When the Nintendo Wii was first announced, I used to insist that it was a gaming platform designed for kids. It’s been a number of years since then and the games available on the platform are every bit as diverse as those who disagreed with me would come to expect. They were right — it’s not strictly for kids, but that doesn’t stop the Nintendo Wii from being the perfect gaming platform for kids.
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New Super Mario Bros. Wii
An old classic returns to the new (well, it’s old now) Nintendo Wii. It’s hard to go wrong with a game like the “New Super Mario Bros. Wii,” a game that delivers timeless gameplay with beefed up graphics, some of the most challenging levels a Mario game has seen to date and the best co-op the platform has to offer.
Jump your way through dozens of missions as either Mario or Luigi and save Princess Peach from the likes of Bowser and his turtle minions.
Super Smash Bros. Brawl
Many kids love fighting games, but it’d be a mistake to let them get their hands on something like Mortal Kombat or Fight Night. With that in mind, Nintendo has “Super Smash Bros. Brawl” for the Wii. You can play as your favorite Nintendo character or even choose from a number of third-party characters like Sonic the Hedgehog and Solid Snake.
It offers all the fun and adrenaline-boosting intensity as any “real” fighting game, but with much more interesting characters and bloodless gameplay.
Mario Kart Wii
“Mario Kart Wii” isn’t exactly “Gran Turismo 5,” but that shouldn’t matter when what it offers is some of the most fun you can have racing against your friends. The Mario Kart series has seen release on every other Nintendo console, and this version is no less enjoyable than the others. More than just a mere port, “Mario Kart Wii” features the addition of new motorcycles and an online mode that allows you to go head to head against racers all over the world.
Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga
There's a lot to be said about the Star Wars franchise but one thing that will always remain true is the fact that Star Wars will remain an eternal part of our childhood whether we were born in the 70s, 80s, or 90s.
With that in mind, the creators of "LEGO Star Wars" have brought the timeless franchise into LEGO brick form for every game console, including the Nintendo Wii. Through the game, kids today will be able to experience the excitement and exhilaration of the original trilogy interactively. With multiplayer support, they'll even be able to play the game with their siblings (if they have any) or their parents, who will undoubtedly enjoy the game as much as they do. What's not to like?
Donkey Kong Country Returns
One of the most sought after releases for the Nintendo Wii is the new “Donkey Kong Country Returns,” a remake based on the classic DKC series. The new game sees the return of mine cart levels, vine swinging and collecting bananas and the golden letters that spell the word “KONG.” As a “2.5D” game, DKCR combines 2D gameplay with 3D graphics.
Players take on the role of the titular Donkey Kong with Diddy Kong riding upon his back. Together, they must retrieve bananas stolen by the Tiki Tak Tribe (characters who look like Tiki heads) who have since replaced the Kremlings in the original game. In multiplayer, the second player controls Diddy Kong. The game can be played with both the Wii Remote or with the classic controller.
Boom Blox Bash Party
When Steven Spielberg surprised the game industry by saying that he was going to be designing a game, his announcement met with a mixed reception. Any doubts about his ability as a game designer was soon put to rest with the release of “Boom Blox” for the Wii, a game where players knocked down blocks of towers in a manner that exercised their creativity.
“Boom Blox Bash Party” is the sequel to that game and it offers the same innovative experiences of its predecessor with even more levels (up to 400) of block bashing mayhem.
Originally made for the PlayStation 2, this undervalued title has found its way to the Nintendo Wii as one of its greatest games.
You take on the role of the wolf Amaterasu and romp around a woodcut, watercolor styled sumi-e illustrated environment. The game is a mix of action and platform with puzzles to solve along the way. In “Okami” Amaterasu has to battle all kinds of strange creatures and earn money for purchasing better equipment and items needed to solve puzzles.
“Okami” for the Wii plays better with the Nintendo WiiMote than it ever did with a regular controller thanks to the game’s drawing mechanic via the “Celestial Brush”. In this mode, players can pause the game to call up a canvas they can draw on to summon spells that provide players with an edge in both battles and puzzles.
Kirby’s Epic Yarn
“Kirby’s Epic Yarn” has one of the most unique aesthetics to ever feature in a game. Instead of featuring pixelated sprites or a dirt-smeared warzone, all of “Kirby’s Epic Yarn” takes place on a patchwork collage replete with embroidery, buttons and quild. Kirby’s metamorphosis takes on new forms as he can turn into a variety of string objects.
Although not originally developed as a Kirby title, “Kirby’s Epic Yarn” feels like it was cut from the same cloth as any of the originals.
The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess
This list would be incomplete without the inclusion of a single Zelda title. Originally intended for the GameCube, Twilight Princess was brought over to the Nintendo Wii with full WiiMote functionality. Although gamers may prefer to use the classic Nintendo controller to play this one, the game is no less enjoyable on the motion control device.
While few games could ever live up to the standards set by Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask, Twilight Princess manages to hold its own superbly and succeeds as a Zelda title–delivering great adventure and excellent combat. It’s a somewhat darker game with more mature aesthetics by comparison to the previous Zelda titles, but it feels like a Zelda game all the same. “Twilight Princess” is a tremendous game in its own right and gamers both young and old can’t afford to give this title a amiss.
Super Mario Galaxy 2
Arguably one of the best games on the Nintendo Wii, “Super Mario Galaxy 2” looks and feels almost exactly like its predecessor. That’s not to say that the game is simply more of the same, however. It’s “Super Mario Galaxy” done right, with its gravity-based gameplay polished close to perfection. Like the first game, Mario must manipulate gravity wells around planets to solve difficult puzzles, but with the addition of new powerups like the Rock Mushroom and Cloud Flower, which have to be used in the greatly diversified challenges offered by the game. In addition to the new powerups, the lovable green dinosaur Yoshi also makes an appearance.
All in all, “Super Mario Galaxy 2” is one of the defining games of the Nintendo Wii platform. Kids will look back on it years from now and see it as the game that defined their childhood