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After my painful experience with Mario Pinball on the Game Boy Advance, I am hoping that Odama will offer a more enjoyable experience. Vivarium, the creators of Seaman, are hard at work on its upcoming GameCube project which will offer a twist on the classic pinball design. Congratulations player, you've been drafted for war.

Odama is the first title of its kind to throw players in the midst of mighty Japanese feudar war where your destiny lies in the fate of a ball.

A pinball, to be exact.

According to the preliminary info released, Odama represents a "giant pinball" which you'll use to devastate battalions and crash into troop barracks. You'll need to strategically use your pinball to "hit" enemy soldiers which in turn will make them join your ranks, ultimately increasing the might of your army. As your army liberates more of the screen, you'll be able to assault the gate and move on to the next level. Just be careful not to crush your troops in the process.

You'll be able to call for reinforcements and use your troops to dam rivers, liberate extra flippers and clear the way to the enemy's gate. Plus, should another player join in on the fun, they can control where the troops go and even help them dodge the Odama.

Odama certainly sounds more challenging and entertaining than any conventional pinball game to date, especially with the military angle in mind. Depending on the orders you give, your soldiers can become tired or even lose confidence in your leadership skills and become complacent. A second player can join in and use the DK Bongos, (released with Donkey Konga) to make the soliders become more alert and get them moving faster than before. However, if Player 2 intervenes, the soldiers' confidence in Player 1 will decline. (Our solution: Keep sharp, and play alone!)

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