Feature: Ten Smartphone and Tablet Games We'd Like to See on Wii U

Oh yes, we're going there

Earlier this week we reported on a story in the Japanese media that Nintendo is providing developers with software to convert smartphone games to Wii U. If true that could potentially have various implications, but until Nintendo reveals more — the source report was a little vague and quoted anonymous "company sources" — we'll hold off on getting too analytical. The potential impact in terms of content, pricing and product delivery — including free-to-play and microtransactions — gives plenty to consider, if it happens.

The very concept of an easy-to-use tool that allows developers to quickly port smartphone games to the Wii U did get us thinking, however, about some quality iOS and Android games that we feel would suit the eShop, and the Wii U / GamePad setup. Below's a diverse selection, some of which are bona-fide phone / tablet games and others that are on various platforms but, perhaps, have found an extra lease of life on Apple and Google services. Things have come a long way since the first version of Snake — which also shows how well the 3DS has performed to continue to sell against a backdrop of quality portable experiences.

We're not saying that we're ready to give up on our lovely Nintendo systems and games to play on phones, quite the opposite: we're saying these games can be as good or — in many cases — better on the Wii U.


Ridiculous Fishing - A Tale of Redemption

Ridiculous Fishing is, well, a bit ridiculous. It banks on getting you hooked (geddit?) into a simple repetition that allows you to gradually level up your equipment. Once a line is cast you tilt and steer the device — which the GamePad should easily handle, or physical controls could be used — to guide the line down and then back up with its catch; once the fish are flipped out of the water you tap the screen to blow them to smithereens with a gun. It sounds simplistic, because it is, but the constant leveling up to wacky new tools and expansion to bigger areas also makes it rather compulsive. It's got rad retro-styled graphics, too.

Punch Quest

What happens when you combine an endless runner with a side-scrolling brawler? Punch Quest, in all of its anarchic and wacky glory. Your hero runs to the right to punch, uppercut and block to stay alive, with it all happening against the backdrop of bright visuals and insane power-ups. The trailer below should give you an idea of what this one's all about.

Riptide GP

Oh, Wave Race, how we miss you. The simple concept of water racing has been largely absent on Nintendo systems since Wave Race: Blue Storm on the GameCube, with the exception of a minor appearance in Wii Sports Resort, which is a pity as it's such darned fun. That's why Riptide GP is in our sights, especially as it already looks pretty decent on Android and iOS devices. Sub out the potentially tricky tilt controls to use the good-old analogue sticks on the GamePad, and this could be a lot of fun.

Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP

This is a particular favourite, as it's a rather thoughtful, creative and artistic title on iOS, Android, PC and Mac. A slow-paced puzzle adventure title, it's focused on exploration, curiosity and riddle solving above all else, and provides a charming audio-visual exhibition — headphones are a must. Sometimes it can arguably be too peculiar and quirky for its own good, but then that didn't stop Little Inferno.

Draw Something

We're more fans of the concept of Draw Something than the rampant micro-transactions that Zynga likes to include in the just-released sequel — a social drawing app where you play with others to both draw and guess the illustrations of others. It's a bit like online Pictionary, with a lot of extra bits and bobs, and would be absolutely perfect for the Wii U GamePad. A look at what talented Miiverse artists get up to is ample proof.

Jetpack Joyride

Rather than being an endless runner, this is an endless flyer. Like the rocket barrel levels in Donkey Kong Country Returns, you use one button — or tap the screen on phones and tablets — to manage your height, collect coins and wacky power-up suits, all while avoiding deadly beams and rockets. It's a simple one-more-go kind of game, with your in-game loot also there to spend on outfits and new items; it's also been released on the PlayStation Network, so a Wii U release isn't a completely unrealistic idea.

Super Hexagon

This is a minimalist title from Terry Cavanagh, a game designer that 3DS eShop gamers will hopefully know from playing the utterly marvelous VVVVVV. Its concept is simply about steering a triangle around a 360 degree axis to avoid walls that continually rush towards the centre of the screen. That's it, but as a cheap download it's strangely addictive, while friends compete to see who has the ninja reflexes to get beyond 10 seconds, then 30 seconds, and on it goes...

EDGE

This title had issues remaining on the Apple iOS store due to a trademark dispute with Tim Langdell — thankfully now resolved in favour of Mobigame's title — and has also appeared on Android, PC, Mac and as a PlayStation Mini. A simple concept of moving a cube through tricky obstacle courses — which is much easier with a D-Pad or stick — and collecting items. Cleverly designed and a test of sharp instincts in the mind and the thumbs.

Shadowgun

We've done quite a few clever, addictive or quirky titles, so let's have a good old-fashioned semi-clone, cheap double-A wannabe that, at the right price, could be some harmless fun — especially as complaints around the smartphone releases often refer to the touch screen controls, which the GamePad could resolve rather easily. Drawing parallels with the Gears of War series due to its cover-based shooting and overly-muscular hero, in this game you shoot stuff. And then shoot more stuff...

Monkey Island 2: Special Edition

This one is on the list because we really want a Wii U release, but we should acknowledge that it's appeared on almost all platforms but those bearing a Nintendo logo. It's simply the classic point-and-click adventure with all new visuals and improved audio, and that works just fine for us. Arguably the pinnacle of the Monkey Island franchise, the PC original is a treasured memory for various old-timers, so a Wii U eShop release would be more than welcome. Though with the recent fate of LucasArts, it may be a forlorn hope.


So those are some games either exclusive to smartphones/tablets or have simply found natural new homes on those platforms, and we want them on Wii U. Whether it'll happen or not is a different matter, but the video game industry is a strange beast — we wouldn't rule it out.

Does the thought of any of these on the Wii U appeal to you? Choose your favourite — if you have one — in the poll below, or simply sound off on the whole idea in the comments section.

Which of these smartphone / tablet games would you like the most on Wii U? (241 votes)

Ridiculous Fishing - A Tale of Redemption

7%

Punch Quest

3%

Riptide GP

7%

Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP

10%

Draw Something

7%

Jetpack Joyride

7%

Super Hexagon

5%

EDGE

4%

Shadowgun

10%

Monkey Island 2: Special Edition

22%

I don't want any of those on Wii U

9%

This is a daft idea, down with this sort of thing!

9%

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