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Viva Piñata: Trouble In Paradise

Viva Piñata: Trouble In Paradise

Viva Piñata: Trouble In Paradise

Viva Piñata: Trouble in Paradise is the Xbox 360 sequel to the critically acclaimed life simulation game entitled Viva Piñata. The title was officially announced on May 13, 2008 with a September 2, 2008 release date in North America, A September 5, 2008 date in Europe, and a September 11, 2008 release for Australia and Japan simultaneously.

Viva Piñata: Trouble In Paradise Plot

The second Viva Piñata game for the Xbox 360 invites gamers to return to the magical Piñata Island to continue his/her job as a gardener and to make yet another garden for the island. Unfortunately, not all is well on the island, as Professor Pester and his gang of Ruffians have wiped out Piñata Central’s computer records while attempting to steal the information contained within to overrule the entire island, thus stopping all parties' Pinata deliveries. As a result, all knowledge about piñata species and which piñatas are needed for which parties has been lost, leading to chaos and the slow stop of the island's way of manner. The player is tasked with assisting Piñata Central in rebuilding the database, achieved by enticing specific piñatas to inhabit the garden, filling them with candy, and sending them off to parties around the world and saving the entire partying world.

Viva Piñata: Trouble In Paradise Gameplay

Viva Piñata: Trouble in Paradise keeps the core mechanics of the original Viva Piñata in place, while supplementing them with several additions. As before, the game is primarily a sandbox title, with players maintaining a garden plot which they can decorate and customize as they see fit. The primary residents of these gardens are living piñata animals who wander the area, eating, sleeping, and even mating with each other. By fulfilling conditions favorable to specific piñata species, players attract members of those species to the garden. In general, the larger and more exotic an animal, the more difficult it is to attract.

In order to give players more choices about how to play the game, the sequel now includes multiple modes:

Viva Piñata Trouble in Paradise received high marks from most media outlets, including several "Editor's Choice" awards from reviewers. In general, the improvements to the user interface and addition of co-operative play were highlighted, while the most commonly cited negative was limited innovation in the core gameplay.

GameSpot scored the title 8.5/10, praising the greater variety of gameplay, but criticizing the voice acting. The review highlighted the party/celebration challenge system which encourages players to acquire different piñatas, providing goal-oriented motivation lacking in the previous title. IGN also rated the game an 8.5/10 (the same score awarded to the original and to Pocket Paradise), indicating that is worth buying if one enjoyed the original and wanted to make use of the co-op features. However, the reviewer did note that the game hasn't radically changed from its predecessor, primarily providing more of the same. The GameSpy review commented favorably on the streamlined user interface and more user-friendly experience, while remarking that it was still a pain to have to wade through several levels of menus for some actions. Despite any such criticisms, the title still received a score of 4.5/5, along with an "Editor's Choice" award.

The harshest critique came from the Official Xbox Magazine, which described frustration at being unable to effectively control the garden's residents as well as frequent interference from destructive intruders. This, coupled with continuing issues running out of space within the garden, resulted in a score of 6.5/10. The review concludes, "Even if there were room to experiment, a few dozen animals aren’t sufficient to lure back veteran gardeners for long, and newcomers are bound to wonder why life on the island is so needlessly difficult".

Nonetheless, the 1UP.com review captured the general sentiment of the majority of reviewers by summarizing, "If you hated the original, Trouble in Paradise isn't going to change your opinion. If, however, you somehow missed out completely on the piñata party the first time around, I implore you to check it out now -- it's certainly much deeper and more addictive than its playful visuals would lead you to believe".

GameSpot nominated it for Best Game No One Played.

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