games offer unlockables like full-length versions of micro-games and bonus game modes, adding value to the gaming experience.
The Pyoro mini-games in
WarioWare: Smooth Moves!
provide unique gameplay with touchscreen controls and motion controls, respectively.
Mini-games like Mewtroid in
and Balloon Trip in
WarioWare: Smooth Moves!
offer quirky and addictive gameplay experiences with a refreshing twist.
There are many aspects of the WarioWare series that deserve much praise. It has an all-star cast of quirky characters, invigorating bite-sized micro-games spread across numerous acclaimed titles, wacky humor, and… Wario, of course! On top of these things, there are the unlockables.
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The best unlockables are usually full-length versions of certain micro-games, though there are also some really nifty bonus game modes and the like. Some are simply unlocked at random, while others appear with certain objectives in mind, like completing certain stages or unlocking every micro-game. Whatever the requirements may be, these are all worth acquiring in these select entries in the series.
1 Dr. Wario (WarioWare: Mega Microgame$!)
A clone of the classic puzzle title Dr. Mario.
This one is, admittedly, a cheeky inclusion, as ‘Dr. Wario’ is a literal port of the classic Tetris-clone Dr. Mario for the NES. There are a few key differences here in this version that is present in WarioWare: Mega Microgame$! It features Wario instead, has a new theme song that isn’t as catchy or memorable as the original, and there is no two-player. Plus, the only song that can be chosen during gameplay is ‘Chill’.
Even with those last two things in mind, it’s Dr. Mario on a portable system packed inside one of the best games for the Game Boy Advance, and the soundtrack has been remixed with the game’s more modern sound front. What’s not to like? The tactical gameplay of this puzzle game is great as it is.
2 Pyoro T (WarioWare: Touched!)
This installation of Pyoro has players pulling on his tail to nab beans, which is a great use of the touch screen.
Pyoro has made frequent reappearances in the WarioWare series, often with new twists to his tongue-stretching, bean-gobbling gameplay. The core objectives tend to remain the same, however: grab as much food and try to survive as long as possible.
Naturally, unlocking every micro-game will reward the player with ‘Pyoro T’, which has a twist of its own here in WarioWare: Touched! Stretching the tail of Pyoro and dragging it around will aim his beak, which will stretch when let go. This must be done to defeat enemies and collect items. The main goal is to protect four flowers. Once they wilt, it’s game over. It’s a great use of the DS’ touch screen, and beating the high scores is always entertaining.
3 Pyoro S (WarioWare: Smooth Moves!)
Motion controls meet challenging side-scrolling action in this iteration.
Pyoro’s new mini-game is available for any player who unlocks all the micro-games in WarioWare: Smooth Moves. Compared to previous entries, this version is totally different and unique, and one could argue it is the best iteration of the bunch.
7 Games With Shrunken Down Heroes
These games utilize miniature heroes as their intrepid protagonists.
Motion controls are used to steer the titular bird in ‘Pyoro S’. This time, he’s stretching his beak to defeat enemies in the sky while collecting special items to turn him invincible, increase his attack power, etc. The inclusion of boss battles is an exciting inclusion, and the likely remixed version of his theme song is a joy for the ears.
4 Mewtroid (WarioWare: Twisted!)
Rolling a cat around to shoot incoming enemies is hilarious and addictive.
First introduced in WarioWare: Twisted, ‘Mewtroid’ is an obvious pun on Metroid and even uses the Brinistar theme. As for the mini-game itself, the player must steer the console left and right to roll a cat around on the carpet in order to aim a blaster attached to one of its paws and shoot down incoming enemies.
It’s a quirky concept and a refreshing change from what could’ve been a standard shoot-’em-up. Enemies bounce, drop projectiles, and may home in on the poor kitty, so using motion controls to roll away from danger always feels rewarding. When the screen gets invaded by baddies galore, it becomes quite a rush.
5 Mirrored Shuffle (WarioWare: D.I.Y.)
All micro-games are mirrored in this mode, adding a new layer of challenge.
Since every micro-game in WarioWare: D.I.Y. was made within its innovative micro-game creation kit, it’s only understandable that there would be engine limitations on what else the developers could work on here. However, they did include a nifty challenge to try out: ‘Mirrored Shuffle’.
This mode tosses in all the micro-games from Diamond Software, as well as those in the player’s own store. The big change here is that, as the name implies, the screen is mirrored! The on-screen objectives are also flipped around, making them difficult to read at short notice, though that just makes it all the more entertaining. It’s a clever idea, tossing a wrench in the gears for players who may have memorized the positions and correct answers for each and every micro-game.
6 Pumpkin Panic (WarioWare Gold)
Ashley blasts pumpkins and monsters in a simple but enjoyable top-down shooter.
Evil mandrakes are growing out of the ground at an alarming rate, and Ashley, the teen witch, needs to blast them with her wand to turn them into pumpkins in ‘Pumpkin Panic’, a mode exclusive to WarioWare Gold. Racking up combos with a single shot that transforms multiple bad guys before booting them all down in a chain is oodles of fun.
7 Video Game Grinches
While the games in which they feature may not be particularly festive, these iconic video game grinches could still use a little bit of goodwill.
The boss battles add a bit more spice to it, too, and they can offer some nifty rewards. For each large mandrake defeated, a new image of Ashley is unlocked in the gallery. It’s a great incentive for anyone who wants to see her in all sorts of spooky and silly outfits.
7 Mewtroid 2: Return of Sameow (WarioWare Gold)
The sequel has players tilting the spaceship so the alien-zapping cat can aim!
‘Mewtroid 2’ has the player turning the console left and right in order to shift the entire spaceship that the heroic feline is in since the cat is hanging from above via its tail. Such a simple change mixes things up considerably here.
Alongside this, enemies are now crawling from the bottom screen up to the top, sometimes led by a jumbo turtle. It gives the opportunity for satisfying combos and bigger point payouts, which is always lovely. The blaster’s range is limited, though this only adds to the challenge and fun factor in this dopey sequel. Plus, it’s separated by two screens, with the one on the bottom showing where enemies are coming from. As a side note, it even plays a cover of the Brinistar theme from Metroid, albeit with cat mews. Brilliant.
8 Balloon Trip (WarioWare: Smooth Moves!)
A 3D remake of the titular game mode from Balloon Fight, new layers of challenge are added to this survival mini-game.
‘Balloon Trip’ is a full-length survival mini-game based on the game mode of the same name from Balloon Fight, which can be unlocked in WarioWare: Smooth Moves. Hazards galore are present, including fish, electrical bolts, and rivals on balloons (the latter of which can have their balloons burst to defeat them!).
All one needs is to utilize the Wii’s motion controls by flapping either or both arms. It controls really well, and there’s a vast amount of space to steer the red-and-blue chap from danger. What seals the deal is the vibrant visuals paired up with the modernized cover of the ‘Balloon Trip’ tune, complete with keyboards and electric guitar riffs.
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