It's the Virtual Console for the win this week in Wii downloadables, as Sega's classic RPG Phantasy Star IV easily tops anything WiiWare can dish out, even if one of them does contain tower monkeys.
The Tower Monkeys arrive courtesy of Tiki Towers from RealArcade (500 points), which involves building perfectly good towers and then letting monkeys loose on them, hoping use them to achieve level goals rather than just knock the damn things over. If you're curious, but not $5 curious, the game is available on the iPhone for $.99. Also on WiiWare this week is Fun! Fun! Minigolf from Shin'en Multimedia (900 points). It's 27 holes of minigolf spread across three continents, which is nice, but it feels the need to say fun twice in the title, which worries me.
This week's no-brainer is Phantasy Star IV for the Genesis (800 points) on the virtual console. The fourth game in Sega's classic RPG series introduced combat macros, combo attacks, and was really the first Phantasy Star to offer in-depth character development, making it the Final Fantasy IV of Phantasy Star.
As lovely as Tiki Towers seems, this week definitely goes to the Virtual Console.
WII-KLY UPDATE: TWO WIIWARE GAMES AND ONE VIRTUAL CONSOLE GAME ADDED TO WII SHOP CHANNEL
Dec. 22, 2008 - Did you think Grandma's house was the only travel destination on your itinerary this holiday season? Think again. Thanks to the Wii™ Shop Channel, you've got some extraordinary places to see, from tropical islands and exotic golf courses to a faraway planet in need of triumphant heroes. Whether you play solo or with family and friends, these awesome new offerings are sure to deliver an extra dose of holiday cheer.
Nintendo adds new and classic games to the Wii Shop Channel at 9 a.m. Pacific time every Monday. Wii owners with a high-speed Internet connection can redeem Wii Points™ to download the games. Wii Points can be purchased in the Wii Shop Channel or at retail outlets. This week's new games are:
Tiki Towers™ (RealArcade, 1 -2 players, Rated E for Everyone-Comic Mischief, 500 Wii Points): Tiki Towers is a game of construction, destruction, problem-solving and monkeys. Reclaim the islands of your tribe by defeating a series of evil enemy chiefs. Work with your monkey friends to build towers out of bamboo poles, coconuts and vines. Match wits against the enemy chiefs bent on destroying your towers and driving you from the islands. Navigate levels filled with crazy building challenges, and deal with unfriendly wildlife and other environmental obstacles. Get your monkeys to chant for the BananaMana necessary to counter enemy attacks. Play in either single-player or two-player cooperative mode in this game where monkeys rule.
Fun! Fun! Minigolf (Shin'en Multimedia, 1-4 players, Rated E for Everyone, 900 Wii Points): Play minigolf with your friends in beautiful environments. Choose a character and turn your Wii Remote™ controller into a golf club. With its easy-to-use controls, all you need to do is aim, swing and see who's the best putter. Play 27 holes spread across America, Asia and Europe. Enjoy exotic locations all over the world. Go for gold in single-player mode, or invite your friends. Fun! Fun! Minigolf supports up to four players. You can use one to four Wii Remote controllers. Fun! Fun! Minigolf is the ultimate party game for everyone.
Phantasy Star™ IV (SEGA GENESIS, 1 player, Rated E for Everyone-Fantasy Violence, Mild Sexual Themes, 800 Wii Points): Phantasy Star IV is the fourth released game from SEGA's epic Phantasy Star series, one of SEGA's biggest RPGs on the SEGA GENESIS. In the year AW 2284, planet Motavia is once again plagued by strange biocreatures, and it's up to the brave men and women of the Hunters Guild to exterminate them. You are Chaz Ashley, a rookie Hunter straight out of training who is supported by Alys Brangwin-a crafty veteran whose good looks and prowess with the blade have earned her an awesome reputation. These two Hunters, along with a cast of supporting characters, will go beyond Motavia to unwittingly save their entire solar system.
For more information about Wii, please visit wii.com.