What do hypnotizing a man, unsheathing a sword, squeezing a toothpaste bottle, plugging a nostril, spinning a windmill, leveling scales, protecting cake from projectiles, balancing ice cream, cleaning a litter box, rock climbing, running a spotlight, and playing guitar have in common? They are all part of the over 200 microgames that WarioWare: Get It Together may throw at you at any given time. The sheer variety present in the microgames is staggering, showing that Nintendo is at their best when they allow their developers free rein to run with their most creative impulses.
WarioWare: Get It Together is the latest in the long running WarioWare series, which had its debut on the Game Boy Advance in 2003. Every installment is based around completing multiple fast-paced rounds consisting of 10 to 20 microgames each, with every game lasting only a few seconds. The highlight of WarioWare has always been the creativity on display. Many microgames are hilarious, featuring absurd tasks to complete and ridiculous artwork. I found myself laughing non stop as the game threw increasingly more silly tasks my way. Sometimes the microgames are funny, while other times things hiding in the background are just as entertaining. But look quick! Most microgames are over before you even understand what is happening. The game teeters on the edge of becoming a sensory overload as you attempt to take in the artwork, understand the task, and complete it successfully all within seconds.
WarioWare: Get It Together features multiple modes, including Story, Play-O-Pedia, Missions, Crew, Variety Pack, and the Wario Cup. The Story mode must be completed first to unlock the additional modes, and can be tackled with 1 or 2 players, while the Play-O-Pedia is a 1 to 2 player mode which allows you to replay levels/games you’ve already completed.
Let’s first talk about the Story Mode, before covering the other modes. Wario and his team, stationed in Diamond City, have just completed their video game. Unfortunately, there seems to be a few bugs in the code, causing Wario and his team to be sucked into the game and forced to fight through the stages to defeat the bugs. Every level they encounter is designed by a different member of Wario’s team and unlocks that individual as a playable character. Wario must rescue his team, clear out all the bugs, and get his game functioning again. As a story, it isn’t much, but it provides all the background needed to launch players into the frantic microgames.
Levels are broken down into themes based upon the character which created the level. The microgames loosely adhere to the level’s theme. Themes include Sports, Culture, Fantasy, Nintendo Classics, High Tech, Remix Rounds, Nature, Food, and more. Each level is further broken down into 10 to 20 microgames, with levels increasing in speed as they progress. The end of every level features a boss, which is just a more in-depth microgame, normally consisting of multiple goals which must be accomplished, rather than a boss fight as you might expect. Of the themes, I enjoyed Nintendo Classics the most as those games were set in the world of various Nintendo games including Mario, Donkey Kong, etc.
Characters are introduced via small, animated cutscenes and short tutorials explaining their abilities. All characters have unique abilities, making them helpful in some microgames, and burdensome in others. When you inhabit a character’s level, you must have them as part of your team – though you are welcome to choose the remainder of your team from any of your available characters.
Teams consist of three to five characters and can be selected manually or by allowing the game to auto choose for you. These characters are then used at random, changing with every microgame. Characters available include: Wario, who wears a jet pack and can dash attack left or right; Cricket, who excels at high jumps; 18-Volt, who shoots discs; Mona, who is constantly moving on a scooter but can throw a boomerang which can be controlled; 9-volt, who is in constant motion on a skateboard and can attack with a yo-yo; Dribble & Spitz, with Dribble in a flying cab and only able to fire his bazooka to the right, and Spitz in a flying cab and only able to fire his bazooka to the left; Dr. Crygor, who is an excellent swimmer; Mike, a robot who loves to Karaoke and can shoot music notes upwards; Kat & Ana who both jump nonstop, but Kat can throw her shuriken to the right, while Ana can only throw to her left; Jimmy T, who does a dancing dash attack in any direction; Ashley, who can cast spells in whatever direction she is facing and flies on a broom; Orbulon, an alien who sucks up things below him using his spaceship tractor beam; 5-Volt, who has out of body experiences when she sleeps and can warp to wherever her spirit is positioned and then emit a shock; Red, who is able to drop bombs that explode on impact; Master Mantis, who can jump onto the ceiling and walk on it; Lulu, who can float upward and perform a ground pound; Penny, who has a water blaster and moves in the opposite direction of the blaster due to the recoil; and Pyoro, who can extend his tongue in multiple directions.
Microgames begin with quick instructions before giving you mere seconds to succeed or fail: “Hit”, “Clear the way”, “Block”, “Clean,” etc. are a few of the random instructions thrown at you. From there you must begin wildly attempting to figure out what is happening in the game and how to complete your goal. For a couple frantic seconds, you’ll be pounding buttons, jumping around the screen, and attempting to figure out what you can and can’t do – all while laughing at the ridiculousness of it all. Within seconds, you’ll be in the next game, and in barely a minute or two you’ll already be at the boss. The game comes at you quickly, leaving very little time to dwell on a specific microgame.
Failure happens, especially the first time you encounter a micrograme, and each level has a specific number of times you can fail before hitting the game over screen. Most levels give players four chances, although later areas only give one. To continue, you must spend points which you earn from completing missions and levels. The cost to continue is low, only 100 points, and every level completed normally earns you a base score of 1,000 points. So, you’ll have more points than needed to complete the game, even if you find yourself struggling on a few of the late game challenges.
I thoroughly enjoyed every level and the frantic pace at which these ridiculous tasks were thrown at me. This is a great party game, one best played with a friend so you can blame each other for your failures and laugh together at the absurd details you’ll catch. The characters are diverse, and the various abilities they possess ensure that the game never grows stale. That said, a few characters are plain bad for completing some of the tasks, essentially guaranteeing a failure. This does not occur often but can be frustrating. Thankfully, there is little harm in starting a level over and choosing a different team if you’re really struggling.
As previously stated, completing portions of the Story Mode will unlock other options on the main menu. We’ve already discussed the Play-O-Pedia, so let’s look more into the Crew Mode, Wario Cup, and Missions, as these will help provide your endgame content.
The Crew Mode gives players the option to choose to enter the Break Room or Emporium, or to access their Play Data. In the Break Room, players can select a character and view various details about them, including listening to their voice and practicing their controls. Choosing to view the Play Data will provide statistics on how many times each character has been played, number of wins they have had, and their win rate. The Emporium opens after completing the game and allows you to purchase items, called Prezzies, which you can give to characters in the break room. Giving Prezzies to characters promotes them to a new level, which in turn unlocks new customization options, artwork, and increases that character’s multiplier for Wario Cup scores. Prezzies can be purchased in one of two ways using points earned in-game. A few Prezzies are available daily for outright purchase, allowing you to choose items you specifically need or want, while those willing to take a risk can visit the Cluckaede to purchase mystery items from one of two vendors. The first vendor sells basic Prezzies while the other sells rare Prezzies, with each vendor offering options to purchase Prezzies one at a time or in a set of ten. The basic Prezzies cost 100 points, while the rare Prezzies are 500 points. There is a detailed journal which keeps track of what items you have and gives various hints about them. These hints will help you give the item as a gift to the right character, ensuring they like the item and thus level up. Giving a gift to a character with no need for that Prezzie will result in less XP earned. The Prezzies are a creative way to keep players playing after the core game is complete.
Missions mode grants you awards for achieving various goals, with every goal completed providing you with points which can then be used at the Emporium or to continue after a game over. There is a wide variety of missions available and Mission mode will take countless hours to complete in full. The Variety Pack mode features a mixture of game modes that can be played with 1 to 4 players using the microgames you’ve unlocked.
Wario Cup is a one player mode which has new challenges weekly. Players will earn rewards based on how well they do in the weekly Wario Cup and their character’s multipliers. There are two types of challenges: Timed Attack and Score Attack. Timed Attack is based around how quickly you can complete a certain number of microgames while Score Attack gives you points for each microgame you complete. Your score is compiled based on the crew member’s job title, difficulty level, and game speed. Additionally, the game does factor into the score the difficulty of completing a specific microgame with certain characters and rewards higher points to compensate. I do have a bit of a problem with Prezzies raising multipliers for Wario Cup scores, as it teeters dangerously close to feeling like cheating. Scores are ranked on a national leaderboard and due to Prezzies increasing character’s levels, the scores aren’t necessarily based on skill, rather whoever has the most time to grind for Prezzies and promotions. Still not as bad as pay-2-win, though.
While these modes are nice additions, it is arguable how many players will feel the need to unlock everything and continue weekly challenges in the Wario Cup after completing the main story. Personally, I’ve never been a fan of these types of modes but see their inherent value and understand that many people are. I do appreciate this much thought being put into the endgame content, since the story mode is incredibly short, especially once you factor in the cut scenes, which help give a bit of background but do little else aside from serving as filler for an otherwise extremely brief experience. The base game can be completed in two to three hours based on your skill, but the Emporium and Wario Cup could easily add many more hours for those who enjoy those types of experiences.
Summary: WarioWare: Get It Together, despite its rather short campaign, features over 200 incredibly funny, absurd, and downright creative microgames for players to complete. You’ll find yourself laughing your way through the experience, fighting with your friends over who failed a game, and savoring your triumphs over the late game’s harder challenges. The addition of the Emporium, Break Room, Missions, Play-O-Pedia, and Wario Cup are nice and will keep the game fresh for many players well after they complete the story, but a few players may not enjoy the grind to unlock all the Prezzies available. As it stands, WarioWare: Get It Together is a great, though short-lived, game – perfect for a night in with a friend.
WarioWare Get It Together
WarioWare: Get It Together, despite its rather short campaign, features over 200 incredibly funny, absurd, and downright creative microgames for players to complete. You’ll find yourself laughing your way through the experience, fighting with your friends over who failed a game, and savoring your triumphs over the late game’s harder challenges. The addition of the Emporium, Break Room, Missions, Play-O-Pedia, and Wario Cup are nice and will keep the game fresh for many players well after they complete the story, but a few players may not enjoy the grind to unlock all the Prezzies available. As it stands, WarioWare: Get It Together is a great, though short-lived, game – perfect for a night in with a friend.