As we draw closer to the end of an era, starting with the discontinuation of the Wii in Japan, we saw it fit to do a quick look back on Nintendo Wii, showing footage of games that highlight both it’s rise to popularity and it’s appeal to many gaming enthusiasts alike.
Launching November 19, 2006, in the United States, bundled with Wii Sports, the new Wii system became a holiday phenomenon. Gamers enjoyed playing The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess using the motion-sensitive Wii Remote and Nunchuk controllers, and the motion-controlled fueled video game revolution had begun.
2007 rolled around when Nintendo unleashed Super Mario Galaxy, one of the best-reviewed games of all time, in November. The Wii Zapper launched with Link’s Crossbow Training, while the classic Metroid Prime series concluded with Metroid Prime 3 Corruption. The Wii Remote Jacket gave the controllers a protective cushion. The Nintendo Fan Network let Seattle Mariners fans wirelessly receive baseball-related content on their Nintendo DS systems at Safeco Field. And former rivals teamed up for Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games.
The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences honored Nintendo with an Emmy Award for excellence in engineering creativity for the motion-sensitive Wii Remote controller in 2008. Mario Kart Wii launched with the Wii Wheel accessory, while Wii Fit and the Wii Balance Board showed people that video games could combine fun and fitness. To offer children an entertaining respite during difficult hospital stays, Nintendo introduced new Fun Centers that feature a Wii system and a selection of family-friendly Wii games. During this year, the WiiWare downloadable game service debuted and a North American version of Club Nintendo began rewarding Nintendo fans for their loyalty.
In April of 2009, Wii Sports Resort built on the Wii Sports phenomenon and included the new Wii MotionPlus accessory, which made motion controls even more precise. Wii Fit Plus brought new options and activities to the fitness software and New Super Mario Bros. Wii brought the hand-held game to the home console.
The new decade rolled around (2010) when Nintendo and Netflix announced a partnership that would allow most Netflix subscribers to stream movies and TV shows directly through their Wii consoles. The American Heart Association and Nintendo of America formed a multifaceted strategic relationship aimed at helping people create healthy lifestyles through physically active play. The iconic American Heart Association brand appeared on boxes for the Wii Fit Plus and Wii Sports Resort software and for the Wii system itself. Super Mario Galaxy 2 was just as well-received and well-reviewed as the original, Metroid: Other M took the franchise in a new direction, albeit one disliked by core fans of the series, and Donkey Kong Country Returns revisited a classic franchise. The Wii Games: Summer 2010 competition brought thousands of people of all ages together in fun competitions.
Finally, to unofficially close off the era, The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword released in 2011 and while it didn’t reach the level of critical acclaim as it’s console predecessor, it did, however, reach it’s acclaim for offering intense motion-control fueled sword combat, engaging puzzles and a beautiful, stylized look. Once again, The Legend of Zelda franchise found ways to surprise and challenge players. Nintendo Enthusiast awarded the game a 10/10, defining it as “a true Nintendo game.”