[17 December 2009]
PopMatters Multimedia Editor
Viva Pinata: Trouble in Paradise is the videogame tie-in to a show about an island of piñatas who, after being filled up with enough candy, are rewarded (?) with the opportunity to attend a child’s birthday party to have that candy beaten out of them. It’s kind of cute, albeit a touch sadistic. Nevertheless, Rare created a really robust gardening and animal husbandry simulation in the first game that, while admittedly tying into a product intended for children, appealed to hardcore adult gamer, as well. This material is exactly what encourages a player to really grind out the game’s often challenging system of resource and animal management. At the core, though, salaciousness is the game’s guiding impetus. And who can’t enjoy the kind of salaciousness that even a six-year-old would be allowed to love? This game will make anyone with a family and an xBox 360 a happy recipient.