D+PAD Review: Viva Pinata: Trouble in Paradise

D+PAD: Trouble in Paradise isn't without its shortfalls. The interface can often appear cluttered and unintuitive, which can throw off younger and inexperienced gamers from the get go. Just why exactly can't we have mouse support, Microsoft? Wandering Piñatas can still get in the way of another mid-action, meaning you have to reselect the first and re-order the action. Disappointingly, gardens are still built on a flat plain, leading to some dull, uninspired and often untidy environments. The tedious romance mini-games still pop up every time you tell a Piñata to 'get jiggy'. The new Desert and Arctic environments simply act as a quick diversion to catch newer Piñatas rather than build environmentally-themed gardens within them, and the included mini-games are poor and underdeveloped, acting as nothing more than a short hiatus for those with small attention spans, bringing with them terrible memories of last year's abysmal Party Animals.

But despite that, Trouble in Paradise remains tremendously good fun. Microsoft's biggest hurdle lies with the fact that Viva Piñata remains undeniably niche, and unfortunately Trouble in Paradise doesn't do anything to broaden its market potential. However, those of you who braved the first game, or indeed think the idea of evolving a Fudgehog into a Parmadillo sounds jolly good fun, would do well picking up Rare's second, and possibly last, foray into the weird and wonderful world of Viva Piñata.

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