Wii sports boxing is a game in which users compete against a computer or a friend with the ultimate aim of knocking their opponent out. It is a game in which the health bar is displayed as a circle made up of a number of segments which slowly begin to flicker and deplete as successful punches are landed. After someone gets knocked down a timer starts which progresses up from 1-10 and usually on the first knock down an opponent only has to wait a few seconds but on subsequent knockdowns due to more complex jab combinations opponents are less likely to get up before the timer reaches 10 and a knockout is declared.
The gameplay is action packed primarily since you and the computer are constantly either blocking avoiding or landing punches controlled by the wii remote in which you are holding which sounds very active and engaging.
The opponents you face progressively increase in difficulty to suit your ability. Obviously this means if you win matches your ranking goes up and so does your opponents. This system is good as it enables the correct degree of challenge for you and helps keep the game fun as you become more skilled at operating the controls and judging when to go in with the jab.
The opponent will often use combinations and harder opponents begin to punch more consistently and utilise the leaning technique in which they lurch to one side to prevent your punches being landed if you are straight upright.
This makes the difficulty progression from 0 up to around 500 a great stimulating boxing experience however there are indeed a number of gameplay drawbacks which are displayed on the subsequent paragraph.
The main downside is the fact that despite the controls being simple in theory to use when you actually come to punching your opponent it is difficult to aim punches for even the experienced user consistently with variety. By this I mean if you focus on the opponents face you may well be able to land a constant +Bombardment of punches but when the opponent is more skilled and blocks these punches leaning blocking and aiming for the opponents side all in one go to try and confuse the opponent is impossible as the controls are simply not sensitive enough. Sometimes your lean by movement of the controllers is not detected and although the wii is in theory supposed to detect your movements it hardly does whatsoever meaning aslong as you point the remote at the screen even when sitting down on your favourite sofa you are still willing to participate in this primarily fitness aimed game.
The lack of sensitivity also makes gameplay more repetitive as the variety of punches you wish to provide are not always made a reality on screen and more often than not that firm punch that you made supposedly by moving your arm sharply forward is just shown on screen as a weak jab.
The visual effects
The visual effect are actually quite good for this game especially when you view aspects such as the live boxing ring setting as zoomed into at the start of each of the three rounds assuming a knockout is not obtained before the end. In addition to this nice setting with relatively realistic appearance by wii standards at least you get the element of the impact air waves made visible and the beads of sweat you see launch off of a freshly punched face. The green impact cloud generated when a lunch is blocked is a nice touch also as on the replay shown after a knockout these effectively docile punches can be eliminated by the viewer allowing them to purely observe the landed punches to the other player that actually dealt them the damage.
These are shown by the colour of the players costume ... Blue or red in a cloud around where the impact is made and is therefore quite clear to see what is going on even in a close final brawl.
Playing with friends
The game also has the option to be played with friends which is a nice feature. All you need to do this is another nunchuk plugged into a controller and then you can enjoy a 2 player game. This is good as you both have the same control lack of sensitivity so this is therefore less of an issue than in the single player mode when you are against the computer. This is because the computer simply always acts to a certain degree of difficulty against you depending in your ranking and with your unpredictable moves which are not always detected this makes the gameplay verses CPU in single player blotchy to say the least. It is okay up to around 500 difficulty rating but any opponent above this primitive rating is difficult to defeat and in my opinion this spoils the game as it is impossible to master a game in which the opponent isn't only hard to defeat due to a high level of skill but also due to a lack of user control which for me lowers the appeal of the game significantly.
Since playing with friends doesn't have this sensitivity bias it is somewhat better although of course in general this lack of sensitivity will always lower shot variety and the fairness of the boxing match result in terms of accuracy thus leading to frustration of users and a lack of skill recognition on screen.
Another nice feature offered by this wii sports mini game is the ability to select mii's which you can customise to look like you for games such as wii sports and wii sports resort. This also helps in boxing as it makes the gameplay more personal depending on who is playing and adds somewhat to the user experience.
Although the graphics of the mii and the surroundings in boxing are primitive in design they are at least not pixelated and so the gaming experience in my opinion is not compromised by the graphics.
Overall the game is not the best that wii sports has to offer due to lack of controller sensitivity and difficulty in expressing the shots which you demonstrate in the room. It has a better difficulty progression system in terms of the skill level of the opponent than others such as wii sports tennis and the scenery in boxing is well done. The mii selection is good and the effects are nice but this cannot make up for the fundamental lack of skill and variety that can be brought to fight higher level opponents in this game and so lacks refinement.