All aboard!

The Japanese Wii and DSi shops have seen some massive updates this past year much to the envy of 'net-reading Wii owners in other territories, but Nintendo are taking it easy at home with a mere handful of releases to start 2010.


Boku wa Plarail Untenshi (1000pts - Takara Tomy) -- This is an example of a gaming staple in Japan: the train driving simulator. As you might have guessed from the title "Plarail" indicates this is a toy train simulator ("plarail" is a fine example of the of the Japanese tendency to create new "Japanese-English" words by combining elements of English words into a new word that doesn't exist in English. Other examples include: remote control -- "remocon" and personal computer -- "persocon") in which you're placed in the driver's seat of either a toy shinkansen ("bullet train") or steam locomotive and need to pick up little playmobile-like people. A second player can join in to deal with passenger boarding, run the windscreen wipers or use other controls.

Old-school shooting G.G. style!

Virtual Console

Kirby no Kirakira Kizzu (800pts SFC - Nintendo) -- A console version of Game Boy title Kirby's Star Stacker. It only came out in Japan on the Super Famicom, but one of the wonders of the Virtual Console is import games, so maybe this will finally see the light of day in the West?


G.G. Series: Dark Spirits (200pts - Genterprise) -- Another cheap and cheerful Genterprise game. Despite the ominous title this looks like an old-fashioned sprite-based side-scrolling shoot-em-up complete with giant bosses, power-ups and different shot types.

Artist ni Narou! Minna no Nurikai Neko Hen (500pts - Ertain) -- The last in this series of "colouring book" titles was focused on dogs, so no surprise this one is all about cats!