User Score
8.4

Generally favorable reviews- based on 424 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 41 out of 424

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  1. Feb 7, 2015
    7
    I appreciate the game and I think many people will love it, but it just wasn't for me. The art and story seem to be great, but I would have preferred not to draw shapes on the GamePad.
  2. Jan 6, 2015
    6
    If you know and play Platinum's popular games like Bayonetta 1 & 2, then you know what to expect with Wonderful 101, also by Platinum: it will be frantic, it will have crazy big-ass bosses, it will rate you with pure platinum, platinum, gold, silver, bronze or er... consolation medal (means you sucked at that particular segment of the game - which I did for quite a few parts of the game).If you know and play Platinum's popular games like Bayonetta 1 & 2, then you know what to expect with Wonderful 101, also by Platinum: it will be frantic, it will have crazy big-ass bosses, it will rate you with pure platinum, platinum, gold, silver, bronze or er... consolation medal (means you sucked at that particular segment of the game - which I did for quite a few parts of the game). However, it's different from Bayonetta though.

    The premise of Wonderful 101 is all about rather quick drawing reflexes. The whole game is based on having a group of tiny heroes that "form" (called unite morph!) the weapon you use against the alien invaders. And to "form" the weapon, you have to draw it out e.g. for a sword, it's a straight line up then press A; for claws, it's a reverse Z then press A; etc. So mostly the learning curve really revolves around drawing the weapon. (here's a hint: use the right thumb pad, I found it more responsive than drawing on the touchpad).

    My first 2-3 missions was a chore as I struggled to find my balance in how to draw the darned shapes. So I really hated it at first. But once I got the hang of it, I started enjoying it more as the game became much smoother and I became more proficient at getting at enemies. In fact, I found Wonderful 101 much easier to pickup than the 3DS' Kid Icarus Uprising which I gave up on as I hated its controls - I would say Wonderful 101's gameplay is saved by the responsiveness of the right thumb pad. Like Bayonetta, what kept me going at the game is that there is generally some freshness in every mission, and the bosses are really fun to deal with.

    Plus the game's storyline can offer a chuckle or two. Generally the game doesn't take itself too seriously so it has a lot of slapstick comedy, which is actually quite funny. Even bosses add to the comedy.

    However, there are some things that irk me in the game. Firstly, the camera angle. Sometimes it's hard to tell which way you're supposed to go because it's very limited in it's panning. It gets worse when you're inside a building and you have to use the game pad to move around - it's a pain. Sometimes it's because of the horrible camera angle means I fall to my death because I can't see where I'm going. Secondly, quick time events. Those frantic button presses at some points in the game is stupid and gives me repetitive strain injury. I think it could've done without it. Thirdly, sometimes the wrong unite morphs get registered and you end up using the wrong weapon and you have to frantically redraw. Fortunately, Platinum was smart enough stop time when you draw, so you don't get hammered. Fourthly, there are some cheap deaths. Sometimes, it's because I'm landed in a totally foreign situation where there is no hint on what I'm supposed to do and some moving contraption just killed me off.

    Overall, I felt the game overall was actually quite difficult. I played it on Very Easy and even then I died quite a few times. But the storyline and the variations in gameplay did keep me going to the end. I think this game could be much much better if they sorted out the camera angles and ease the controls a little. If you're looking for a perfect Platinum game, play Bayonetta 2. The Wonderful 101 feels more like a prelude to the greatness contained in Bayonetta 2. What Platinum didn't get right in Wonderful 101, they perfected in Bayonetta 2.
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  3. Sep 30, 2013
    6
    The game is good. The quality is there, but I thought it was going to be something better. Gaming sites were patronizing the game as if it was going to be a system seller when it is not. The game is good, enjoyable and a good purchase if you love action games, but there are more thing to play on the WII U so I would not recommended unless you have played all games available on WII UThe game is good. The quality is there, but I thought it was going to be something better. Gaming sites were patronizing the game as if it was going to be a system seller when it is not. The game is good, enjoyable and a good purchase if you love action games, but there are more thing to play on the WII U so I would not recommended unless you have played all games available on WII U because I would recommend any game before this one. Expand
  4. May 25, 2015
    5
    This game reminds me of an obnoxious, quirky anime culture that exists today that I actively avoid. I bought it because I had played Metal Gear Rising and because of thought felt that Platinum Games was a very talented developer. To this day I still feel that they are very good. However, Wonderful 101 is not only filled with gameplay problems, but it has a story that did nothing but annoyThis game reminds me of an obnoxious, quirky anime culture that exists today that I actively avoid. I bought it because I had played Metal Gear Rising and because of thought felt that Platinum Games was a very talented developer. To this day I still feel that they are very good. However, Wonderful 101 is not only filled with gameplay problems, but it has a story that did nothing but annoy me and almost encourage me to shut the game off. Between bad jokes, bad puns, an extreme abundance of stereotypes, and quirky 4th wall humor that was supposed to be clever I guess, this game is something that if weren't for it's great combat I would have shut off after the first few hours. Hideki Kamiya strikes me as a 10 year old who thinks he's a lot funnier than he really is, putting on a show and begging the player to laugh at every corner, but he is a talented game designer. The drawing mechanic is one of the most clever things i've ever seen before. My only issue with it is how complicated and annoying it started to become as drawing certain objects would get confused for the wrong objects as I would collect more formations. It became difficult to distinguish things like the whip and the claws. The game was laughably difficult or cryptic at times, asking the player to understand things that were never explained. I can't help but feel retarded when the game wants me to slash something with the sword but refuses to give any hints that I am supposed to do so. Another problem is the constant battles with the main villain, popping up about 6 times throughout the game and lasting upwards of 15-20 minutes each sometimes. The game seems like it was meant to be played on easy the first time playing and it feels like normal is only an appropriate difficulty once you've upgraded a bunch. I find it ridiculous that normal mode expects such intense reflexes assuming it's what most people would play. And I am an experienced gamer, I did finish the game on normal without too many problems, but I just felt that certain sections were asking a lot from anybody playing for the first time. Overall, this game was okay, with cringe-worthy dialogue and plot and great combat. Expand
  5. Nov 5, 2013
    0
    Games simply don't get much crazier than The Wonderful 101. It's pretty obvious the good folks at Platinum had a lot of fun making it, and if you allow yourself to get lost inside its over-the-top world, you might just have a lot of fun playing it as well.

    You play as a group of superheroes known as the Wonderful 100 (the 101st member is you, the player). Hailing from different parts of
    Games simply don't get much crazier than The Wonderful 101. It's pretty obvious the good folks at Platinum had a lot of fun making it, and if you allow yourself to get lost inside its over-the-top world, you might just have a lot of fun playing it as well.

    You play as a group of superheroes known as the Wonderful 100 (the 101st member is you, the player). Hailing from different parts of the world, they boast a sort of wackiness that has somehow become rare at the superhero genre, which is extra weird when you realize how ridiculous the concepts of most superheroes are anyway. Over a colorful story about a futuristic alien invasion, the game pays homage to campy vigilantes both from USA comics and from Japan's super sentai TV shows. The presentation is very good, with a great soundtrack, excellent voice acting, and a wacky storyline that constantly makes fun of itself (like one of the antagonists constantly ridiculing the heroes' outfits by calling them "cosplayers").

    The game plays like a beat-'em-up and real-time strategy hybrid, and let me just say you won't get far by simply button-mashing. Each main hero has an ability called a "Unite Morph": Wonder Red has Unite Hand (good for one-on-one fights and turning switches), Wonder Blue has Unite Sword (good against hordes of enemies and as a makeshift key), Wonder Green has Unite Gun (good against faraway enemies and fliers), and so on. You activate these abilities by drawing specific forms on the gamepad touchscreen or with the right analog, and it works very well once you get the hang of it. There are a total of seven main heros, each with their unique characteristics and specific Unite Morphs, and there are also a plethora of other abilities to get from the Wonder Mart. This forms the basis of a robust combat system, which is perhaps the game's greatest victory.

    It should be said that The Wonderful 101 isn't a game for everyone, though. More casual gamers could be put off by the controls and the frantic action; this really isn't an easy game. More experienced players, however, will have a blast trying to master the plethora of attacks and defense techniques, and will get particularly blown away by some utterly epic boss battles. Words won't do them justice; they're INSANE, and amount to an unforgettable experience.

    While the game's absurdly frenetic nature is definitely fun and original, sometimes the chaos is too much. This is reflected mainly when it comes to collectibles: you start with only a fraction of the Wonderful 101 in your team, and are tasked with finding new heroes (as well as memorabilia like Platinum Coins and Hero Figurines) as you brave the stages. So far, so good; the problem is that it's easy to miss little details with lack of camera control and so many things going on at once on the screen. Some of the collectibles are also hidden in totally non-intuitive ways, and the game suffers from having a lot of invisible walls arbitrarily preventing you from searching for goodies on every corner of a stage. Finally, for some reason you can't keep track of the heroes in your team in any meaningful way until you finish the game. This was a big blunder to me: each new hero comes full with name, country of origin, and all sorts of personal details, and yet the game prevents you to pore over those tidbits when you want to.

    Clearly the product of a development team with a passionate vision, The Wonderful 101 is never afraid to try new things. Most often it works, sometimes it doesn't, but ultimately it oozes creativity and amounts to a very engrossing adventure. You need to give the game a chance in order for it to really win you over, but you'll few amply rewarded once it does.

    Rating: 8.0
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Metascore
78

Generally favorable reviews - based on 75 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 52 out of 75
  2. Negative: 0 out of 75
  1. Dec 12, 2013
    60
    The Wonderful 101 bursts with charm, humour and style. It is very easy to care for the characters and their universe. But frequent trouble with the controls breaks the tempo far too often. Something that also racks up the challenge unnecessarily high in an already hard game. But at the same time the battle system is a joy, if hard to master. It’s a very good game with some rough edges that feels very well needed on the Nintendo Wii U.
  2. Oct 29, 2013
    90
    This is the kind of experience which Nintendo promised when it announced the console - the kind of experience it deserves.
  3. 80
    Full of ideas, humor and difficulty, The Wonderful 101 will keep you glued to the screen, which can be both good & bad. But a little bit of challenge from a difficult game never killed anyone, right? [Issue#234]