The top 5 Wii games
The Wii was a funny old thing. The most successful home-console in Nintendo’s history, selling over 120 million units, the Wii managed to tap into the wider ‘casual’ market better than any console since the PS2.
This however came at a price for many of the die-hard Nintendo fans, with publishers focusing on ‘lighter’ games rather than hardcore experiences in order to appeal to the mass-market audience. But despite this, the Wii is still home to several real gems; these are the best five of those I played:
5. Wii Sports
One of the best-selling games of all time thanks to the fact it came bundled with the console, but it can’t be denied that this game was the key reason for the Wii’s success – more so than all of Nintendo’s traditional franchises combined.
Some of my fondest memories of the machine are of playing Wii Tennis, Wii Bowling and Wii Golf. Each of which are executed perfectly with the Wii-mote, and offer a unique multiplayer experience that hasn’t been bested since. Each of the sports have a surprisingly amount of depth to them – it’s not possible to bowl the perfect ball every time with ease, and the golf takes months to master.
Still a joy to play now when the mates are over, Wii Sports will probably go down as the most successful launch title ever.
Wii Sports is available on Amazon. Click here to check the price.
4. House of the Dead: Overkill
I didn’t go into this game with any expectations, and was very pleasantly surprised with what I experienced. This game captures that arcade light-gun feeling perfectly, with none of the downsides (i.e. you don’t have to sink coins in every time you die…) and playing through with a buddy is a real delight.
With Overkill Headstrong Games and Sega have taken everything good from the previous 4 entries and left all the bad parts out – everything that is good about light-gun games is present, and nothing about the game tries your patience. The difficulty is also on point – it’s as pick-up-and-play as they get, but turns into a challenge for veterans of the franchise.
Fast, fun and best played with a friend – Overkill epitomises everything good about the Wii.
It’s available here on Amazon.
3. Mario Strikers Charged
I did not expect this to be as good as it was. As a big football fan, the major soccer franchises of PES and Fifa let me down with failed experiments on the Wii (although the excellent PES 2008 is a notable exception), so it was left to Nintendo to show them how it can be done on their console.
Charged is an absolute blast, with the Wiimote waggling kept to a minimum, the game’s controls are excellent – pinging the ball around the pitch feels as natural as it does playing with a traditional controller. The graphics are great, with Mario and the gang never looking better in their robotic outfits, and the presentation is top drawer.
This is the Wii’s most successful online game, and I should add that this is actually the first game to make me ‘rage-quit’ online – something I am completely against morally. But something about conceding a last-minute winner against an online opponent feels so abhorrent, terrible and unjust (even though it isn’t) I couldn’t stand to look at the game any longer.
It’s available here on Amazon.
2. Smash Bros Brawl
Probably the most anticipated game on the console, and following the stellar success of Melee brawl never really had a chance. Melee is deemed by many to be the perfection of the Smash Bros formula, and so anything that wasn’t a simple re-skin of the GameCube classic was always going to be something of a let down to the die-hard fans..
Taken on its own merits however, brawl is a fantastic game. The graphics are beautiful, and whilst the gameplay is a shade slower than Melee’s, it’s still a frantic smash-fest every round. The Subspace Emissary is the best single player mode in any of the Smash games, and the guest characters of Snake and Sonic brought back some of the novelty magic that was present in the first game.
It was also the first online Smash game, and whilst it was hampered somewhat by Nintendo’s bizarre friend-code policy, it was still online Smash and that was a great thing to experience.
Brawl is available right here on Amazon.
1. Super Mario Galaxy
For my money the only true classic on the system, Super Mario Galaxy is one of the best Mario games ever.
Galaxy felt like a much more truer sequel to ’64 than Sunshine. The best looking game on the Wii by some distance and the best looking Mario game to date, it’s a pleasure to experience. Every level is a treat.
The excellent Galaxy 2 felt more like an expansion than a true sequel for me – the Lost Levels to Galaxy’s Mario Bros – and so it didn’t quite have the impact the first Galaxy had on me.
Galaxy is available on Amazon. Click here to see the price.