14th September, 2007- Wii’s Virtual Console has provided a portal into the past since the console’s launch, allowing millions of Wii owners to experience some of the greatest classic titles from yesteryear. Now for the first time ever, European Wii owners will be able to broaden their horizons as a selection of great titles never before released in PAL territories become available to download from the Wii Shop Channel. If you’ve always wanted to discover some of the titles released in Japan or America, now is the perfect time!
Named after the Japanese holiday season famous for its firework displays, the‘Hanabi Festival’ on Wii’s Virtual Console will see the release of a selection of classic titles split over three themed weeks, starting from today. To celebrate the launch of Super Mario Bros. in Japan on 13th September 1985, the first week of the Hanabi Festival on Wii’s Virtual Console will be Mario Week and will feature the classic Super Mario Bros.™: The Lost Levels™ and puzzler Mario’s Super Picross™. On top of these great Mario titles, Mario will also be taken to the next dimension as he folds effortlessly from 2D to 3D in Super Paper Mario only on Wii, which is also available in shops across Europe from today.
Over the following two weeks of the Hanabi Festival, Virtual Console fans will get to experience a host of special classics including the US versions of Nintendo Entertainment System action–platformer Ninja Gaiden™ and space shoot‘em up Gradius III™ (Super Nintendo Entertainment System), as well as discovering Japanese-exclusive titles like Ninja JaJaMaru-Kun (Nintendo Entertainment System) and the cult Nintendo 64 blaster Sin And Punishment.
The first of this week’s retro treats is the 1986 sequel to the best-selling game of all time. Super Mario Bros.™: The Lost Levels™ was originally only available for the Famicom Disk System in Japan and expands on the original with all-new level designs, trickier enemies and obstacles, and secret worlds to explore. For the Mario purist this is the ultimate gaming treat, but make sure you hurry; this title will be a collector’s item and will only be available for download until the last day of the event on 30th September (all other Hanabi Festival titles will remain available after the event). Super Mario Bros.™: The Lost Levels™ is available now for 600 Wii Points.
Joining this great game will be 1995 Super Nintendo puzzle title Mario’s Super Picross™. This classic picture crossword game, previously available only in Japan, features hundreds of challenging yet relaxing puzzles. Each puzzle features a grid of tiles that reveal a picture when filled correctly. Like Picross DS, Mario’s Super Picross™ includes a save function allowing players to return to puzzles later and a selection of changeable background melodies. Mario’s Super Picross™ is available now for 900 Wii Points.
Also, separate to the Hanabi Festival, comes the latest Turbografx release: action-adventure Neutopia II. In the first Neutopia title (also available on Virtual Console) the heroic Jazeta destroyed Dirth the emperor of darkness. Many years later, the shadow of darkness is spreading across the land and Jazeta must once again take up his arms to save his father and defeat Dirth once again. Neutopia II is available now for 600 Wii Points.
With the addition of new games never seen before in Europe, Virtual Console offers users the ultimate retro gaming experience. They join the list of 135 classic titles already available for Virtual Console in Europe.