The Wii U eShop is about to meet its end and shut down soon, just like the Nintendo 3DS eShop, with it closing on March 27, 2023 and cutting off access to buy games. This is something of a tricky situation for folks! Some notable games are honestly cheaper physically, such as Star Fox Zero and Guard. A lot of other “must-haves” went from exclusives to… not, like Tokyo Mirage Sessions FE and Fatal Frame: Maiden of Black Water. Still, there are some major and notable games worth getting and playing, and these are our recommendations.
The Heavy Hitter Exclusives
The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD
As you’d expect from an HD remaster, it looks better. Nintendo adjusted the lighting, it runs in 1080p, and features 30fps. However, it also involved the company making adjustments to fine-tune it. There’s a new control scheme, as you might expect from the GamePad. There are fewer Tears of Light to hunt down, you immediately get access to Hero Mode, you can use amiibo to get extra items or unlock the Cave of Shadows dungeon, and there are Miiverse stamps… oh. Oh right, Miiverse is dead.
The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD
So, this is an HD remaster of The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker! It’s as comprehensive and enjoyable as ever. In addition to being a 1080p version of the game with better lighting, there are also new UI elements involving the GamePad, the ability to use motion controls with the GamePad gyroscope, and gameplay adjustments like faster travel with the Swift Sail. It also featured Miiverse compatibility, but… that’s gone now.
Xenoblade Chronicles X
Xenoblade Chronicles X is a fantastic game that focuses a bit more on exploration than storytelling than Xenoblade Chronicles 1-3, though keep in mind there’s still an interesting tale and fascinating lore here. As part of an Earthlife Colonization Project, countries sent out ark spaceships to try and escape the war and find a new home. The American’s White Whale is shot down and crash lands on the planet Mira. Players are one of the humans who was in stasis on board and, upon being awoken, joins Elma, Lin, and Gwin as BLADE members in New Los Angeles trying to help recover after the crash, find more people and remnants, and deal with things to come.
The Overlooked Wii U eShop Gems
Affordable Space Adventures
Affordable Space Adventures is one of the rare examples of a Wii U eShop exclusive from a third-party that will be lost forever upon Nintendo closing things up. It is a puzzle game you go through alone or with friends as you attempt to get the Small Craft spaceship you took your “vacation” on off of a planet after being stranded. It’s especially good with other people!
Nintendo named 2013 The Year of Luigi, and Dr. Luigi was one of the results of that! It’s Dr. Mario, only with L-shaped pills in some of its four modes. Though some of the other modes are identical to past games. It’s a Wii U eShop exclusive that will be gone forever after the storefront’s closing, so it’s something you may want to get for posterity.
Kirby and the Rainbow Curse
Kirby and the Rainbow Curse, like Kirby: Canvas Curse before it, involves indirectly controlling Kirby. You draw lines, in this case on the GamePad, to get him through levels. You can get it physically, but if you’re having trouble finding a disc and want a fun platformer spin-off, this is worth grabbing. It can feel more like a puzzle game at times, what with being limited by available ink.
NES Remix and NES Remix 2
NES Remix and NES Remix 2 are both fantastic, bite-sized minigame collections on the Wii U eShop featuring NES games. The first featured challenges from games like Balloon Fight, Donkey Kong, Excitebike, Super Mario Bros, and The Legend of Zelda. The sequel brought in even more games, like Dr. Mario, Kid Icarus, Kirby’s Adventure, Metroid, Punch-Out, Super Mario Bros 3 and Zelda II. You can get them on a disc as the NES Remix Pack, but if you’re having trouble finding that or already own one and just want the other, grab them now!
Pokemon Rumble U
Remember Pokemon Rumble games? It’s been a while since Pokemon Rumble Rush in 2019, and that was a mobile game anyways, so you’re forgiven if you don’t! The Wii U entry was the amiibo game before amiibo even existed, as you would use NFC figures to play if you wanted. Rather than Pokemon, you fight with and against Toy Pokemon. It’s an action game, and up to four people can also face off. As in typical Pokemon games, you can befriend and find new allies by defeating them in battle. It’s not the best installment, but we shouldn’t forget this Wii U eShop exclusive before the store’s closing.
What do you think are the best Wii U eShop games? What other gems did we miss? Let us know in the comments.