For this issue’s video game review, I’ve decided to do a wrap-up of some of the old-school games available for download through Nintendo Wii’s Virtual Console. With over 50 games to download from past consoles like Nintendo, Sega Genesis, TurboGrafx-16, Super Nintendo and Nintendo 64, the Virtual Console has plenty of familiar titles to give gamers their old-school fix.
Since there are so many old-school titles to choose from on the Virtual Console, I’ve picked only the games that I’m familiar with and that are worth downloading. Oh, and since I’ve never played the TurboGrafx-16 console, I’ve decided not to discuss any of the games available to download from that console.
Super Mario Bros. (1985) Rated E ? Action
Nintendo brings back the game that started it all. One of the most famous games of all time is still one of the most famous games of all time, but just 20 years later. You’ve probably played this game to death already, but it’s still worth the download for all you Mario freaks, like me.
Excitebike (1985) Rated E ? Racing
Probably one my favorite racing games of all time, Excitebike is a simple but fun motorcycle game that pits gamers against other little biker dudes in a number of wild tracks. You can even make your own custom tracks, inputting wild ramps to giver your biker mad air. For $5, it’s a great deal for one of the better racing games on the NES.
Other notable games: Castlevania, Kid Icarus, Punch-Out!!
Sonic the Hedgehog (1991) Rated E ? Action
Lately the past few Sonic games have been pretty crappy, but this is the game that made Sonic the Hedgehog the franchise character he is today. The game is just as fast paced and colorful as you might remember and it’s still fun to play. One of the best Sonic games ever, is definitely worth the $8 to download.
Streets of Rage (1990) Rated T ? Action
Probably one of the best games to use the Final Fight/Double Dragon side-scrolling fighting style, Streets of Rage is good enough for the $8 price. Even though the game is just about beating up bad guys, you’re beating them up with a friend. Definitely one of the better side-scrolling action games on the Virtual Console.
Other notable games: Ecco the Dolphin, Toe Jam & Earl
Super Mario World (1991) Rated E
Some say that Super Mario World is the best Mario game ever and that is something I could agree with, but I could also argue with. With everything you would expect from a Mario game, this game helped sell millions of Super Nintendo’s across the world, putting Nintendo way ahead of Sega during the console war of the early ’90s. With its colorful world, useful power-ups and tons of secrets, Super Mario World is still one of the best games around, even if it is old-school.
Donkey Kong Country (1994) Rated E ? Action
I remember when this game first came out. It was mind-blowing because it had some of the best graphics I had seen at that time. It didn’t have the colorful and bright world of Super Mario World, but it had its own distinct jungle theme that fit perfectly. It’s one of the better Donkey Kong games ever made and worth the $8 to download.
Other notable games: F-Zero, Super Castlevania IV, Zelda: A Link to the Past
Super Mario 64 (1996) Rated E ??Action
Some say that Super Mario 64 is the best Mario game ever and, again, that is something I could agree with, but I could also argue with. Removed from the clunky N64 hardware, 3D Mario both looks and plays better on the Wii then on the N64. I remember the hours and days playing this game, and they were some of the best gaming times I’ve ever had. It’s a great game and one of the best available on the Virtual Console.
Other notable games: Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Starfox 64