2.86 out of 5
Read about our scoring system here
Don’t let the average score above scare you completely off this game, as we have rated it based on seven different areas of scoring which we feel are important for family games that keep you entertained while getting you in shape. This review is mostly for families looking for great games to play with elementary-aged children, and was tested by a mom, an eight year old boy, and a six year old girl. The details of this Nintendo Wii game review can be seen below.
Review of Carnival Games
Fun Factor – 3 out of 5
Carnival scored a little low on the fun factor, simply because some of the games were quite frustrating and based only on luck. The kids seem to like it, but not quite as much as the original Wii sports. You play for virtual prizes and tickets, which I thought they would get into, but they didn’t that much. They do like unlocking things, but for some reason it just isn’t enough of a draw to keep playing.
Family/Group Factor – 4 out of 5
Since there is a multi-player option for both multiple remotes and only one, we scored this game pretty well on the family factor. Everyone can get involved at the same time and play against eachother just like you can play alone. The only difference is you don’t get the tickets and prizes like you do alone. Still, being able to play together is important, and this game delivers.
Too Easy or Too Hard – 2 out of 5
Was it too easy? Absolutely not. The learning curve for some of the games was actually quite difficult and my kids had a heck of time. Many of them they quickly gave up on saying it was way too hard. Plus several are based on more luck than skill, leaving little room to improve on and lots of frustration.
Activity Factor – 1 out of 5
We weren’t too impressed with the activity factor on this game, since many of them you can even sit down and do. If you do have to stand up, the motions are rather weak. Two of the games actually require vigorous movements for a very brief moment, thus the reason it did get a 1.
Child Friendly – 2 out of 5
While the carnival theme and ability to change clothing or add goofy items is child friendly, some of the things said on this game are not. The vendors of the games can be quite rude at times, and my six year old actually pointed this out. She actually pouted a bit when they’d say things like “Are you even trying?” or “Maybe if you’d actually win we’d give you a prize!”. While I’m sure they were trying to get the whole carnival game experience, I didn’t think this was actually good for a child self-esteem.
Variety – 5 out of 5
Variety was the strongest point of the game, since there are quite a few games you can play right away and unlock as you go (unlike some games, the majority of the games are already unlocked while just a few are locked that aren’t even part of the “main” selection of games, but rather “super” games based on only scoring instead of tickets). This is a great game if you are looking for multiple activities for the kids, and the main reason we purchased it. I figured there would be plenty of room for them to find favorites and games the kids could easily play.
Addiction – 3 out of 5
There is a slight addiction quality to Carnival with the whole ticket and prize system, but not much. Some games weren’t hard to reach the “Jumbo Prize” level and a few bonuses were fairly easy to get with 25 or 50 tickets. However, I don’t know as I’d want to sit and play until we had 300 or 500 tickets just so I could wear something on my character. Plus of course I don’t have “I’ve done something useful” feeling as I do with Wii Sports. The kids will play for maybe 20 minutes before wanting to switch to something else that’s more entertaining. They aren’t too interested in unlocking items. My six year old has a computer game she collects tickets with and does enjoy it, but this one just doesn’t seem to have the same pull.
If you are looking for a slightly lazy game for the family, you might like it. I think we would have liked it more if not for the comments the vendors make. Carnival might be better suited for an older child who wouldn’t get quite so frustrated by the difficulty and rude comments.
My advice is to rent this game first if you have doubts on if it would be a good family game for you.