Posted on Friday, November 2 @ 15:00:00 Eastern by Nicholas Tan
Wii U Games for Families and Kids
It's not entirely necessary to split the Wii U's numerous launch titles between casual and hardcore offerings, since there are plenty of parents who are on the lookout for both, but we figure that this separation is worth it. Not all of us are interested in the Wii U as a family center meant to distract children or participate with them, or as a next-gen powerhouse capable of becoming the focal point of our living room.
That said, the Wii U is no slouch when it comes to family-friendly titles which the Xbox 360 and the PS3 generally lack. Here is a list of our recommendations that will be available on launch day.
No. of Players: Up to 5 players
ESRB Rating: E10
If you aren't already getting Nintendo Land as a part of the Deluxe Set, then you should consider purchasing the title, if just for the fact that it's primarily meant to be Nintendo's hallmark demo highlighting the touted features of the Wii U. Like Wii Sports before it, Nintendo Land is essentially a tech demo in the guise of a theme park, but it does highlight the asynchronous multiplayer with the GamePad and four other players.
Each of the twelve attractions is based around a Nintendo franchise, like Metroid Blast and Pikmin Adventure, so it's an appetizer to what Nintendo might offer on the Wii U in the future. It's also a nice icebreaker into the console if you have friends over who are clueless about what this newfangled doohickey does. Otherwise, it's probably not going to see a lot of playtime once you're done experiencing all of the attractions.
New Super Mario Bros. U
No. of Players: Up to 5 Players
ESRB Rating: E
The next obvious choice for a family-friendly title is New Super Mario Bros. U, which isn't as irritating in multiplayer as its previous incarnation on the Wii. Here you can play the Nintendo mascots Mario, Luigi, Toad, and in neat twist, your Mii. Players can turn into Flying Squirrel mario and ride Balloon Baby Yoshi. The player using the GamePad can stun foes and help create platforms for the other four players to reach secret coins. Of course, I just use platforms to make people hit their head and send them into the endless pit, because I'm a prick who shouldn't be allowed near godlike power.
Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment
Developer: 5th Cell
No. of Players: Up to 4 Players
ESRB Rating: E10
To be fair, Scribblenauts Unlimited could belong on either list of recommendations. It has charm, colorful graphics, and a knack for asking players to think outside of the box to solve puzzles with only their imagination. This time around, players can summon Nintendo characters and items as well, so that I can make a Goron ride a Yoshi on a battletank with Princess Peach inside. Hey, I can do whatever I want. There are no wrong answers!
Disney Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two
Publisher: Disney Interactive
Developer: Junction Point
No. of Players: 2 Players, Cooperatively
ESRB Rating: E
As far as I'm concerned, Mickey is timeless. Who has the heart to hate him? In this sequel to the first Epic Mickey, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit joins Mickey as partners to control the powers of paint and electricity to explore a world full of practically forgotten Disney characters. The drop-in, drop-out 2-player cooperative play will help players revisit Disney's past and listen to Disney-inspired songs like a genuine movie. The GamePad does little more than function as a map, but it looks to be a great adventure for both kids and parents who have grown up with Disney.
Developer: Ubisoft Paris Studios
No. of Players: TBD
ESRB Rating: RP
Crazy, demented rabbits take over an amusement park—that must have been the pitch. Ubisoft has no idea why the Rabbids decided to do this, but who cares? It's an excuse to play lots of mini-games and hear them respond with bwwwwaaaaa. Like Mario Party, it is designed after a board game with events where players get to use the Wii U in different ways and, on occasion, shouting at each other like crazy people. Just what a good party is all about... for kids, of course... for kids.
Next: Games for Hardcore Gamers