When I finally had my first chance to try FlingSmash this past E3, the booth attendant asked me a curious question after my turn—did I think this would be better as a retail release, or as WiiWare? Having only sampled a tiny bit of the game, I replied that it really would depend on how much there was to it. How big was it? What else was there to do?

Fast-forward to today, and Nintendo (who has graciously sent me a copy for review) has finally figured out how they will sell the title: in a $50 box bundled with the new Wii Remote Plus (which I also received.) Some simple math will tell you this means the game is effectively being sold for $10—which, as it turns out, is a very useful context for its evaluation.

FlingSmash is probably best described as a unique sort of platformer, though you'll not exactly spend much time on platforms. Zip, the little yellow guy you're trying to get to the end of each level, is much more like a pinball in motion, ricocheting off surfaces and scoring points by smashing through bricks. To control him (or female version Pip, who can also be controlled by a second player for a chaotic co-op experience), you take a Wii MotionPlus-equipped Remote and give it a quick swing, sending him flying in that direction. Pausing briefly before a swing will give you a Super Shot, which'll smash through blocks which otherwise block your way, and pressing A will slow Zip down to a halt so you can line up another shot. And that's it.

Your goal is, then, to use these moves to get Zip from the beginning to the end of a smallish number of levels, using precise smashing skills to make sure you collect at least three coins along the way and trying to stay far enough ahead to keep from getting trapped by the slow scroll. The controls work well, but it gets pretty chaotic anyway, particularly as some of the new worlds change things up a bit by making Zip heavy, small, unable to use Super Shots, and the like. It's fairly difficult to be perfectly precise in FlingSmash, but it doesn't matter all that much if you're just looking to clear the game—the levels are forgiving enough to let you breeze through most of them for a clear, even if you don't necessarily get a good rank doing so.

If you are interested in getting good ranks, you'll need to learn the ins and outs of the levels playing through them over and over, trying to make your way through some of the more difficult paths and the like. This is made a little painful, actually, by some poor choices in pacing—like pausing the action for upwards of 5-10 seconds just to show you how many points you scored on a particular challenge section, or even just stopping dead when you enter the challenge section itself, as if the game's saying "hey, wait a sec, let me just set this up, allright?" None of this is necessary, and without it, replaying for the better ranks would have been much more enjoyable.

The good news is that even if you aren't replaying, there are still some neat things to see and do along the way. I already mentioned changing things up by making Zip a heavy metal ball (you can ride magnets); there are also a pretty decently-sized array of various gadgets you'll need to interact with to get through the levels. The boss fights can also get pretty neat, with one in particular that I really liked trying to trap Zip in collapsing structures of blocks—to hit him, you have to get through quickly, before you get squished.

There is one real obstacle to breezing through the game in one go, and it is actually a familiar old friend from Wii Sports Resort's Swordplay Showdown. Maybe I'm playing it wrong—I probably am, the cute little island-spirit guide kept popping up and telling me I didn't have to swing the Remote so hard—but it makes my arm ache. It's not a bad ache, but it's one that requires periods of rest. This fact alone stretched FlingSmash out a bit longer than it would have otherwise; it's a fun concept, and they've done an admirable job with it, trying to mix it up a little here and there, but it just doesn't seem like there's all that much to it in the end.

But context is everything, and when you consider the game is basically a $10 rider to a shiny new Wii Remote Plus, the value proposition starts looking a lot better. As a fun-but-forgettable title, you could do a lot worse for such a small amount of money—and it helps make FlingSmash's flaws more forgivable. I think it's worth the slight upcharge to check out a unique experience to try out with your new Wii Remote Plus, particularly as good MotionPlus games do still seem to be few and far between. Maybe you will too.