enjoy the mechanics of combat in this game. There’s a little magic but you don’t need to worry about equipping the latest Materia to everyone and it’s generally easy to understand. For more novice players there’s a handy auto equip function that allows you to suit everyone up with the best you’ve got in your kit at the time – kind of like a Football Manager AI picking the best players for the team – and this is a really nice touch. It could be most likened to combat in FF7 Crisis Core, which is free flowing, and which gamers simply engage in battle in real time and then a small levelling up ceremony neuterers the end of that particular session.

Because this is a Wii title, and not something overly common on the format, you’ll also find battling is pretty easy – series bosses will have particular quirks to help you beat them – and generally you’ll find yourself progressing throughout the story without a major problem. Some of the harder bosses are contained in Optional Missions, that can extend the main storyline for a few hours at least, and don’t really give you anything of consequence you can’t already purchase in the market. That being said, you really should level up as much as you can, and take every available opportunity to grow in stature, equip more powerful weapons and take advantage of upgrades. This is because, after all, this is a Final Fantasy title (albeit unofficially) and staying one step ahead of the game is what battle mechanics are all about. While playing this game I used a Walkthrough Guide, unofficial mind, from a Japanese player who’d translated the guide into English. At some points I noticed that certain obstacles just didn’t exist and there have been theories online that the game has removed a few of the harder enemies (although nothing you’ll miss) to make the game more PAL friendly.

Graphically, and keeping in mind that this game only runs on a 60Hz television, this is the finest looking game I’ve ever seen on Wii. You’ll have a few frame rate issues through the faster paced scenes but it’s nothing that should dissuade you from the fact this is a clean, crisp and well rounded looking game, with everything from the deck of a ship to Market Stalls being recreated with fantastic and vivid imagination. As Zeal runs through town for example, bustling over the bridges and crawling through back alleys, you’ll really soak up the atmosphere of this game in more ways then you can imagine. And, to add to that, Uematsu has once again created an iconic score on par with the his best work of Final Fantasy, Crisis Core and Lord of Arcana. It’s deep, it’s rich, it’s powerful and adds to the game on a whole new level – especially during the meteor shower scenes which are reminiscent of Cloud and Tifa’s meeting in Niblehiem all those years ago at the beginning of FF7 (again, Scott, I’m sorry). Another connection to FF7 means the games length takes on a life of its own, and at the point where most titles are ending this one just keeps going – the single player alone clocks up near 20+ hours even for the most experienced of players.
As you progress throughout this game you’ll encounter a number of different regions and area’s throughout which to traverse. These include the decks of ships, underground passageways, cobbled streets, a Castle Courtyard and a lavish Ballroom. All of them allow you to play a different type of game, with underground passages providing little light, and the cobbled streets being overrun with people. It’s a great touch that really makes for expansive and long lasting play – just because you’re good in one area doesn’t mean you’ll be good in another (or even traverse it with such ease) – and the cut scenes provide for an engaging storyline that allows you to soak up the dialogue with pleasure. The voice acting can, at times, seem a little wooden – although the more powerful characters really bring their roles to life.

While this game has a lot of replay value, you do also get Multiplayer, which adds to proceedings a life of it’s own and becomes a game within itself. Thankfully, there are still a good amount of people left online playing this game, as you participate in team battles in either “Deathmatch” or “Co Op” environments and fight amongst a collection of arena’s which – although smaller, then say, Transformers Cybertron Multiplayer, do provide some good ground for beating the unholy hell out of your buddies. Another good reason for MP is the ability to play as characters from the game, and not just the original collection of Mercenaries, as you get to choose from a healthy collection of Major and Minor characters that appear throughout the story. Its not a Deathmatch MP party unless you’re playing as General Astar!

If there’s one particular flaw with The Last Story, and it’s hard to find, then it perhaps lies with its familiarity that we’ve already mentioned. At certain points throughout the plot (like when one character discovers the secrets of his dead father) you have a certain sense of deja vu from previous titles of a similar nature. That’s not necessarily a setback, but you do have to wonder just how original this title can be, given the rich tapestry and history of its principal creator and director. I speak from the point of view of an advanced gamer with a lengthy experience, but if you’re anywhere near new to the idea of playing JRPG’s (Japanese Role Play Games) then you shouldn’t have anything to worry about, or if familiarity is something you want to experience then all should be good. That being said, what idea doesn’t rip off another idea in the process, and can a game truly be as unique as it might have been a decade ago. More powerful gameplay mechanics have demanded that games are a lot more than just blocks falling at random intervals – and gamers are starting to demand more (especially in the wake of FF7 & FF8) – if a game says its RPG, then prove it.

In summary, I find a game like this a lot more accessible then the likes of Xenoblade Chronicles or (what I’ve seen) of the upcoming Pandora’s Tower. Of the three, and none of them are connected, it’s seems the most intimate and interactive that a JRPG can be – and even though it sticks to the usual unfrequented love and depressing misery – it takes a lot of humour and change from the criticisms that were launched at Xenoblade. For one, there’s a lot more Welsh and Irish voice actors, and the cast seems to have been plucked from all over the United Kingdom as opposed to just London. It’s also a shame that a game like this has come at the end of the Wii’s lifespan (although with consoles retailing second hand in the UK currently at £40 you can’t be beaten) because you could have so much more to build on if the Wii wasn’t departing for Retro pastures. This is a really great game and more people need to play it. Now.