Uniquely, the Trauma Center franchise almost has an entire genre to itself. Seemingly content that Atlus has the 'surgery sim cum fantastical bioterrorist soap opera' sewn up, few developers have attempted to impinge on its territory, with DS title Lifestyle: Hospital Affairs about the only notable rival.
This may have led to Atlus taking its eye off the ball somewhat, with recent titles suffering more than many sequels from the law of diminishing returns. After all, there's only so many times you can drain the cytoplasm, slice out the tumour, apply the gauze and rub in the antibiotic gel before the sudden need to perform CPR becomes the predictable norm rather than a shocking mid-op twist. While the games have always suffered heinous delays making their way to Europe, the fact that the still-enjoyable DS iteration Under The Knife 2 shows no sign of being localised two years after its US release perhaps tells its own story.
Sensibly, then, Atlus has decided a reboot is in order with this new Wii game, splintering the narrative into six pieces, each focusing on a different doctor and a different discipline. Gone are regulars Derek Stiles and Angie Thompson, and noticeably absent (for the most part) are epidemics of bizarre synthetic diseases. The result is the freshest Trauma title since the first Under The Knife, and perhaps the series high point to date.