The punch detection is better without the balance board, but it’s still not as good as you’d like to see it. One of the first things that you do in the story mode (Note to those of you that played Prizefighter, it’s the exact same story) is to go through a training for how to play the game. Jabs (left hand) and Straights (right hand) work pretty well. Keep both hands in a thumbs up posture and punch straight out with both hands and you’ll do very well with those. Hooks and uppercuts are not great though. As you’d figure with a hook, you’ll sweep your arm out a bit and then back to the starting spot, or so it says. Uppercuts are supposed to be an upward motion with the Wii Remote or the Nunchuck. What you end up with, and you’ll see this in the tutorial, is hooks that end up as uppercuts and uppercuts that end up as hooks.
When you add the fact that you get frustrated when the punches never seem to match up what you’re doing, you start exagerating your motions… then the cord connecting the two starts to whip around more and more. Eventually I found myself getting closer and closer to wanting to actually start punching… probably not a good sign.
The one reason I’ll keep at the game is that it’s actually a really good workout. The training modes really do get you moving and while it doesn’t work up a sweat, it feels like my arm and shoulder muscles are getting a different workout.
I think the game really could have benefitted from the Wii Motion Plus, but as it is… I can’t really recommend it. I’ll see if I figure out any tricks to the game that make it more playable though.