After scoring two hits on Game Boy Advance, Intelligent Systems were tasked with striking the same chord on Nintendo DS. And, as with its predecessor – which has yet to see release in Europe – it takes full advantage of what was largely seen as the gimmick behind Nintendo’s handheld.
As such, WarioWare: Touched! lead by example in how developers could put the Nintendo DS touchscreen to work. Like before, you play through a multitude of tiny microgames each with a single instruction that tells you what to do. You can be simply tapping a cat at one point, petting a dog, slicing some watermelons or hitting question blocks to get coins, all using the touchscreen.
As this is a Wii U Virtual Console title, that instead requires the use of the Wii U GamePad. The question is, which screen setting do you use? Ideally, you need both screens to be visible as there is a lot of interaction between what were the dual screens in many of the microgames. The ideal choices are the two which have you rotate the GamePad to get a full view of the screen, but the other features will also work well, such as touchscreen focus or the standard Nintendo DS frame.
There are multiple characters in this game that give you a selection of microgames to play. Each presents their own gimmick whether that be rotating, using the microphone, slicing or even retro Nintendo games with new touchscreen elements. You initially just have to play through each character once to proceed, but, once you have, you can continue on until you lose and get more microgames. As you progress further, the speed and difficulty ramps up making the game quite a challenge. You can also play through each of the microgames that you have played to get the top scores, adding incentive to go through and collect them all. There’s also the chance to unlock smaller games such as Wario Paint, a small touchscreen offshoot of Mario Paint that lets you colour in all the characters.
Everything runs well and the touchscreen responds really quickly. There is a little bit of an issue in regards to the microphone sensitivity, but that can be dealt with by getting closer to the GamePad. Other than that though, the game controls really well. It’s all done by touchscreen, and, due to that, you truly feel like you have accomplished the feats that the microgames demand.
The graphics in WarioWare: Touched! continue the zany and sometimes clearly Japanese style that is associated with the series. The start of each character stage has an animated scene to tell the story, and each of the games has a certain style. The graphics in each microgame vary from classic spritework to full 3D depending on the game, and each has its own visual flair. On the TV screen, they manage to hold up well, even when blown up to maximum possible size. The screen smoothing isn’t required in this game, in fact, it probably takes away from it.
The sound of the game works well, too. Each presents a separate style with its own tiny bit of music to go with it, showing great care was given to give each stage some individuality. The tracks outside the microgames are all very catchy and well done.
WarioWare: Touched! is another classic collection of frantic microgames. If you’re familiar with the series you’ll find a lot to like here, and for those that aren’t, it may be worth giving it a shot. The learning curve is low as each game requires just simple touch movements so anyone can easily grasp it. The microgame delights in WarioWare: Touched! may not be to everyone’s tastes, but there’s certainly much to enjoy.