Chronicling the must-have Nintendo games of the past month.
Nintendo’s two red-hot video game systems, the DS and Wii, got off to an unfortunately slow start when they were first released. They suffered from a dearth of good launch titles and a disappointing amount of gimmicky games. However, much to the delight of owners of both systems, they’re now brimming with a good amount of excellent titles. The problem for any budget shopper, of course, is which ones to buy, exactly.
Both systems saw a number of good titles released this past December—the holiday season, no doubt, sparks a lot of developers to get their blockbuster titles out before late in the month. On the Wii, we saw such titles as Puzzle Quest: Challenge of the Warlords, Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles, and NiGHTS: Journey of Dreams. On the portable side of the Nintendo spectrum (that is, the DS), we saw Geometry Wars: Galaxies, Warhammer 40,000: Squad Command, and the Nintendogs-esque Shrek: Ogres and Dronkeys.
Sadly, the DS offering this month was rather shoddy, featuring several under-developed titles and a boatload of licensed games, so I’m going to go ahead right now and say that the game to buy for December will be for the Wii. Puzzle Quest, sadly, will probably be knocked off. Why? Well, it’s fun, I suppose, but it’s just not as good as the same title for, say, the DS. Puzzle Quest was pretty clearly a cash-in to try to get Wii owners to shell out money for a game that had been great on previous systems.
NiGHTS: Journey of Dreams received some pretty mixed reviews. It’s the spiritual sequel to a cult-classic released many years ago—some herald it as a must-play game, while others consider it pretty average. While nothing groundbreaking, NiGHTS is a fun game. It’s not complex, it’s not difficult, but, at its core, it does what many games these days are failing to do: entertain. Still, it doesn’t do so to the caliber that such a task is performed by, say, Metroid Prime 3 or Super Mario Galaxy.
As some of you may have anticipated, I’ll go ahead and label Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles as the best Nintendo game to spend your hard-earned cash on for December. There are a few problems with the title, but again, it’s a game that’s really a blast to play. It’s definitely a must-buy for any die-hard Resident Evil fan because it does an excellent job of retelling the stories of past Resident Evil games. It plays great with the Wii Zapper, and it’s a solid shooter. If you haven’t already, I’d say it’s your best bet for a good game to pick up.