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Wiiloveit's Best of DSiWare

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13th June 2011; By Patrick

After the success that was the Top DS Picks feature here on Wiiloveit, I decided it was about time to round up all the troops to do a 'Best Of' feature for the DSiWare service. I sincerely hope you enjoy it!


Jack’s Picks

Art Academy: First Semester / Second Semester
The Art Academy games taught me that I could actually draw and paint, which is something that no one else has ever managed. The tutorials are easy to follow, help you understand why you should be doing certain things and the end product is always 100% yours. The ability to draw your own pictures after the tutorials also allows for endless drawings, and you can see some of mine here.

Aura Aura Climber
Aura Aura Climber is built on a very simple and very fun idea, but it is one that keeps me coming back again and again. The classic arcade gameplay that is present in this game is disappointingly missing from many titles these days. If I have 5-10 minutes spare, this is always the game that’ll fill it.

Go Series: Earth Saver

Go Series: Earth Saver manages to combine simplicity & difficulty (something many developers have trouble differentiating these days), into one addictive arcade experience. The game has a Dig Dug 2
vibe, and offers strategic thinking combined with quick decision making as you battle against the clock, balancing the factors as you try to break off as large chunks as you can risk without wiping Japan off the map. This game is simply pure arcade fun, has fantastic replayability, and is a game that keeps me hooked for hours on end.

Spin Six
Spin Six is also a simple concept, with a new twist that brings a lot of fun. The organized chaos of setting up multiple chain reactions at once combined with the several different routes you can take is something that I really enjoy. The game has a lot of varied content, from the puzzles to time attack & score attack. Despite using the same framework, each feel very different and add a lot of fun, variety and replay value.

Alphabounce
Alphabounce is my favourite Breakout-styled game. The fact that the game has 25 million levels means there’s always something new, and a lot of creative block types and powerups adds variety without ever becoming too confusing. Customization helps add a personal touch and lets you play the way you want. Finally, this game also eliminates the dreaded “last block syndrome” found in many games in this sub-genre.


Billy’s Picks

Art Style: BOXLIFE
When it comes to puzzlers, BOXLIFE is simply the best I could've asked for on DSiWare. It's original, creative, fun, and incredibly addictive. I cannot begin to explain the amount of hours I spent on this title to get a perfect on everything. Plus, the option to customize your own little house - parts of which are unlocked through more playtime - adds off a final cute little touch to this delightfully compulsive Art Style game.

Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Minis March Again
This game has a full-fledged level editor complete with an online distribution center, and a selection of pre-installed missions created by Nintendo to ease into the platformer/puzzle compound. The sheer amount of content at ones disposal in a mere DSiWare game is extraordinary, and at 800 points, it's probably one of the best value titles on the service.

Mario Clock
I cannot wake up in a morning. I've tried annoying beeping alarms, various ringtones on my phone, and the sounds of BBC 6 Music radio to awaken me from a nights slumber, but alas, none have worked on a consistent enough basis to be called reliable. In Mario Clock, however, you can record your own alarms via DSi Sound, or hear a classic Mario ditty. Three alarms can be set, each with snooze functions, making it way better than the standard DSi clock/alarm function, and the interactive scrolling animation of Mario travelling through coin-littered 2D worlds is a nice way to slowly adjust the brain into a fully alert state.

2-in-1 Solitaire
2-in-1 Solitaire is simply this: two solitaire games in one. It does it's job for 200 points, and it does it well. No unnecessary frills, just the game. And with solitaire, it's not like several different game modes, themes and various other extras are first thing on the player's minds anyway. Whenever I'm bored, I just whack this app open and keep myself wrapped up in it's simple joys for ages.

Bomberman Blitz
My fifth choice was my hardest, since I didn't want to feel I'd done any game a major injustice - especially in the light of a basic clock app gaining third place. But I feel Bomberman was probably the best decision. It's the same old Bomberman affair and there's only the battle mode at your dispense, but it's the cheapest way to get hold of the best online Bomberman experience available on a Nintendo console, and well worth it, too.


KnucklesSonic8’s Picks

X-Scape
Even for a first-party title, X-Scape doesn't get nearly as many mentions in the gaming community as it deserves and that really bothers me. This game is such a fun romp from start to finish with the only major flaw being that it has to end. A truly memorable and thoroughly engaging adventure that must be added to your collection whether you own a DSi or a 3DS.

Trajectile
I have been playing Trajectile on and off for months now and I still haven't grown tired of it. Addicting arcade-style gameplay with tons of content makes this the ultimate "short burst" game on DSiWare.

Pop Island
Pop Island impressed me when I first got into it because of its strong focus towards enjoyment through excitement and suspense. The game does a fantastic job of breathing life into an old concept all the while setting players in a vibrant world. The game really comes to life in group settings, but even when playing the game on your own against the CPU, the game is still lots of fun. What a heart-warming game!

DodoGo!
I think this IP deserves more love than it gets. Alien After All put a lot of heart into this game (and its subsequent followings) and it really shows. If you asked me to choose between this and Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Minis March Again, the choice is an easy one to make. Not only do you feel more connected to all that's taking place in DodoGo!, but the puzzle solutions are arguably deeper, more clever and more challenging. And best of all, the game never feels repetitive even weeks down the road. Its fresh gameplay experience puts it at the top of the pack as far as I'm concerned, and I only hope that more people will give the game a shot now that it's available through the eShop.

Dragon Quest Wars
Designed with multiplayer in mind, Dragon Quest Wars takes less of the RPG-stylings the series is known for and presents players with a bite-sized strategy game -- and a very accessible one at that. I love games like this because they carry a simple premise with relatively basic mechanics, and yet still have a hidden layer of depth which makes them so compelling. It's a great game that's priced perfectly at 500 Points.


Daan’s Picks

Mighty Flip Champs

Mighty Flip Champs was WayForward’s first DSiWare title, following Alma as she moves throughout the environment. Alma can move left and right, climb ladders, and fall, but her power comes in through her staff, which allows her to “flip pages” like a book, with the next page appearing on the bottom screen so you can strategize you path. A very long and difficult game, Mighty Flip Champs is also extremely fun and is not to be written off.

Art Style: PiCOPiCT
Of the Art Style games by skip ltd., PiCOPiCT (PiCTOBiTS) is easily the best. As series of blocks fall down, you fill them using a magazine that you build with the blocks already in play, they fill up a character from an NES game on the top screen, pixel by pixel. Combined with a soundtrack by Japanese Chiptune band YMCK, it’s truly excellent for a 500-Point purchase.

Alphabounce
Even though this was already picked by Jack, it deserves an extra shoutout. For only 500 points you get an astounding amount of content, and a very addictive pick-up-and-play game. This game comes highly recommended to anyone that can enjoy an Arkanoid/Breakout-styled game.

Starship Patrol

Starship Patrol is a clean, fully-featured strategy game that is easy to pick up, but hard to master. It might share some connections to tower defense games, but the formula feels so fun that it doesn't even play like one. The variety of space weapons and enemies are also brilliant, making this a must-have title.

Pop+ Solo
Pop+ Solo was Nnooo’s first title on the DSiWare service, and is an amazingly relaxing and deep game. While the basic goal is to tap on bubbles to pop them, there are a host of modes and features, along with challenges and achievements that make this game very difficult to stop playing.


Murat’s Picks

Car Jack Streets
Car Jack Streets is clearly inspired by the Grand Theft Auto series, but is more in line with GTA2 than any of the recent games. It doesn’t take itself too seriously, as you go around from a top-down perspective earning money in any way possible - legal or otherwise - while avoiding the cops. Inspiring creativity and arcade-action, Car Jack Streets is an extremely fun title.

Real Football 2009
Real Football 2009 may have been released very early in the Nintendo DSiWare life, but amazingly, it still holds up today. While there are no shortage of football/soccer sims on the market, this one is surprisingly deep and solid given the 800-Point price tag. In addition to the realistic players from all different countries, you can change any face or flag to a photo taken on your DSi Camera for a feeling of complete customization.

Army Defender
Army Defender is a great value game for only 200 Points. Its pick-up-and-play nature, simplicity, and responsiveness make this a title that should not be missed.

Guitar Rock Tour
While at a glance it man’s Guitar Hero, Guitar Rock Tour is it’s own entity. As you tap the screen or press buttons to the rhythm, classic and modern songs play through in a high quality. While it does share many similarities to other titles, for 500 Points it is completely worth it.

Bomberman Blitz
As Billy said, this game is the cheapest way to experience online Bomberman on a Nintendo console, but the offline is just as good - you can have either one or two screens, and there are tons of items and stages to keep play varied. The Bomberman series is always fun, and this title is definitely no exception.


Patrick’s Picks

Shantae: Risky’s Revenge
I am honestly astounded that this game did not end up on anybody else’s list, but perhaps it’s because it’s too obvious. The flagship title for all of DSiWare, as it were. Regardless, the game was originally going to be developed in 3 parts, each costing 500 points. However, as WayForward continued with development, they decided to release the entire game (which is better than many retail titles) in one 1,200-Point package. It is absolutely superb, with amazing art, music, and a general feel - a worthy successor to Shantae.

Cave Story
The 2nd most expensive title on the service, tied with Thorium Wars, Cave Story is in need of no introduction to almost anyone. It was developed for DSi simultaneously with the WiiWare version, and this version is almost exactly like the original PC version. But the high density of save points in the game plus its portable nature make it a perfect fit.

Puzzle Quest: Challenge of the Warlords
Back after Puzzle Quest: Challenge of the Warlords first launched as a retail DS title, it was gifted to me as a “fun time-waster”. I took one look at it and laughed. The premise was silly: conducting match-three puzzles to deal damage in a magical RPG? How stupid. But then I went into surgery very shortly afterwards and decided to give it a try. It was actually fantastic, and I was addicted long after recovery. It became one of my all-time favourite DS games (#7, if you’re curious), so I was shocked to see it come to DSiWare - with all its content intact.

Mighty Milky Way
The 2nd WayForward game on my list, Mighty Milky Way is the spiritual successor to Mighty Flip Champs, and is WayForward’s 3rd game on DSiWare. It’s a very simple puzzle game where you jump off of planets and create new ones to reach a goal. However, it gets puzzling and difficult relatively quickly, becoming very much a “one more time” type of game, which is exactly what DSiWare is meant for.

Glow Artisan
Glow Artisan is a game where you take the image given to you on the top screen, and draw it on the bottom screen. But of course, it’s nowhere near that simple. You’re given a grid (that gets bigger as you go up in difficulty levels), and can only drag the three primary colours in rows or columns starting from edges of the grid. You can delete entire rows and columns, as well as overlap colours to create new ones. With a staggering amount of puzzles, the ability to create your own out of either photos or by making one in a built-in toolset, and then sharing your creations with other local players, Glow Artisan is a true value at 500 Points.



So what do you think? Do you agree or disagree? 
Be sure to tell us on Facebook or Twitter, or you can reach me via email!

Thanks to Jack, Billy, KnucklesSonic8, Daan, and Murat for their contributions!

Feature by Patrick
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