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Wii Virtual Console News and Releases for 9/1/2008

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There are few games that have been more wanted on the Virtual Console than Super Mario RPG. In fact, only fellow Nintendo RPGs Mother and Mother 2/Earthbound are constantly mentioned more often than Squaresoft’s classic Super Nintendo title. Finally, though, the wait is over in North America, as Super Mario RPG hit the Virtual Console on the service’s Labor Day update. Joining it this week are a new WiiWare title from Hudson and another classic Nintendo game, this one from the NES era.

This week’s games are:

WiiWare

My Aquarium (Hudson Entertainment, 1 player, Rated E for Everyone, 500 Wii Points): With swaying aquatic plants and fish idly swimming about, My Aquariumis a relaxing Wii experience that allows you to enjoy a virtual aquarium in your spare time. Whether freshwater or saltwater, you can select from over 40 popular types of fish, including favorites like the Ocellaris clownfish, the freshwater angelfish and the Asian arowana. You can also create up to six different aquariums and personalize them by adding decorations like seaweed and driftwood. In My Aquarium, you can send aquariums to your registered Wii Friends. The aquariums can even be set with special dates, such as a friend’s birthday, that the fish will commemorate with a dance. Feed your fish and watch them steadily grow from fry to adult. Then, after meeting certain conditions, you can breed them. Another feature will allow you to interact with your fish using your Wii Remote controller in fun ways, like “tapping” the glass of your aquarium.

Virtual Console

Clu Clu Land (NES, 1-2 players, Rated E for Everyone, 500 Wii Points): Take a deep breath and prepare for a puzzle game set in the underwater kingdom of Clu Clu Land. The greedy Sea Urchins have stolen all of Clu Clu Land’s gold bars and buried them in a series of mazes. As Bubbles, a brave bubble fish, you’ll set out to uncover all of the gold bars in each maze. But you’ll have to be careful: Sea Urchins will relentlessly pursue Bubbles, and there are also dangerous black holes that must be avoided. Bubbles isn’t defenseless, though, as she has the ability to stun Sea Urchins with sound waves and quickly change direction using posts scattered throughout the stages. Not only that, but the locations of the gold bars in each maze form the outline of another object—once you know the object, you’re well on your way to finding the gold. With 20 stages to complete and increasingly complex conditions (like having to pass over the gold bars twice to uncover them), you might just want to bring along a friend for help.

Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars (Super NES, 1 player, Rated E for Everyone, 800 Wii Points): Set in the Mushroom Kingdom and featuring its cast of well-known characters, this adventure RPG begins with a familiar scenario: Mario must rescue Princess Toadstool from Bowser. However, a mysterious new enemy named Smithy soon appears, and Mario and Bowser are forced to fight as allies for the first time in their long history. In the quest to defeat their powerful new foe, they’ll journey across a wide variety of locations (a town of mining moles, a tropical forest, a thundering waterfall—just to name a few) and tackle a mix of obstacles requiring both expert timing and strategy to overcome. Along the way, they’ll gain experience and grow more powerful, while also meeting new characters whose unique abilities will be needed to take on Smithy and his gang. Striking a perfect balance of traditional RPG elements and the action-packed game play Mario is famous for, it’s easy to see why this title has earned “legendary” status.

Super Mario RPG came out in June on the Japanese Virtual Console and last month on the European Virtual Console. Clu Clu Land, surprisingly, is debuting first on the North American Virtual Console. Those games, along My Aquarium, are currently available for download off the Wii Shop Channel.

Check back next week for the latest round of releases for the Wii. Until then, happy gaming!

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