This September sees the arrival of Rare’s sequel to the colorful Viva Piñata. This installment in the franchise will see players rescue the vibrant Piñata Island from peril, one mini-game at a time. The malevolent Professor Pester along with his gang of Ruffians have wiped out Piñata Central’s computer records, which poses a threat to parties everywhere. Oh noes! It’s up to players to send little piñata missionaries to parties around the globe collecting data to rebuild the piñata database like some kind of sinister marketing research.
The new game sees the game expanding into the equally colorful world of Xbox LIVE, opening the games connectivity and adding a whole new social dimension. Trouble in Paradise is also eager for players to take their 360s out of their bedrooms and into the living room with added support for cooperative play, fun for the whole family!
The game also wants players to get creative, giving them the opportunity to customize their own “gardens” in the game with a plethora of content they can drop in and out and over a hundred species of Piñata that can come and take up residence.
Viva Piñata has always been an odd creature and certainly looks like a fish out of water when compared with the rest of the 360’s portfolio. Being the console’s only true offering for the family/casual gaming market, it will have a lot of work to do in order to make an impact as this is territory fiercely defended by Nintendo, which has nothing short of a small armada of this kind of light-hearted party games.
The September release will also put the game in direct competition with Media Molecule’s highly anticipated PS3-exclusive LittleBigPlanet. While you could argue that Viva Piñata: Trouble In Paradise is the 360’s answer to LBP, I fear it may have a hard time getting its voice heard over the noise of the Sony hype machine when it eventually kicks into gear.
[See also: Viva Piñata: Trouble In Paradise gallery]