We all know that it was Wii Sports, not Legend of Zelda: The Twilight Princess, that has made Nintendo's little wonder the runaway success of this console generation, but Nintendo keeps on telling us that it hasn't forgotten its loyal, more hardcore audience. For those of us who have been playing Nintendo games since the days of the NES and SNES, that makes Metroid Prime 3: Corruption an important game. While not an FPS as such, it's the nearest thing Nintendo has to a Halo or a Killzone, and those of us whose Wiis have spent much of the year gathering dust are getting desperate for a Nintendo classic with some meat to it. The question is whether a Metroid - and one designed to fit around the Wii's unique controls - can convince the hardcore fanbase and stand up to the increasingly sophisticated competition on other consoles.
Well, the good news is that the controls are superbly implemented. With the original Metroid Prime, Retro Studios did an incredible job of refitting the Metroid series for a first-person perspective without losing any of its core values, and here the team has done equally stellar work in adapting Metroid Prime for the remote and nunchuk. The Nunchuk is used for forward, backward and lateral movement, while the remote works as a targeting device, moving sights and cursors within the main screen area, but rotating the view once these push towards the edges. It's beautifully done, and gives the game that immediate sense of physical connection between player and character that is a factor in so many of the best Wii games. You don't have to prance around in front of the sofa like the guy in the current TV advert, but there are times when Corruption makes you feel like it. Kudos, Retro.
And kudos too for finding other interesting ways of using the remote and nunchuk that build on this foundation without feeling like totally pointless gimmicks. Within even the earliest levels, you'll find interactive panels and devices that have you pushing, pulling and twisting the remote, plus a grapple which can be used to yank items and enemy shields towards you and - later on - swing across chasms. It's all good fun, and it all adds to that important sense of being there.