The Nintendo Download – 7/5/12

This week’s Nintendo Download comes to us with a surprising triple-dose of Virtual Console action. And what’s even more surprising is that yes, one of those releases is for the Wii Virtual Console, and is joined by a new WiiWare title as well. So let’s get started…

In the Nintendo eShop, The Legend of Zelda and NES Open Tournament Golf make their appearance to non-Ambassador Program members for $4.99 each. For Ambassador members, if the pattern up til now holds true, then you should be able to update your copies for free to include some new features and a new icon on your Nintendo 3DS menu screen.

The Legend of Zelda is the original, which introduced us to the land of Hyrule and the conflict between Link, Zelda, and Ganon for the power of the then-incomplete Triforce. Though the story is thinner than what would come to be from later installments, it offers a vast world in which you can go virtually anywhere from the start, combining arcade action and role-playing elements into a challenging but satisfying whole. Plus, it’s like two games in one! Defeat Ganon (or just enter your name as “ZELDA”) to open up a second quest with a remixed overworld map, new dungeons, and fiercer enemies.

NES Open Tournament Golf is golf featuring Mario and Luigi, with Peach (nee Toadstool) and Daisy acting as caddies. But that’s where the resemblance to later sports games bearing the plumber hero’s name ends; this one is just straight-up golf, minus the more frenetic and chaotic elements which would come to be associated with Mario sports titles. But if you’re just a fan of golf, this one isn’t bad.

Also available in the Nintendo eShop is Family Tennis 3D, a “casual tennis game features eight playable characters and six different courts,” plus a tournament mode, unlockable gallery, and mini-games. This one will cost you $6.99, but be warned: It does not support multiplayer.

And then we have Akari by Nikoli, puzzle/strategy game by the creator of Sudoku (or at least the one who named it). For $4.99, you get 50 puzzles.

For both the Nintendo eShop and Nintendo DSiWare, there is a one-two punch of edutainment. Topoloco is a $4.99/500 DSi Point game which covers the field of topography. Or, for $1.99/200 DSi Points, you can get 3, 2, 1… WordsUp!, a word-building game in which you see how many words you can form from the same set of letters.

Beginning at 9am PST/Noon EST on July 6th, the Game of the Weekend for this week is Sakura Samurai, which is $4.99 ($2 off) until 9pm PST/Midnight EST on Sunday, July 8th. You can find my review for it at the Toronto Video Game Examiner here; it’s not a bad game, but does require a certain level of determination and skill to beat, not to mention a lot of potential backtracking.

The final handheld offering this week is a free demo of Square Enix’s Heroes of Ruin, an action-adventure game featuring up to four-player cooperative play.

As for those Wii games we were talking about, the Virtual Console gets 2020 SUPER BASEBALL, a futuristic baseball game which allows for two players. The price is 900 Wii Points, which seems to indicate an arcade release. It originally came out in 1991, so if you want to see how sports in our near future were perceived over 20 years ago, this is your chance.

Or, for 500 Wii Points, you can learn the fine art of pottery in Let’s Create! Potter for WiiWare. At the very least, it’s probably less messy than the real thing.

And that’s everything for this week. For more information on each title, just click on the corresponding link above.

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David Oxford

David Oxford is a freelance writer of many varied interests. If you're interested in hiring him, please drop him a line at david.oxford (at) nyteworks.net.