Nintendo is sitting pretty as this generation’s industry leader, and the recent fifty dollar price cut is only helping bring even more gamers into the wonderful world of Wii. So whether you are picking the system up for a loved one or are a seasoned Wiiner chiseling a yearly list to Santa, we’ve got more than a few things to look for this holiday shopping season.
This year has yielded plenty of top-grade Wii titles. These are the best brand new games that deserve a spot on your list.
- New Super Mario Bros Wii
New Super Mario Bros Wii may have the worst name of all of the 2D Mario platformers, but that doesn’t stop it from being one of the best. Easily ranking #2 on my personal list, NSMBW successfully revives the old school platforming formula that helped birth so many countless classics before it and takes it to the next level while still remaining faithful. This is easily the best game to hit the Wii this year, and it is an absolute must for anyone with a Wii.
- The Conduit
Addictive, high value first person shooters are a hard find on Nintendo’s console. Whereas its competition seems saturated with fps games, the Wii just can’t keep up. That doesn’t mean that Nintendo fans can’t get a first-person fix, however. High Voltage poured tons and tons of effort into creating an excellent shooter with tight, responsive controls and expansive multiplayer, and the end product does not disappoint. This is a no brainer for any hardcore Wii gamer.
- Silent Hill: Shattered Memories
A bold reinvention of survival horror, Shattered Memories looks to offer Wii gamers a unique and frightening adventure by revisiting the first game in the acclaimed series. Gorgeous visuals, brilliant lighting effects, and a deep story line that changes with every decision you make, Shattered Memories is sure to please any Wii gamer who claims to be hardcore. We’ll see just how “hardcore” they really are when they piss there pants and sleep in mom’s room the the night after they play this game for the first time.
- Excitebots: Trick Racing
Why haven’t you already bought this game!? It got rave reviews. It is the sequel to a launch title favorite. It is a hardcore arcade racer. Excitebots is seriously the most criminally commercially underrated Wii game of 2009, quite possibly since the system launched. If you don’t already have it, add it to your list. You won’t regret it.
Another game that was criminally unsuccessful at retail, MadWorld utilizes a brilliant black and white (and red) visual presentation to depict itself. The gameplay is a unique and refreshing take on the beat-em up genre, with in-game mini games and tons of ways to brutally destroy anyone who gets in your way. But use common sense if getting this for a kid. It is rated M for a reason.
- Metroid Prime Trilogy
Trilogy is easily the greatest deal on Nintendo’s little white box at the moment. For fifty smackers, you get all three critically acclaimed entries in the Metroid Prime series. The original, which is widely heralded as one of the greatest games ever made, and Echoes, the less impressive but still amazingly great sequel, were both GameCube titles that have been enhanced with upgraded visuals and a fully overhauled control scheme. Plus you get Corruption, a game that could easily stand on retail shelves for a full $50. If you’re a gift giver on a budget, this will not disappoint.
- Dead Space: Extraction
I’ve whined about it before, and I’m whining about it now. The rail-shooter genre is so undeservingly criticized and ignored by the majority of gamers it makes me sick. Believed it or not, Extraction is one of the best games on the Wii. It is visually stunning and the gameplay and story are absolutely gripping. This is a high value hardcore game tailor-made for the Wii, and anyone who ignored it at release is to blame for the lack of hardcore titles on Wii shelves. Do yourself some justice and add this to your list.
- Little King’s Story
Nothing I could do or say would ever make you want this game or think your loved one would want it, so I don’t know why I’m even putting it on here. That is a truth that became apparent when the flood of reviews scored the game no less than high 8’s and 9’s and none of you bothered to believe them. An entire industry of video game journalists isn’t going to conspire one huge lie to trick you into buying a bad game. This is a title that any hardcore Wii owner, especially those with a taste for strategy, wouldn’t mind finding under the tree.
The games in this list are the absolute must-own titles that no library is really complete without. Maybe you weren’t able to afford them at their release, or maybe you’re new to the Wii world. Either way, these are top notch productions that more than deserve your attention. If you don’t already own them, I highly suggest you change that this holiday season.
- Super Mario Galaxy
- The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess
- Zack & Wiki: Quest for Barbaro’s Treasure
- Super Paper Mario
- The House of the Dead: Overkill
- De Blob
- Mario Kart: Wii
- No More Heroes
- Super Smash Bros Brawl
While the majority of gear for the Wii couldn’t pass as a toddler’s play thing, there is still some pretty neat stuff out there you or a loved one could put to good use.
- Energizer Induction Charger
There are tons and tons of chargers available to get your Wiimotes back at full steam, but after using the Flat Panel Induction Charger from Energizer, I couldn’t imagine using any of them. This thing is a sleek device that charges your Wii remotes wirelessly without requiring exposed copper leads to touch. This means it’s going to last much longer since you won’t have to deal with rusting of cheap parts.
- At least a 2 gig SD Card
You may want more memory, but I don’t recommend going with any less. And it’s not like it really matters, as SD memory units are dirt cheap nowadays anyway.
That’s it, kids. If there’s something you think Wii shoppers should look for this holiday season or just want to call me an idiot for not including your favorite game, fell free to start some chatter in the comments section!