Monday, November 9, 2009

The LoadDown - 11/09/2009

Roundin' up recent downloadable releases for Wii, DSi and XBox 360... lots of content again this week, the holiday season must be approaching!

WiiWare -- Three games this week.  Most notable in my book is Nintendo's own Excitebike: World Rally, updating the NES motorbike racing classic for 3-D, retaining the 2-D perspective (unlike Excitebike 64) with online racing and Track Editor sharing.  Also out are Frogger Returns from Konami, apparently a port of the Playstation-era update of the classic coin-op, and Dragon Master Spell Caster from Stickmen Studios, no relation to the dragon battle game released for the DSi last week. 

Virtual Console -- Two games, neither particularly exciting.  Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap for the Sega Master System, previously seen on the Virtual Console in its better-looking TurboGrafx-16 incarnation Dragon's Curse.  And Cybernoid, a classic, very challenging platformer/shooter for the Commodore 64 (it was also ported to the NES.)  So far many of the C-64 releases on the Virtual Console have been games already released on those TV plug-and-play C-64 units; I keep hoping for more variety, but Cybernoid is a worthy game.

DSiWare -- A nice selection of releases this week.  First, Hudson brings us Bomberman Blitz, putting the frenetic, explosive classic series onto the DSi with support for up to 8 local or online multiplayers.  Plus, the Electroplankton collection debuts with 5 inexpensive titles: Electroplankton Trapy, Electroplankton Hanenbow, Electroplankton Rec-Rec, Electroplankton Nanocarp, and Electroplankton Beatnes.  These aren't so much games as electronic toys, well-suited to the DSi's capabilities -- they are sound-generating, sometimes sound-driven, interactive simulations with personality.  Retro gaming fans may find Electroplankton Beatnes interesting, as it generates simple waveforms emulating the NES sound chip.

XBLA -- At long last, the remaining three Wallace & Gromit episodes from Telltale Games have arrived - in one fell swoop!  But they're not being sold as a package a la Sam & Max -- each game remains at the original 800-point cost established for Fright of the Bumblebees several months ago.  I will definitely be buying these, but I will likely pick them up one at a time so as to savor each chapter (and have a shot at earning all the achievements.)

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