Roll up! Roll up! To the Greatest Show on Earth.

Perhaps not the household name it is over the pond, the Ringling Bros Barnum and Bailey Circus is massive in America.

And now it comes to this country, in the form of a heavily interactive Wii game.

This is a huge year for the Wii, with a large number of pivotal games coming out for the system.

Monster Hunter Tri, Mario Galaxy II, Red Steel II and Metroid: Other M, are big releases that will be on many a Christmas/birthday wish list.

With such competition, one has to question where mini-game extravaganza such as 2K Play’s It's My Circus need to pitch to pick up sales.

Surrey Comet: Game review: It's My Circus - Nintendo Wii

The circus enthusiast market is surely too niche to support a game on its own, and mini-game compilations have come to the system thick and fast - so much so that it's hard to make a dent.

So how does this game aim to do it, and is it any good?

This game offers players a chance to start as a lowly dreamer, with few circus skills, and progress to no less than the world's greatest performer.

And it's not a bad, or unenjoyable game. It offers a lot more than I expected when it landed on my desk - and I'm not a particular fan of these types of game.

Surrey Comet: Game review: It's My Circus - Nintendo Wii

The progression is simple to map out. Perform tasks well to get certificates of your ever-growing prowess. Complete two games for a new certificate. After six of those you will unlock the Zing Zang Zoom tent (Yes, that's right) and after 11 you will be performing in Barnum's FUNundrum show tent. OK, that's a bit ridiculous, but there you go!

Your player is fully customisable, of course, and you earn Barnum Bucks to buy costumes and prizes from the Prize Store.

To be the complete circus performer you need to master numerous skills, such as acrobatics, which includes being a human cannonball, a see-saw stacker or a trampolinist.

You must also master animals ranging from dogs, who you have to make sing in tune in Hound Harmony, to taming and training tigers.

No circus would be complete without clowns, and they feature heavily in It's My Circus. There is clown bowling, which sees your clown becoming a bowling ball. There's pie chucking too, in a couple of guises, and these are good fun, if a little brief and one-dimensional.

Surrey Comet: Game review: It's My Circus - Nintendo Wii

The Balance Board is also brought into play regularly, with high wire hijinx requiring good balance to get across to the other side.

The death-defying stunts of circus life are also in here, with stunt ball reminiscent of Mad Max in the Thunderdome and actual Houdini-esque escapology.

Then it’s on to the trapeze for some high-flying fun, and you can finally call yourself the Greatest Showman on Earth,

Phew! That's actually quite a lot to get through. As with all these games, some of it works well, others you will want to complete and never look at again.

In terms of motion controls, which this game relies on heavily, I've played far worse efforts. And in terms of originality it's a fine attempt at doing something different.

Will I play it for many more hours? No, probably not. Will younger gamers find a lot to do here? Yes, I think they will.

Surrey Comet: Game review: It's My Circus - Nintendo Wii

If you are looking for a harmless game that brings a lot of fun to the table, this is not a bad choice.

Sadly, you may well find it in a bargain bin before long, but that may just be a good way of saving yourself some money.

Get this one for the kids. They'll still be willing to go to bed at a reasonable hour, leaving you to play one of the many incredible titles coming out for more hardcore gamers in the next couple of months.

Score: Six cream pies out of ten

Good points:
- Colourful and fun
- Lots of circus skills to try out
- There are pies to thrown
- How many other games can you escape a trunk while harnessed in a straitjacket?

Bad points
- Some dull games
- Controller frustration on occasion
- It's not a real circus
- Animals in a circus, these days?
- Not hardcore
- Another mini-game compilation