Capsule Review: Go Vacation

(A note on versions - this game was originally released for Wii in 2011. An enhanced port was released for Nintendo Switch in 2018. This review is based on the Switch version. While there are several minor changes and improvements over the Wii version, the core game is essentially the same.)

A sports minigame collection set in an island resort. Activities range widely from table hockey to skydiving to playing a glass harp, connected by a surprisingly rich hub world to explore and featuring a surprising amount of customization in the form of outfits, vehicle skins, a variety of dogs that can follow you around, and a villa for the player to lay out and furnish.

While there is a lot to do, with over fifty minigame activities plus some exploration-based side activities in the resort hub, most of it is fairly shallow. Activities are kept approachable with simple controls but generally also have simple mechanics that don’t allow for strategic depth or differentiation - racing cars ends up basically the same as racing ATVs or jetskis. As a result, the novelty can wear thin very quickly even though most activities have multiple modes or difficulties. Additionally, while the resort is clearly designed to be fun to spend time in, awkward controls and frequent load screens for NPC interactions create too much friction for this to be a good way to relax.

The game can be fun with a friend and is likely good for children or families. Solo adult players will likely get bored fairly quickly.

I Stopped Playing When: I explored the Marine Resort and tried each activity with a friend, and then explored the City Resort and tried its activities by myself. The former was fun, the latter was not, and my friend wasn’t interested in playing any further.

Docprof's Rating:

Two Stars: Meh. The game has some merit - it probably held my attention for at least an hour or I came back to it for more than one play session. But there wasn't enough draw for me to stick with it for the long haul.

You can get it or learn more here.