The Wii U is here, and what better time to look back at the best games the Wii had to offer. The Wii wound up being one of the most successful consoles of all time from a pure sales perspective, but most hardcore gamers agree it didn’t have as much to offer from a software perspective as some of the other most successful consoles like the PS2 or DS. While it didn’t have as many excellent games as it’s HD competitors, most of the Wii’s library were exclusive games, and the best the Wii had to offer was just as good as what you’d find on the PS3 or 360. So, here are what consider the ten best games for the Wii. Just one note, The Legend of Zelda Twilight Princess was included on my “Best Gamecube Games” list, and since that is the better version, it won’t be on this list.
10. Sonic Colors (Sonic Team/Sega, 2010)
Judged from a purely objective perspective, Sonic Colors is not one of the ten best games on the Wii. Don’t get me wrong, it is still a good game, and one of the best Sonic games of the past 15 years, but it did have some issues, especially compared to the much improved Sonic Generations (which wasn’t released on the Wii). But, this is my list after all, and I quite enjoyed Sonic Colors. Sonic Unleashed laid the groundwork for this game, but Colors really refined the style and removed the awful Werehog stages. The main thing holding it back was the somewhat odd jumping controls, but other than that Sonic Colors was a big step forward for 3D Sonic games, setting things up for the excellent Sonic Generations a year later.
9. Kirby’s Epic Yarn (Good Feel/Nintendo, 2010)
While many were disappointed with its deviation from the typical Kirby style, Epic Yarn was simply a delightful game. The game wasn’t difficult or mechanically deep, but it’s total commitment to the visual style shines through in every aspect of the game. This game managed to be one of the best looking games of recent memory, even on the technically modest Wii. Epic Yarn isn’t about weaving some though provoking narrative or breaking the player’s will with extreme challenge; it’s a simply an amazing cute platformer with solid gameplay that takes place in a charming world with an unbelievable well realized aesthetic.
8. Wii Sports (Nintendo, 2006)
For much of the new audience the Wii introduced to gaming, Wii Sports was the Wii. While the main reason for this is the fact that grandparents and stay at home moms typically aren’t interested in things like Zelda or Metroid, it is also testament to how good Wii Sports turned out. As a means of showing what the makes the new console you just bough unique, Wii Sports was a complete success. It’s fun yet familiar mini games were perfect at introducing the concept of motion controls to both the new casual audience and more experience gamers picking up the new Nintendo console.
7. Donkey Kong Country Returns (Retro Studios/Nintendo, 2010)
After completing the Metroid Prime trilogy, Retro moved on to another long dormant Nintendo franchise, Donkey Kong. Ever since Rare was purchased by Microsoft there hadn’t been a proper Donkey Kong game, but Retro brought the series back to its 2D roots with Donkey Kong Country Returns. The game played just like the old SNES games, with fair but difficult challenge and clever level design. I look forward to seeing what Nintendo franchise Retro revives next, my hope is for Star Fox.
6. Metroid Prime 3: Corruption (Retro Studios/Nintendo, 2007)
I always find it both funny and disappointing whenever I hear someone say they didn’t like, or worse, didn’t even try any of the Meroid Prime games because “they turned Metroid into a first person shooter”. The Metroid Prime games are as close to being shooters as Skyrim or Oblivion. These games capture the essence and core design sensibilities of the classic Metroid, they just happen to take place from a first person perspective, and in that respect they are for more faithful to the originals than Other M. Now, Metroid Prime 3 is not the best the game in the series, but it is still an excellent experience from start to finish.