Virtual Console

Here at Ars Technica, we've had some recent personal experience with how Nintendo's DRM schemes can get in the way of using downloadable titles on new hardware. And now, new details about how the Wii U's Virtual Console will interact with previously purchased titles has us wondering.

As announced last week, the Wii U Virtual Console is a completely separate beast from the one on the Wii. It includes new features like independent play on the touchscreen GamePad, customizable controls, and a connection to the Miiverse social forums. If you want these new features on a game you already bought and downloaded on the Wii, you'll have to pay a small upgrade fee: $1 for NES games or $1.50 for SNES games.

All in all, this could be worse. Sure it's a bit galling to pay again for a downloadable game you already own, but at least Nintendo isn't charging the full price of $5 to $9 for previous purchasers. Plus, you do get some new features for your outlay.

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I'll get those Wii U owners an HD Zelda re-release. Wii U owners LOVE HD Zelda re-releases.

Nintendo President Satoru Iwata used a direct-to-consumer Web video presentation today to talk about the company's near-future plans for the Wii U. While the presentation included many new details about the system's upcoming features and games, not many of those announcements could be considered very surprising.

On the features front, Iwata promised that the Wii U would be getting two new system updates in the spring and summer. These updates will include improvements to the Wii U's software launch times and faster switching between system menus, Iwata said. Those have been major gripes for Wii U users so far, but our tests found the loading times were actually comparable to launch titles for other systems.

Nintendo will also be bringing some important updates to the surprisingly robust and interesting Miiverse social networking service. These new features include a browser-based mobile interface, user-created community discussion threads, and a more-robust message filtering system, all of which should help make the service even more useful.

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What is Virtual Console? Virtual console is known as an online service that allows players to purchase and download games as well as the other software for Nintendo’s Wii gaming console. This is sometimes called VC.  Virtual Console line up often consists of titles originally released on past consoles.  Titles run in their original forms through software emulation that can also be purchased between 500 and 1200 Wii points. However, this depends on systems rarity or demand.

So, what are the best Nintendo Virtual Console games for you and your family? Here are some of them:

Super Mario 64. This game is recommended for kids from eight years old and up.  In fact, this game is the best seller when it comes to N64 which is released y 1996. With this game, the whole family would surely enjoy Mario’s walking, run, crouch, crawl, swim, jump and climb just to save Princess Peach.

Ecco the Dolphin. I myself also loved this game together with my seven year old son. Ecco is actually a bottlenose dolphin being controlled by the player through a progression of side scrolling aquatic levels.

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See, I announce some site news and I immediately start sticking to it. I love it when a plan comes together. One of the most anticipated Wii titles this year is Metroid: Other M. Fanboys and girls the world over are drooling over the promise of hearing Samus Aran speak for the very first time. I’ve never been a fanatic of the series because they are usually so damned hard, but I am hyped over the fact that Team Ninja is taking control over gaming’s most famous bounty hunter. Nintendo has been fairly shy about showing the game in motion so far, but it looks like in the weeks leading up to it’s launch in May they look to change that.

The first trailer we saw for Other M, while very beautiful, was all CG and pre-rendered animations. That’s all well and good, but everyone knows the real meat and potatoes are the gameplay trailers. Honestly, I thought we’d have to wait another couple of weeks before we saw this beauty in motion. I’ve never been so happy to be wrong before. Once you watch the trailer below, you’ll know why. Enjoy, and stay thirsty my friends.

So, I had some friends come up a couple weeks ago for a bachelor party and one of the things we did was go to a Hawks game. After showing up like halfway through the second quarter due to poor planning, we kinda started to enjoy ourselves. That is, until the ridiculously obnoxious pack of 10 year old hyenas two rows down became almost unbearable. Ugh. I mean, is there anything more annoying than a group of 10-12 year old boys? I really don’t think there could be. If I was like terminally ill and got accepted to the Make-A-Wish Foundation, I’d wish that I could beat up an 11 year old boy. Don’t get freaked out, I don’t want to like cripple him or break his nose or do any kind of permanent damage. I’d want it to be like a videogame or something. Probably more Tekken than Mortal Kombat, even I may feel bad when I “FATALITY” an 11 year old. (Side-note: If the whole fight thing wasn’t allowed I’d wish that I could take an 11 year old to his favorite place or game or whatever and buy myself every snack, hat, jersey and anything else he’d want while I didn’t get him anything. The look on his face would be priceless!!) I’d want it to be like nothing happened to him afterwards, but he’d sure as hell remember it and that would allow me to go in peace…

Yesterday was Monday, and on Monday we get new WiiWare & VC games to download. The cream of the crop this week is Max & The Magic Marker. The game is your typical 2D platformer which stars Max as he uses his “Magic” marker to get around the world and defeat the bad guys. As you’d suspect, the Wiimote acts as the marker and everything you “draw” shows up in the game. If Max needs a bridge to get over a gap, just draw it. If Max needs a hill to roll down, just draw it. It’s that simple really. The game, and it’s developers Press Play, have received tons of awards and accolades for this innovative title, so you may want to go ahead and drop the 1000 points on this one. If you’re interested in checking out what the game looks like in motion, just look below. And, just for fun, here’s a link where you can see everything that’s new on WiiWare & the VC this week, which includes the SNES classic Final Fantasy 2. Finally, because I’m hyped over their return, I’m gonna give you the newest video from Reflection Eternal whose album is set to drop April 6. It rarely gets better than Kweli & Hi-Tek teaming up, and I can’t wait to hear the rest. Enjoy, and stay thirsty my friends.

Reflection Eternal - In This World (Official Video)

Reflection Eternal | MySpace Music Videos