The Nintendo Download – 1/21/2016

Mario & Mario & Mario & Luigi.

Wow! Nintendo’s really picking up steam as the year rolls on — we have quite a bountiful batch of beauties for the Wii U this week, and while Nintendo 3DS doesn’t have as much going on, it’s still got one pretty good showing.

Minecraft: Story Mode – Episode 1: The Order of the Stone for Wii U – Wow, when it rains, it pours. Just over a month after Minecraft came to Wii U, now Minecraft: Story Mode has followed. While the original Minecraft has no story to speak of, this point-and-click style adventure from TellTale Games tries to make up for it by weaving an episodic tale where you guide Jesse to EnderCon, where he hopes to meet Gabriel the Warrior but discovers something is amiss. “You will drive the story through the decisions you make: What you say to people (and how you say it) and what you choose to do in moments of thrilling action will make this YOUR story.”


Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros. 3 for Wii U – While Minecraft: Story Mode looks cool and all, this is the real highlight for me. Super Mario Advance 4 is an enhanced Game Boy Advance version of the already enhanced version of the Nintendo Entertainment System classic Super Mario Bros. 3 that was in Super Mario All-Stars for the Super NES. Still with me? What sets this version apart is the inclusion of e-Reader levels: a number of levels that were originally accessible only by scanning cards through the GBA’s e-Reader device (many of which never made it to North America), featuring all kinds of new ideas and content, as well as stuff from previous Mario titles, from the giant turnips of Super Mario Advance to the Super Feather’s cape from Super Mario World. In short, it’s perhaps the ultimate version of what was already considered by many to be the best game of all time.


Zack & Wiki: Quest For Barbaros’ Treasure for Wii U – This Capcom title for the Wii is typically regarded as an overlooked classic. Those who played this swashbuckling adventure generally loved it, but unfortunately, it didn’t reach a wide enough audience to keep things going. But now it’s got a second chance at life — will you join Zack and Wiki on their quest to become the greatest pirates who ever lived?


A World of Keflings – Demo Version for Wii U – Not sure if you’re ready for an extended stay in a world of Keflings? Find out with a quick visit courtesy of this free demo.


Brunswick Pro Bowling for Wii U – The Brunswick brand seems to get as much — or more — emphasis than the actual bowling in this game. Career Mode allows you to compete in tournaments while Rival Challenges allow you to earn currency to purchase all sorts of authentic Brunswick bowling equipment, as well as power-ups such as the Bomb Ball which detonates for an automatic strike. Up to four players can play and earn up to 200 achievements.


Cube Life: Island Survival – Demo Version for Wii U – Sure, the Wii U has Minecraft now, but is that not enough for you? Look into this genre-alike title with a free demo to decide if this is the “more” you want or need.


SKEASY for Wii U – This looks like the Wii U answer to Ski Free for Windows, but without any sign of the abominable snowman (from the description or screens) to impede your progress towards the high score.


Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam for Nintendo 3DS – This one comes out in the Nintendo eShop at 9pm PT on January 21st, and unfortunately, I won’t have a review ready in time for release as I’d hoped. I will say that I’ve been thoroughly enjoying it for the most part (and the parts that I didn’t simply required some new perspective), but the main reason the review won’t be ready in time for release? My wife has been hooked while playing the game for her own review at G4, which ought to be ready tomorrow. Hopefully then I can get my hands on it for long enough to have it up soon after!


PET INN 3D for Nintendo 3DS – 16 breeds of cats and dogs and 14 mini-games await as you manage a pet hotel in this simulation.

Theme Shop on Nintendo 3DS

This week’s new themes are “SEGA SG-1000” and “Animal Crossing: Winter Frolicking.”

Nintendo eShop Sales (Taken directly from Nintendo’s press release; prices in USD)

For more information, screens, and videos for each of this week’s releases, click on the corresponding links above.

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)



About the author

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)