Top 5 Christmas Games 2010 – Nintendo Wii
In just a few short weeks, a red-suited, brandy-swilling fat man will be breaking into your home and leaving a present or two under your tree. If you’ve made it onto Santa’s ‘nice’ list and don’t have any ideas what to ask him for, then maybe GameBrit can help you. We devised a highly complicated set of formulas to reveal the best possible games you could hope to get for the Nintendo Wii this Christmas. Unfortunately this list included two Yoga games, a collection of crossword puzzles and adaptations of Deal Or No Deal and All-Star Family Fortunes. So we went back to the drawing board, put on our thinking caps and used every other cliche in our big book of clichés to come up with the definitive Christmas buying guide for Wii owners.
So without further stalling for time, here are our top five Christmas picks:
5. A Boy & His Blob
2D platforming has seen a bit of a resurgence in recent years, and this Christmas the Wii is home to three of the best 2D games of this generation. One of them is already at number 1 on this list (no prizes for guessing what that is) but we found it pretty tough to choose between side-scrolling RPG, Muramasa, and WayForward’s A Boy and his Blob.
This beautiful reimaging of the classic NES title just about edges it. From the wonderful hand-drawn art to the subtly challenging puzzling, this is one of the most pleasant gaming experiences we’ve had in a long time. If you’ve found your love of gaming has been nearly extinguished by a torrent of generic ‘me-too’ games then this is guaranteed to rekindle that spark.
4. Dead Space: Extraction
Another genre that’s been given a second wind, thanks to the Wii is the arcade shooter. This year has seen two other great light-gun games released (House of the Dead: Overkill and Resident Evil: Darkside Chronicles) but it’s Visceral Games’ title that really impressed us.
This prequel to last year’s surprise hit Dead Space may have caused controversy by switching genres but it has lost none of the intensity of its grander cousin. There isn’t a better horror title on Wii at the moment, nor are there many better looking than this.
3. Mario & Sonic at the Winter Olympics
Christmas is the ideal time to bring out party games and the Wii has more than its fair share of these. Most are absolutely terrible but this, the second Mario & Sonic sports title, is both well made and highly addictive – a great combination in our eyes.
Whether you fancy flinging Knuckles down a ski slope or partaking in a spot of curling with Yoshi you’ll find enough different sports to keep you and the whole family entertained. With online leaderboards and unlockable ‘dream’ events (winter sports given a Mario or Sonic themed make-over), this will keep you hooked for months.
2. Little King’s Story
The Wii has no good games. Third parties don’t support Wii. Wii games are for kids. Blah-blah, whinge-whinge, boo-hoo. If one thing was highlighted this year it was that self-proclaimed hardcore Wii gamers are absolute idiots. Great titles like Mad World, The Conduit and Dead Space: Extraction disappeared into the mists of time, with pitifully low sales figures that must surely have rung bells of doom amongst publishers looking to put money into Wii development.
The biggest travesty was that Little King’s Story, one of the most charmingly addictive games of this generation, sank without a trace. A mesmerising mix of real-time strategy and world-building, this even trumped Nintendo’s Pikmin franchise for complexity and heart-warming charm. If you have a Wii and haven’t bought this yet it’s time to make amends. GO. BUY. THIS. GAME.
1. New Super Mario Bros Wii
It was probably the most obvious choice for the top spot and not without good reason. Not only is NSMB Wii one of the most challenging 2D Mario games ever, but it’s also an absolutely cracking multiplayer experience. Spin-offs like Mario Party, Mario Kart and Mario Tennis may have provided plenty of multiplayer madness in the past but they can’t hold a candle to the fun in NSMB Wii’s four-player sessions.
Whether you are playing co-operatively or competitively, the action never lets up for a second as you contest for coins, power-ups and points. While it may feel like a best-of compilation of previous Mario games, Nintendo have really upped the ante in terms of difficulty and longevity so expect to be glued to this for the whole holiday period and beyond.