The Wii U’s life cycle is officially coming to an end, which Nintendo officially confirmed shortly after their Nintendo Switch press conference. While the system was the worst selling console for Nintendo, excluding Virtual Boy, it still brought along some of the best games from the company itself. Games like “The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker HD” and “The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD” would probably rank high on the list but were excluded due to being ports from the GameCube and Wii respectively.
“Splatoon” is Nintendo’s first jump into the highly popular shooter genre, which quickly payed off as the game is now one of their biggest properties. The game gave fresh air to the genre and revolves around players trying to paint the map with their teams color while taking out their opponents along the way. Players play as an inkling, a hybrid between human and squid, allowing players to transform into squid form to quickly traverse the map on their teams paint color. The games bright color palate and soundtrack is refreshing in contrast to games like “Call of Duty” and “Battlefield.” The game did well enough to earn a sequel on the Switch as well as two of its inkling characters being featured as racers in “Mario Kart 8 Deluxe” for the Switch.
6. “Mario Kart 8”
The most robust entry in the franchise, “Mario Kart 8” brought the series to new heights with the inclusion of kart customization, a wide cast of characters and much more. The racing is what you would expect but with paragliding and underwater segments thrown in as well to mix things up. Nintendo continued to support the game after launch with updates as well as two DLC packs featuring “The Legend of Zelda” and “Animal Crossing” themed maps, karts and characters. The game’s sales speak for itself, quickly becoming the best selling game on the Wii U soon after launch.
5. “Super Mario 3D World”
“Super Mario 3D World” combines the level designs and styles of the 2D “Mario” games with the platforming mechanics of the 3D “Mario” which results in a game that is incredibly fun to play, especially with friends and family. The game allows 4-player co-op with Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach, Toad and an unlockable Rosalina to play as throughout the game, each with their own speed and jump height. Similar to its 3DS predecessor, the game features a Big Band soundtrack which fits perfectly in this new era of “Mario” titles.
4. “Hyrule Warriors”
The closest thing to an original “Zelda” game on the Wii U, “Hyrule Warriors” crosses the combat heavy gameplay of “Dynasty Warriors” with the deep world and characters of “The Legend of Zelda” series. Providing fan-service for the series in the best way possible, the game gives players the opportunity to play as characters like Midna and Zelda to more obscure ones like Agitha, the little bug collector from “Twilight Princess.” With the support the game got in the west, hopefully we can see a sequel soon on the Nintendo Switch.
3. “Super Smash Bros”
An entry of “Smash Bros” has found its way to every one of Nintendo’s home consoles since the Nintendo 64, which speaks to the games depth and ability to pull fans back time after time. “Super Smash Bros” is something unique to Nintendo because of their long history of beloved characters from their multiple franchises. It’s something that Sony tried to replicate with “PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale,” but failed in bringing the same level of game-play and the rich history of characters that “Smash Bros” contains. The game is a blast to play with friends, and still boasts a large scene on the competitive side of things.
2. “Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker”
Originally just a few puzzle levels in “Super Mario 3D World,” “Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker” focuses on the adventures of Captain Toad in a different manner than typical titles in the “Mario” series. Each level is unique and must be seen from all angles in order to be beat, which finally made good use of the Wii U gamepad and its features. Captain Toad comes across familiar “Mario” enemies, though the catch is he can’t actually jump, meaning he either evades them or uses turnips pulled from the ground to knock them out, a nod to “Super Mario Bros 2.” I urge all Wii U owners to give it a shot as it is one of the most refreshing and underrated titles on the system.
1. “Super Mario Maker”
“Super Mario Maker” delivers on a wish that many Nintendo fans have had ever since the very first “Super Mario Bros,” the ability to create their own levels. Because of the tools given to them, course creators made some terrific and creative levels for fans, challenging many players pre-conceived ideas about the series. Part of the games charm is the ability to switch the art-style of a level to either the original “Super Mario Bros,” “Super Mario Bros 3,” “Super Mario World,” or “New Super Mario Bros.” The possibilities for making levels in the game are endless, making it the best title on the console.