News Article

Nintendo Download: 24th January 2013 (North America)

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Fighting with balloons and guns, cave exploration, getting funky and more

It's Nintendo download time, North America, and this week brings you various goodies for your latest systems. The Wii U eShop features a new downloadable title that you probably spotted two days ago, the first Virtual Console release — sort of — on the system, and 3DS has a mixture of new and old offerings to tempt you. Wii and DSi are neglected this week, unfortunately. So, let's get to the detail.

Wii U download software

The Cave (SEGA, $14.99) — An eagerly anticipated release on the Wii U platform, not least because it's the first new download-only release of 2013, this title is a puzzle adventure game with a lot of credentials and promise. You choose three of seven characters — multiple playthroughs are encouraged — to explore a variety of areas, all against the backdrop of plenty of wit and dark storytelling. Unfortunately, for all of its charms and seductive presentation, we feel that the gameplay and design falls short, as our review of The Cave explains.

Wii U Virtual Console

Balloon Fight (Nintendo, $0.30) — Although the full Virtual Console doesn't launch until Spring, the Trial Promotion means that you can buy — not rent — one classic NES or SNES title a month for just 30 cents. Kicking off this promotion for its first month is Balloon Fight, a reminder of the primitive early days of NES, albeit with some Wii U specific features included. Our updated review will be with you very soon, but in the meantime you can also check out our Wii Virtual Console Balloon Fight review.

Wii U retail download

Funky Barn (505 Games, $29.99) — A launch day retail release in stores, this farm management title is best known by some for the shenanigans on its Miiverse community, no doubt due to its name. It has its quirks and, despite the trolling it suffers on the social platform, is a competent game let down by a high-price tag and relative dearth of content, as our Funky Barn review argues. We'll update the price for the download as soon as possible.

3DS download software

Cocoto Alien Brick Breaker (Bigben Interactive, $4.99) — This title promises to renew an arcade classic, which as the name suggests is the good old-fashion brick breaking mechanic of deflecting balls/projectiles as skilfully as possible. With five planets to travel through along with upgrades to your shield and weapons, we'll see whether this is an old concept done well in our upcoming review.

3DS Virtual Console

Super C (Konami, $4.99) — The second NES entry in the Contra series — though naming conventions were confusing — is now available on the go, which sets you up nicely for some classic run and gun action whenever the fancy takes you. It's classic action that's well done, but you can read our thoughts on why that's a good thing in our Wii Virtual Console Super C review, and we'll be fighting through the handheld release for a fresh outlook soon.

3DS retail download

Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Shadow Wars 3D (Ubisoft, $29.99) — It may have a clumsy title, but this game was one of the finest offerings worth considering when the 3DS launched in March 2011. Despite its lack of hype and attention it delivers a lengthy, engrossing campaign of turn-based strategy gaming, with three difficulty levels and extra challenge missions for those that get hooked in. We recommended it very highly in our Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Shadow Wars 3D review.

3DS retail demo

Brain Age: Concentration Training (Nintendo, free) — The Brain Age series was a pivotal part in the success of DS, attracting a broad range of gamers to the system. Nintendo will no doubt be hoping to repeat history with this fresh release that focuses on short exercises to sharpen up your concentration skills. This free demo should get you warmed up before the full release.

So there you have it, a good variety of options for those with Wii U and 3DS systems, and a rare instance of both DSi and Wii missing out. Let us know what, if anything, you'll be spending your money on in the poll and comments below.

What will you be downloading first this week? (294 votes)

The Cave (Wii U eShop)


Balloon Fight (Wii U Virtual Console)


Funky Barn (Wii U retail download)


Cocoto Alien Brick Breaker (3DS eShop)


Super C (3DS Virtual Console)


Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Shadow Wars 3D (3DS retail download)


Nothing for me this week


Please login to vote in this poll.

From the web

User Comments (131)



Everly said:

No Zen Pinball again. I really don't think we will see it this month despite what is being said.



blackknight77 said:

I wonder if the Wii virtual console will ever see another release.

I really wish Konami would finally release NES Contra



Undead_terror said:

Super c looks fun but I hope it won't be too hard for me...shouldn't so it probaubly be a insta download.



XCWarrior said:

I love how more people say "Nothing For Me This Week" even with Balloon Fight at 30 cents. Could you have picked a worse title to start this promo with Nintendo? I have it on 3DS thanks to ambassador problem. I've spent maybe 2 hours with it. I don't need it again, even for 30 cents. F-Zero next month though I'll probably pick up. And if they actually give us Mother 2, well, Wii U servers will crash from the downloads.



ultraraichu said:

I'm willing to get The Cave but I'll wait since I don't want to my list of games to complete longer. Maybe when I beat or complete at least 2.



NImH said:

@3Dash For $0.30, the chance to experience WiiU VC... Get it together sir. Download Balloon Fight already.



Aloth said:

The price of the shadow wars is just not right, you can pay 20 bucks for the physical copy!



Svengoolie said:

It kinda sucks when Thursday comes and the "announcement" of new games is stuff that we've already downloaded yesterday!



Spoony_Tech said:

Not sure how bad I want contra but I'm surprised its there. Also Shadow Wars should be 20$ or less. After all it is over a year and a half old. Find it on retail people its so worth it. Think military Fire Emblem!



XCWarrior said:

@Alonsoapc This is the same problem with Sony and Microsoft's digital stores. Most of the time, you pay original full price for full retail downloads. You're getting the "convience" of it being on your system.

I'll take my physical copy which I found on sale still brand new, thanks.

@undead_terror OK, what does you not having a Wii U have to do with anything? People want Earthbound, people would go buy Wii Us in order to have Mother 2, I'm sure of it.



FiveDigitLP said:

Seriously, people. If you like strategy games like Fire Emblem, purchase Shadow Wars! It is an excellent game that is hugely underrated. The main campaign is a decent size and there are a lot of additional modes as well.

If it was a bit cheaper, I would rebuy it myself so that I could play it whenever I wanted without having to switch out cartridges!



SheldonRandoms said:

Wait, so if it's 30 cents to buy, that means you keep it forever right (looks at other 30 cent games) you can never have to much Punch-Out!! or Super Metroid.

@Pikachupwnage I recently saw that game at k-mart for 10 dollars on clearance.



Spoony_Tech said:

@XCWarrior He is referring to your opening statement about the nothing for me part. I don't have a Wii U either so isn't more then likely that's why people are selecting it?!



Spoony_Tech said:

@Everly If you've never played Super Metroid you owe yourself too!! Forget Donkey Kong. It gets boring after say 10 minutes.



NImH said:

Wasn't there a recent article about Nintendo announcing it for a future VC release? Why do o the masses whine so? No one should have expected it for thirty flippin cents!



Klimbatize said:

Will be picking up Super C. Loved Contra, but hardly played Super C.

I would definitely recommend Ghost Recon, but as others have said, that price point is silly. You can get the retail version for around half that cost.



Everly said:

@Tech101 I was debating it and watched some video of the game play. Can't really say that it is interesting me. Donkey Kong is something that I loved as a kid, so it is more of a reliving my childhood for 30 cents situation.



ejamer said:

Very disappointed in the Ghost Recon pricing. It's a good game... but often found for between $10 and $15 at retail.

$30 for a non-transferable digital copy doesn't make sense. $20 would have felt expensive...



ThomasBW84 said:

I'll pipe up in the "get Shadow Wars" campaign, though like everyone else I'd suggest shopping around in stores. I'm very surprised that this isn't, at least, dropped to $19.99.

If you can find it though please consider it. I reviewed three Ubi games at the 3DS launch — for my sins (one was competent, one was atrocious) — and this was a real surprise; it's fantastic.



Tasuki said:

Nice I haven't played Super C since the NES days. All I remember is that its a tad harder than Contra since the code for this game only gives you 10 lives instead of 30. Still going to download that one too nothing like having a Contra game on the go.



Undead_terror said:

@XCWarrior Nevermind what I said, got the thing mixed up that time but then again not everyone has a wii u in order to play it and people might not want to get it anyway.



Svengoolie said:

That's the problem with going digital with Nintendo. They're making some progress, but still aren't giving you the deals that they should.




Super C for me this week. I totally can't get enough of that game every time I play it. Though I wish we would have gotten the original Contra from NES this time around on the eShop, not like how we didn't get it on the Wii Shop Channel before, I'd be happy, but Super C is just fine with me. As for the whole $0.30 thing involving VC games being on Wii U for up to July starting with a simple game like Balloon Fight , I find it hard to complain about ppl getting it whether they have the game or not. IMO, it's always better to have a back-up copy of it, even if it's digital somewhere where you know you can find it.



DarkEdi said:

i have Super C in my wii, i won´t pay full $5 again. Why can´t we download it free if we already pay for it? or maybe only pay $1 like the Wii-Wii U service?



antipop621 said:

I already got Balloon fight with leftover change on my account. Playing on the gamepad is wonderful. Can't wait to play Super Metroid like this.



AbeVigoda said:

Just Brain Age demo for me. Shadow Wars is an awesome game though, very similar to Advance Wars.



Savino said:

Super C is obligatory!!! I wonder how much it will cost here in Brazil!!!
If less than 5 dollars it will be a blast!!!!



Tasuki said:

@DarkEdi: Seriously seriously. Honestly why does everyone think because they by a game on one type of format they think they should get it for free on another. If thats the case why didnt I get SMB free all the other times cause I bought it on NES years ago. OH and I should have gotten Terminator 2 for free as well on DVD and Blu Ray cause I bought it on VHS years ago. Oh wait I should also get my Metallica albums free too cause I bought the cassettes years ago as well. See where I am going with this?



Savino said:

Shadow Wars probably will be about 25 dollars here in Brazil.... Still a little overpriced. You can find cheaper in many places!



Pokefanmum82 said:

just getting the brain age demo....i haven't been buying any games off of the eShop recently. I want some Pokemon VC games or the HarmoKnight game to come already



LordAndrew said:

Does the download version of Shadow Wars crash if the online switch is left on? That was really frustrating in the retail version.



Spoony_Tech said:

Super C should be a 3ds classics. Anyone remember the mode 7 graphics?

For that matter where is Star Fox?!



defrb said:

Balloon fight?,.. nah thank you,.. not even when you give me 30 cents

i want zen pinball.



Zodiak13 said:

Super C and Balloon Fight. Although I am already done w/ playing Balloon fight. Kinda boring to me. Eh, I got my .30 cents worth, lol.



bezerker99 said:

Looks like the original Contra will never see daylight on any of Nintendo's Virtual Consoles.



shauntu said:

Ghost Recon is awesome, wish there was a nice way to trade-in physical copies for digital downloads at a discount... Did download The Cave and Balloon Fight. Poll should allow for picking multiple options!



Beta said:

I know that it isn't listed above, but I got me and my brother Sonic and all-star racing transformed from the eShop today, great game!



Spoony_Tech said:

Why am I thinking it was the snes version?!

I was always wondering why it never made the vc. It would be an insta download if it ever was. Star Fox that is.



Tasuki said:

@Tech101: Of course that was my thoughts on the Star Fox not coming to the VC since there wasnt an official announcement just we cant emulate the Super FX chip and that was it. But after I did some research I noticed that the Super FX chip was built by some lab for Nintendo so I am guessing its licensing issues.



Spoony_Tech said:

Just imagine what the original Star Fox would look like on the 3ds. That game was made for the 3ds! Shame!



WaveGhoul said:

Super C is cool and all, but it doesn't come close to touching the brilliance of the original. Super C's soundtrack alone, aside from maybe 1 or 2 tracks is severely dissapointing along with half of the underwhelming and uncreative Boss battles. I've already beaten it on the Wii's VC so there's no need to double dip nor will i ever for NES games on the go.

The orginal Contra would be nice for once....I'd love to hear a response from Konami based on WHY it's being skipped....Again.




You know, it's funny some of you are saying that Star Fox from the SNES can't come to the VC because of licensing issues. I think the same would qualify for a game like say Donkey Kong 64 from the N64 also. Just saying. TRUE! , It may by a game made by Nintendo and RARE. But seeing as how RARE isn't with Nintendo no more, I don't think Nintendo would have the rights to put it onto a Wii U eShop when the time comes ONLY becuase of the reason being that I believe it was morely RARE's game anyways when it was being made. Despite if Nintendo's name is on it.



Freelance said:

OMG CONTRAAAAAAAAAAA!!! Must...get...soon!!!!

Now if only we get the original too and Operation C!!



Spoony_Tech said:

Yeah but with the case of DK64 that solely a Nintendo franchise. However did Rare introduce a new character to that game? If so that could be the issue. I wish microcrap would just drop Rare already and maybe we could get some of those games!! I'm going to guess its also the reason the DKC games were recently removed as well. They did make that series for the most part reguardless if Nintendo owns it or not.





Ya, true. It may have been a Nintendo franchise, But it still holds the RARE logo on it making it a game made by RARE. Even if Nintendo was involved or not. Even though that may be the case, I still don't get how Nintendo was able to pull off bringing the 3 DKC games over to Wii VC back when they did in the Wii era even if the RARE logo was staring us in the face every time we started the game up.



SparkOfSpirit said:

... Why did they skip Contra and Operation C?

Why does Konami keep skipping one of the best games of all time?

Oh well, I'll get it regardless, but the other two games are better.



SparkOfSpirit said:

@WaveBoy SERIOUSLY can someone- ANYONE actually ask Konami WHY they keep skipping Contra?

I don't want to have to keep pulling out the NES to play it on my TV.



Bass_X0 said:

I'm still mad that they skipped Contra Force. That was the best one in the series.



Lunapplebloom said:

Ballon Fight for me. 30 cents is a real steal for that one. I may look into some other downloads later.





How can you say that man? :/ I thought Contra Force was supposed to be the worst Contra game ever made. I heard something before a couple of times here and there that it wasn't supposed to even be a Contra game. But if you like it, here's to everyone's own opinion.



Aloth said:

I was complaining about the 30 bucks price, but in the brazillian store is 90 bucks!!! And the game is not sold in stores here, just imported!!! Nobody is going to buy it...
I've heard it's a nice game though.



idork99 said:


Just downloaded Super C for the 3DS and was going to save the game when I noticed something suspicious in the Virtual Console Menu. It has an option for "Start Download Play." This is awesome news for me as I was sad that I'd never be able to play co-op on the 3DS.



rayword45 said:

Ghost Recon - Woot might finally
Pricing - The hell?

I suddenly regret not picking it up for $5 at Sears on clearance



Tasuki said:

Contra Force is not part of the Contra series. It was released as Arc Hound in Japan. When it was brought over here they changed it to Contra Force hoping it would sell better



MeloMan said:

Oh man, Contra Force. Yeah, I knew that wasn't a part of the Contra canon. But anyway... I forgot all about Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon for the 3DS. Nevermind the retail, I'll pop that in my Gamefly queue posthaste



MagicEmperor said:

I already downloaded The Cave (before midnight PST on Monday!) and Balloon Trip, so I voted for Super C. Oh, baby! 8)



SparkOfSpirit said:

@NintendoCat14 Nobody knows because none of these gaming sites ever ask Konami why they keep skipping a classic.

But then nobody ever asks why Konami does all the dumb things they tend to do.



Stuffgamer1 said:

I voted Balloon Fight, ' cause I downloaded it yesterday, which is very clearly first. Not that I really want anything else anyway...



Ras said:

Nothing for me...

... as I already downloaded The Cave and Balloon Fight earlier this week, lulz. With tax, BF came to $.32. If they're doing ten games, $3.20. Hell, I'll buy them all at that price. I wish Donkey would be the hacked version that Ninty gave me on the 3DS recently.

Super C eventually.



Windy said:

Slim pickins this week saves my wallet and my 25.00 dollar eshop credit. Its been good for the past couple months im glad to get a break



Windy said:

@Spark_Of_Spirit Im so sad konami bought Hudson Soft they could be releasing many many VC classics as well as sequels or 3d classics. They own the rights to so many great games. Neutopia 1 and 2 are excellent Zelda type games that should get more exposure but do not. Konami is going horribly wrong. Releasing the wonderful Hudson Soft games on Wii VC, Wii-U VC, and 3DS VC makes sense and money. I guess Konami doesnt want to make money. Weird right?



Xcape_DuCkMAN_X said:

It will be enough to keep me happy for the moment. Balloon fight and super c....... now if we can do something about getting good ol regular Contra!!!



Emaan said:

Downloaded Balloon Fight last night for the Wii U. I might give the Brain Age: Concentration Training demo a try.



Xcape_DuCkMAN_X said:

Know what??? Now that I think about it, where the hell is Pro Wrestling and Kung Fu for NES??? Why the neglect for these outstanding classics???? Bad enough they were missed on the Wii VC in the states, and Urban Champion got to become a 3D Classic on the 3DS VC????? Such injustice!!!!!



Senate_Guard said:

Downloaded the Brain Age demo. After I finished, Mr. Floating Head told me I had the brain of a 60-70 year old... Gotta get on that.



grumblegrumble said:

Booooooring!!!! :/ Already beat Super C as a kid and I don't really wanna do it again. The rest is rubbish.



FluttershyGuy said:

Was already getting my Balloon Fight on yesterday! 30 cent classics FTW!

As for Super C, I'm always happy for VC support. HOWEVER... first of all, and it goes back to the GBA Wii U VC announcement, I wish they'd have handheld games for handhelds and console games for consoles. Instead of getting an NES game that's already available on Wii VC, we could have gotten a new Game Boy/GBC game. Either Contra, Contra Hardcorps, or Contra Force; three unreleased Contra games that I, and I imagine many others are looking forward to on VC; could've been released on Wii VC instead, along with a new GB release. Instead, Super C is made available again. But, again, I don't want to complain too loudly, because it is VC support.

Now, what in the BLEEP is going on with NES Contra? It defies all logic that one of the all-time great NES games has now been passed over for a second time in favor of its sequel on a format. I once thought it some exclusivity deal that had to do with Contra arcade being available on Xbox Live Arcade. However, that's the arcade version, and Super Contra arcade's availability on XBLA hasn't stopped Super C's release on two Nintendo platforms now. This is one of the great Virtual Console mysteries!



RR529 said:

I'll probably give the Brain Age demo a DL eventually, but nothing else besides that (I don't have a Wii U, BTW).

I just got Crimson Shroud & Gunman Clive yesterday, though, so I'm good.



chiefeagle02 said:

I got the Brain Age demo. The math activity in the demo was good and it promises to deliver a satisfying challenge. However, there were a few things I didn't like about the game:

-I don't like the voice for the Doctor.
-I miss the book-style gameplay (holding the system on its side).
-Dr. Kawashima got WAY too nice between the original Brain Age and this one.

GameStop has this listed for $35. If it was $20, like the other games were, I'd eventually get it. However, after playing this, I think I'll wait for a price drop and just stick to the older games in the meantime. I admit my gripes were purely aesthetic and the activity present was really cool. All the same, I think I'll wait and see what happens.



pashaveliki said:

One glance at that screen shot of Super C and I hear that tinny 8bit thunder, helicopter blades and kick ass music.
Hard to say no to your favourite game from 2nd grade...



ToxieDogg said:

@Tech101 It's possible that Nintendo can't have Donkey Kong 64 on the VC because it contains an emulated version of an old 8 bit computer game called 'Jetpac' as a minigame which is entirely owned by RARE, as they originally published it (under their old company name of Ultimate: Play The Game) and also released an updated version called Jetpac Refuelled on XBLA. Sucks that something like that is causing a problem, but that's probably what it is.



FluttershyGuy said:

Happy birthday, @MarioKenny1992 & @Brendonm17 ! Not sure how old you are, @Brendonm17 , but @MarioKenny1992 , 1992 was one of my personal best years, and perhaps THE best for gaming (finally got the SNES, along with many of the best games on the system: Zelda: ALttP, Super Mario World, Super Castlevania IV, Final Fantasy II/IV, Street Fighter II: TWW, CONTRA III, etc.).



Moonhillwat said:

I still think you guys were unfair with the review for The Cave. It's an excellent game.

Also, I very much love Super C! Hopefully it makes it to the Wii U VC.





I don't actually remember a game called Jetpac on the old Donkey Kong 64. If it's there, then I must have overlooked it before probably. As for anything that goes retro old school in the game, I DEFINITELY remember seeing the old Donkey Kong arcade game in DK 64. That's something I'm sure everyone probably remembers to this day.



Bones00 said:

@shinesprite My guess is only people who don't own a Wii U or who don't know about the deal. I hope to have my own Wii U by the end of the month but I at least have Balloon Fight on my 3DS.



StarDust4Ever said:

Balloon Fight is an awesome game on the NES, but playing it on the 3DS made my thumbs sore due to the clicky D-pad. I've already got it on Wii-VC, but will still be taking advantageof the promo ofer.

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