Help Wanted: 50 Wacky Jobs (Wii)

By Steven Marsh

Published on Thursday, May 28, 2009

Graphics: 6.50
Sound: 6.50
Gameplay: 8.00
Replays: 9.00
Gamelength: 7.50

“Help Wanted” is here to fill that void caused by the collapsing American economy by supplying us all with virtual jobs.

A while back, we did a preview for “Help Wanted” based on a nicely made demo build. Since then, the game seems slightly refined, although largely unchanged and simply with much more content. The premise of working in a virtual world may seem ridiculous, considering that time could very well be spent on real work to make real money, but a bit of care has been put into the creation of this game to make it feel like a collection of fun minigames with a simple work theme. It’s fun, family friendly and has plenty of replay value, so if you’re out of a job and feel like killing some time while you wait for that next big offer, hop into the world of “Help Wanted” for some family friendly fun.

On the visual side, the game retains it’s charming, although choppy and technically flawed design. Characters, including animals and weird-looking guys on a stage, among other things, are a laugh riot and provide plenty of reason to keep on playing. The framerate is a bit messy from time to time, but it’s stable at high numbers for the most part. Most of the visual presentation doesn’t merit much discussion, but this is definitely a game that has to be seen rather than explained.

Quirky sound effects, weird voices and a crazy soundtrack definitely are not this game’s strongest points, but they do a good job of setting up the atmosphere for more laughter. This is one of those games that relies heavily on audiovisual cues to catch the attention of most players, so expect lots of random and just plain weird sounds.

In the final version, far more stuff is available for play. The box makes claims that there are fifty full minigames, but many of them are literally just harder versions of previous games. I’m of the opinion that this is meant to be a “pick up and play” collection of minigames for the entire family with a workaholic theme and a stupid story. The game does live up to that, but there are by far not fifty full different minigames. At any rate, the story mode has you working tons of different jobs to make money in order to buy a watch that allows you to turn into a hero and save the world from a giant incoming asteroid. I don’t really know how the developers came up with that, but it’s really just an excuse to have a second mode with essentially the same features and a sort of grind. I mean, honestly, they could have just went with a work simulation story and it would have been the same thing, but with less of the weirdness. Anyhow, earning money from the games allows players to purchase various uniforms that unlock new jobs, as well as other things such as masks that extend the overall game time limit. There’s not much to the overall game concept. The minigames themselves, however, are the meat of the game and they range from the very first job, “Courier”, to food-related jobs, dancing jobs and all sorts of other things. Most appealing is how the game teaches you to play each minigame with a pretty nice on-screen tutorial each time you load a new minigame. The controls are all very refined and it seems like the developers put a lot of effort into making sure that the motion controls work flawlessly, which deserves a serious nod. Twisting, pulling, shaking, spinning, flipping, flicking; you name it and the chances are, you’ll probably be doing it in “Help wanted”, which means there’s a huge amount of variety. Sure, the box lies about the actual content to a certain extent, but that doesn’t make the game any less of a joy to play. I played this with my sister, my 4 year-old nephew and my 6 year-old niece. They all enjoyed the game thoroughly and we had a very fun time taking turns playing the various minigames. This has quickly become a favorite game amongst the children in the house, but the adults seem to enjoy it as well. In short, it’s something that anyone can pick up, play and get into.

Overall, this is one of the most enjoyable minigame collections out there for the Wii, but a much larger selection would be nice if there’s ever a sequel.

-Qwirky audiovisual experience.
-Fun for the whole family.
-Plenty of replay value.
-Extreme amount of control variation.

-Minigame selection could be much larger.
-The game is unecessarily weird.

Bottom line:
At $29.99 MSRP, this is a definite must-have game for any family who likes to game together, but other gamers may want to spend their money on something else.

Overall Rating: 7.50

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