Giftamania 2016 (Updated)

Update: Added Dead Rising 4 and LEGO Dimensions expansion packs.

With apologies to Maffew, as well as everyone else for not getting this up a little sooner as I’d have liked.

Following is a quick list of titles and things good for grabbing as gifts for the gamer in your life this holiday season. Mind, these come as my own personal recommendations, and don’t account for everything, including some “obvious” picks (such as Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, Final Fantasy XV, and Pokemon Sun and Pokemon Moon). Everything here has been released in some form or fashion since Christmas 2015.

Xbox One

killerinstinctdefeditionXbox One S – Your mileage may vary on this one; if you or the intended recipient don’t own an Xbox One already, then this is the way to go. If you/they are planning on getting a 4K TV in the next year, however, then you might want to wait for Microsoft’s Project Scorpio — or at least more details about it — to emerge.

Killer Instinct: Definitive Edition Originally introduced in 2013, the revival of Killer Instinct has finally reached completion after three “seasons” of releases. While I only reviewed the first season, much more content has been made available since then, including new guest stars from Halo, Gears of War, and Battletoads! What’s more, you can now get everything in one complete package at retail with the Definitive Edition, which also includes a soundtrack CD and code for a gold Gargos skin. Now that’s what I call an Ultra Combo! (Also available on Windows 10 via Play Anywhere with Xbox One)

Forza Horizon 3 This open-world driving game is great for relaxing, but also provides plenty of excitement as you partake in various races, challenges, and even hunts for classic vehicles. Sync up your own custom soundtrack (or use one of the stations in the game) and hit the road — as well as the plains, beaches, and anywhere else you can think to drive! (Also available on Windows 10 via Play Anywhere with Xbox One)

oriblindforestdefeditionboxOri and the Blind Forest: Definitive Edition (Review Pending) – Alongside Killer Instinct, this was one of the games which made me want an Xbox One in the first place, and I haven’t been disappointed. This Metroidvania-styled platformer has a beautifully eerie presence a surprising degree of emotion as well. I was saving this to say in my already long-overdue review, but to me, Ori feels like the perfect mascot for the Xbox One, and deserves to be adopted as one. Plus, for the price, how can you afford not to try it? (Also available for Windows via Steam)

ReCore (Review Pending) – From some of the creative minds who brought you Mega Man and Metroid Prime comes this mysterious tale from another world. As Joule Adams, you’re tasked with exploring the planet of Far Eden and finding out what happened to those who were supposed to colonize it for mankind’s survival. But while you seem to be the only human around, you’re not alone — a group of Corebots use the special abilities granted by their customizable frames (such as the “dog,” Mack) to assist you throughout this third-person adventure that feels in some ways like a mix of Mega Man Legends and Metroid Prime, coupled with its own unique elements as well. (Also available on Windows 10 via Play Anywhere with Xbox One)

Quantum Break (Review Pending) – Yeah, I know — I’m juggling a lot of balls in the air here (and yes, it’s driving me nuts). This is an extremely story-oriented third-person shooter with some interesting characters and some content that’s set up like an actual television serial interspersed with the game’s chapters. If you’re cool with a game you watch as or more often than you play, then this one’s definitely worth a look. (Also available on Windows 10)

Xbox Design Lab – The Xbox One Wireless Controller is one of my favorite controllers to come around in some time, with a comfortable feel and a Dpad that’s not only finally worth a damn, but pretty dang good in its own right! So what could make it better? How about your own choice of color scheme, and maybe a laser-engraved message as well? This holiday season, you can give a custom Xbox Design Lab controller as a gift by purchasing a code which the recipient can then redeem to make the controller of their dreams (and 14-day shipping is free!).

Dead Rising 4 – This late arrival to stores and this list alike is a must-own this holiday season for its Yuletide setting alone, but for fans of beat ’em up-styled gameplay, the latest adventure of Frank West really hits home.

Wii U

papermariocolorsplashboxPaper Mario: Color Splash After Paper Mario: Sticker Star, I thought that the magic of the series I loved might never return. Imagine my surprise when Nintendo took such great strides towards a return to form just one installment later! While still not quite on the level of the masterpiece that is Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door, this lite-RPG adventure is a great choice for all ages.

The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD Nintendo’s next console, the Switch, isn’t destined to join us until March of next year, and the Zelda title designed to bridge it and the Wii U, Breath of the Wild, may take even longer still. In the meantime, they’ve updated the game which bridged the GameCube and the Wii with improved visuals and other features, including amiibo support! Get the game with the Wolf Link w/Midna amiibo, and you can begin prepping it to join you in the next Zelda adventure, whenever it may come!

Nintendo 3DS

kirbyplanetrobobotboxKirby: Planet Robobot Simply put, this is a must-have for any Nintendo 3DS owner. To say anything more would simply diminish it; if you or someone you know hasn’t played it, then rectify that immediately (or at least come the holidays).

Azure Striker Gunvolt: Striker Pack This spiritual successor to games such as Mega Man Zero really brings the thunder — or the lightning, at least! And with the recent release of Azure Striker Gunvolt 2 in the Nintendo eShop, you can now get both chapters together on a single game card at retail!

Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam It’s a crossover no one knew they wanted — or was even possible! Establishing the Paper Mario series as a separate entity (well, even more so), Nintendo’s two long-running Mario role playing game series collide as denizens of the Paper world are released into the regular Mario world, and chaos ensues! This one is definitely a “cut” above!

Sonic Boom: Fire & Ice While the original Sonic Boom games did little to endear the world to this iteration of the franchise, Fire & Ice is a much better second go. With humorous writing and voice acting that’s in keeping with the Sonic Boom cartoon and the addition of Amy Rose to the playable character roster, Fire & Ice doesn’t excel, but it is comfort gaming at its finest.

Project X Zone 2 Let’s get crazy! This turn-based strategy game brings together characters from several of SEGA, Capcom, Bandai Namco, and Nintendo’s top titles for a fan service smorgasbord! Even if you don’t know all the characters involved (and the odds are pretty good that you won’t know everyone), don’t worry — you’ll probably find yourself wanting to check out some new games by the end of it. Heck, I never had any interest in SEGA’s Yakuza before, but now I can’t wait for Yakuza 0 to arrive on PlayStation 4 early next year!

PlayStation 4

dragonquestbuildersboxPlayStation 4 Pro – Speaking of PlayStation 4, if you’re interested in 4K gaming or virtual reality with PlayStation VR, then this is the model to look into. Just know that while it can stream 4K video, it won’t play Ultra HD Blu-ray discs.

Dragon Quest Builders Part of Minecraft‘s strength is its go anywhere, do anything you want freedom. However, if you’re interested in a game which captures the building and resource mechanics while providing you with a bit more of a purpose, then this alternate timeline sequel to the original Dragon Quest ought to be right up your alley.

Ratchet & Clank This latest release in the long-running PlayStation-exclusive franchise combines what made the original game great with a bit of added flair from the motion picture release, turns it on its head, sprinkles in some elements from other installments, and provides an experience great for longtime fans of the series and newcomers alike. And given that the film (which is based on the original game, with this being based on that) didn’t quite set hearts aflutter while the game was a number-one bestseller, it’s probably safe to say that if you have to choose between the two, going with the game is probably the best choice.

Multiplatform

deusexmankindboxartDeus Ex: Mankind Divided (Review Pending) – The Canadian Video Game Awards 2016 winner for Best Console Game, Best Game Design, Best Narrative, Best Performance, and oh yeah, Game of the Year. As Adam Jensen, you’re a cybernetically-enhanced human (though you didn’t ask for this) who is putting his myriad tools to good use as you make the decisions you think will best see you through to victory. Lethal or non-lethal weapons? Employ stealth, or go in guns blazing? These choices and many more are yours.

Rise of the Tomb Raider 20 Year Celebration (Review Pending) – For as iconic a figure as Lara Croft has been for the industry over the years, this installment follows in the footsteps of its predecessor by being decidedly not for children — or the faint of heart. It’s definitely an intense game that will keep you on the edge of your seat, and some parts can be pretty gruesome as well. That said, the original version came to Xbox One last year, but 20 Year Celebration throws in all the extra content that has been released since then, including some additional skins (such as a Retro Lara for a nostalgic kick), a co-op mode, and an Extreme Difficulty mode. On PlayStation 4, it’s also one of the first games to take advantage of the HDR features and 4K resolution provided by the Pro version, as well as a chapter playable in PlayStation VR.

WWE 2K17 The latest installment in 2K Games’ long-running sports entertainment adaptation is opting for a little more of a sim flavor this year. Create your own Superstars and events, alter others, and have the full run of Raw, Smackdown, and the rest of the shows WWE brings to a worldwide audience every week.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutants in Manhattan On the half-shell, they’re the heroes four; in this day and age, who could ask for more? This IDW Comics-styled game is all about teamwork, whether you’re working with friends or strangers in online multiplayer, or managing all four green teens yourself.

skylandersimaginatorsboxSkylanders Imaginators Continuing the ever-growing theme of player-created content, this year’s Skylanders title allows you to create your very own Skylander called an Imaginator. They come in all different types, and become more powerful when one of the new Senseis shows them their moves. Plus, if you get the PlayStation 4 version (though it should come to the others next year), you can also get Skylanders of Spyro’s old pal, Crash Bandicoot and his rival Dr. Neo Cortex.

LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens “Chewie… we’re home.” These words from Han Solo reflect the feeling of this LEGO title as the series gets back to its roots, but with some new tricks as well. And it just feels so right.

Mega Man Legacy Collection Released as a digital download for Steam, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 late last year, this collection of the Blue Bomber’s six Nintendo Entertainment System adventures (and all the gobs of additional related content included) not only arrived on the Nintendo 3DS earlier this year, but at retail for Xbox One and PlayStation 4 as well. Plus, if you go for the physical Nintendo 3DS version, you can also add an exclusive gold Mega Man amiibo figure to your collection!

Mighty No. 9 This spiritual successor to Mega Man comes with a pretty severe caveat, as the game has been very divisive: If you or someone you know wants a challenge, then this one may deliver. That said, it’s best to look around and see if you can find a good bargain on it to keep your bets safe. Think of this one as “stocking stuffer” material, or consider trying the free demo first. Oh, and be careful about getting the Wii U version — that one apparently suffered from some pretty nasty hardware crashing issues, and I’m not sure if they ever got all those fixed.

LEGO Dimensions Sonic the Hedgehog Level Pack – The toys alone are cool enough, but getting to use them in a game which does a pretty good job of marrying the LEGO and Sonic styles of gameplay is even better.

LEGO Dimensions Gremlins Team Pack – Based on one of my favorite holiday movies, exploring the town of Kingston Falls during the snowy holiday season makes this a perfect holiday gift for anyone who owns (or will soon own) LEGO Dimensions.

Other

supermarioadventuresSuper Mario Run Though this game is available now, you won’t be able to buy it in stores. However, as it commands a $13.99 price tag, an iTunes gift card or two for the intended recipient may not be the worst idea. Just remember that it launches as an iOS exclusive, while the Android version comes sometime later.

Super Mario Adventures This recently republished collection of the comic which originally ran in Nintendo Power magazine 25 years ago is, for many, one of the definitive pieces of Mario fiction (outside of the games, that is). A loose adaptation of Super Mario World, this also includes an additional chapter which loosely adapts Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins and gives us the origin of Wario. Sadly, the 14th and final installment was not included; thankfully, it was a standalone story, so the rest of the book holds up quite well on its own otherwise.

NES Classic Edition and NES Controllers – Good luck finding either of these! Even if you’re not interested in this plug ‘n play collection of 30 classic games for yourself, you’re almost guaranteed to know someone who is, so if you see one in the wild — grab it! And if you happen to come across the even rarer controller, a replica of the original NES input device, consider that it also works with some games (pretty much anything a sideways Wii Remote would) on the Wii and Wii U!

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.

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An old great, some new greats… so much this week is looking great!

Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars for Wii U – The original — and still hailed by many as the best — Mario role playing game, it’s business as usual in the Mushroom Kingdom until a mysterious giant sword comes crashing down on Bowser’s Keep, flinging the king of the Koopas, Princess Peach, and Mario across the four corners of the kingdom. It’s up to you (as Mario, of course) to reunite the group against a common foe and expel this threat to the land!

Runbow – Demo Version for Wii U – Unsure if this multicolored race to the finish is right for you? Try out this demo version — maybe then you’ll be interested in the Nintendo 3DS version, too!

WiiU_PrismPets_02

Prism Pets for Wii U – Craft new colors by sliding some of your favorite animals around the field, but don’t fill it up!

WiiU_INVANOID_02

INVANOID for Wii U – Blast the alien bad guys for as long as you can, then compare your score with others on Miiverse to see who’s the best!

LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens for Wii U and Nintendo 3DS – Not too long ago, in a theatre that was probably pretty close by, Star Wars triumphantly returned to the big screen, and now the LEGO version is back to continue their take on the story.

BOXBOXBOY! for Nintendo 3DS – Qbby is back with a new power that allows him to create double the number of boxes he could before! But will it be enough for you and him to survive all of the treacherous trap-laden levels?

Monster Hunter Generations – Special Demo for Nintendo 3DS – The next generation of Capcom’s smash hit franchise is on its way July 15th, but until then, you can find out if it’s right for you by taking on the three quests available in this special demo. What’s more, if a friend has the demo as well, you can both team up to hunt some monsters down!

The Battle Cats POP! for Nintendo 3DS – Tower defense gets weird as you recruit a variety of bizarre cats to take out your unusual enemies and claim treasure across the world!

Zero Escape: Zero Time Dilemma for Nintendo 3DS – Your humanity is on the line as you’re forced to make difficult decisions in order to earn your freedom. You may escape, but will you be the same person you were when you went in? The choice is yours.

7th Dragon III Code: VFD – Demo Version for Nintendo 3DS – Unsure if you want to fight dragons on July 12th? Find out now with this free demo!

New DLC

Hyrule Warriors Legends – Link’s Awakening Pack – Marin from The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening soars into battle, and along with her comes a new weapon for Linkle, a new Adventure Mode map, 16 My Fairy Costume pieces, and two new Challenge Battles.

Minecraft: Story Mode, A Telltale Game Series – Episodes 2-5 are now available for purchase, as is a Season Pass which includes access to all the remaining episodes.

Activities

Nintendo Badge ArcadeRhythm is the name of the game this week, as Rhythm Heaven Megamix machines are being rolled out from June 30th to July 3rd. Plus, free plays will be offered from July 4th through July 6th!

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) nyteworks.net.

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Wow! Quite a few marquee names are headlining the Nintendo Download this week. Let’s have a look, shall we?

TokyoMirageSessions_FE

Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE for Wii U – The worlds of Shin Megami Tensei and Fire Emblem come together in the modern day as you battle through dungeons and strategize against your foes in this role playing game.

Mario_SonicattheRio2016

Mario & Sonic at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games for Wii U – Happy Birthday, Sonic! The Blue Blur turns 25 today, and is ready to show his stuff in the latest version of his rivalry with Mario at the Olympic Games for the Wii U. 17 sports are featured, including Soccer, Beach Volleyball, and the Olympic Games debut of Rugby Sevens.

WiiU_MightyNo.9

Mighty No. 9 for Wii U – Keiji Inafune’s action platformer introduces Beck, a robot with the ability to absorb the Xels which comprise other robots. As the other Mighty Numbers run amuck, it’s up to Beck — aka Mighty No. 9 — to help hunt down his brethren, find the cause, and save the world from destruction!

PokemonMysteryDungeonBlueRescueTeam

Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Red Rescue Team/Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Blue Rescue Team for Wii U – The world is in a state of crisis, but by forming rescue teams, your Pokémon can save the day!

PokemonMysteryDungeonExplorersofSky

Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Sky for Wii U – Learn the secrets of Time and Darkness as you set out on an adventure to save the world!

SuperGhoulsnGhosts_01

Super Ghouls ’n Ghosts for Wii U – Sir Arthur and his breezy boxers are back as the princess is kidnapped by underworld creatures once again.

WiiU_SplashyDuck_02

Splashy Duck for Wii U – Collect the coins, dodge the whales, and reach the finish line!

WiiU_StarSky2_04

Star Sky 2 for Wii U – Slow down, relax, and learn what consequences your choices bring in this nighttime adventure game.

WiiU_Blackjack21

Blackjack 21 for Wii U – Not just Blackjack, but a simulator that aims to bring the experience as close to the casino as possible.

EduPackofKidsGames

Educational Pack of Kids Games for Wii U – A set of learning games for young children that teaches about math, colors, shapes, and more.

WiiU_RubiksCube_03

Rubik’s Cube for Wii U and Nintendo 3DS – “The most authentic digital representation of the Rubik’s Cube available,” you’ll find both 2x2x2 and 3x3x3 here with touch controls, a solver, and leaderboards.

3DS_UnholyNights_03

Unholy Heights for Nintendo 3DS – Sucker monsters into your apartment building to charge them rent while keeping them happy with new furniture, then turn them loose on any “heroes” who dare to invade!

Theme Shop on Nintendo 3DS

This week’s new themes are “Rhythm Heaven Megamix Costumed Tebiri” and “Rhythm Heaven Megamix Ringside.”

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

  • Nintendo eShop on Wii U and Nintendo 3DS
  • Nintendo eShop on Wii U
    • Vector Assault is 20 percent off (reduced from $4.99 to $3.99) until 8:59 a.m. PT on June 30.
    • Infinity Runner is more than 40 percent off (reduced from $6.99 to $3.99) until 8:59 a.m. PT on July 7.
    • Star Sky is 50 percent off (reduced from $4 to $2) until 8:59 a.m. PT on July 7.
    • Steel Rivals is more than 25 percent off (reduced from $6.99 to $4.99) until 8:59 a.m. PT on June 30.
    • Super Destronaut is 50 percent off (reduced from $1.99 to 99 cents) until 8:59 a.m. PT on July 14.
  • Nintendo eShop on Nintendo 3DS

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) nyteworks.net.

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A pretty good batch of releases this week, including a couple of dig-lightful titles and a surprise release from Nintendo themselves:

Rhythm Heaven Megamix for Nintendo 3DS – Over 70 rhythm games have been collected here, from the series’ Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS, and Wii installments to all-new games. Can you reach Heaven World?

3DS_MegaMan7

Mega Man 7 for Nintendo 3DS – The Blue Bomber is back — and so is Dr. Wily! If you’ve finished the Mega Man Legacy Collection (or the Virtual Console releases) of the six Nintendo Entertainment System classics, then this is the obvious next step as the original Mega Man sets out on a Super NES adventure.

3DS_Gunslugs

Gunslugs for Nintendo 3DS – You’ve only got one life to live in this Roguelike-inspired game of running, jumping, and shooting. Fortunately, you can find more heroes to join you and Voodoo priests selling Continue statues to prolong your journey to the gates of Hell itself.

N3DS_LegendofDarkWitch2_01

The Legend of Dark Witch 2 – Demo Version for Nintendo 3DS – Uncertain about whether this action-adventure is for you? Find out by trying out the new demo version!

WiiU_Terraria

Terraria for Wii U – Dig, fight, build, and explore your way through this world filled with hundreds of enemies and giant enemy bosses. Craft your own weapons and armor, and share the adventure online and locally! (In short, it’s a lot like a 2D version of Minecraft.)

WiiU_SuperPaperMario

Super Paper Mario for Wii U – The two-dimensional plumber must cross several more dimensions in order to find the Pure Hearts capable of countering the Chaos Heart which threatens to suck all dimensions into the Void! Fortunately, Mario’s not alone — Luigi, Princess Peach, and even Bowser are on hand to help out, each with their own unique abilities.

WiiU_drilldozer

Drill Dozer for Wii U – Join Jill and her trusty, powerful, and upgradeable Drill Dozer as they pursue the Skullker gang across pits, up lifts, and more to retrieve the stolen Red Diamond in this Game Boy Advance classic.

WiiU_RunRunandDie

Run Run and Die for Wii U – As a penguin who has awakened in a dark laboratory, you must do one thing: run. 24 levels of robots, bombs, spikes, and impossible jumps stand between you and freedom, and you’ve only got a single button to guide you through.

WiiU_TwinRobots

Twin Robots for Wii U – Alone or with a local co-op partner, guide two imprisoned robots through 28 levels to freedom.

Activities

Nintendo Badge ArcadeThe Legend of Zelda machines are celebrating the reveal of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild this week, and from June 16th to June 22nd, you can get two free plays every day! Learn more at http://badgearcade.nintendo.com/.

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

  • Nintendo eShop on Wii U and Nintendo 3DS
    • Save Up to 40 Percent on Select Digital Games – Nintendo is celebrating E3 2016 by offering fans big savings on select digital games in top franchises, including The Legend of Zelda, Pokémon and more classic series. This also includes the original BOXBOY! game to get fans prepared for the just-announced sequel. As an added bonus, My Nintendo members can get an additional 10 percent off the sale price on select games*. Customers can shop the sale at http://e3.nintendo.com/sale/ or on Nintendo eShop on their devices from June 14 at 11 a.m. PT to June 21 at 8:59 a.m. PT.
      • *My Nintendo members must link their Nintendo Account and their Nintendo Network ID prior to purchase and before 5:59 a.m. PT on June 21 to be eligible for the additional 10 percent discount. Members must have accessed Nintendo eShop on their device at least once prior to purchase.
    • Mutant Mudds Super Challenge (Nintendo 3DS and Wii U), Xeodrifter (Nintendo 3DS and Wii U) and more games from Renegade Kid are on sale until 8:59 a.m. PT on June 30.
    • Island Flight Simulator, Secret Agent Files: Miami and more games from Joindots are on sale until 8:59 a.m. PT on June 23.
    • The Peanuts Movie: Snoopy’s Grand Adventure (Nintendo 3DS and Wii U) is on sale until 8:59 a.m. PT on June 21.
  • Nintendo eShop on Wii U
    • Wheel of Fortune, Legend of Kay Anniversary and more from Nordic Games are on sale until 8:59 a.m. PT on June 30.
    • Word Party is 25 percent off (reduced from $19.99 to $14.99) until 8:59 a.m. PT on June 30.
    • Paranautical Activity is 50 percent off (reduced from $9.99 to $4.99) until 8:59 a.m. PT on June 30.
    • Canvaleon is more than 25 percent off (reduced from $6.95 to $4.95) until 8:59 a.m. PT on July 14.
  • Nintendo eShop on Nintendo 3DS

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) nyteworks.net.

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The 2016 Electronic Entertainment Expo kicks off next week, and Nintendo’s taking us in with a really good game as well as a less-good game.

Kirby: Planet Robobot for Nintendo 3DS – Available June 10th, it’s Kirby against mysterious forces who are trying to cyberform his home world of Pop Star! Fortunately, Kirby has a certain knack for using his enemies’ powers against them, but this time he takes it to a whole new level! Stay tuned for my review, which is coming soon!

DanMcFoxHeadHunter

Dan McFox: Head Hunter for Nintendo 3DS – Agent Dan McFox has 60 different cases on hand, and he’ll need you to help pick the right faces out of the crowd.

PuzzleLabyrinth

Puzzle Labyrinth for Nintendo 3DS – “Puzzle Labyrinth is a game where the player must solve puzzles.” That is literally their tagline. 60 stages filled with traps and monsters must be conquered by solving puzzles and finding items that will allow players to escape each maze.

The Book of Unwritten Tales 2 for Wii U – KING Art, creator of The Critter Chronicles, The Raven – Legacy of a Master Thief, and of course the original The Book of Unwritten Tales, is back with a new 20-hour game that spoofs your favorite fantasy stories with quirky characters as you solve puzzles by the hundreds.

Olympia Rising for Wii U – Jump, slash, climb, and even incinerate your way from the depths of the Underworld to the peak of Mount Olympus. Can you be the true hero needed to accomplish this Herculean feat?

WarioMasterofDisguise

Wario: Master of Disguise for Wii U – Wario swipes a magic wand from television star Count Cannoli, using its powers to turn himself into a Master of Disguise and steal everything that’s not nailed down, including the mythical Wishstone. This game didn’t fare too well upon its release on the Nintendo DS, but perhaps the extra room on the Wii U GamePad will help make the difference?

New DLC

Fire Emblem Fates – New DLC Map: End: Lost in the Waves – The final part of “Heirs of Fate” sees the next generation assault their ultimate foe. This pack goes for $1.99 USD.

Fire Emblem Fates – Map Pack 2 DLC – Other versions of the Hoshidan and Nohrian children from other dimensions are under attack. These fledgling warriors of the Deeprealms are now forced to save themselves and their parents by rising up and discovering the mystery of their adversaries. Your leveled-up units from the main Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright and Fire Emblem Fates: Conquest games are unable to lend their assistance in this six-map series, which you can receive as they are released for $7.99 USD.

Theme Shop on Nintendo 3DS

This week’s new theme is “Kirby: Planet Robobot : Robobot Armor Activate!”

Activities

Nintendo eShop Sale – An E3 sale is coming soon to the Nintendo eShop, with My Nintendo members getting a special deal! Find out more here.

Hyrule Warriors Legends Free Companion Fairy Now Available! – As a special thanks to everyone playing Hyrule Warriors Legends, the new Fairy companion Lazuli is arriving via a free SpotPass download, and she’s bringing gifts! In addition to aiding you with her magic and skills, extra rupees and fairy food are available as well!

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) nyteworks.net.

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E3 lurks in the distance, and things are quiet… but not too quiet…

Kick & Fennick for Wii U – Kick is a young boy out to help his robot companion, Fennick, by traveling through 45 levels and blasting baddies with a gun that has enough “kick” to launch him from place to place!

MetroidPrimeHunters

Metroid Prime Hunters for Wii U – Samus Aran and six of the fiercest bounty hunters in the galaxy are in pursuit of the treasure of a lost warrior civilization in order to claim its untold power for themselves.

WiiU_B3GameExpoforBees_gamplay_05

B3 Game Expo for Bees for Wii U – Take on the role of the newest security bee at the convention hive for the bee gaming convention known as B3. After being distracted by the pre-show hype, it’s time to make things right in this first-person shooter.

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153 Hand Video Poker for Wii U – You may be good at playing a winning hand in Poker, but can you handle 153 hands?

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Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie’s Double Trouble for Nintendo 3DS – Dixie Kong is back, and this time she’s got her oversized infant cousin Kiddy Kong with her to lend a hand as they fight their way through the Northern Kremisphere in search of Donkey and Diddy!

3DS_SSSnakes_gamesplay_02

SSSnakes for Nintendo 3DS – The classic returns, updated for a new era. Modern visuals appear on the top screen, while a more simplified map appears on the bottom. Plus, you can now shoot to take out rival snakes! Just don’t accidentally snack on yourself!

New DLC

Fire Emblem Fates – New DLC Map V: Endless Dawn – In this fifth part of “Heirs of Fate,” Shigure leads the party storms the enemy. This pack goes for $1.99 USD. (I know this was posted last week. Strangely enough, this is what was in the press release; I’m not sure if it didn’t get released last week, or they just forgot to update this week’s.)

Fire Emblem Fates – Map Pack 2 DLC – Other versions of the Hoshidan and Nohrian children from other dimensions are under attack. These fledgling warriors of the Deeprealms are now forced to save themselves and their parents by rising up and discovering the mystery of their adversaries. Your leveled-up units from the main Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright and Fire Emblem Fates: Conquest games are unable to lend their assistance in this six-map series, which you can receive as they are released for $7.99 USD.

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) nyteworks.net.

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Wow, now this is what I call a delightful Nintendo Download, even though it’s only two releases in particular that have my eye.

StarTropics for Wii UStarTropics is one of my favorite games from the Nintendo Entertainment System library: I love the graphics, the music, the characters, the tropical setting, the mix of threats both mystic and alien alike. The only problem is, I’ve never completed it because this game is really tough! (And not especially forgiving, either.) Fortunately, I think the Wii U Virtual Console’s Restore Points may just make things palatable enough for me to give guiding Mike Jones and the Sub-C through the many island secrets to find his missing uncle.

Zoda’s Revenge: StarTropics II for Wii U – Maybe once I finish StarTropics, I can finally give its sequel (and its improved gameplay mechanics) a look as well! Unlike its predecessor, though, Mike’s adventures instead take him through history as he meets famous figures and fights off Zoda in order to collect the Tetrads and unlock their secret.

Fun Fact: To this day, neither StarTropics or Zoda’s Revenge: StarTropics II have been released in Japan. Probably why getting Mike Jones into Super Smash Bros. seems pretty unlikely — but under the Southern Cross, anything is possible!

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Rynn’s Adventure: Trouble in the Enchanted Forest for Wii U – An evil wizard has kidnapped the king and queen as marauding reptiles invade the Forest! As the spry young Fox, Rynn, can you fight your way to the wizard and free your parents?

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Futuridium EP Deluxe for Wii U – 50 levels, five bosses, and 150 medals are what stand between you and victory in this futuristic yet retro-inspired starship shoot ’em up.

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Dual Core for Wii U – Up to four players can cooperate or compete in this twin-stick shooter, including a 1-on-3 mode. Fight through the colony to find out what calamity has occurred in this future-flung setting!

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Dragon Fantasy: The Black Tome of Ice for Wii U and Nintendo 3DS – By pirate ship and through frozen tundra, defend against enemies as you use spatially aware Area-of-Effect attacks and power moves against the demons and bosses who threaten the world of Dragon Fantasy!

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Infinite Dunamis for Nintendo 3DS – In this role-playing game, a young engineer named Luke comes to the aid of a young woman who is under attack, only to discover she is half-machine. He offers to help her, kicking off a chain of events he may never forget.

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Epic Word Search Collection 2 for Nintendo 3DS – Can word searches be epic? They can when they each contain 1,500 words apiece! Puzzles themed around America, ancient history, animals, journeys, and Shakespeare are at your fingertips.

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Conveni Dream for Nintendo 3DS – You’re the new owner of a convenience store, and you’ve got your work cut out for you! Order imports and keep the shelves stocked to level up and enlarge your business!

New DLC

Fire Emblem Fates – New DLC Map III: The Changing Tide – In this third part of “Heirs of Fate,” it’s up to Shiro’s band to seize an opportunity. This pack goes for $1.99 USD. (I know this was posted last week. Strangely enough, this is what was in the press release; I’m not sure if it didn’t get released last week, or they just forgot to update this week’s.)

Fire Emblem Fates – Map Pack 2 DLC – Other versions of the Hoshidan and Nohrian children from other dimensions are under attack. These fledgling warriors of the Deeprealms are now forced to save themselves and their parents by rising up and discovering the mystery of their adversaries. Your leveled-up units from the main Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright and Fire Emblem Fates: Conquest games are unable to lend their assistance in this six-map series, which you can receive as they are released for $7.99 USD.

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) nyteworks.net.

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Some fun items on the docket today, including one of my favorite games of all time and a Mario-rrific update to a more recent great!

Minecraft: Wii U Edition – Super Mario Mash-Up Pack for Wii U – At long last! All the main details are here, but the gist is that if you have or get Minecraft: Wii U Edition, you can now get a free download that will allow you to explore a Minecrafted Mushroom Kingdom, including new skins, textures, and all sorts of other fun from Mario’s world.

PixelJunk Monsters for Wii U – The classic tower defense game comes to Wii U as Tikiman continues to protect his offspring from the monsters who wish to invade his realm!

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PokéPark Wii: Pikachu’s Adventure for Wii U – As Pikachu, run, jump, and smash your way through the various attractions of the PokéPark, and maybe even make some new Pokémon friends along the way!

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Sweetest Thing for Wii U – Candy Land has been invaded by ants, and now gingerbread houses are crumbling and the chocolate fountain in the town square has dried up. Are you the sugar repair engineer needed to rebuild the candy realm?

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Chompy Chomp Chomp Party for Wii U – Up to nine players can join in as each controls a different Chompy in various game modes and arenas.

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Contra III: The Alien Wars for Nintendo 3DS – One of the best shoot ’em ups (and one of my favorite games) of all time is now available on the New Nintendo 3DS. But just like on the Wii and Wii U, I’ve vowed not to get it or Super C until they release the original Contra, too — what’s taking them?

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Digger Dan DX for Nintendo 3DS – Guide Dan through 100 caves to collect gems and gold — just don’t get trapped!

New DLC

Hyrule Warriors Legends Master Wind Waker Pack – Purchase this downloadable content for 99 cents USD and you’ll get six new Fairy Costume pieces, the “Master” Wind Waker map in Adventure Mode, and a new adventure battle scenario. Or you can drop $14.99 USD on the season pass and get this and all of the other downloadable content packs as they become available.

Fire Emblem Fates – New DLC Map III: The Changing Tide – In this third part of “Heirs of Fate,” it’s up to Shiro’s band to seize an opportunity. This pack goes for $1.99 USD.

Fire Emblem Fates – Map Pack 2 DLC – Other versions of the Hoshidan and Nohrian children from other dimensions are under attack. These fledgling warriors of the Deeprealms are now forced to save themselves and their parents by rising up and discovering the mystery of their adversaries. Your leveled-up units from the main Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright and Fire Emblem Fates: Conquest games are unable to lend their assistance in this six-map series, which you can receive as they are released for $7.99 USD.

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) nyteworks.net.

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This week’s Nintendo Download shows a lot of love to the oldschool style of gaming, but with a modern twist. From super-hard platformers to 8-bit styled graphics to classic characters and more, there should be plenty to satisfy older fans of gaming as well as new.

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Disney Art Academy for Nintendo 3DS – From Elsa and Olaf to Mickey and Minnie to numerous emotions from Inside Out, this teaching tool will help you learn to draw more than 80 characters from the worlds of Disney and Pixar.

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Wordsup! Academy for Nintendo 3DS – Prove you’re worthy of joining the Wordsup! Academy by taking on six modes of challenges and six different languages.

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Witch & Hero 2 – Demo Version for Nintendo 3DS – Not sure if this tag-team action-adventure is for you? Find out with this free demo!

Super Meat Boy for Wii U – Over 300 single-player levels, epic boss fights, a plethora of unlockable secrets, warp zones, and hidden characters from other popular indie games all await in this tough-as-nails platformer. As Super Meat Boy, can you survive the salt factories, haunted hospitals, and even Hell itself to save your girlfriend?

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The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass for Wii U – This touch-based sequel to The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker returns Link to the open sea as he must solve the mystery of the Ghost Ship.

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8-Bit Hero for Wii U – Up to five players can team up in this co-op retro arcade adventure. 30 levels and three difficulty levels await.

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Color Symphony 2 for Wii U – Color is the key to overcoming the obstacles through 120 levels of this puzzle action platformer.

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Tachyon Project for Wii U – In this story-driven dual-stick shooter, you take control of Ada, a sentient computer program designed to hack into the most secure servers on Earth, but who has been locked out of her own home server. Can you unravel the mystery of what happened to her creators?

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Queens Garden for Wii U – This match-3 game features 100 levels and 60 different garden decorations, along with some bonus games as well.

Theme Shop on Nintendo 3DS

This week’s new themes are “Pokémon Radiant Collection,” “Pokémon Red and Blue,” and “Pokémon: Here Comes Ash-Greninja.”

New DLC

Minecraft: Wii U Edition – Super Mario Mash-Up Pack – Available May 17th, this download is free to those who purchase Minecraft: Wii U Edition and allows you to turn the world of Minecraft into a mash-up with Mario’s world. You can find out more about this content here.

Fire Emblem Fates – New DLC Map – Realms Collide – In this second part of “Heirs of Fate,” Nohr’s youths must give aid to a wild dragon. This pack goes for $1.99 USD.

Fire Emblem Fates – Map Pack 2 DLC – Other versions of the Hoshidan and Nohrian children from other dimensions are under attack. These fledgling warriors of the Deeprealms are now forced to save themselves and their parents by rising up and discovering the mystery of their adversaries. Your leveled-up units from the main Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright and Fire Emblem Fates: Conquest games are unable to lend their assistance in this six-map series, which you can receive as they are released for $7.99 USD.

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) nyteworks.net.

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My head’s feeling a little woozy today, so instead of a fancy intro, I’m just going to get right to it.

Pocket Card Jockey for Nintendo 3DS – Developed by Game Freak, you’ll have to win at a form of solitaire to get your horse to move fast enough to win the race.

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Super Punch-Out!! for Nintendo 3DS – If boxing were like professional wrestling, then this is probably what it would be like. Guide Little Mac to the World Video Boxing Association championship title by sticking and moving through numerous outlandish opponents in this Super Nintendo Entertainment System sequel to the NES classic.

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Style Savvy for Wii U – Think Rarity is best pony for her fashion sense? Step into her shoes as the owner of your very own chic boutique in this title. Create outfits, satisfy customers, and do it all with Style Savvy.

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Escape from Flare Industries for Wii U – The Nature Boy has become a man of industry, and — wait, that’s “Flare,” not “Flair.” I guess that wasn’t very fair to Flair, then, was it?

Apparently, there are these jerks who locked up a little slime guy named Splat to sell him off. However, despite all his rage, he’s still just a Splat in a cage, so he takes the first opportunity he can find to get out of there so he can rescue his pals, beat the boss, and get out of there. Acid, spikes, and other obstacles present puzzles to navigate as Splat tries to escape the factory, though.

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Midnight 2 for Wii U – 28 unlockable levels await in this golf-ish sequel to the original Wii U title.

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PixelMaker for Wii U – A program for creating pixel art, you can use the GamePad screen to get a close-up view of the finer details while the TV screen presents the bigger picture.

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SpaceRoads for Wii U – The R-Series 1700F claims to be the fastest ship in the universe, and you get to pilot her at breakneck speeds through the worst environments space has to offer. Just don’t run out of fuel!

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Sudoku and Permudoku for Wii U – Two styles of puzzle are available in this package, including classic number-placing Sudoku, and Permudoku, where colors replace the numbers.

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The Beggar’s Ride for Wii U – A mysterious mask lies in wait for a hero, but could the old beggar who discovers it be more than he appears? Four masks in total bestow godlike powers that can reveal the truth!

Activities

Nintendo Badge Arcade – Until May 25th, spending $1 USD will automatically get you a thank-you badge featuring the Arcade Bunny (up to a maximum of $4 USD and four badges).

New DLC

Fire Emblem Fates – Map Pack 2 DLC – Other versions of the Hoshidan and Nohrian children from other dimensions are under attack. These fledgling warriors of the Deeprealms are now forced to save themselves and their parents by rising up and discovering the mystery of their adversaries. Your leveled-up units from the main Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright and Fire Emblem Fates: Conquest games are unable to lend their assistance in this six-map series, which you can receive as they are released for $7.99 USD.

Fire Emblem Fates – New DLC Map – In Endless Dreams – For $0.49 USD, you can help the lost and isolated Kana find allies. This map is Part 1 of “Heirs of Fate.”

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) nyteworks.net.

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Nothing especially huge has dropped this week — unless you count the absolutely enormous world of Xenoblade Chronicles — but there are two cool-looking free-to-play games available to try out this week. At that price, anything is worth a shot at least once, right?

Lost Reavers for Wii U – From Ancient Ruins and Medieval Castles to a Modern City, this free-to-play four-player co-op game is all about teamwork as you each pull together as one of four unique characters to retrieve treasures and return them to your extraction point.

The Deer God for Wii U – Oh deer! This side-scrolling adventure is all about survival, reincarnation, and karma as you find power-ups, test your platforming skills, and unlock secrets most ancient as you must live and survive as a deer.

Xenoblade Chronicles for Wii U – Shulk’s original adventure returns once again! Funny how after it took so long to get here, Nintendo of America is quickly re-releasing it in short order along with its sequel, huh? See where it all began with this Virtual Console re-release of the original Wii title!

Mini Mario & Friends: amiibo Challenge for Wii U and Nintendo 3DS – This freebie has been out in the States for a month through a promotion we northern folks never got to partake in, but now everyone can download this free title and conquer 50 levels using the special abilities of 11 Minis. All you need to get started is any one amiibo figure!

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Disney Art Academy pre-purchase for Nintendo 3DS – You can’t start learning to draw with Disney until May 13th (well, you can, but not with this title until it’s released), but you can pre-purchase it now and have it ready to go when the clock ticks down and the game is made available.

SEGA 3D Classics Collection for Nintendo 3DS – SEGA’s collection of 3D Classics is finally here! From previously-released titles such as 3D Sonic the Hedgehog to never-before-seen-in-this-part-of-the-world titles like 3D Power Drift, there is plenty to see here.

ASH for Nintendo 3DS – This turn-based role-playing game’s story is cast with an air of uncertainty as the royal army is deployed in absence of a king, leaving its leader to wonder the true intentions of the Magistrate.

Theme Shop on Nintendo 3DS

This week’s new themes are “Star Fox Zero : Space Battle,” “Shovel Knight Campfire Dream,” and “Plague Knight’s Theme.”

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) nyteworks.net.

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As noted yesterday, Star Fox Zero is available today in both the Nintendo eShop and at retail. While the game and its Tower Defense-meets-Five Nights at Freddy’s companion, Star Fox Guard, can be purchased separately in the Nintendo eShop, both games are being sold collectively as one unit in stores for $74.99 CAD. Those who purchase one in the Nintendo eShop will receive an automatic discount of $9.99 CAD when purchasing the other game digitally.

Star Fox Zero is a game that’s only possible through the second-screen experience of the Wii U GamePad,” said Nintendo of Canada’s General Manager and Senior Director Pierre-Paul Trepanier in a press release. “Many video game fans have experienced the Star Fox series through the years, but never with this level of full-throttle action.”

To get people hyped up for the game, Nintendo’s Shigeru Miyamoto has teamed with Production I.G and WIT STUDIO to produce Star Fox Zero: The Battle Begins, a 15-minute animated short which expands the world and characters with a trip through the first level of the game, Corneria:

Yep, Falco is still my favorite.

In addition, they’ve provided an overview of both Star Fox Zero and Star Fox Guard that you can view here:

While I haven’t gotten to play the game yet, you can find my impressions from last year’s Nintendo Summer Celebration and Media Showcase here.

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.

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It’s a small batch this week, but a pretty packed one. In addition to the return of Star Fox, Mario is ready to party, and there’s even free pinball and solitaire/horse racing! What more could you ask for?

(Don’t answer that, it was purely rhetorical.)

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Star Fox Zero for Wii U – Available Friday, April 22nd: In this reboot of the Star Fox team’s original adventure, you’ll have to master new ways to pilot the sleek Arwing and its new all-terrain Walker formation, the mighty Landmaster tank (now with hover conversion), and the hovering Gyrowing flight drone in order to stop Andross’s armies from invading Corneria and conquering the Lylat system!

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Star Fox Guard for Wii U – Available Friday, April 22nd: Star Fox team member Slippy Toad’s uncle Grippy is in the mining business, and as the founder of Corneria Precious Metals Ltd., he needs your help! Man a dozen turret-mounted cameras across each facility and keep the invading robots at bay!

Unlike the retail version of Star Fox Zero, it and Star Fox Guard are sold separately in the Nintendo eShop. However, purchasing one game allows you a $9.99 CAD discount on the other, bringing the total price for both to $64.99 CAD. (Edit: Whoops, my mistake — looks like the two together are $74.99 CAD.)

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Mario Party DS for Wii U – Bowser has shrunken Mario and seven of his friends down to pocket-size! Pick one and take control in four game modes as you triumph in 70 mini-games across five game boards to foil the Koopa King’s latest scheme!

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Blockara for Wii U – It’s a competition that happens only once every 12,000 years as the September Dragon awakens to grant one wish to the best alchemist in the land. Are your puzzle skills sufficient enough to claim the prize? Choose from ten characters, each with their own story, and find out!

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Dreamals for Wii U – Three animals have been summoned to the Dream World, and are now searching for a way home. Each can move in only one direction, so teamwork is the key in this puzzle/strategy game.

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Pinball Arcade for Wii U – Touted as “the most realistic and comprehensive pinball game ever created,” this free download will soon see updates featuring tables based on various hit movies, TV shows, and more, including Star Trek: The Next Generation, Terminator 2: Judgement Day, Twilight Zone, Creature from the Black Lagoon, Monster Bash, Medieval Madness, Funhouse, Attack from Mars, Circus Voltaire, and Big Shot. Plus, online tournaments and extra modes will allow you to challenge yourself and compete against your friends.

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Pocket Card Jockey Demo Version for Nintendo 3DS – Is this mixture of solitaire and horse racing for you? Find out in this free card-stacking demo before the full game is released in May.

New DLC

Fire Emblem Fates – New DLC Map – Witches’ Trial – For $1.99 USD, you can test your skills in the Fear Mountain stage from Fire Emblem Gaiden. You can also purchase Map Pack 1 to get everything released through April 21st for less than you’d pay individually.

Theme Shop on Nintendo 3DS

This week’s new themes are “Fire Emblem Fates : The Men” and “Fire Emblem Fates : The Women.”

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) nyteworks.net.

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This week, Nintendo bounces back with a pretty solid lineup of titles, including three of the most celebrated games to ever grace the Super Nintendo Entertainment System’s library — if you have a New Nintendo 3DS, at least. If yours is without the New, you can still enjoy Square Enix’s latest role playin game tour de force. Meanwhile, over on Wii U, beta season is finally open for Bandai Namco’s intriguing new online multiplayer romp, Lost Reavers.

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Bravely Second: End Layer for Nintendo 3DS – In this direct follow-up to Bravely Default, Agnés Oblige is in trouble and it’s up to you — er, Yew — to save her!

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The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past for Nintendo 3DS – This Super NES classic not only returned the Zelda series to its top-down roots, but effectively established the foundation for many games to follow.

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Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy’s Kong Quest for Nintendo 3DS – Donkey Kong has been kidnapped! Rather than cave in to the Kremlings’ ransom, Diddy Kong is taking charge to rescue his big buddy, and he’s got his ponytail-swinging girlfriend Dixie along for the ride in her breakout role.

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Super Metroid for Nintendo 3DS – What A Link to the Past did for Zelda, Super Metroid did for Metroid. Return to Planet Zebes to track down the stolen Metroid hatchling before the space pirates can use it to cause havoc across the galaxy!

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Langrisser Re:Incarnation -TENSEI- for Nintendo 3DS – Available April 19th: Your choices determine the outcome in various settings throughout the game. Three factions are in need of your leadership — will you choose the path of light, the road to darkness, or try to find another way?

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Super Strike Beach Volleyball for Nintendo 3DS – Choose from eight characters, each with their own patented Super Shot, and attain glory in Campaign mode, endure as many rounds as you can in Survivor mode, or just relax in Free Play mode.

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Excave III: Tower of Destiny for Nintendo 3DS – Join the heroine Scarlett on a hack and slash dungeon-crawling adventure through the auto-generated rooms of the Fantasy Tower!

Asdivine Hearts for Wii U – Restore light to this fantasy world by traveling alongside your four companions (plus a cat) and engaging in animated turn-based battles and sub-quests, among other challenges.

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Lost Reavers Beta Test Version for Wii U – The full service doesn’t launch until April 28th (for free, no less), but you can get some practice in this four-player cooperative game now.

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Brain Age: Train Your Brain in Minutes a Day! for Wii U – What age is your brain? Join Dr. Ryuta Kawashima as he helps you figure it out, as well as exercising it through quick mental activities that will help keep your mind in shape.

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Draw 2 Survive for Wii U – Quick reflexes and split second decisions are the key to survival as you must “Draw 2 Survive,” whether by yourself or in a group of four in this free title.

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Slots – Pharaoh’s Riches for Wii U – Enjoy Las Vegas style slots, a pyramid bonus game, and more, all from the comfort of your Wii U.

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Dodge Club Party for Wii U – One, four, or five players can engage in this 16×16 square free-for-all based on the interactive installation that toured art galleries, night clubs, and festivals across North America.

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Paranautical Activity for Wii U – I’ll let the description speak for itself: “Paranautical Activity combines the classic FPS action of games like Doom and Quake, with the randomness and difficulty of modern roguelikes like Binding of Isaac and Spelunky.”

New DLC

Fire Emblem Fates – New DLC Map – Ballistician Blitz and A Gift from Anna – For $1.99 USD, you can get the trial ground known as the Ballistician Blitz, based on The Wooden Calvary stage from Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon and the Blade of Light. Choosing “A Gift from Anna” on the “Play DLC” section of the Dragon’s Gate after you download it gives you a free download that is playable only once, resulting in you receiving either the Sighting Lens or the Witch’s Mark. You can also purchase Map Pack 1 to get everything released through April 21st for less than you’d pay individually.

Theme Shop on Nintendo 3DS

This week’s new themes are “Animal Crossing : Gardening Weather” and “Bravely Second : Ask Agnès.”

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

  • Nintendo eShop on Wii U and Nintendo 3DS
    • Spring into savings on Nintendo eShop with the Super Spring Sale! Save up to 30 percent off select games in Nintendo eShop until 8:59 a.m. PT on April 21. Remember: Purchasing items from Nintendo eShop is an easy way to earn points for the new My Nintendo rewards program. Just make sure your Nintendo Network ID and Nintendo Account are linked prior to making a purchase. Visit https://my.nintendo.com/ for more information.
    • Joe’s Diner (Wii U), Jewel Match 3 (Nintendo 3DS) and more games from Joindots are on sale until 8:59 a.m. PT on April 21.
    • Shovel Knight – Digital Version (Wii U and Nintendo 3DS) is more than 30 percent off (reduced from $14.99 to $9.99) until 8:59 a.m. PT on April 21.
  • Nintendo eShop on Wii U
    • Runbow is 25 percent off (reduced from $14.99 to $11.25) until 8:59 a.m. PT on April 28.
    • Peg Solitaire, Skeasy and more games from RCMADIAX are on sale until 8:59 a.m. PT on April 20.
  • Nintendo eShop on Nintendo 3DS

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) nyteworks.net.

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Not a whole lot to speak of this week, though a compilation package with some of Nintendo’s earliest classics (and their remakes) is now available on the Wii U:

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Game & Watch Gallery 4 for Wii U – Classic games which helped make Nintendo a household name can now be yours to enjoy on contemporary hardware. Play recreations of Fire, Boxing, Rain Shower, Mario’s Cement Factory, Donkey Kong Jr., Donkey Kong 3, and many more in recreations of their original liquid crystal-display format, or remade with Mario and friends to the specs of the Game Boy Advance!

Star Fox Zero pre-purchase for Wii U – Be among the first to play this new title from the Star Fox franchise by pre-purchasing it through the Nintendo eShop on Wii U or through this link. Doing so will not only allow you to play after a small update upon launch, but also net you a $4.99 discount towards Star Fox Guard when the two titles are released on April 22nd.

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Emojikara: A Clever Emoji Match Game for Wii U – Create your own emoji masterpiece by unlocking a collection through completing word puzzles!

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Epic Dumpster Bear for Wii U – Is this memes? Regardless, there are 70 levels spread across seven worlds, plus bonus puzzle levels which make special use of the Wii U GamePad as you seek revenge on the evil corporation that destroyed your forest.

SUPER ROBO MOUSE for Wii U – Three worlds are divided into 20 levels as you guide Robo past dangerous blades, spikes, flamethrowers, lasers, and sharks in order to escape from the evil Boltz Clan.

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Doll Fashion Atelier for Nintendo 3DS – Choose a Pretty, Gothic, Victorian, Princess, or Antique doll and dress it to impress from 600 available items.

New DLC

Fire Emblem Fates – New DLC Map – Anna on the Run – For $1.99 USD, you can find out the fate of Anna as she gets cornered by thieves. You can also purchase Map Pack 1 to get everything released through April 21st for less than you’d pay individually.

Theme Shop on Nintendo 3DS

This week’s new themes are “Disney Frozen,” “Mickey & Friends,” “Stitch & Company,” and “Disney The Little Mermaid.”

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

  • Nintendo eShop on Wii U and Nintendo 3DS
    • Spring into savings on Nintendo eShop with the Super Spring Sale! Save up to 30 percent off select games in Nintendo eShop starting at 9 a.m. PT on April 7 until 8:59 a.m. PT on April 21. Remember: Purchasing items from Nintendo eShop is an easy way to earn points for the new My Nintendo rewards program. Just make sure your Nintendo Network ID and Nintendo Account are linked prior to making a purchase. Visit https://my.nintendo.com/ for more information.
  • Nintendo eShop on Wii U

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) nyteworks.net.

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