Viva Piñata Reviews

AuthorReview
Runch Optimus
425,916 (253,860)
Runch Optimus
TA Score for this game: 1,826
Posted on 23 April 09 at 16:28
This review has 60 positive votes and 6 negative votes. Please log in to vote.
Viva Piñata can best be described as a family-friendly wildlife and gardening sim, but it can be summarized by just one word: addicting!

Story:
Viva Piñata puts you in the role a budding gardener on Piñata Island, where you start with a small patch of dirt and are tasked to construct a garden as you see fit. You will be greeted by a girl named Leafos, and soon you will meet her brother Seedos, as well some of the other denizens of Piñata Island.

Despite the story being incredibly shallow, you’ll find that you don’t miss the lack of detail. In fact, you may find yourself skipping over the brief story elements just to get back to tending your garden. Viva Piñata is driven by the gameplay, not the story.

Gameplay:
The gameplay in Viva Piñata is incredibly simple, but it allows for a huge amount of customization and can become challenging when trying to manage the various aspects of a fully-grown garden. As the gardener, you have full control over the types of groundcover in your garden (dirt, short grass, water, etc.), you have the ability to plant, water, and fertilize plants and trees, and you can buy and place various items for your garden, from decorations to homes.

Of course, the main focus of Viva Piñata is to attract wild piñatas to your garden to make them residents. Piñatas will come visit your garden of their own free will, assuming of course that your garden meets their standards. This can be as simple as wanting a small patch of grass, or as complicated as desiring numerous requirements that depend on the types and quantities of plants, piñatas, decorations, and other things in your garden. Once a piñata is attracted to your garden and becomes a resident, it’s there to stay, unless if gets eaten or killed, which can occur fairly often. Let’s face it, some piñatas are tasty, and many wild carnivorous piñatas will come to your garden to snack…

Once piñatas are residents of your garden, you can work on having them romance and breed, you can equip them with accessories, feed them fruits and other food, or just enjoy their amusing antics. For completing various tasks, such as cultivating new plants or breeding piñatas, you will increase your gardener level, allowing you to attract more impressive piñatas and winning you improvements to your shovel and watering can, among other things.

Honestly, I’ve only touched on some of the aspects of Viva Piñata. There’s so much to do in this game that it is easy to get lost in the gameplay for hours on end. You’ll find yourself trying to justify completing one more task, which can easily turn into you working on a string of things you never intended to finish. Viva Piñata is fun, addictive, and compelling.

Graphics/Sound/Music:
The graphics in Viva Piñata are bright, colorful, and vivid, and they really contribute to the fun and cheerful mood of the game. Little details, such as the fact that you can still see tags attached to many of the piñatas, really enhance the cuteness factor. In particular, the antics of the various piñatas, which in many cases are quite subtle, give the game an endearing quality that will appeal to kids and adults alike.

Similarly, the sounds in the game are perfect. You’ll find yourself endlessly amused by the sheepish neighs of the Doenuts, or the cute sighs of the Elephanilla. The music is well designed such that it fits seamlessly into the background of the game. Even after hours of playing, you won’t find yourself annoyed by the score, which is quite an accomplishment in a game of this type.

Value:
Viva Piñata is a game that has no real ending, and given it’s addictive nature, it’s a game that you may end up putting far more hours into than you could ever have thought possible. Given the fact that Viva Piñata is currently available online in many places for under $10, it’s an outstanding value and definitely worthy of a spot in your collection.

Achievements:
Viva Piñata has 50 of the most varied and fun to get achievements of any game you are likely to find. With achievements for everything from naming piñatas and hiring helpers to achievements for dedication to piñata breeding and horticulture, you’ll find that Viva Piñata’s achievements give you something extra to strive for in the game. Of the 50 achievements, 49 are obtainable in about 25 hours of play, while the last requires you to play for a full 50 hours to achieve.

In fact, in a game like Viva Piñata that has no real ending, the achievements do a good job of not just letting you know how long you should keep playing, but also when you should consider stopping.

Final Thoughts:
Viva Piñata is a cute, fun, addicting game that is suitable for gamers of all ages and mindsets. It provides countless hours of fun for anyone willing to give its unique type of gameplay a shot. Highly recommended!
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This review has 20 positive votes and 3 negative votes. Please log in to vote.
Viva Piñata is an attractive and fun game to play, which is not surprising as it has come from Rare, makers of Banjo-Kazooie and many other popular games.

Basically, the game is a simulation game. You maintain an ever changing garden and attract different piñatas. It all sounds very childish, but once you begin to play the game, you realize you can have fun with it however old you are.

The story certainly doesn't lead the game, nor is it supposed to. There's an underlying storybook in the journal, but it is really unnecessary and in no way increases your knowledge of the game. It's almost just put in there as an entertaining thing for little kids.

The game even has its fair share of innuendo. There are names such as "Willy Builder" and "Fanny Franker", and even quotes such as "Can I interest you in something seedy? No, I don't mean it like that..."

Grant Kirkhope, who wrote the music for most of Rare's Nintendo 64 games, has returned with an amazing orchestrated score. It is beautiful and fits very nicely in with the game. You will never grow tired of hearing it - in fact, you may even want to turn the game on to hear it again!

Vibrant, colourful, wonderful. Whatever Rare are smoking, it's yet another crazy and individual game yet to be seen elsewhere.
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Sera Di Siah
810,893 (497,195)
Sera Di Siah
TA Score for this game: 1,826
Posted on 04 September 14 at 23:17
This review has 12 positive votes and 1 negative vote. Please log in to vote.
Like many, I suppose, I didn't pay much attention to Viva Pinata simply because it was obviously a game designed for kids. But I kept hearing great things, and so I figured it was time to try it out. First the demo, of course, and I immediately went out and purchased the full game. It's a blast.

The game's premise is simple: you're growing and tending a garden. Various actions in the garden attract various animals. Your job is to meet the needs of your new animal friends, and even breed them. And, of course, there are obstacles along the way to be overcome.

The animals are amusing. They are all pinatas, of course, and their names are variations on animals and sweets. So, you have the Mousemellow and the Sparrowmint. The Doenut. The animations are never less than cute and almost always amusing. When you meet the requirements for animals to breed, they do a little "romance dance" (it's a family game, after all), most of which are hilarious.

The game's pace is deliberate. You'll very rarely feel rushed, but you never find that you have nothing to do (except, perhaps, in the very early stages of the game). There are constraints early on. You have a small garden area, and access to a limited number of options, both of which increase as you go.

There are two control schemes--one which is simplified and uses only one analog stick, and an advanced which uses both. Younger gamers will probably like the simplified version, but if you are at all used to playing first or third person perspective games you'll have not problem with it. The game also does an excellent job of giving context for your commands in the upper right part of the screen--good for beginning and experienced players alike. None of this hand-holding gets in the way of the game, though. Graphically the game is beautiful. Colorful, creative and very well designed. The character animations are simply amazing. Also excellent are the animal noises and ambient sounds, which with surround sound are just amazing and engrossing.

And that's the best part of this game, really. You can spend hours immersed in it, and you never feel pulled out of the game world. It is perhaps one of the most relaxing and genuinely fun games I've played in a long time.

Certainly some will be put off by the game's cutesiness, as I was originally. But behind the facade is an immensely enjoyable and satisfying game that, while not full of thrills and action, certainly provides a unique and entertaining experience. Highly recommended.
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Ne0nAbyss
74,056 (46,572)
Ne0nAbyss
TA Score for this game: 1,826
Posted on 21 March 13 at 12:11
This review has 6 positive votes and 1 negative vote. Please log in to vote.
Viva Pinata is a cute, overly-addictive, family-friendly game that most gamers of all ages and skills can play. The game is the first installment of a series of 3 games, that as I've said before, no matter the age there's something for you.

Story

To generally start out the game, you've a rookie gardener on Pinata Island, you've been called upon to make a garden as you see fit and with the help of Leafos and Seedos, who are brother and sister, you must raise and nurture a large variety of pinata and plants. Although the game doesn't have a direct story line the game is mostly centered around the gamer and how they choose to make their garden.

Gameplay

The gameplay is like most sim games involving animals/gardens, you work on getting new pinatas into your garden, and planting new plants to advance in level. The leveling system makes it a bit complicated to level up for the younger people but for teenagers, even pre-teens, it's easy to understand.

The gameplay as I was stating earlier is ran through my getting pinatas into your garden by filling various resident and visiting requirements which become harder as the game progresses, some being able to visit early on but mostof the more difficult requirements take time. After they become residents you must keep them happy or they will leave, and if you're feeling adventurous you can romance them.

Another way of gameplay is planting plants, which also become available as you progress in the game. Some, like pinatas, harder then others.

Achievements

Not much to say on the regards of achievements beside that they are for the most part are pretty easy to obtain and that gives kids, and achievement finatics and easy sense of accomplishment when finished.

Sounds/Music

The music does sometimes become a bit annoying if left at full blast but the way they've made it, it seems it fits with the game very well.

The sound effects are definitely my favorite part and some things the kids would love! The sound of the adorable pinatas would brighten anyones day.

Final Thought

This game is perfect for all ages and overall I really have enjoyed playing, so I think everyone else will too.
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