Accessorize Your Wii Experience

April 22, 2010

This week in the Wii Blog For You, we will discuss a few more ways you can enhance your Wii experience with peripherals. More specifically, I will introduce the Wii Wheel and Wii Speak.

Wii Wheel

The Wii Wheel is a steering wheel accessory that enhances racing and driving games. As seen in the photograph, it works by simply snapping your Wii controller into the wheel. It definitely makes games in which you have to steer by tilting the Wii remote left and right easier to control. Additionally, holding an actual wheel while maneuvering your onscreen vehicle enhances the immersion and fun factor. Some of the better games that make use of the Wii Wheel are Mario Kart Wii and ExciteBots: Trick Racing. The Wii Wheel comes packaged with Mario Kart Wii or you can purchase it separately for $14.99. Games that are compatible with the Wii Wheel can be identified by looking on the back of the game’s packaging. Here is Nintendo’s official information page about the product: Wii Wheel.

Wii Speak

Wii Speak is a microphone that sits on top of your television and allows you to talk to other Wii users over your high-speed Internet connection. It connects to one of your Wii’s USB ports, so setting it up is a simple process. While it is definitely a neat accessory, the product’s downside is that only a handful of games are actually compatible with it. However, in addition to the games that use it, you can chat with your friends who also have the device through the Wii Speak Channel, which is free. Wii Speak costs $29.99, and some of the games that are compatible with it include Animal Crossing: City Folk and Endless Ocean: Blue World. Like with the Wii Wheel, check the back of a game’s packaging to see if it is marked as being compatible with Wii Speak. Here is Nintendo’s official information page about the product: Wii Speak.

That’s all for this week. Until next time, happy gaming!


Five Family Friendly Wii Games You Shouldn’t Miss

March 5, 2010

The Wii Blog For You, thus far, has not provided much information about specific games that are currently available. Therefore, this week, I would like to identify five games that are worth a look if you own the Wii. I based my selections on three criteria:

1) The game had to be simple enough that it is accessible to people who may be new to gaming.

2) The game had to have content that is suitable for people of all ages.

3) The game had to be one I have played myself and can personally vouch for as being fun and worth the $49.99 price tag.

So, without further ado, here are the Wii Blog For You’s Top 5 Family Friendly Wii games.

5. Punch-Out!!

Punch-Out!! is a remake of the classic 1987 game from the original Nintendo Entertainment System. You may remember it as Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out!! Of course, that was before Tyson started biting people’s ears off. As its name implies, it is a boxing game. However, rather than being a serious boxing simulation, it takes a more comical and “cartoony” approach. The goal of the game is to progress through a series of progressively more difficult boxers until you are declared the champion. If you would like to learn more, here is the game’s official website.

Here is a screen shot from the game:

4. Wario Ware: Smooth Moves

Wario Ware: Smooth Moves is a game that defies description, but I will do my best. Essentially, the game is a test of your reflexes and how quickly you can react. The game presents you with a rapid fire succession of scenarios in which you have to react with a specific controller motion or button input. The game is a riot, especially if you are playing with more than one person. Here is the game’s official website if you would like to see how the game works.

3. Wii Sports Resort

When you purchased your Wii, it came with a game called Wii Sports. Wii Sports Resort is the sequel to that game, and it is better than the original in every way. If you liked the original, then you will love this game. The sports included this time around are: bowling, golf, archery, Frisbee, basketball, cycling, canoeing, power cruising, table tennis, air sports, swordplay, and wakeboarding. The game also includes the Wii MotionPlus, which is Nintendo’s controller upgrade (covered in an earlier edition of this blog). Here is a link to the game’s official website.

Here is a screen shot of the archery game.

2. Mario Kart Wii

Mario Kart Wii is the ultra-popular racing game that features the characters from the Super Mario Bros. franchise of games.  What makes this game so much fun are the fantastical race tracks, the game’s blazing speed, and the chaos that results from the weapons the racers can use to slow their oppoents down.  This is the sixth entry into the Mario Kart series of games, and it includes all new race tracks plus some of the classic tracks from the previous games.  Mario Kart Wii features online functionality, so if no one is around at home to play with you, you can hop online and race people all over the world!  Here is the game’s official site.

And, here is a screen shot of the game:

1. New Super Mario Bros. Wii

My number one choice is New Super Mario Bros. Wii.  The Super Mario Bros. series is possibly the most famous videogame franchise ever, and this is primarily because the games are always of high quality and good, clean fun.  The original Super Mario Bros. dates all the way back to 1985, and New Super Mario Bros. Wii is Nintendo’s effort to bring that classic into the 21st century.  The game has several innovations compared to earlier iterations to help make it an accessible, family game.  First, for the first time in a Mario game, four players can play at the same time, and there are competitive and cooperative options.  Additionally, the game features a Super Guide option.  If you are struggling with a particular area of the game, the Super Guide will appear and offer to get you past that area so that you can continue on in the game and not get overly frustrated.  The game is great, but in case you don’t want to take my word for it, the game has sold over 10 million copies as of January 25, 2010.  So, obviously the game is quite popular. Here is the link to the game’s official site.

Here is what it looks like:

So, there you have it.  Five fun, family-friendly games.  If you’re looking for something new to play, you can’t go wrong with any of them.  That’s it for this week’s blog.  See you again next week!