The Nintendo Wii is arguably the one console responsible for bringing video games into the mainstream. People who didn’t care much for video games found the system to be extremely accessible, and the games appealing even to their unfamiliar eyes. It was a true family console, meant to be played with the people around us, to fully experience what the system was capable of doing. The Wii also had a substantial library of video games, and wowed everyone with the sheer variety of first-party exclusives and third-party offerings from both AAA studios as well as indie establishments across a variety of genres. Without further ado, here is the list of the top games ever to have been released on the Nintendo Wii.
12. Dead Space: Extraction (2009)
The ‘Dead Space’ games have mastered the art of making the environment feel alive, but in a thoroughly deadly way that makes your heart race and fearful of what is about to happen. With ‘Extraction’, Wii gamers got a taste of the good ol’ ‘Dead Space’ medicine. Players are left feeling as if they are the protagonist themselves, wandering across a space station, hunting down grotesque monsters with laser guns.
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11. Super Paper Mario (2007)
With the release of the Wii, fans demanded a ‘Mario’ role-playing game right from the get-go. They got their wish in the form of the delightful ‘Super Paper Mario.’ The game was a hilarious and heartfelt take on the RPG genre, and the transition to contemporary times was done wonderfully. The RPG and platforming mechanics were on point, and the game utilised the Wii Remote really well. The dialogue in particular deserves some special attention, as it was brilliantly self-referencing and funny to its core.
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10. Rayman Origins (2011)
The exploits of Rayman and his friends have been long known to the gaming world, and it is with their fourth main appearance that they garnered some serious praise too. ‘Rayman Origins’ is a delightful platforming game, much in the fashion of the original instalment. However, it adds a vibrant aesthetic to a gripping quest of redemption as our loveable protagonist takes the fight to the evil Darktoons and other evil beings. The Wii version had three separate control schemes too, owing to the Remote’s versatility, making it an even more enjoyable cooperative experience.
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9. Metroid Prime 3: Corruption (2007)
The ‘Metroid’ series has been at the pinnacle of shooting games since times immemorial. By the time of the release of ‘Metroid Prime 3: Corruption’, the shooting mechanics had been taken to an all-time high. ‘Corruption’ represents a high point of the series, and even made use of the Wii Remote brilliantly. Shooting was not only better and more accurate, it also felt more natural and seamless, with the Remote approximating the feel of a PC mouse. The gesture controls took it up a notch, and the result was a very immersive ‘Metroid’ experience on the system.
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8. Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars (2008)
Before Capcom would join forces with a certain American comic book publisher for a fighting video game series, it teamed up with Tatsunoko, a Japanese animation company that housed characters such as Macross and Speed Racer. The result was a fulfilling brawler replete with a sizeable cast of characters, their unique skills and moves, and a sound gameplay structure. All fighting fans should give this a go, as this is the precursor to the ‘Marvel vs. Capcom’ games we enjoy today.
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7. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess (2006)
‘The Legend of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time’ is generally considered to be the best video game of all time. To follow it up would certainly prove to be a daunting task. When ‘Twilight Princess’ was released, fans and critics went gaga over it, mainly due to a more ‘realistic’ art style that was a departure from ‘The Wind Waker.’ It had a gorgeous world to explore and a gripping tale to enthral us completely. The game had a slightly darker and more mature representation, with Link becoming a werewolf every single time he went into the Twilight Realm.
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6. Donkey Kong Country Returns (2010)
Longtime fans of the legendary ‘Donkey Kong’ franchise clamoured for a new game on the Wii, and they weren’t disappointed when Retro Studios released this amazing side-scrolling platformer. The game stuck to the storied traditions of the series; it looked stunning and was quite difficult to master, but a sheer joy to play. The game still serves as a vantage point for the franchise, and one it can still refer to, for the future.
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5. Resident Evil 4 (2005)
‘Resident Evil 4’ needs no introduction as one of the best games of all time, regardless of genre. It made the jump to the Wii quite well, with the versatility of the Wii Remote making the experience of crushing the heads of zombies a particularly satisfying one. The foreboding setting, the fleshed out characters, and the splendidly horrifying aesthetic remain on the Wii version. With all the bonus content available too, ‘RE4’ is at its definitive best on this system.
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4. New Super Mario Bros. Wii (2009)
The one thing ‘New Super Mario Bros. Wii’ is remembered for, is the four-player cooperative play it provided gamers. This gameplay mechanic is a tough one to execute, but this game showed how well it could be done. While ‘New Super Mario Bros. Wii’ might not have the best level design in the series, it made playing in a group with friends and family extremely enjoyable, and took it to the next level.
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3. The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword (2011)
While the Wii had a lot of great games, something that this list is a mere gateway towards, it didn’t have a game that firmly established the system’s notion of movement-based play being superior and the way forward for video games. Heading into the last stage of its life cycle, it finally got that game.
‘The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword’ did what most other ‘Zelda’ games did before– it redefined the norms of gaming once more. By changing the controls from buttons to gestures, ‘Skyward Sword’ rendered the Wii Remote essential, and it pulled it off spectacularly. With the relentlessly fast-paced narrative and some of the best dungeon design to be seen, ‘Skyward Sword’ will always be one of the best Wii games, and arguably its most innovative one as well.
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2. Xenoblade Chronicles (2010)
One thing should be clear right from the outset. ‘Xenoblade Chronicles’ had no right to be on the Wii. Coming in at the end of the system’s life cycle, players and critics were astounded at the level of graphical detail it packed, and rightly praised it to no end. The JRPG consisted of a remarkable, and sweeping world, with a breathtaking soundtrack, well-drawn characters, and a compelling story that will hook you in for more than 100 hours.
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1. Super Mario Galaxy 2 (2010)
‘Super Mario Galaxy 2’ took the storied ‘Super Mario’ formula and took it to hitherto unprecedented heights. With its intuitive control schemes and level design, it took 3D platforming to a place where it seemed impossible to reach. It took full use of the Wii’s capabilities to deliver an unforgettable ‘Mario’ experience. The game is a true embodiment of the creative spirit behind ‘Mario’, and it will be a long time before we manage to overlook ‘Super Mario Galaxy 2’ as not only one of the best Wii games, but as one of the best games of all time.
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