Ever wonder where Piñatas come from? Piñata Island of course.
UK Games Studio Rare (part of Microsoft Game Studio) has once again created a game that is amusing, exciting, bold and full of vibrant colours - Viva Piñata.
You start the game by getting the deeds to an old neglected garden plot, which you have to add your own personal touch of 'Grand Design' and the 'Chelsea Flower Show' to create a exotic garden that will attract even the wildest Piñata to come and take up residency.
After you are given your trusty shovel and watering can from Leafos, you have to get your hands dirty by clearing out the rubbish, digging up weeds, cultivating the ground ready to start planting flowers, vegetables and grass.
With each new addition to your garden, you will see another Piñata sniffing around and if all their needs are in your garden they may even decide to stay - then if another of the same species enters your garden you can get them to do a romance dance. (There are 2 Achievements on Xbox live for this - Romancer and Master Romancer)
In the beginning the game progression is slow and the constant interruption with notices and Piñata cut scenes become annoying, but for any five year old these cute, funny named Piñata cut scenes can be quite fun. Pretztail, Fudgehog and Mousemallow to name a few.
As you progress in the game you will unlock a larger variety of seeds and plants to buy along with different accommodation for your Piñatas and helpers.
The learning curve of the game is well thought out; you will never advance further than your skills. You are given experience point for growing plants and attracting new species. Each point goes towards your next level.
Nothing comes cheap on Piñata Island, but you do not need to worry about the currency to much, as everything in your garden can be quickly sold for chocolate money. You can buy a carrot seed, plant it and once it has matured you can sell it for five times the value. Even your Piñatas can be sold for coins. You can sell a whirlm for 100 coins, or feed the whirlm to a sparrowmint -which makes them romance, and then sell their offspring for three times the profit&.
You may think of your garden as a safe haven for your Papier-mâché friends, but you are wrong. Sour piñatas will from time to time enter your garden and cause havoc - until you find a way to keep them at bay.
So you have built your perfect garden the Piñatas are coming and romancing, your flowers and vegetables are growing, then a new piñata come along and you have to undo all your green-fingered work by digging up your vegetable plot and create an extra large pond, just because you want to accommodate one of the games many water Piñatas.
Gardening is hard work and never ending, lucky for us we never really need to go out in the cold, leave our comfy sofa or get out hands dirty.
Welcome to the world of Viva Piñata.
Rare have done a good job with this game, something for all ages, it may look childish, but any adult could pick it up, play it and find four hours have passed&A must have game for any collection.