News Article

Nintendo Download: 20th December 2012 (North America)

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Wario, escaping vektors, Wii U discounts and 3D goodies

The download information arrived a little later than normal today, and no wonder — there's a lot of content available this week, along with some surprise sales on Wii U. Enough pre-amble, let's get into it.

3DS download software

escapeVektor (Nnooo, $9.99) — The original release on WiiWare was one of the platform's best titles, so this compilation of four "chapters" of content is sure to please fans. You're tasked with escaping a CPU over the course of 150 levels and 27 worlds, all with stereoscopic 3D and online leaderboards thrown in. We've got high hopes for this one, and we'll see whether we can avoid an unfortunate cyber-virus in our upcoming review.

PIX3D (Gamelion Studio, $3.99) — This pixel puzzler promises 1000 puzzles over three game modes with an accompaniment of 8-bit retro music. It sounds downright irresistible, but the final result is a mix of clever, enjoyable puzzling with some difficulty spikes and missed opportunities. Still worth consideration, and you can check out our PIX3D review for more details.

3D Game Collection (Joindots GmbH, $5.99) — The title says it all, really, with 25 different board and card games combined in one package, with three themed worlds to try out. Previous experiences of game "collections" make us wary, but we'll get playing to bring you a review soon.

3DS Virtual Console

Wario Land II (Nintendo, $4.99) — Since this classic Game Boy Color platformer arrived in Europe in the summer, retro enthusiasts in North America have been not-so-patiently awaiting its arrival. It's now available in all of its coin hoarding glory, so stop asking about it and get downloading, or have a read of our Wario Land II review if you're still not sure.

3DS download demo

2 Fast 4 Gnomz (QubicGames, free) — This WiiWare remake arrived at the start of November, a tricky endless runner that made some improvements over the original. You can give our 2 Fast 4 Gnomz review a read if you're curious about what we thought, plus you can just download this demo for nothing; everyone wins.

3DS retail DLC

New Super Mario Bros. 2 (Nintendo, $2.50 each) — These are the final two Coin Rush packs that will be released for this year's big handheld platformer. The "Impossible" and "Mystery Adventures" speak for themselves, with the former being suitable only for the best players, while Mystery Adventures encourages you to explore and look for those invisible walls.

3DS retail downloads

Mario Tennis Open (Nintendo, $39.99)
Pilotwings Resort (Nintendo, $39.99)
Pokemon Rumble Blast (Nintendo, $34.99)
BIT.TRIP SAGA (Aksys Games, $14.99)
Riding Stables 3D (TREVA Entertainment, $29.99)

Wii U download software sale

Trine 2: Director's Cut (Frozenbyte, $15.99 until 7th January)
Little Inferno (Tomorrow Corporation, $9.99 until 4th January)
Chasing Aurora (Broken Rules, $7.49 until 3rd January)

Wii U retail downloads

Jeopardy! (THQ, $49.99)
Wheel of Fortune (THQ, $49.99)


Castle Conqueror - Heroes 2 (CIRCLE Entertainment, 500 Nintendo Points) — This picks up on events two years after the original Castle Conqueror - Heroes, which arrived on DSiWare almost exactly a year ago. It's turn based strategy over a number of battles, and while we don't think this one quite reaches the same impressive heights as the original, we still strongly recommend it in our Castle Conqueror - Heroes 2 review.

Anonymous Notes Chapter 3 - From The Abyss (Sonic Powered Co, 200 Nintendo Points) — An action RPG that picks up on the preceding two chapters, with the abilities and items gathered from the previous games able to be shared with this new entry. The first two had middling scores in our reviews, so we'll see if this one fares better.

Cake Ninja XMAS (Cypronia, 200 Nintendo Points) — The ninja that specialises in slicing and dicing cakes is making a festive appearance on DSiWare. Neither of the first two entries in the series found favour in our reviews, but we'll head to the dojo — wearing a Santa hat — to test this one out soon.


Vampire Crystals (Shanblue Interactive, 1000 Nintendo Points) — It's a new WiiWare game, which is quite a novelty nowadays. This one takes place in Creepyland, and involves you playing as vampires to fight ruthless zombies. It promises destructible environments as well as co-op multiplayer, but we'll check it out and bring you a review soon.

WiiWare demo

Vampire Crystals (Shanblue Interactive, free) — See description above!

There's certainly plenty of choice this week, let us know what you'll be spending your money on in the poll and comments below.

What will you be downloading first this week? (148 votes)

escapeVektor (3DS eShop)


PIX3D (3DS eShop)


3D Game Collection (3DS eShop)


Wario Land II (3DS VC / GBC)


New Super Mario Bros. 2 (3DS DLC)


Castle Conqueror - Heroes 2 (DSiWare)


Anonymous Notes Chapter 3 - From The Abyss (DSiWare)


Cake Ninja XMAS (DSiWare)


Vampire Crystals (WiiWare)


Nothing for me this week!


Please login to vote in this poll.

From the web

User Comments (91)



Nintex said:

At long last, Wario has arrived! Definitely a lot of stuff to choose from this week.



Birdman said:

Was wondering where this was. Anyway, once I get the cash and/or some review scores, I'll be looking at escapeVektor, PIX3D, WL2, the NSMB2 DLC, perhaps PRB and Anonymous Notes Ch. 3.



brandonbwii said:

That is a ton of content. I believe the WiiWare game has a demo as well.

BTW my body was not ready for this.



bluecat said:

Wow, lots of stuff here. I guess it's a final push before the holidays.



brandonbwii said:

I find the idea of charging the original price of PilotWings Resort disgusting. You can buy it for $20 almost everywhere. Even sleezy places like GameStop.



ShadJV said:

Glad about Wario, and that the sales last past Christmas in case I get a points card!



Morpheel said:

No poll today?
I finally got one of these anonymous notes. It's cool.

I may get Wario Land II and the gnomz demo later



Auracle said:

Nice selection. Escape Vektor sounds promising and now may be a good time to get Trine 2.



Dodger said:

Bittrip Saga doesn't look like the perfect bittrip collection, but for $15 bucks I might get them. Having them all on a handheld (where I actually will play games like that) for a lot less then buying them on Wiiware isn't that bad.



TrueWiiMaster said:

What were they thinking with Pilotwings? That game sells for $20 or under at most retailers. I wish Pokemon Rumble would get a price cut too. $35 just seems too high.



Stuffgamer1 said:

@brandonbwii: Well, it IS disgusting. And yet Bit.Trip.Saga is only $15 to download, which is LESS than the retail version launched at. Nintendo is too bloody greedy.

I had to check Nintendo's press site for this info, as it was available over two hours ago (no idea when it went up). Got Wario Land II (how long you think we'll have to wait for 3?) and Little Inferno.



ThomasBW84 said:

@3Dash There are so many games that the system can't do it. I'm not even kidding! I could do a stripped back list, but then everyone will say "but I want to vote for X"...



rayword45 said:

EscapeVektor is effing awesome. Nothing else is interesting.

Only good price is Bit. Trip SAGA for retail downloads. We need some sales, and a DLC bundle for NSMB2.



Hardy83 said:

$40 for Pilotwings? I've seen it as low as $20 CAN at some retailers. Pffft!



rayword45 said:

^And $5 USD

Not to mention $20 MTO and some cheap Pokemon Rumble Blast though the last one is fine IMO.



Handy_Man said:

Just curious, but why did it take so long for this to update today?

Anyway, I got Wario Land II. Might pick up Little Inferno too since it's on sale now.



ThomasBW84 said:

@Luigifan141 We got the update news a few hours later than normal, which was an inconvenient time all around. We did it as fast as we could!



Dazza said:

Poll added chaps, hope you can forgive me for excluding the retail stuff this week



pepsilover2008 said:

Well i'm definitely picking up bittrip saga as that is insanely cheap. Would pick up piliot wing, but that is so over priced i kinda feel bad for anyone picking it up.



SMW said:

Vampire Crystals has a pretty fun demo. 3 stages and part of a boss fight. Glad they included 4 player co-op in the demo. Looks like a fun game.

I was thinking of getting PilotWings, but not for $40! Amazon it is, then.



FarukoSH said:

Nice =) So the "have it your own way" eShop mantra its working, great deals for those games... ill take Trine 2 for 15 everyday.

BIT.TRIP.SAGA for 15 ? that seems like an awesome deal !! but will save those 30 on my 3DS if a "Christmas deal" comes in...



iphys said:

Hmmm, what's the record for most games added in one update? I can't recall any larger updates than this. I went with escapeVektor.



CrazyOtto said:

Pilotwings Resort should be $4.99

Anyways, I'm getting Vampire Crystals as my final Wiiware purchase.



CanisWolfred said:


Holy crap, I never expected to see something like this on a Nintendo console, and so soon after its launch, too! Kinda makes me wish I had a Wii U right now...



RR529 said:

Looks like a bountiful week. With that said, there's personally nothing of interest to me.

Hope you all find something you like



moomoo said:

A sale on a Nintendo console?! It really is the end of the world!

Anyway, this looks like an awesome week. The option to get all 6 Bit Trip games for $15 is absolutely crazy, too. That's an incredible price. I know I'll be getting EscapeVector.



AVahne said:

Whoa, we're actually getting a sale. That's surprising.
AND on the same day that Steam's starting its holiday sale as well.



Starzsixty9 said:

I just bought trine 2 a few days ago... ftw lol so my free 500 points from nintendo network premium replaces the $5 extra I spent urggggg



RevolverLink said:

I'm still busy with my CN rewards (TwinBee and Metroid II), so no downloads for me this week. I will get Wario Land II eventually, though.



EvilLucario said:

What an awesome week. BIT. TRIP SAGA is one of my favorite games on the 3DS, and escapeVektor coming in on eShop...

Oh, and don't forget about Wario Land II finally arriving to Virtual Console. Took them long enough.

Now if only SEGA released Ristar for 3DS Virtual Console... then my life would be complete along with the Mother Trilogy revamped.




I bought Pilotwings for $4.99 brand new at Best Buy. Nintendo should charge even less as they don't have to ship anything to you and they don't have to send ti to a retailer who marks up the price so they make a profit. Nintendo blows sometimes.




I saw Anonymous Notes used in complete condition for $3.99 at Disc Replay and almost bought it, but I already spent $3.98 on Chapters 1 & 2. Now, I've spent a total of $5.97 on 3 chapters so now I feel like I probably should have bought the physical copy.




I bought Warioland II for GBC early this year, but am tempted to buy it again anyway. I also am craving that 3D game collection.



SheldonRandoms said:

@ThatTrueEvil: I also wish they put Ristar on the 3DS Virtual Console, though it'll most likely be the game gear version (and hopefully the japanese version for that extra level)




TheDreamingHawk said:

I STILL don't know why people complain over the retail pricing... it's the same as the MSRP, so why is everyone angry? Companies follow MSRP, that's the rule.

I got Wario land II this week, and will get EscapeVektor and Bit trip and pokemon rumble blast when I have money



rayword45 said:

Companies don't follow MSRP all the time. Capcom's store for example (and that's the worst example ever).

That's still a bullcrap excuse. It's called "keeping up with retailers"



rayword45 said:

Also, we need 3DS sales and price drops like Europe. I'll bite on my 4th Cave Story and any other shoddy Nicalis ports then, as well as a few other games.



AVahne said:

Vampire Crystals was pretty fun! Though I wonder, now that eShop is out and we've heard so many good things about it, has Nintendo changed any rules for devs still releasing games on Wii Shop? Did Shanblue get to price Vampire Crystals on their own, or did Nintendo still do that themselves?



Sam_Loser2 said:

Damn! I could have saves $9 if I had waited to get Trine 2 and Little Inferno. Also could have picked up chasing aura.



edcomics said:

I took the plunge for Trine 2 not that long ago, and now it's 20% off. Sheesh.



XFsWorld said:

Imma download Pilotwings Resort but should have been $20, just like Star Fox 64 3D should have been $30.



Windy said:

I got anonymous notes III I really enjoyed the first 2 no matter what reviews said I like the Action RPG and item collection play style. I do wish item changes would show on avatars but oh well



vdallos said:

Same here with Trine2...4 bucks lost. Well a lest i can buy little inferno and nano assault with one card.



Hokori said:

This is great that there getting the rest of the past retail downloads out



SCAR said:

Cool. Ya, I just check the eShop every Thursday to see what's on there on both Wii U/3DS and saw these. I'm pretty tempted to just use my $15 from 10% back for Trine 2(already have on PS3), but I like having all my retail games on the SD card, too, so Mario Tennis Open might be a go for me... I already have it, but nothing I can't deal with in terms of reselling for slightly less, than rebuying it, especially when people who don't want to buy the full priced new game will easily buy it from me for $25-30, then I can buy it again for the SD card. That's how I manage to rebuy the games full price again, so I'm stealing a potential second hand sale from GS, and a new one from Nintendo, but since it's digital, Nintendo's only getting a laggier service at the worst... Whatever, and Wario 2 will for sure make it on my 3DS soon. Good week I'd say...



DarkEdi said:

One of the best week ever. I want a lot of games, that´s weird from me. More weeks like this.

I want one of each category.



bezerker99 said:

If anyone can tell me that SAGA has fixed the lag/framerate issue (esp with Runner) then I'll sell my cart (heck, maybe I'll keep it!) and download this from eShop.



bezerker99 said:

Runner, esp in 3D (and World 3 levels) has framerate issues (gets real choppy and Commander Video, as well as the moving background, lags). It's only on the 3DS version though. I have WiiWare and Bit.Trip Complete and those versions are lag free. Still, Bit.Trip SAGA for $15....?? That's a steal!!



bezerker99 said:

However, having that sexy Nintendo life quote on the back of the cartridge box is priceless in my opinion.



Klimbatize said:

Wow, this was a good week. I had already bought quite a few games off the eShop in recent weeks, and I just went a little crazy and spent, ahem, $45 on games released today (BIT.TRIP.SAGA, Wario Land II, escapeVektor, PIX3D, 3D Game Collection, and the NSMB2 DLC).

I should be good for a while...

Oh wait, Lost Levels and Fluidity come out next week? Uh oh.



Lobster said:

Whoa. This is the week when EVERYTHING happened. Guess they wanted to be sure we had a chance to nab things before the end of the world!



Omega said:

A new WiiWare game. Hurrah, hurray, hooray and huzzah! (Only too bad that we Europeans must wait until next year.)



Gridatttack said:

I wonder, was the bit trip game got its issues fixed? or is the same as the physical one?



Grubdog said:

Been playing escapeVektor all day, already one of my favourite 3DS games. It's 4 times bigger than the WiiWare one and looks incredible in 3D, i'm overwhelmed.

Far more interesting than a 10 year old platformer guys.



UnseatingKDawg said:

So, North America finally got Wario Land II? Took us long enough.

Someone correct me if I'm wrong - Europe has Wario Land III already, correct?

If that's the case, I won't be expecting WL3 until... summer? For cryin' out loud, we're still missing 2 "8-Bit Summer" games!



Windy said:

I am still very disappointed that they don't offer 10.00 off on Retail downloads. You get no Box, artwork or Cartridge. I guess this is going to be something Nintendo just isn't going to budge on. It wont matter soon when every game is digital download only. My prediction is within 3 years everything will be digital. Can't wait for Gunman Clive i'm really looking forward to playing that with the control pad. They Really unleashed alot of good gaming this week.

Also if anyone is thinking of Downloading Pilot Wings you can get it from Amazon for 14.95 Save yourself 25 bucks. There are a couple other titles like this also. Steel Diver which isn't in the Eshop yet is 6.95 at amazon. what a good deal! When I see this kind of difference in price I will try and report.

@Nintendolife Would it be possible to make a section for reporting on pricing descrepancies between the non-digital and digital download games? I know it would take a ton of effort on someone's part but would be very informative.



Windy said:

@Azikira Just an FYI. Nintendo did run a few lame sales over the summer in the 3DS Eshop. Since I think Late August Nothing on sale. Seems they are very content to let the old DSi games Rot right where they are at Full price. Sad thing is...most of the first DSi Downloads are just bad games. Sony runs their shop the same way so I guess oh well. But really some of the older should have a sales section to go into. and these old Carts that have recently been added to the Eshop for Digital download at 39.99 is just crazy

I don't think were going to see any sales on software.



Hokori said:

For the whole retail should be cheaper... I sorta agree, depends on the game TBH, and yes there should be sales for every game at certain points of time



rayword45 said:

Why in hell do you consider that a legit reason? Name 5 other companies that do that with EVERY RECENT TITLE, even the ones that cost half as much elsewhere like Pilotwings and Star Fox. Name them. I can't.

There is no reason for them to charge $40 for Pilotwings for a digital download with no box, when I can get a box and manual for $35 less.

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