Along with the release of the Wii U came along a game that shows all the potential and features of the Wii U and Gamepad. Similar to the Wii’s launch which came with Wii Sports, The Wii U Deluxe system was packaged with Nintendo Land. Nintendo Land is a game with several other minigames that many people can enjoy or a player can go solo and have fun on their own. The game is set in a Theme park/Carnival theme setting. Nintendo Land features 12 minigames based on various Nintendo franchises, some support up to five players, with four using the Wii Remote and Nunchuk, and one using the Gamepad.
We will cover all the attractions or minigames that are featured in the game. The game’s case is pretty simple, the Gamepad is featured on the front of the box, the back showcases some of the included minigames. The game didn’t come with a Nintendo Club PIN. I was pretty upset about this when I opened the box. Later on though, I did get 50 Coins for a post play survey, after registering the Wii U. The game disc shows some of the costumes/characters that your Mii turns into when playing the specific minigames. The manual goes over and describes some of them, including how many people can play and what controllers are needed to play each.
Image courtesy of a “fan” on the Miiverse Nintendo Land forum.
Before the minigames, I want to introduce everyone to someone very special…. as special as Navi from The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. Her name is Monita. There is one way to describe her, if Navi and Fi somehow had a baby we would get Monita. She is the tour guide that keeps popping up over and over again to show you around the Theme Park and also gives you quick tutorials of the minigames. With each minigame you play, you get coins that you can then use to get prizes or decorations for your park, of course to get those coins you must play a Plinko like game. Your park eventually gains visitors via Miiverse. The visitors that leave comments about the game are usually walking around making comments about a certain minigames (note that these comments are NOT live.)
Number of players: 1–5
Now for the main attractions! First we visit The Legend of Zelda: Battle Quest! Up to four players can play, each player comes in red, blue, green and yellow tunics and use their swords to fight enemies, using Skyward Sword motion controls. One player uses the GamePad (in a green tunic) to control the character in the rear of the pack using a bow and arrows. The player with the GamePad can also move the controller around and use it to snipe enemies. To reload the bow and arrow, the player aims the GamePad down. Oh, and there are boss battles.
Next up is Metroid Blast. One player uses the GamePad to control Samus’s Gunship, while up to four players with Wii Remotes and Nunchuks can control Mii characters on foot, wearing Varia Suits. There are three modes, “Assault Mission”, “Surface-Air Combat”, and “Ground Battle”. In “Assault Mission”, the players cooperate to defeat and destroy waves of enemies and complete missions. In “Surface-Air Combat”, the players with Wii Remotes and Nunchuks have to shoot down the player controlling Samus’s ship. In “Ground Battle” all players use Wii Remotes and Nunchuks in a battle for tokens.
Then we have Pikmin Adventure , One player controls Captian Olimar who can command tiny Pikmin using the GamePad, while four other players (As red, blue, yellow and white pikmin.) can control larger looking Pikmin using the Wii Remotes. Players must work together to help get through levels and defeat enemies, including a boss at the end of every stage. Along the way players are collecting nector, the nector makes function of the leveling system for the minigame. The higher the level the stronger the players attack, as for the Olimar player, the higher the level the more Pikmin they are able to control. When the boss is defeated at the end of each stage, the players board Olimar’s ship. There is also a Versus Mode where players compete for candy.
Number of players: 2–5
First we have Mario Chase. I found myself having a ton of fun playing this one with several players. Four players (in Toad costumes) with Wii Remotes have to chase down a fifth player (who’s in a Mario costume) with the GamePad. The player being chased from time to time gets a small advantage and is able to pick up a Star power up to become invincible for a small amount time. Players are rewarded with a few more stages later down the game. One stage has mud that slows players down, another has slides to give players that extra speed boost.
In Luigi’s Ghost Mansion up to four players, in Mario, Luigi, Wario, and Waluigi costumes, must try to find a ghost in a maze, and weaken it by shining their flashlight towards it. The ghost is controlled by a player using the GamePad. The ghost remains invisible to the remaining players (unless the flashlight is shone at it, the player uses the ghost’s dash attack, or lightning strikes illuminate it), the other 4 players controllers will vibrate if the ghost is near by, team work is essential to defeat the player ghost. The flashlights have a battery limit, thought but the players will have the opportunity to recharge the battery with battery icons that appear on the screen. If the ghosts makes all the other players faint or if the other four players defeat the ghost by running down the ghosts HP, then the game ends.
Animal Crossing: Sweet Day is almost like Mario Chase, four players control animals trying to collect candy as a team before they get caught 3 times by the guards, controlled by another player using the GamePad. The objective of the 4 characters are to collect a combined total of 50 pieces of candies, their movement becomes slower, making it easier for them to be caught. The GamePad player controls two guards at the same time, giving it a bit of a challenge. No need to be facing the TV with the Wii U Gamepad. To those familiar with “The World End With You” game this is attention splitting. Meaning you have to multitask.
Takamaru’s Ninja Castle, Very simple concept to this game, this is a target shooting game. The Wii U Gamepad will be used as a controller, rather than a screen like the other games. Use your finger to swipe the Shuriken using the Gamepad to point. The speed and vigor of your swipe also determines how the star will move in the actual game. The Gamepad can be tilted and the stars will be tilted on the screen as well. Pressing right on the D-Pad will re-sync the Gamepad on the screen, kind of like Motion sensor for Skyward Sword. You get three heart containers and must avoid getting hit by the other Ninjas.
Donkey Kong’s Crash Course may look simple but it is a very difficult, good coordination is essential. The goal of the game is to guide the cart through the maze by tilting the actual Gamepad itself. Other controls for the game are just to move the actual camera angle itself. In this game you are timed and during the course of the game you are collecting bananas like the ones in Donkey Kong Country.
I personally had a few problems with Captain Falcon’s Twister Race, the GamePad had a bit of lag issues and sync issues. In this game, the player must race down a track while avoiding obstacles in 12 different areas. The GamePad is held vertically and the gyroscope is used to steer the vehicle. The stage does include speed boosts to get players going faster, since each is timed.
I had a blast playing Balloon Trip Breeze, very nostalgic. The player must control their Mii character on a similar field to the one on Balloon Fight. The player flies around by swiping the stylus on the GamePad’s touch screen to create gusts of wind that will move the Mii around. Players will also use the GamePad screen to destroy certain objects on the field such as blocks. The GamePad will offer a zoomed in area and the TV will offer a zoomed out view. The levels are divided into morning, afternoon, evening and night, which are all ended by landing on an island.
In Yoshi’s Fruit Cart the player has to guide Yoshi to the finish by collecting all the fruit in the level, by making a trail on the GamePad using the stylus. The fruit is only visible on the TV screen, so the player must use reference points in the background to draw the path on the GamePad. The further the player advances in the game, the harder the levels become.
Octopus Dance is a very fun game, Octopus Dance is a rhythm game which plays by using either the Control Sticks or the Gyro Sensor on the GamePad. Players must memorize and replicate the actions performed by the diver on screen. The game pays tribute to the Game and Watch series.
Nintendo Land is very fun both alone and with others. I was able to play with both lots of people and obviously by myself. When I played with a group and an audience we were able to have lots of laughs. The game has great play value since players are going to strife to get coins to decorate their Theme Park. The game packs enough punch for at least one type of person to have fun. If you didn’t get the game with the Wii U Deluxe, then I highly recommend picking up the game. Overall this game gets a 7 out of 10 in my rating system.