Wii Classics Coming to Wii U eShop. Wii Digital Releases of Metroid Prime Trilogy, Punch-Out, DK & Super Mario Galaxy 2

Wii U versions of Metroid Prime Trilogy, Super Mario Galaxy 2 worldwide, as well as Punch-Out Wii in the USA or Donkey Kong Country Returns in Europe are headed to the eShop throughout the month of January, as digital versions of Wii Classics finally come to the Wii U.

Here’s an awesome Metroid series retrospective video (since we’re talking Metroid Prime Trilogy….) from Metroid: Other M. Take a look…

Each game will be priced at $10 / €10 / £9 during the week of its debut, with a normal price of $20 / €20 / £18 thereafter.

As revealed in the latest Nintendo Direct episode, Nintendo President Satoru Iwata said that the Wii U’s backwards compatibility with the Wii, where you could only play Wii disc titles by going into Wii Mode first, was the culprit for why it took so long to bring digital Wii classics to the system via the eShop.

Here’s a trailer for Super Mario Galaxy 2.

However Nintendo has finally figured things out, and more Wii Classics will come to the Wii U eShop in the coming months at regular intervals from here on out.

With these new digital versions, you can now launch & play Wii Classics directly from the Wii U Menu, instead of having to switch over to Wii Mode. Additionally, any Wii game that supported the Classic Controller on the Wii, can now be played using the Wii U GamePad instead, if you prefer.

A Wii U system update will also apparently be coming, which will allow you to launch Wii games you own on disc without switching to Wii Mode. A nice gesture.

Wii Classics Wii U eShop Schedule Release Dates January 2015

Super Mario Galaxy 2 (2010) is the first Wii Classic to be available on the Wii U eShop in digital form, it came out on January 14th, 2015 right after the Nintendo Direct presentation.

Punch-Out!! (2009), the Wii reboot version, was the second title in the Wii Classic series and was digitally re-released on the Wii U eShop on January 22, 2015, while Europe got Donkey Kong Country Returns.

Next up is Metroid Prime Trilogy (2009)! The beloved, and hard-to-find, compilation of all three Metroid Prime games, will be released on January 29, 2015!

Metroid Prime Trilogy will be an interesting case-study to see whether or not Nintendo updates these games in any form for play on the Wii U… therefore fixing one of the longterm issues with Metroid Prime Trilogy on the Wii.

Here’s a trailer for Punch-Out Wii:

Potential problem with Metroid Prime Trilogy 100% completion on Wii U:

The problem with Metroid Prime Trilogy on the Wii was due to the fact that the game had you unlock extras by earning in-game Achievements called “Credits” (a system that was carried over from the Wii’s Metroid Prime 3, and applied to the compilations updated versions of Metroid Prime & Metroid Prime 2, along with updated Wii Remote & Nunchuck controls).

Beating bosses and making your way through the game would earn you different colored “Credits”, these credits could then be spent on unlockable Extras, such as a “Screenshot Tool” that allowed you to take a pic of the screen by pressing Up on the D-Pad, that you could then message to friends whom you had exchanged “Friend Codes” with, after uploading the screenshot to your “Message Board” in the Wii’s Main Menu. As well as other features like artwork, Samus’ Metroid Fusion Suit, and more.

The problem with this system came by way of “Friend Vouchers” which could be exchanged for green-colored “Friend Credits” (or rather, you send a friend a “Friend Voucher” and if they send you one back, it turned into a “Friend Credit”).

A Friend Voucher was earned by adding friends to your Metroid Prime Trilogy game, in the same way you would exchange Friend Codes to add someone to your Friends List on the Wii (a convoluted and ridiculous process). This was the ONLY way to earn said Green Credits… credits which were essential to unlock all the Extras in Metroid Prime Trilogy.

Metroid Prime Trilogy Wii Friend Voucher Credit Locked Extras Screenshot
Friend Vouchers? FOR SHAME!

To unlock everything, you had to have earned 15 Friend Credits total, which would unlock the following Extras:

* Screenshot Tool
* Mii Bobble Head In Metroid Prime 3 for Samus’ Gunship
* Bumper Stickers for Samus’ Gunship (Metroid Prime 3)
* 6 Diorama Models
* 3 Concept Galleries

Naturally, this confusing process was lost on most people, and then became impossible once Nintendo shutdown the Wii’s online support on June 28, 2013; when WiiConnect24 officially ended.

This has been a problem for Metroid Prime Trilogy & Metroid Prime 3 owners ever since, as it is impossible to earn the Green Credits any other way legitimately (unless you download a fan-made save file & figure out how to use it on your Wii, or use a cheat device).

Here’s a trailer for Metroid Prime Trilogy.

Now Nintendo has the chance to finally remedy this sad & pathetic hitch in the otherwise stellar Metroid Prime Trilogy title by re-activating the ability to exchange Friend Vouchers & Friend Credits with your entire Wii U Friends List or via MiiVerse.

Or, even better, if Nintendo simply does away with them altogether and updates the game so you can unlock each of the Extras that used to require the Green Credits without having to earn the Green Credits themselves (while still having to earn the rest of the credits through normal play).

One would imagine that they will also update it to make the Screenshot Tool compatible with MiiVerse, so you can simply take a screenshot of the game and share it with friends online….

However whether or not Nintendo will go through the trouble of updating Metroid Prime Trilogy’s Wii U version with these fixes remains to be seen. If they don’t, it will be a HUGE missed opportunity.

Hopefully Nintendo will rectify the situation to remedy this crime; as Metroid Prime Trilogy is an AMAZING game, and all of it’s content deserves to be seen by everyone who plays it.

And while they’re at it, hopefully they include the extremely rare DLC, “Doc Louis’s Punch-Out”, for Punch-Out Wii that was only obtainable via Club Nintendo (and allowed you to play as Doc Louis)! It should be included free-of-charge with this new Wii U digital re-release.

Doc Louis Punch Out Wii DLC Artwork Official Club Nintendo

I am extremely happy to see that one of my favorite games of all time, Metroid Prime Trilogy, is getting a re-release!

I have pumped more hours into Metroid Prime Trilogy than any other game in my Wii library; and it is one of my favorite games of all time & a go-to that I play & replay often. In fact, I have each game beaten on every difficulty outside of Prime 2 Echoes on Very Hard, and Prime 3 on Hypermode (which I was working on; but stopped a while back. I need to get back to it). And I have played through all three Prime games a million and one times on the Wii, just for fun.

Once you play them with the Wii’s “look anywhere” controls, it is hard to go back to the GameCube versions where you could only look around the room by standing still.

Metroid Prime Trilogy is also rare & hard to find. A Wii game that Nintendo made few copies of, so a hardcopy of Metroid Prime Trilogy can go for around $100 bucks on ebay (although you can now find them for cheaper, around $50).

Thankfully fans will now be able to pick up the amazing compilation of GameCube’s 2002 Metroid Prime & 2004’s Metroid Prime 2: Echoes, and the Wii’s 2007 Metroid Prime 3: Corruption; in one nifty package for a very reasonable price. A win-win.

I look forward to seeing what other Wii games come to the Wii U eShop in the future; hopefully THQ’s criminally underplayed “Deadly Creatures” (an Action Adventure where you play AS a Scorpion & a Tarantula) & Capcom’s Resident Evil 4: Wii Edition, both games of which I reviewed for VGB, are coming soon.

Which Wii Classic are you most excited about? Metroid Prime Trilogy, Super Mario Galaxy 2 or Punch-Out?

Here’s the Metroid Prime Trilogy, Wii Classics on Wii U image gallery.
Click on any of these image thumbnails to see the full-size photos: