Best Wii U games to buy before the eShop closes

Best Wii U games to buy before the eShop closes
Images via Nintendo

Written by 

Harry Boulton


22nd Mar 2023 18:17

While the Wii U wasn't exactly the most popular console in the world, it still has a strong catalogue of games that you might regret missing after its eShop closes. Game preservation is more important than ever before with the number of Nintendo digital storefronts closing rapidly increasing.

So, if you're wondering what the best Wii U games to buy before the eShop closes, make sure to carry on reading below to see all of our choices.

Best Wii U games to buy before the eShop closes

The biggest problem with the Wii U is the fact that most of its best games have been ported to the switch, and are undeniably best played on Nintendo's blockbuster hybrid console. This leaves the small pool of essential Wii U games even smaller than before, but there are still some titles that are well worth picking up.

Here are our selections for the best Wii U games to buy before the eShop closes, focussing entirely on exclusive titles:

Xenoblade Chronicles X

Best Wii U games: Xenoblade Chronicles X
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Despite being a fairly significant departure from the first Xenoblade Chronicles (and the subsequent mainline games), Xenoblade Chronicles X is still absolutely worth picking up. Focussing more on the world and exploration than the detailed narratives of the other games in the series, Xenoblade Chronicles X truly lets you explore.

In the gargantuan uncharted planet of Mira, players will be able to experience one of the densest worlds in all of gaming, with countless different biomes and areas - each with their own distinct flavours. There's also a heavy emphasis on mechs too - what's not to love?

Xenoblade Chronicles

Best Wii U games: Xenoblade Chronicles
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While this is technically cheating - as Xenoblade Chronicles has been available on four different platforms including the Switch, there is a good reason why we have put the Wii U version specifically on this list.

There are some strange differences in the Definitive Edition like the static trees, but the biggest reason why some players prefer the original is the dramatic difference in art style employed by the Switch remaster. Characters appear far more 'cartoon-y' than the original, which is not to a lot of players' tastes.

It is probable that the Definitive Edition on Switch is the better game overall, but if you're a fan - or want something to preserve, then you might want to consider picking up the original version on the Wii U eShop.

The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD

Best Wii U games: Twilight Princess HD
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Again, The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD is not necessarily a new or Wii U exclusive game, but unlike Xenoblade Chronicles this is undoubtedly the definitive way to play.

Propositioned by many as the darkest Zelda game - and that is not just referring to the time of day - Twilight Princess lets you in on a more mature Zelda narrative in tandem with all of the other excellent hallmarks that you learn to expect in a Link adventure.

If you've never played the game before, or want to experience it in HD for the first time, then you definitely should pick Twilight Princess up before the eShop closes.

The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD

Best Wii U games: Wind Waker HD
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Not only another Zelda game but another HD remaster, The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD is certainly a fan favourite and of the best in the series. Boasting a stunning art style that stands alone within the series, Wind Waker is one of the more whimsical adventures for Link - especially compared to something like Twilight Princess.

One of the biggest aspects of Wind Waker that differentiates it from other entries is the emphasis on sailing, and it really is a joy to just float through the gorgeous Great Sea.

Both Twilight Princess and Wind Waker have had Switch ports in the rumour mill for quite a while now, but nothing has come of it yet. It would be incredibly surprising if Nintendo never touched either again, but you won't do yourself any hard in picking up these two excellent remasters if you've got a Wii U sitting there anyway.


Best Wii U games: Splatoon
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Despite the various improvements that have arrived in the two sequels, the original Splatoon is still an excellent game that is great to look back on and play again. It came as a shock to quite a lot of players quite how good Splatoon was when it launched, bringing a fresh paint-flavoured take on third-person multiplayer combat with some squids thrown in too.

The main thing you'll have to worry about here is the delisting of the servers, which could very well be imminent. It is also not going to be the most popular game due to its two predecessors, but there's still a lot of fun to be had here.

Devil's Third

Best Wii U games: Devil's Third
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Don't laugh. Now we're not going to stand here and tell you that Devil's Third is a good game, but it is certainly an intriguing game to pick up. It was one of the very few M-Rated games published by Nintendo and was directed by Tomonobu Itagaki of Ninja Gaiden fame.

Despite its critical panning, it has established both a semi-decent cult following online, in part due to the astronomical price tag of its physical release. While a digital copy isn't going to fully satisfy the heart of any collector, it is the best chance you have to try out this intriguing title.

So, that wraps up our choices for the best Wii U games to buy before the eShop closes on March 27, featuring the few titles not yet ported over to the Switch. Just make sure that your Wii U hasn't bricked itself though, as that is unfortunately a real possibility.

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