To say that not many people bought a Wii U during its launch in 2012 would be an understatement. The Wii U is currently Nintendo’s lowest-selling home console, with only 13.56 million units sold worldwide. What was initially pitched as an advanced version of the incredibly popular Wii console ended up turning into a prototype of Nintendo’s next significant innovation in gaming, the Switch. Despite the Wii U’s failures as a console, Nintendo and a few third-party companies had created some fantastic games for the machine. Most of the more popular games like Mario Kart 8, Bayonetta 2, and Captain Toad have already been remastered or re-released on the Switch, but here are 6 more Wii U games that deserve a second chance on the current console.
6. NINTENDO LAND
Nintendo Land was a launch title for the Wii U that included twelve different mini-games, with each game inspired by famous Nintendo franchises like Mario Bros., Legend of Zelda, and even F-Zero. Similar to the release of Wii Sports on the Wii, Nintendo Land provided players, young and old, a diverse mix of games that would keep them entertained for hours while also introducing them to the features of their new console. With a beautiful Nintendo inspired aesthetic and great remixes of classic tunes, this title is a must-play for any avid Nintendo fans.
Unfortunately, a port of Nintendo Land might not be easy. Many of the multiplayer games were designed with the Wii U gamepad as a necessity. Mario Chase was a game that required one person to look at the gamepad screen to hide, while the other players would search for them using the TV screen. If Nintendo figured out a way around these multi-screen mini-games and could port Nintendo Land to the Switch, it would be another fun mini-game bundle similar to 1-2 Switch.
5. STAR FOX ZERO
An entire decade had gone by without a new Star Fox title before Star Fox Zero. After their last appearance in Star Fox Command for the DS in 2006, our favorite crew of anthropomorphic galaxy defenders became stuck in limbo as Nintendo tried to figure out how to modernize the series for home-consoles. The plans for this Star Fox reboot began when PlatinumGames asked Nintendo if they could include a bonus level inspired by Star Fox in their exclusive release of Bayonetta 2 for the Wii U. After seeing the work PlatinumGames had put into this bonus level, Nintendo approached them with the idea of partnering up to bring a new Star Fox game to the market.
Unlike Nintendo Land that used both the gamepad and TV screen for multiplayer purposes, Star Fox Zero relied on both screens for the single-player campaign. The game required players to divide their focus between what was happening from multiple perspectives, creating an experience that was overall more frustrating than fun. In an interview earlier this year with GameXplain, Atsushi Inaba of PlatinumGames claims that they have no idea if a port of Star Fox Zero is in the works. Because Nintendo owns Star Fox, it will ultimately be up to them if it is released on the Switch.
4. XENOBLADE CHRONICLES X
This massive JRPG developed from Monolith Soft is the spiritual successor to Xenoblade Chronicles. With new characters to meet and the new world of Mira to explore, Xenoblade Chronicles X may be one of the most massive games ever brought to a Nintendo console. As the player journeys across five continents, they will complete side-quests and discover the rich history of their planet. Also, you can fight and fly around in a giant mech-suit. These mech-suits, known as Skells, become very useful as they allow you to take down bigger enemies. They also allow faster movement, which is fantastic when you are exploring a world that is bigger than both Skyrim and Breath of the Wild.
Xenoblade Chronicles X is currently the only game in its series not available on Switch. The remaster of the original Xenoblade Chronicles was released earlier this year, while Xenoblade Chronicles 2 and its DLC were developed exclusively for the current console. While a port of Xenoblade Chronicles X would complete the collection on Switch, this game is so large in scale that it would require a lot of work to make porting it a viable option. With a campaign that averages around seventy hours to beat, this beautiful game deserves to be seen and played by more people.
3. WII SPORTS CLUB
A game that needs no introduction, Wii Sports was the immensely popular launch title for the original Wii console. The original game currently holds the record for the fourth highest-selling video game of all time. While a sequel, Wii Sports Resort, was later developed for the Wii, Nintendo kept quiet on what their plans for the series were moving forward. In November of 2013, Nintendo officially released remastered versions of the Bowling and Tennis sports for individual purchase or a short-term digital rental through the Wii U e-shop. Throughout the next year, Nintendo released remasters of the remaining three sports, eventually leading to a physical release that included everything.
It feels bizarre that we have not seen any form of the Wii Sports series represented on the Switch. With a pair of Joy-Cons, every Switch console is guaranteed to have enough controllers to play multiplayer (except for Boxing.) With the Switch also being a hand-held console, players could bring their Switch to a picnic or somewhere else to play with family and friends. There could also be an online matchmaking component added to a modern release of Wii Sports. Nintendo put work into polishing Wii Sports for its return on the Wii U, and with the franchises’ history, it would be a guaranteed smash-hit on the Switch.
2. LEGEND OF ZELDA: TWILIGHT PRINCESS HD
The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess initially launched on both the Gamecube and the Wii back in 2006. This title finally gave fans the darker and more realistic looking Zelda title they expected to receive after the infamous Space World tech demo back in 2000. Twilight Princess tells one of the most ambitious stories in the history of the franchise and also allows players to switch between two different versions of Link. Minus the polished visuals, the HD version also added Amiibo support and an extra dungeon.
With the 35th anniversary of Legend of Zelda arriving soon, there may be a chance that Twilight Princess HD will have a second chance on Switch. With a stellar cast of supporting characters and a nefarious villain, Twilight Princess HD may have been one of the best games on the Wii U.
1. LEGEND OF ZELDA: WIND WAKER HD
The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker HD is not only the number one game that should be ported over to the Switch but perhaps the most straightforward game to port as well. Without motion controls, reliance on a gamepad, or anything else to get in the way, not much work would have to be done to bring this Wii U exclusive to our current consoles. One of the more unique Zelda games takes the player out of Hyrule Field and drops them into the middle of an ocean, populated with small islands to explore. With a unique and timeless art style, fantastic music, and some of the best-designed dungeons in the series, Wind Waker HD is the best version of one of the greatest games ever made.
Similar to Twilight Princess HD, there may be a chance that Nintendo is waiting for the upcoming anniversary of Legend of Zelda to release this title. Ideally, we may see both Twilight Princess and Wind Waker released together as a way to celebrate thirty-five years. Even if Nintendo decides to release the two games separately, having the option to play these great titles on the TV or on the go will be worth the wait.