Last week I gave my impressions of the Resident Evil: Revelations Demo, and this week I am prepared to do the same for the Mario & Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games Demo. Both games are on completely different ends of the spectrum, so this article will be a little different. First, I want to give my impressions on some general stuff.
I will admit that I was a little shocked to see how good this game looked on the 3DS. There aren't as many polygons as its console counterparts, but it sure looks good nonetheless. The overall presentation is pretty cool and sticks with the theme London chose for its 2012 Olympic Games. While I'm on the subject, I have mixed reactions about the 3D effect itself. In some games the 3D is barely noticeable (25m Rapid Fire Pistol), in others it's a little distracting (Football), and sometimes it looks pretty cool. Enough of the presentation, let's get to the gameplay.
I am 100% new to the Mario and Sonic series, so forgive me for my ignorance. Gameplay wise, I was surprised. Every game controlled quite well and used a variety of different styles from just one button, to stylus control and even a little gyro functionality. You get to try out five of the different Olympic games on the demo including: 25m Rapid Fire Pistol, Football, Trampoline, 100m backstroke, and BMX.
25m Rapid Fire Pistol is an easy game, but it still is a little fun. Your objective is to get the highest total by shooting five targets. You will receive more points as you get closer to the middle. Your targets will automatically shift past you and all you need to do is time your shots correctly with the R button. Not too complicated or impressive, but it's neat to try and top your best shots. 3D doesn't really add anything to this game, at least not that I noticed.
Football made use of just the slide pad, but it did so in a cool way. Before a ball would be tossed your way you needed to pull down on the slide pad to aim and release when the ball gets close (you'll know because it flashes). Some balls are worth more points, and occasionally a new goalkeeper will appear to make things interesting. My problem with the 3D here is that I would get distracted by its strength and that would make it difficult to judge the distance of the incoming ball. Controls well and it's fun, but not a winner in the 3D deparment.
Trampoline was a little disappointing; I wanted to choose and perform my own moves, but the game forces you to use just one button. As you land, you will need to press A in time with your shadow. It is extremely boring and could have provided a much better experience; did anyone else want to transfer to the second trampoline? I certainly tried.
100m Backstroke is about what I expected. It's a boring take on the non-entertaining backstroke competition. To swim you needed to complete full circles on the touch screen with your stylus with better circles giving you a better speed. It works well, but it isn't all that fun.
SEGA and Nintendo saved the best event for last, BMX. In this game you will use the combined efforts of the slide pad, buttons, and gyro control! As you race your opponents you will need to make jumps with the A button while steering with the slide pad. The trick to win these races is to land your BMX as perfect as you can, this is done with gyro controls and upon perfect landings you will receive a speed boost. You can easily take out anybody with great landings.
Overall, the demo is a mixed bag. There are definitely some shining moments and some utter crap. Granted the full game will feature a ton more Olympic games, so it would be unfair to judge the entire game. I still have no real interest in adding this to my collection, but the demo is a fair taste of the type of stuff to expect. There will be a variety of different modes in the final retail version that aren't showcased in the special Demo medley. I would say that you should check out the demo to see if this is something you'd like to play. Fans of the Mario and Sonic Olympic series will definitely enjoy the game, so with this kind of thing it really comes down to personal taste.