You should now be fairly familiar with our quarterly tradition of looking at the biggest games coming to the Wii U. Our Spring edition had some games that have since fallen out of a 2014 release, as it was pulled together at a time when 'TBC' was far too common as a release window on Wii U games — alternatively, some projects previously given a '2014' window have also dropped to 2015.
It's time for another update, of course. Previously released games that now drop out by default from the last list are Mario Kart 8, NES Remix 2 and Scram Kitty and his Buddy on Rails; on top of this, Xenoblade Chronicles X is now a 2015 release for the West, while FAST Racing NEO has been off the radar for too long to still be considered a likely 2014 arrival at this point.
Games confirmed or very likely for 2014 are the key, then. Following E3 we also have more enticing retail games — some of which are new — to include, though one eShop game does make the cut ahead of some big-budget rivals; more downloads will get mentioned or linked at the end, too.
So, without further ado, here's our updated list of what we consider to be the biggest games still coming to Wii U in 2014.
Not a great deal needs to be said to hype this one, as we said before. Due in the Holiday season — no firm release date like its 3DS brethren — this was extensively shown during E3, and since our last list we've had confirmation of the GameCube Controller Adapter for Wii U to keep dedicated players happy. With more challengers and stages filling out the content side of this title, and the accompanying range of amiibo toys playing its part, this is likely to be at the top of many Wii U wishlists.
This Dynasty Warriors / Zelda mash-up is arriving relatively soon, and is getting extensively shown off by Koei Tecmo and Nintendo. It'll be button-mashing mayhem, though the setting and fan-service will likely help it to a decent number of sales, while it's set to offer plenty of playable characters — even Agitha.
This was on our list as a speculative entry for a long time, but we've now seen much more of the intense action sequel and been given an October release window. It's certainly shaping up well, and E3 brought the happy news that the original Bayonetta is also coming to the Wii U with new outfits and GamePad touch screen controls — it'll be a freebie with retail copies in North America, and will feature as part of a dual disc edition in Europe. Both of these titles should keep Wii U gamers busy this Fall season.
A recent reveal, this takes the basic concept of the popular puzzle levels in Super Mario 3D World and expands them into a full adventure for the heroic Toad. Early footage and hands on time bodes well for this one, as there appears to be plenty of variety and clever design at play so far. Due in the Holiday season, it'll also support the amiibo toys.
After the hype of its original reveal earlier this year, Developer Big Red Button is now facing the task of delivering on promises made with this Wii U iteration in the new spin-off for the Sonic universe. In our first impressions article we tackled the slower-paced, co-op adventure element and came away with some cautious optimism, though that same demo has received some criticism. With a cartoon and toys joining this and the 3DS title, there's plenty of pressure as Rise of Lyric approaches release.
A long-term resident on these lists, this is now being published by Bandai Namco and will arrive in November. It's aiming for impressive realism and depth, not to mention stunning visuals, and will also be one of very few car racing games on the Wii U. Though it's a multiplatform game this could fare reasonably well on Nintendo's system.
The LEGO games may have had variable quality of late, but the Batman iterations are normally among the best, with the home console versions standing out. There'll be some attractive visuals and co-op mayhem, undoubtedly, while this one will have over 100 characters from the DC universe along with an outer-space setting.
This one edges out Disney Infinity 2.0 and, in truth, you can swap them out in your own mind if you so desire — both high-profile toy / game products are returning this year. This latest release from Activision is hitting 3DS and Wii, as well as what will likely be the strongest version on Wii U, and the gimmick this time is that you can trap villains and use them on the side of good. With a lot of toys no doubt joining it, this will likely be another major success, and this is a market Nintendo is entering in its own way, too.
We actually excluded this from our Spring list, partly in a bout of disappointment and frustration at the Wii U version being shoddily delayed beyond all other iterations. Ultimately, and with Ubisoft insistent that a Fall release is still on, this will still excite gamers that only own a Wii U or have held off from buying any of the other versions. We hope the system and GamePad — for which this game should be ideal — will be treated well, though we'll have to wait and see.
This earns a place as an eShop wildcard. There are plenty of eShop games on the way this year, though this gets on this list by virtue of being a Wii U exclusive and, more importantly, full of promise. We played this recently and were impressed at its potential to provide an immersive, unique experience, so it should certainly be on your radar. We'll have an interview with Nifflas — who's co-developing this with KnapNok Games — and some hands on impressions on the site soon.
So there you have it, ten games that we think represent some of the best of what's still coming to Wii U this year, with confidence that they'll all actually arrive before 2015 rolls around. We shouldn't forget that Just Dance 2015 is a thing too, for those of you that like the series, while on the download front there's plenty on the way, including a certain Wii U / 3DS release from WayForward that may just make it onto our equivalent 3DS list. Don't forget that we've also provided some full on guides to the biggest retail and eShop games on the way this year, too, with lots of titles to consider.
As for this list of ten Wii U games, let us know what you think and which others you think should be included via the comments, while you can also vote for your favourite in the poll.
What's your most anticipated Wii U game of 2014? (557 votes)
- Super Smash Bros. for Wii U43%
- Hyrule Warriors12%
- Bayonetta 217%
- Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker11%
- Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric1%
- Project CARS6%
- LEGO Batman 3: Beyond Gotham1%
- Skylanders Trap Team1%
- Watch Dogs4%
- Affordable Space Adventures1%
- My choice isn't on the list2%
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