The 15 Best Wii Exclusives of All Time

A Look at the Best Games Released Only For the Wii

Some games can be played on everything from the PS3 to the DS, but other games come out only on one platform. Wii exclusives are especially notable, because without having to worry about making a game that works on multiple platforms, game designers can think entirely in terms of motion control, creating games that could not be replicated on other systems. Below is a list of the games that should make PS3 and Xbox 360 owners jealous.

Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword

The culmination of everything that has gone into Wii design, the action-adventure game The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword is the ultimate Wii game, the game that fulfilled my faith in the potential of the Wii console and the viability of gesture gaming as a true alternative to traditional game controllers. After this, playing an action-adventure game with nothing but buttons and triggers just feels wrong. Alas, we'll probably never see another Zelda game like it. More »

Xenoblade Chronicles

There is nothing about Xenoblade Chronicles that screams out a need for the Wii. It does so little with the Wii remote that you're better off playing the game with the Wii Classic Controller, and it's a role-playing game on a system virtually devoid of them. It could have been made for any platform, and it's on the Wii only because Nintendo owns a controlling interest in its developer. But in spite of all that, it is one of the greatest games ever made for the Wii, and one of the greatest JRPGs ever made, period. It is a grand epic that should not be missed, and a reason to pity anyone who doesn't own a Wii. More »

The Last Story

The other great Wii JRPG is the closest thing to a Final Fantasy game ever made for the Wii, with a lush score, a charming (though generic) story, and visuals that rise above the level of almost all other Wii games. And the fast-paced real-time combat system makes it one of the most exciting RPGs I've ever played. More »

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Disney Epic Mickey

Disney Epic Mickey
Junction Point Studios

It is rare for any publisher except Nintendo to put out a big-budget Wii exclusive, but that's what happened with Disney Epic Mickey, an action-adventure game designed by the brilliant Warren Spector. Portraying Mickey Mouse's adventures in a decaying alternate cartoon universe, the game is notable for an engaging story and a unique game mechanism that allows players to use paint and thinner to repair and destroy the world. While the game has a few flaws, such as camera issues, this is still an involving, immersive experience.

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De Blob
The revolution will be colorized. THQ

A game that correlates oppression and revolution with grays and colors, De Blob creates a vivid world where the dark forces of black and white are pitted against revolutionaries who are colorful in the most literal sense of the word; they devote themselves to repainting their cities after the bad guys drain them of color. A funny and stylish platformer with an intuitive control scheme that uses motion control smoothly and intelligently, De Blob is an almost perfect Wii game. More »

Donkey Kong Country Returns
DKCR is no walk in the park. It's more like a mining cart ride over broken tracks. Nintendo

This impressive old-school 2D platformer is so imaginative and varied and well designed that I can more-or-less forgive it for being brutally difficult. While some games like to come up with something different, DKCR aims to gives Donkey Kong fans everything they expect, perfectly done. More »

Sonic Colors
Sonic Colors perfectly captures the feel of the original Sonic games. SEGA

This is the game that finally made Sonic the Hedgehog a successful 3D star. With years of great 2D arcade platformers featuring the speedy critter followed by years of 3D Sonic games that varied from dreary to near-misses, Sonic Colors, finally, perfectly recaptures the magic of the original 2D games in a 3D world. More »

Wii Sports Resort
You can put so much spin on a ping pong ball that it arcs like a Frisbee. Nintendo

I often complained about the flood of mini-game collections that virtually drowned the Wii, but a mini-game collection done right can be tremendous fun. Resort is, very simply, the ultimate mini-game collection. Created to introduce the MotionPlus, the game finds a lot of different ways to take advantage of the increased motion sensitivity, giving players an experience that is even more impossible on any other console than the typical Wii game. More »

Deadly Creatures

Action games are generally about fighting things you wouldn’t want to meet in person: alien monsters, Nazi soldiers, zombies, ninjas, and, in the case of Deadly Creatures, spiders and scorpions. One of the most original and exciting action video games ever made for the Wii, Creatures takes place in the dust of the desert, with fierce battles between creatures that could easily crawl into your boot and poison you when you put it on. Although in Creatures, these little critters prove they can do much worse than that. More »

Dead Space: Extraction
Blow off a few limbs and this guy will go down. Electronic Arts

The Wii single-handedly revived the rail shooter, at least for a while, simply because the Wii remote so perfectly emulates the light gun technology used on other consoles. While other rail shooters are content to basically serve up the same old formula, the ambitious Extraction aims to create something new, adding a jittery camera and an intriguing story to the standard shooting gallery mechanics. The result is quite possibly the best rail shooter ever made. More »

Marble Saga: Kororinpa
Hudson Entertainment

Kororinpa is one of the best examples of a game that wouldn’t make a lot of sense on any platform except the Wii. Sure, you could rotate the game’s elaborate three-dimensional mazes with analog sticks, but that would be like walking on the beach in heavy boots; yes, you still are on the beach, you’re still leaving footprints, but you don’t feel the sand between your toes or the water lapping at your ankles. Koririnpa makes the relationship between player, maze and rolling marble beautifully symbiotic, and is one of the best puzzle games on the Wii. More »

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That's gotta hurt!. Nintendo

Using the remote/nunchuk combo to punch and the balance board to dodge, Punch-Out!! is a full-body game, making it both a lot of fun and an utterly exhausting workout. I had hoped Nintendo might someday release a MotionPlus sequel that would get rid of the couple of movements in the game that required a button push rather than a movement, but alas, that never happened. More »

Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands
Typical scenario: The prince runs across a wall, past a whirring saw blade, right towards a monstrous knight. Ubisoft

While the story is pretty dreadful in this entry in the POP series (which shares a name with versions on other platforms but is in fact a game written and designed especially for the Wii), the gameplay is as good as any of its cousins, offering the same wondrous mix of acrobatic puzzle solving and less wonrous (but improved) combat. While the lack of a decent story makes the overall experience less magical than the original Prince of Persia: Sands of Time, there is still plenty of magic in the gameplay. More »

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No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle

No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle
Travis Touchdown faces down yet another insane assassin. Ubisoft

This over-the-top, utterly insane action game features wild swordplay, stylish visuals, and all the sex and violence you expect to not find in Wii games. It is not the best game for the Wii, but it is an experience you definitely don't want to miss.

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Mario Kart Wii

Mario Kart Wii

Arguably the best kart racing game ever made, Mario Kart Wii offers imaginative, engaging tracks, thrilling multiplayer, and wonderfully responsive controls. I still remember how excited I was the first time I tried steering using motion controls and discovered it actually worked.