What's that, another Wii centric Last-Gen Heroes post? Well yeah, I only had a Wii until last year. That means that basically my entire last gen experience was with Nintendo's brilliant little white box. While I chronicled my favorite Wii exclusive game, and possibly my favorite game of all time in my last post, this time I want to talk about my favorite Wii feature. It's one that gets a lot of very justified flack, but I feel that Wii Ware never truly got its full credit last gen. The file limit was ridiculously small, and the store wasn't exactly intuitive, but Wii Ware games I downloaded are among my favorites from last gen. I'm just going to run through this fairly quickly, as most people don't care about detailed reports of games they never played, so here we go.
I'll start with the flagship series of Wii Ware, LostWinds. LostWinds is a two part (apparently of four but there's been very little info on the remainder of the series) game for Wii Ware, and now iOS, that launched with the service way back in 2008. You take control of Toku, the boy in the picture, and Enril, the wind spirit. The game is a platformer, with some mild puzzle elements. The games aren't the most difficult, they can be beaten in a few hours, but they present a fully realized world that I find wonderful.
Next up is my personal favorite Wii Ware franchise, BIT.TRIP. The series places players in control of CommanderVideo, the guy in the image, as he travels through a journey from an ethereal being to corporeal and back again. Each game is a spin on a classic style of game, but tied to some really awesome music. The definite stand out is BIT.TRIP RUNNER, the only game in the series to span a direct sequel. As of yet, the only place to play the entire series is the Wii (or Wii U) as the final installment, BIT.TRIP FLUX, hasn't been released on Steam yet.
The final series I will talk about is a Nintendo published series, Art Style. Art Style is a series of games with no real connection, other than aesthetics, done by skip Ltd. for Wii Ware and DSi Ware. The games all take simple gameplay mechanics and graphics in an effort to create pick up and play games that anyone can enjoy. The real fun comes from the fact that these games are incredibly hard to master, but not so hard that you won't want to. My personal favorite is Lighttrax, a racing game in which you take control of a beam of light as is races other beams of light. The best way I can describe it is that it's the closest thing to a Tron light cycle game as has ever been made. Other stand outs include Cubello, a first person shooter/match three puzzle hybrid, a Rotozoa, a color match game in which you control a microbial organism with various colored arms.
So there you have it, my personal picks for best Wii Ware exclusive franchises. I hesitsted to put BIT.TRIP up there, as it's also available on Steam and in a 3DS collection, but it started as a Wii Ware game and I'm sticking with it. Sure there were some missteps in Wii Ware, the loss of Super Meat Boy perhaps the most glaring of them, but I really love that service and I'm glad it lives on with the 3DS and Wii U, even if Nintendo has dropped the "Ware" suffix.