Viva Pinata

I know the reason you listed Pokemon, Yu-Gi-Oh and Neopets was to show franchises that exist in multiple forms of media for profit, but I’ve always been impressed with the way Pokemon turned out. I’m not familiar with Neopets, but unlike Yu-Gi-Oh and Viva Pinata, Pokemon was a small game inspired by someone wanting to capture the fun of playing with insects and animals outdoors to a new generation of children who have lost on that experience due to overdevelopment in Japan. Of course, once it exploded, then came lots of marketing and licensed goods, but I always feel like that’s not so bad if the original product came out of a honest desire to create for the sake of good creation. Winnie the Pooh and Moomin don’t get any worse just because you could probably buy branded toilet paper of either franchise.

Which is not to say of course, that when it’s the opposite approach is done, the end product isn’t any good or entertaining, just that it’s usually rather obvious.


Not terrible, looked marvelous. But far from compelling gameplay. I keep meaning to start over & see if it catches on with me, but new and compelling games keep coming out. I mean, if I’d rather finish Just Cause or Full Auto or Cars than play Kameo, then it falls below the line.

The graphics are beautiful. I’ll think about it.

I don’t quite get the concept of Viva Pinata. Isn’t it a cute nurturing game where you build an environment for your pinata, and then cruelly beat it to death? Or are you beating other cute pinatas to death? Or did I imagine that bit when I watched the last 2 minutes of the demo at E3?

I’m so close to the end of Kameo that I can’t give up now.

Actually, the whole thing was conceived as a multiple-media franchise. The show was created based on the game specs, and the two were designed to complement each other.

  • Alan


Ah. Been there.

Sorry for dumping the invites to play GoW tonight everyone, but I was into my Viva Pinata game.

It’s quite a good game, really. Here’s my rundown after a few hours with it:

  • It’s a “kid’s game” in the way that Pixar movies are “kid’s movies.” Sure it’s kid-safe, and a kid can understand it and play it fine, but there’s enough depth and stuff to do that an adult like me can get into it as well. The TV show is not like this - it’s just a kid’s show, and there’s hardly anything there for adults. The game is less…basic…and doesn’t overwhelm you with obnoxious voice-overs.

  • If you’re a gamer, you’re going to hate the first hour of the game. Not because it’s a bad game, but because you’ll progress fast enough to be constantly interrupted by cut-scenes, new Pinata arrivals, new characters becoming available, etc. There will be stretches where you can’t get jack squat done in your garden because you get scene after scene after introduction after dance sequence after character arrival… And there’s a lot of hand-holding with the “how to play” stuff up front. You know, for kids (and non-gamers). Once you get past that phase, the game gets a lot more interesting and less annoying for more mature, core gamers.

  • It’s a higher overall quality game than PDZ by a long shot. I think Kameo is under appreciated, but it’s better than that, too.

  • There’s a bit of that “one more turn” feeling to it, though it isn’t turn-based. You find yourself saying “I’ll stop right after this happens” and then, after it happens, you say “well right after THAT happens, I’ll quit.”

I honestly haven’t gotten deep enough to know if there’s a major winner here, but it’s easily Animal Crossing quality or better.

I’m really digging it as well. It starts getting really really hectic after about two hours. There’s about 20 things you want to do, and so much more stuff to do pops up that you forget what you were doing before. This sounds like a bad thing, but it’s actually really fun. The game also ramps new things to play with and pinatas to try to attract at a great pace. You discover something new to play with about once every two-three mintues at the point I’m at now.

The game is like Animal Crossing on biker crank.

OK, here’s a question.

I want to get this because it seems BY FAR the most approachable game for my 2-year-old. And NO I WON’T BE PLAYING MUCH OF IT WITH HER, maybe a half hour every few days AT MOST. (Obviously she’s too young to actually play it, but I’m curious to see if it’ll engage her at all.)

BUT, my wife is concerned that if there’s any fighting in it, it won’t be something we want her to see. So, is there a way to disable all fighting? Is there a no-mean-pinatas difficulty mode or something?

+/- I thought Kameo was ‘OK’ and PDZ blew.
++ I LOVE the Viva Pinata Saturday Morning Cartoons they’ve put up on XBL.
– I think the Pokemon/Animal Crossing Genre should defenestrate while on fire.

  • Actually, all cutesy games deserve to die, with the possible exception of Katamari Damacy and its ilk.

So I just dont know. I seriously dont see picking this one up.


I’d love to see your definition of “cutesy” games. And why are “cutesy” games wrong, whereas saturday morning cartoons are okay? Also, Katamari Damashii isn’t cute. It’s just not “dark, urban and gritty”.

Sounds to me like someone’s struggling with something.

His inner child, I’m sure. Part of him wants to play with dolls, part of him wants to hang outside 7 Eleven smoking and cursing.

I don’t think there’s a no-fighting mode. The fighting is even less violent than what you see on a Saturday morning cartoon, though. Basically the Pinata stand/fly like 10 paces apart and do a little spinny animation, then shoot colorful squares at the other one. Eventually one of them wins and the other one becomes sick. Or, if it’s a Pinata that eats the other kind (like the frog pinata eat the butterfly kind), it sort of breaks apart and candy spills out.

Making certain species get along, or avoiding keeping them together, is part of the game.

I think it’s going to be damn near impossible for a 2-year-old to actually play, though. There’s a neat two-player thing for parents and kids where you just turn on the second controller, and you can both control the one little interface ring thing. So a parent can help their kid along with the controls. I don’t know how well it works, but it’s a good idea for parents with kids that are just old enough to want to play and “do something” but can’t really understand it farther than you telling them when to press the green button, or the blue button, or whatever.

Earlier today, I saved the game for my daughter and got the following tip (paraphrased).

Use real-time tool-switching to hit Seedos’ weak spot for massive damage!

Viva Piñata 1 PS3 0

Played a lot more today, and spend the last I don’t know how many hours watching my girlfriend play her garden.

This game is seriously addictive.

This got me scratching my head. What is the ilk of Katamari Damacy? Does it have an ilk? Anyway, shit post.