Nintendo downloads this week: Three new WiiWare games invite you to play cards with friends, dodge intergalactic obstacles and compete in wild grocery cart races. A new Virtual Console release even challenges players to partake in some heated high school hijinks. On Nintendo DSiWare, you’ll find a portable platformer in Oscar in Toyland and creative art activities. And be sure to check out the renewed Nintendo Channel, which from now on will host the Nintendo Week video features series.
Nintendo has now added these new/classic games to the Wii Shop Channel and Nintendo DSi Shop. The games go live at 9AM Pacific time. Users with a high-speed Internet connection can redeem Wii Points or Nintendo DSi Points to download the games. Wii Points can be purchased in the Wii Shop Channel. Nintendo DSi Points can be purchased in the Nintendo DSi Shop. A Nintendo Points Card can be purchased at retail locations or Amazon (see Card on the right).
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Where available, we’ve included videos of each of today’s games. Either for nostalgia’s sake or so you can see if any new game is to your taste.
This week’s new WiiWare games are:
Publisher: Virtual Toys
ESRB Rating: E (Everyone) – Mild Fantasy Violence
Price: 800 Wii Points = $8
Description: This is a puzzle game in which players are shown a geometric shape that they must recreate on a grid within a time limit. Players must complete the puzzles as large objects appear and fly around the screen to cause visual distractions. In some levels, players can earn bonus points by shooting down UFOs or robotic heads, resulting in brief explosions.
Texas Hold’Em Poker
ESRB Rating: T (Teen) – Simulated Gambling
Price: 600 Wii Points = $6
Description: Prepare to experience the intensity of a real Texas hold’em poker tournament. Whether you’re a poker novice or a veteran, you’ll enjoy Tournament, Cash Game and Heads-up modes with the simple-to-use Wii Remote™ controller. Hit the tables as one of six fun and charismatic characters, or import your own Mii character to really put on your poker face. Take on the world’s most prestigious casinos, from Monaco to New York, and challenge opponents who won’t hesitate to taunt or comment on your style, creating a very realistic poker atmosphere. You can also impress friends with wild poker parties, thanks to an online mode that allows you to play with up to five friends and create your own tournaments or join official Gameloft tournaments. You can even challenge random online opponents of any skill level. Even if you’ve never played poker before, you can learn all the rules and strategy with an Advanced Tutorial that teaches you everything from winning hands and betting to bluffing. Broadband Internet access required for online play.
Publisher: JoJu Games
ESRB Rating: E (Everyone) – Alcohol Reference, Comic Mischief
Price: 800 Wii Points = $8
Description: You’re a sharp-elbowed shopper racing through the store to find items before your rivals do. Use your Wii Remote controller like a handlebar to control your shopping cart as you race through different types of stores. Vex your competitors by stunning them with plungers and stealing groceries out of their carts. Outrun them by using your drifting and aisle-jumping skills. Keep away from the security guards who want to stop the mall melee. The first player with a completed shopping list at the cash register wins. A simple and fun game that’s suitable for all ages, Mart Racer pits you against the computer or up to four players. Play with your friends and family on a split screen or compete online via Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection.
This week’s new DSiWare games are:
Oscar in Toyland
Publisher: Virtual Playground
ESRB Rating: E (Everyone) – Comic Mischief
Price: 800 Nintendo DSi Points = $8
Description: This is a platformer game in which players run and jump through colorful levels filled with teddy bears, balloons, candy, and toy trains. Players must find and collect hidden dolls throughout each level while avoiding enemy creatures. Players can sling a large yo-yo at elephants, tiny clowns, and jumping desk lamps, causing them to turn black and fall off the screen.
Art Academy: First Semester
ESRB Rating: E (Everyone)
Price: 800 Nintendo DSi Points = $8
Description: Art Academy is a portable art course that replaces the lecture-like structure of art school and the trial-and-error of working on canvas. Art Academy: First Semester can guide you through the basics of pencil and paints, using Nintendo DSi controls to draw like the real things. With your own paintbrush set and color palette, you’ll learn texturing and blending techniques, plus ways to depict light and shade. There’s also Free Paint mode, which allows you to select and draw from photos in your Nintendo DSi Camera Album. In just a few lessons, you’ll be discovering your inner artist and creating your own masterpieces with art skills that you can apply with real-life materials.
This week’s new Virtual Console game is:
Crash ‘N The Boys Street Challenge
Original platform: NES
Publisher: Aksys Games
ESRB Rating: E (Everyone) – Cartoon Violence
Price: 500 Wii Points = $5
Description: Todd Thornley, son of the head of Thornley Industries, has had it with Crash and the Southside boys. With help from other high schools, Todd decides Hiller High will take down Crash and his Southside High cronies in an unsanctioned street challenge. Take control of one of four high school teams (with four playable characters per team) and make your way through five different sporting events. Dash and bash through the 400 meter hurdles; swing to victory in the hammer throw; swim and knock out your opponent while swimming; pole vault, jump and ride a unicycle across rooftops; and use judo to fight your opponent in a one-on-one brawl. Can you lead your high school to the top of the Street Challenge?
Top 20 WiiWare games as of September 11:
1 [N] – Contra Rebirth
2  – Reel Fishing Challenge
3  – My Aquarium
4  – Tales of Monkey Island: Chapter 2
5  – World of Goo
6  – Tetris Party
7  – Final Fantasy IV: The After Years
8  – My Pokémon Ranch
9  – Texas Hold’em Tournament
10  – Sexy Poker
11  – Family Slot Car Racing
12  – Dr Mario Online Rx
13  – Tales of Monkey Island: Chapter 1
14  – Family Mini Golf
15  – Defend Your Castle
16  – NyxQuest: Kindred Spirits
17  – Brain Challenge
18  – Water Warfare
19  – BUST-A-MOVE Plus!
20  – Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: My life as a Darklord
Top 20 DSiWare games as of September 11:
1  – Flipnote Studio
2  – Nintendo DSi Browser
3  – Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Minis March Again
4  – Guitar Rock Tour
5  – Paper Airplane Chase
6  – Asphalt 4: Elite Racing
7  – Pop+ Solo
8  – Puzzle League Express
9  – Bird & Beans
10  – WarioWare: Snapped!
11  – Dr. Mario Express
12  – Master of Illusion Express: Deep Psyche
13  – Mario Calculator
14  – Mario Clock
15  – Sudoku Student
16  – Art Style: BOXLIFE
17  – Photo Clock
18  – Art Style: precipice
19 [N] – Clubhouse Games Express: Family Favorites
20 [-] – Master of Illusion Express: Funny Face
* [N] – Denotes a brand new entry in the Top 20
* [-] – Denotes a game that was not on the Top 20 last week