Nintendo of America seems to have spent the last few weeks compensating for all those two- and three-game release weeks in the rest of the year recently, but for the first update of the New Year we're back to only a handful, some of which have already been released in Europe and Japan -- hopefully not a sign of a return to the old ways!
Heron: Steam Machine (500pts - Triangle Studios) -- We quite enjoyed this variation on the classic 8-bit computer game Pipe Dream, so it's nice that folk in North America are finally getting a shot at it.
Pub Darts (500pts - Big Blue Bubble Inc.) -- Darts has been done before on the Wii, but this is the first pure-play darts game for WiiWare. We'll let you know if it hits the bulls-eye or misses the mark in an upcoming review!
Fast Draw Showdown (500pts - Digital Leisure Inc.) -- This seems to be a spinoff of Mad Dog McCree: rather than a rails shooter the players are tasked with shooting faster than their FMV opponent. Our reviewin' hombres will have to find out if this is one to leave buried at Boot Hill or not...
Final Fight 3 (800pts SNES - Capcom) -- Released in Japan last month as Final Fight Tough, this is regarded by many as the best Final Fight game for the SNES.
Trajectile (500pts - Nintendo) -- This seems to be a localised version of Reflect Missile which was released in Europe back in November. Drake though it was a brilliant puzzler so we're sure many people will be happy to see this on the DSiWare shelves.
Animal Puzzle Adventure (500pts - Aksys Games) -- Originally published by Arc System Works in Japan as Chiria no Doobutsu Koya last June, this is a puzzler where you try to get farm animals back to their barns. Our resident animal experts will be sure to check this one out and confirm if it's a blue ribbon winner or a candidate for the glue factory.
Hell's Kitchen Vs. (800pts - Ludia) -- This was released last month in Europe and our own Jimmy "The Kitchen Witch" Newton put it through its paces and found it wanting. Best to stick with the TV show then!
As always you can feast your eyes on the full Nintendo of America press release below:
Should old acquaintance be forgot? We can't remember. But what we can remember is that this week's downloadable lineup from Nintendo asks a lot of questions. The Nintendo DSiWare™ service wonders if you can master missiles with Trajectile™, lead animals to their proper pens with Animal Puzzle Adventure or match wits with TV chef Gordon Ramsay in Hell's Kitchen Vs. The WiiWare™ service puts you in charge of maximizing your rubber duckie output with Heron: Steam Machine, asks you to aim for the bull's-eye with Pub Darts and wonders if you have an itchy trigger finger with Fast Draw Showdown. Finally, Final Fight™ 3 on the Virtual Console™ service makes you wonder if the fight is ever really final.
ESRB Rating: E (Everyone)
Price: 500 Nintendo DSi Points™
Description: Trajectile is a puzzle game that's as much about firepower as it is about brainpower, requiring you to line up your shot and launch a flurry of missiles at enemy targets. Three types of missiles are at your disposal, each one with its own characteristics - but all of them can bounce off walls on their path to smash, blast or drill through enemies and blocks. Along the way, you'll find item blocks just waiting to be destroyed so that you can obtain special power-ups ... and cause even more destruction. Be careful though, as missile type and position are predetermined and you get only a limited number of launches per stage. Complete multiple classes containing numerous individual stages, earning medals when you clear stages in fewer than the given number of turns. Are you ready to take aim at becoming a Trajectile master?
Animal Puzzle Adventure
Publisher: Aksys Games
ESRB Rating: E10+ (Everyone 10 and Older) - Mild Suggestive Themes
Price: 500 Nintendo DSi Points
Description: Animal Puzzle Adventure is a simple puzzle game where you have to lead various animals to their respective barns placed on the map, while avoiding pitfalls and cliffs and using the objects on the field to your advantage. There are 10 stages per level with a total of five levels, creating 50 stages in all. After clearing a stage, you unlock a piece of a photo. Once you clear all 10 stages in a level, the wallpaper for that level becomes unlocked and you can then view it in the gallery. With so many puzzles to unravel, you'll find yourself immersed in the puzzle-riffic world of Animal Puzzle Adventure.
Hell's Kitchen Vs.
ESRB Rating: E (Everyone)
Price: 800 Nintendo DSi Points
Description: Hell's Kitchen Vs. is based on the U.S. TV phenomenon where world-renowned chef Gordon Ramsay puts aspiring chefs through rigorous culinary tests. The game recreates the show's pressure-cooker atmosphere as two players battle head-to-head in an arcade-style kitchen challenge. Try to conquer your opponent in each time-management test, while taking the heat of Gordon Ramsay judging and rating your performance at every stage of the game.
Heron: Steam Machine
Publisher: Triangle Studios
ESRB Rating: E (Everyone)
Price: 500 Wii Points™
Description: Heron: Steam Machine is a game about a factory where rubber duckies are being produced by a large steam engine. On this steam engine, there are four different gauges which you will have to watch carefully. By connecting the pipes, you will earn points and relieve some of the pressure, keeping the machine running just a little bit longer. If one of the gauges reaches its maximum, the machine will eventually blow up, and the game is over. If you were lucky enough to achieve a high score, make sure you enter your name in the list so other players can compete with you. In Multiplayer, you are able to cooperate with friends in maintaining the steam machine. When you play with two, three or four players, the screen is divided into sections with different background colors. Each player is able to solve his or her own part of the puzzle. Players are restricted to their own section of the screen, so you will have to work together to make the pipes fit properly. (Additional accessories are required for multiplayer play and are sold separately.)
Publisher: Big Blue Bubble Inc.
ESRB Rating: E (Everyone) - Alcohol Reference
Price: 500 Wii Points
Description: Pub Darts is a simple darts simulation which uses the Wii Remote™ controller's unique controls to mimic dart-throwing motion. The game is set in a local pub where the players will settle in to play some of their favorite dart games, including 501, Cricket, Around the Clock, Killers and Baseball. Controls function just like throwing a real dart. Players are able to create their own personal profiles, including selecting their avatar image from a collection of creative characters and the design they would like displayed on the dart flights.
Fast Draw Showdown
Publisher: Digital Leisure Inc.
ESRB Rating: T (Teen) - Alcohol Reference, Violence
Price: 500 Wii Points
Description: When it comes to fast draw there're only two types of people: the quick ... and the dead! Now you have the chance to find out where you stand, or lie, as the case may be. You'll go up against the best quick draws in the business, including one of the world's fastest, Wes Flowers. Unholster your Wii Remote controller and show 'em who the fastest draw really is, in this live-action shooter. You can even take on a friend in multiplayer modes, and see which of you has the quickest draw. You'll need some serious speed and awesome accuracy to take on these gunslingers ... so get ready for some real fast draw action.
Final Fight 3
Original platform: Super NES™
Publisher: Capcom USA
ESRB Rating: T (Teen) - Animated Violence
Price: 800 Wii Points
Description: Following the defeat and subsequent disappearance of the Mad Gear Gang, a small group known only as "Skull Cross" is responsible for a new uprising of vandalism, terrorism and death. The government of Metro City is at a complete loss. Metro City's mayor, Mike Haggar, and Guy are prepared to take on the new gang, but before they can act, the door bursts open, revealing Lucia, Cody's old friend. "Metro City is under attack!" she shouts, "Skull Cross is loose, and they've got something up their sleeves." But before any of them can move, a mysterious man appears in the doorway. "My name is Dean," he says. "I know Skull Cross inside-and-out, and I hate them more than anything. I can help you, and you can help me. We must go!" All four fighters vow to bring Skull Cross down. It will be a tough assignment, and may even be their final fight!
Nintendo adds new titles to the Nintendo DSi Shop and the Wii Shop Channel at 9 a.m. Pacific time on Mondays. Users with broadband Internet access can redeem Wii Points or Nintendo DSi Points to download the games. Wii Points can be purchased in the Wii Shop Channel. Nintendo DSi Points can be purchased in the Nintendo DSi Shop. A Nintendo Points Card™ can be purchased at retail locations. All points from one Nintendo Points Card must be redeemed in either the Nintendo DSi Shop or the Wii Shop Channel. They are not transferable and cannot be divided between the two systems.
Remember that both Wii and Nintendo DSi feature parental controls that let adults manage the content their children can access. For more information about this and other features, visit Wii.com or NintendoDSi.com.