Wii U's Launch is just Around the Corner
The successor to Nintendo's wildly popular Wii comes out November 18. Here's what games to expect with it.
Anyone who's considering buying a new console will tell you that one thing is important above all else: the games available for it.
The Wii U is set to be ready for purchase on November 18. With the console being released so close to Christmas, companies are set to capitalize by offering great popular franchises and hoped-to-be-hot IPs:
- Assassin's Creed III – Ubisoft's popular stealth-killing series makes a move to be closer to the present day in this 1753–83 tale set against the backdrop of the Revolutionary War. A vast frontier, plus explorable versions of New York and Boston, will be your hunting grounds for your human prey. As half-Indian Templar Connor Kenway, you'll come face-to-face with the important people of the era like George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson. Combat-wise, you'll now be able to wield two weapons at once and do hunting while out in the wilds of Colonial America. As for background realism, did somebody say "snowmen?" There's also a limited edition with a statue, belt buckle, and other goodies, but it'll set you back $120. (available at launch; Rated M)
- LEGO City: Undercover – The inaugural outing of the LEGO games on the Wii U is doing something unusual—it's not based on a license of a movie or book. Instead, it's based on the LEGO City set of building kits, and you'll play as detective Chase McCain and fight crime brought on the city by the evil Rex Fury. The Wii GamePad is used in areas like scanning and getting critical information updates. While the game borrows a bit from Grand Theft Auto's gameplay, you're still always squarely on the side of justice and the game is kid-friendly. Adding to the fun are more than 100 vehicles (both on the road and in the sky), numerous disguises that grant skills and access to areas otherwise off-limits, and the ability to take loose LEGO bricks to make useful objects. (available from Nintendo by Christmas; Rated E)
- Just Dance 4 – This series is following a mantra of "if it ain't broke, don't fix it." The gameplay will be mostly as it has been since the original, with the overriding goal being to copy what you see the dancers on-screen doing. The Wii U gets an exclusive "Puppet Master" mode where you use the controller screen to make choreography on the fly for a friend to dance to. The 40+ songs available range from the still hot (Carly Rae Jepsen's "Call Me Maybe"), the fairly recent (Rihanna's "Umbrella"), and timeless classics (Stevie Wonder's "Superstition"), and will have up to six missions each in a quest mode to get unlockables. (available from Ubisoft at launch; Rated E)
- Madden NFL 13 – Football season will be half over by the time this game comes out, but that's not likely to put off fans of the series from picking up this year's iteration. As usual, the game has found an area desperately in need of upgrading and patched it up. Passing has been made a bit easier, but on the same token those cheap 'money plays' are also greatly nerfed. And AI-controlled defensive backs who seemed to know where the ball was going even if they weren't looking at it are gone. The game has gotten very positive reviews on the systems it's already out for, so look for more of the same here. (available from EA Sports at launch; Rated E)
- ZombiU – Another new system, another new zombie apocalypse game. This one is set in London amid the ravages of a plague that has zombified much of the populace. The huge difference is that this is built to take advantage of the screen on the Wii U's controller, allowing access to many functions in a way that will make them seem more real. If you're faced with a keypad to enter a combination into, you won't move a virtual finger on your TV screen; you'll have the keypad on the controller and press buttons on its screen with your actual fingers. Another great feature is that at death, you'll restart as a new person and hunt your old, now a zombie, character in effort to regain your inventory—and if friends are online, they can join in the hunt, too! (available from Ubisoft at launch; rating pending)
Jeff is currently playing Silent Hill: Downpour; follow him on Twitter at JKLugar