Metascore
72

Mixed or average reviews - based on 42 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 42
  2. Negative: 2 out of 42
  1. Okay, so it doesn't win the award for most action-packed adventure on Wii, but it is a beautiful, innovative and very different kettle of fish. A breathtaking experience. [Christmas 2007, p.46]
  2. Endless Ocean is a perfect non-game, whatever that means. [Jan 2008, p.60]
  3. It’s a no-brainer for open-minded gamers looking to diversify their collection. Dive in.
  4. If you fancy a radical change of pace, this is for you. Action fans need not apply. [Jan 2007, p.74]
  5. As freeform a game as you're likely to get, offering depth beyond measure. [Jan 2008, p.80]
  6. This game defines what Nintendo meant when they first used the word 'new-gen.'
  7. If you ever played Ecco The Dolphin on the Mega Drive, or its conversion on the DreamCast, and you spent some time just happily swimming around on that first level doing flips and jumps while enjoying the simple delights of the whole virtual-swimming experience, there’s a good chance that Endless Ocean is going to be right up your watery boulevard.
  8. 80
    Once all areas of the map have been fully explored, the replay value is threatened by repetition, but amongst the violence and destruction found elsewhere in videogames, it will always be refreshing to sit back – cup of tea in one hand, a remote in the other – and simply just relax in the deep blue.
  9. It’s something worth experiencing even if you end up coming to the conclusion that it isn’t for you, your gaming perspective will have been broadened.
  10. It may not have the splendid story of BioShock or the incredible environmental detail of BioShock, or indeed the cool name of BioShock, but it's a real breath of fresh air in a gaming environment that has become stale with relentless shooting and violence.
  11. It's strictly a deep-sea diving simulator with heavy emphasis on exploration, treasure finding and aquatic discovery. With that said, it's a mesmerizing experience. Nintendo produces a vivid, wondrous underwater abyss to explore, complete with plenty of missions to fulfill.
  12. A great value with a surprising amount of modes and depth. While there is no overriding goal to the game, you still will have plenty of things to do and tours to give during your stay in the ocean.
  13. 80
    It's going to last you as long as you want to keep on exploring. There's a lot of sea to explore before you can say you've seen it all.
  14. 80
    Arika has created a very good, albeit different title that centers on the process of exploring the ocean and both seeing and cataloging its inhabitants. There is almost no way to lose (and the aquatic life is all safe, sharks included), but you will have fun all the same simply discovering new things, whether that encapsulates a humpback whale or a long-lost underwater civilization.
  15. A charming and unique experience. Gamers with an open mind toward design will find a lot to admire here. It may even make you question what makes a game a game.
  16. 80
    Endless Ocean isn't like most games. While others drive tension and excitement to a fever pitch, Endless Ocean's deep-sea visuals and bubbling sound effects slowly dissolve your cares and stresses -- while occasionally eliciting gasps of awestruck disbelief.
  17. 80
    There’s something pretty telling about a game that can suck away hours of your time before you know it. That’s just what Endless Ocean did to me. Despite not being a game in the classical sense, Endless Ocean is a solid and fascinating diversion.
  18. The game's absence of goals won't please everyone. If you want drama, suspense, and action, you'll have to look elsewhere. [Feb 2008, p.87]
  19. Despite the uncomfortable number of missed opportunities and graphics that fall short of current-generation standards, tooling around underwater and leisurely unfolding the central events in Endless Ocean remained unexpectedly delightful and engaging until the end—and even a few hours after.
  20. 75
    If you’re looking for something that’s different and is completely about exploration, then you’ll enjoy what Endless Ocean has to offer.
  21. This isn't a game for everyone, but for those who get the appeal, it's a success. Over-acheivers need not apply; you'll either quit within minutes or go insane and break the disc. Endless Ocean is a break, not a conquest.
  22. Endless Ocean is a unique experience that showcases the Wii in a whole new way, and at $29.99, the game represents a good value. You’ll never have the same dive twice, and it’s nice to have a game the kids can play where a shark won’t accidentally eat them.
  23. Of course, a game about diving will probably never have mass appeal of Mario, but it is surely fun - a welcome change against the rash of speed and violence often found in today's games.
  24. Endless Ocean is a specific type of game for a specific kind of player. Leisurely swimming and looking for wildlife may be a bit slow paced for some, but if you find yourself glued to Animal Planet on Friday nights, it gives you a chance to live out your dreams of undersea discovery.
  25. Arika reminds us that so little of our gaming relaxation time is actually spent relaxing, making this a healthy diversion that deserves recognition. [Jan 2008, p.88]
  26. Endless Ocean is a game that goes out of its way to ease the player into its world. It's so calm and relaxing that at times you'll wonder if you have a pulse, only to suddenly spring back to life when something catches your eye - be it a massive shark or some sunken treasure.
  27. It comes across as more of a toy then a real game, and with a budget price of $29.99 it is well worth the purchase for anyone seeking a way to wind down that won’t numb the brain.
  28. If you’re into adrenaline-pumping thrills and any game slower than F-Zero,, don’t expect to get much, if anything, out of this game. If, however, you enjoy paced simulations and the thought of collecting stuff, you may want to put Endless Ocean on your sonar, at least for a rental.
  29. Endless Ocean is a unique game that will strike a chord with some and fall flat with others.
  30. More a learning tool than a game, Endless Ocean will appeal best to anyone interested in marine wildlife or gamers who cannot resist "collecting them all."
User Score
8.1

Generally favorable reviews- based on 58 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 35 out of 38
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 38
  3. Negative: 3 out of 38
  1. BobbyMeeks
    Jul 24, 2008
    10
    I must be old... I love this title. With all the rage and hectic schedules in my life - from ex-wives and stupid people I work with toI must be old... I love this title. With all the rage and hectic schedules in my life - from ex-wives and stupid people I work with to managing the ball games and homework of five children - it is such a welcome release to just scuba dive in my living room. I have had several of my children pile on top of me as we explore the depths. The music is pretty but kookie - but the slow-paced exploration is fantastic. I love this game! Full Review »
  2. Cardoso
    May 7, 2008
    10
    Absolutely amazing. The best relaxing gaming of all times.
  3. Jan 26, 2013
    7
    Endless Ocean has something for both casual gamers who want to have a relaxing time and dedicated completionists.

    The Good: Believable
    Endless Ocean has something for both casual gamers who want to have a relaxing time and dedicated completionists.

    The Good: Believable creature models and environments; you're free enough to play it at your own pace; great original music score.

    The Bad: Terrible human models; barely a real "game"; cheesy new age songs.

    Endless Ocean is an underwater diving simulator and as such it does a good job in accomplishing its first "directive": to deliver some relaxing undersea exploration experience without lots of "whys" and "hows" for the casual player. Those who like marine biology or just want to have a nice ease playtime will be easily lured into it by the nice representation of fishes, big mammals (including whales and seals), birds, crustacean and pretty much every other possible sea-related life form.
    Of course, the Wii is far from being a graphics powerhouse by any means but well-choosen textures provide a nice final result in this front--except for human models, which are just empty plastic shells. -.-
    More than that, the game even shines in the memorable occasions it offers you the opportunity to face--and interact with--huge beings like the Atlantic Northern Right Whale or the Giant Squid. (Achieving this degree of epicness by creating some truly breathtaking moments without cheap graphic tricks is something Arika should be proud of.)

    The objectives in the game aren't really compulsory, so you'll get several "quests" to perform every now and then--people asking for guided divings, fish photos for magazines--but they can just be ignored and you'll be fine anyway. You can't die either, so it's totally on the easy side to fit the casual "Blue Ocean" (no pun intended) market Nintendo aimed so well in this generation of consoles.

    On the other hand hardcore gamers tend not to dig Endless Ocean for the very same reasons, but if you're the completionist type there are plenty to unlock and uncover (and there's a good chance you'll feel compelled to do so): a fauna encyclopedia to fill in (and creatures change depending on where/when you dive), a map to unfold, historic relics to scavenge, secret places to find, a major local legend to clear up (and ultimately "beat" the game) and more.

    It's easy to mistake Endless Ocean for another careless shovelware Wii release, but one couldn't be more wrong in this case since Arika took the hard route by really trying to offer something for everyone--and succeeding.
    Full Review »