WarioWare Gold

WarioWare Gold[a] is a minigame compilation co-developed by Nintendo EPD and Intelligent Systems and published by Nintendo for the Nintendo 3DS family of video game consoles. The ninth installment in the WarioWare series, it was released in PAL regions in July 2018, and in North America and Japan the following month. The game's plot follows the greedy Wario who has organized a gaming tournament for a large cash prize, with the ultimate goal of claiming the money for himself. Meanwhile, various other WarioWare characters deal with other problems which play out in the form of short stories.

WarioWare Gold
The words "WarioWare Gold" in a blue and yellow outlined font. Surronding it in a circle is the cast of the WarioWare series in front of a golden background.
Cover art featuring Wario and the entire WarioWare cast
Developer(s)Nintendo EPD
Intelligent Systems
Publisher(s)Nintendo
Director(s)Goro Abe
Producer(s)
Designer(s)
  • Nami Komuro
  • Ryosuke Kakutani[2]
Programmer(s)Youichi Tada[3]
Artist(s)
  • Eiko Hirao
  • Ko Takeuchi[4]
Writer(s)Nami Komuro[5]
Composer(s)Daichi Aoki
Yasuhisa Baba[6]
SeriesWario
Platform(s)Nintendo 3DS
Release
  • EU: July 27, 2018
  • AU: July 28, 2018
  • JP: August 2, 2018
  • NA: August 3, 2018
Genre(s)Action
Mode(s)Single-player, multiplayer

Similar to previous entries, in WarioWare Gold, the player is tasked with completing consecutive "microgames" at increasing paces. Gold features both microgames from past entries in the series and some new ones for a total of over 300 microgames, the most featured in the series to date. After completing the story mode, additional modes such as the challenge mode are unlocked. The game's creative director, Goro Abe, put careful planning in determining which 300 of the 1,100 microgames across the series would be featured. Gold also featured voice acting, a first for the series. Intelligent Systems focused less on collectible items and more on core programming after deeming them not as important.

Gold received generally positive reviews, being praised for its graphics, additional modes, and the introduction of voice acting. Reception of its various collectibles was split, with some finding them worthwhile while others on the contrary. The game sold poorly at first but later spiked in 2020 in the United Kingdom. A follow up for the Nintendo Switch, WarioWare: Get It Together!, released in 2021.

GameplayEdit

 
Wario shutting the door on a solicitor in a microgame by tapping the A button.

As is tradition for a WarioWare game, the player is tasked with completing "microgames"—various minigames with very short time limits—in rapid succession. When one is complete, a point is given, and the game moves on to the next.[7] If a microgame is completed incorrectly, or the time runs out, the player loses one of four lives. If they run out of lives, the game ends and the high score is displayed, which is determined by how many microgames were passed. When a section of microgames is completed, the player will complete a boss microgame. After which, the minigames can be replayed and will begin to speed up the time allotted.[8]

As a collection game, most microgames that appear have once existed in a previous title in the WarioWare series. These include the Game Boy Advance original, Twisted!, Touched!, Smooth Moves, D.I.Y., and Game & Wario,[9] in addition to some new ones for a total of over 300 microgames.[10] The microgames vary in how they are completed. They involve pressing buttons, tilting the system, touching the touch screen, and blowing on the system's microphone.[9]

Gold features full voice acting in the story mode, a first for the series, with an additional unlockable feature allowing players to redub their own voice over the game's cutscenes.[11] Alongside the story mode, there are missions for the player to complete that awards them with coins that can be used to purchase rewards such as additional minigames. The challenge mode is one of the multiple modes unlocked after completing the story mode. In the challenge mode, the microgames are reintroduced alongside various distractions and complications to the original format.[9][12] For example, sometimes the screen will be covered in ink or other objects to obscure vision.[9] There's also a local multiplayer mode where players compete in an endurance competition of who can complete the most minigames in succession.[12]

PlotEdit

Having run out of money following a treasure hunt in the village of Luxeville, the greedy Wario decides to organize a gaming tournament in Diamond City, convincing his friends to design some new microgames for the event. For an entry fee of ten thousand coins, he offers a ten million coin prize to the tournament's winner, although he secretly plots to take all the prize money for himself. While the player competes in the tournament, a girl from Luxeville named Lulu calls Wario out and begins training to challenge him, seeking to retrieve a treasure Wario stole from her village. The rest of the game consists of self-contained vignettes for all of Wario's friends; these range from Mona meeting with Joe and trying to find a dress to wear for her party, to Dribble and Spitz fighting off UFOs with their space-faring taxi, to 18-Volt engaging in a rap battle with newcomer 13-Amp to win back a stolen game console.

In the game's final level, Wario refuses to give the player the prize money, as he already declared himself as the winner of the tournament. Putting Luxeville's treasure (a large golden pot) on top of his head, the pot grants him special powers and turns him into "Wario Deluxe". With Lulu's help, the player manages to beat Wario Deluxe and win the tournament, knocking the pot off Wario's head and changing him back to normal in the process. Returning the pot to Lulu after she reveals that it is actually Luxeville's public toilet, Wario attempts to flee with the money he made from the tournament when he is intercepted by his friends. Taking the money Wario refused to pay them for their work and splitting it evenly, the player receives their entry fee back and the group even decides to share some of the money with Wario as well. Lulu returns to Luxeville with the pot afterward, only to learn that the townspeople had bought a new high-tech toilet in her absence.

DevelopmentEdit

 
The Nintendo 3DS, shown above, offered opportunities for brand new gameplay styles in WarioWare Gold.

WarioWare Gold was developed for the Nintendo 3DS by Intelligent Systems, the developers behind most previous WarioWare titles, and published by Nintendo.[9] According to Goro Abe, the game's creative director, despite most microgames appearing in prior titles in the series, many of them were reworked from scratch. Since Gold consists of over 300 microgames with the series totaling over 1,100, Abe surveyed opinions from the staff of Intelligent Systems on which microgames the series should include. After he determined the results, he ranked the microgames based on the top picks from the staff, as well as which ones had easy-to-understand rules and games that have not aged well. One of the new gameplay additions was the split-screen challenge mode; this involved the use of the dual screens of the Nintendo 3DS where after one microgame was completed, it would immediately switch over to the other screen. This was a concept Intelligent Systems had wanted to implement since the Nintendo DS, but the idea proved too taxing on the hardware at the time.[10][13]

"In the future, if there's new technology on new hardware that we can use in a new WarioWare title, then we'll probably prep more unlockables with unique and interactive mechanics."

Goro Abe, Creative Director, in a 2018 interview with Kotaku[10]

Full voice acting was included for the first time in the series, as the development team felt that it would lead to a deeper connection between the player and the game. They also believe the change made the characters feel more alive, although Abe stated future games would not necessarily have full voice acting.[14] Wario for instance was voiced by longtime actor Charles Martinet in English-speaking countries.[8] While the game was released after the launch of the Nintendo Switch, Abe ruled out porting WarioWare Gold to the platform, stating it would "come with a number of issues" and that it would be difficult to reproduce "the same sense of fun".[14]

Speaking about the unlockable souvenirs, Abe explained that while Twisted! and Touched! featured a large number of collectibles centered around the gyro and touchscreen as both technologies were still fairly novel at the time, the team felt such unlockables were unnecessary for Gold due to how commonplace both forms of inputs had become. He also explained that with the given time constraints, they preferred to focus on extras that did not require as much programming effort, like the Records. In a 2018 interview with Game Informer, Abe explained that the future of the WarioWare series would be placed on the reception of Gold.[10][14]

WarioWare Gold was announced during a Nintendo Direct broadcast on March 8, 2018.[15] The game released in Europe on July 27, 2018,[16] North America on August 3, 2018,[17] and Japan a day prior.[18] Shortly before release on June 5, a free demo of the game was available on the Nintendo 3DS eShop.[16]

ReceptionEdit

WarioWare Gold received "generally favorable reviews" according to review aggregator Metacritic, receiving a 78/100 based on 45 critic reviews.[19]

Despite being a collection of microgames across the series, critics such as Nintendo Life and IGN appreciated the additional work done by Intelligent Systems.[12] In addition, they found the old microgames to be reworked so well they often could not tell the new and the old apart from each other.[7][9] Nintendo Life's Steve Bowling mentioning how "say[ing] that WarioWare Gold is a mere 'best of' collection would be unfair".[12] Most lauded the introduction of voice acting,[21][22] with Christian Donlan of Eurogamer joking how the addition, alongside a new graphics style "could, conceivably, be the only thing that's been missing from your life until now."[9] James O'Connor, writing for GameSpot, admired Charles Martinet's impression of Wario; he wrote how he "imbues Wario with a sense of pride and malice here that's a delight to witness."[20]

Some saw the addition of microgames being organized into categories to be a helpful addition, which helped with not having to constantly switch between control schemes such as tapping and button pressing.[8][12] Nintendo Life found the concept to be helpful when playing in areas where they were constricted in space or the use of the microphone.[12]

Reviewers praised the challenge mode and the unique twists they made on the microgames after completing the main storyline.[8][9][22] O'Connor found the concepts to be "tense and exciting",[20] and Bowling saw the experience as "fast, fun and chaotic in the best way".[12] Tristan Ogilvie of IGN, however, sometimes considered hindrances to be rather annoying instead of challenging or unique.[7]

Collectibles received mixed reception; Game Informer's Kyle Hilliard enjoyed the system and called them "worthwhile pursuits", and while he did find some to be more entertaining than others, he praised the system for being unique.[21] Donlan called the collection aspect a fun system to participate in after completing the story mode.[9] Reviewers at Famitsu saw collectibles as neat additions after completing the short story mode.[22] Kotaku found the collectibles to be of varying quality, ranging from fun time-wasters to barely interesting at all.[8] Similarly, IGN and ArsTechnica believed the collectibles were, for the most part, not worth having to constantly replay old microgames.[7][23]

SalesEdit

WarioWare Gold released on August 3, 2018, leaving only two days for it to top the NPD sales charts. The game didn't make the top 20 list and only reached third on their Nintendo 3DS charts, behind Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon. According to Jeff Grubb of VentureBeat, reaching the top spot in two days would have been possible for a new game; he attributed the lack of sales due to the release of Nintendo's new home console, the Nintendo Switch.[17] In Japan, Gold sold 30,000 copies at launch and had reached 93,000 physical copies sold by its last week on the Media Create sales charts.[24][25] In sales charts in the UK later on in January 2020, the game began to slowly drop down and stayed in the 827th position. However, the game peaked at fifth place, about 2 years after release.[26]

NotesEdit

  1. ^ Known in Japan as Made in Wario: Gorgeous (Japanese: メイド イン ワリオ ゴージャス, Hepburn: Meido in Wario Gōjasu)

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Intelligent Systems (July 27, 2018). WarioWare Gold (Nintendo 3DS). Nintendo. Producers: Kensuke Tanabe, Toshio Sengoku, Naoki Nakano
  2. ^ Intelligent Systems (July 27, 2018). WarioWare Gold (Nintendo 3DS). Nintendo. Planning & Writing: Nami Komuro Planning: Ryosuke Kakutani
  3. ^ Intelligent Systems (July 27, 2018). WarioWare Gold (Nintendo 3DS). Nintendo. Director & Program Director: Youichi Tada
  4. ^ Intelligent Systems (July 27, 2018). WarioWare Gold (Nintendo 3DS). Nintendo. Art Director: Eiko Hirao Character Design: Ko Takeuchi
  5. ^ Intelligent Systems (July 27, 2018). WarioWare Gold (Nintendo 3DS). Nintendo. Planning & Writing: Nami Komuro
  6. ^ Intelligent Systems (July 27, 2018). WarioWare Gold (Nintendo 3DS). Nintendo. Sound Director: Yasuhisa Baba Music: Daichi Aoki
  7. ^ a b c d e Ogilvie, Tristan (2018-08-06). "WarioWare Gold Review". IGN. Archived from the original on 2021-05-12. Retrieved 2021-05-16.
  8. ^ a b c d e Kohler, Chris (2018-08-02). "WarioWare Gold: The Kotaku Review". Kotaku. Archived from the original on 2021-02-24. Retrieved 2021-05-17.
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Donlan, Christian (2018-08-06). "WarioWare Gold review – a glitter-trumpet of sheer joy". Eurogamer. Archived from the original on 2021-05-17. Retrieved 2021-05-16.
  10. ^ a b c d Totilio, Stephen (2018-10-18). "The Unusual Effort That Went Into Creating WarioWare Gold". Kotaku. Archived from the original on 2021-05-06. Retrieved 2021-05-16.
  11. ^ Wong, Alistair (2018-07-06). "WarioWare Gold Lets You Make Your Own Dub For The Cutscenes". Siliconera. Archived from the original on 2021-05-17. Retrieved 2021-05-16.
  12. ^ a b c d e f g h Bowling, Steve (2018-07-31). "WarioWare Gold Review (3DS)". Nintendo Life. Archived from the original on 2021-05-17. Retrieved 2021-05-16.
  13. ^ Doolan, Liam (2018-10-18). "Wario's Latest Microgame Collection On 3DS Wasn't Just A Quick Money Grab". Nintendo Life. Archived from the original on 2021-05-17. Retrieved 2021-05-16.
  14. ^ a b c Kyle Hilliard (December 2018), "Tracking the trajectory of Nintendo's weirdest games", Game Informer. pp. 152–153. Retrieved May 5, 2021.
  15. ^ Damien, McFerran (2018-03-08). "WarioWare Gold Is Bringing Minigame Madness To 3DS This August". Nintendo Life. Archived from the original on 2021-05-17. Retrieved 2021-05-16.
  16. ^ a b Craddock, Ryan (2018-07-05). "A Free Demo Of WarioWare Gold Is Available To Download Right Now". Nintendo Life. Archived from the original on 2021-05-17. Retrieved 2021-05-16.
  17. ^ a b Grubb, Jeff (2018-08-22). "Nintendo 3DS owners have Switched, leaving WarioWare behind". VentureBeat. Archived from the original on 2021-05-17. Retrieved 2021-05-16.
  18. ^ "メイドインワリオ ゴージャス" [Made in Wario Gorgeous]. Famitsu (in Japanese). Retrieved 2021-05-24.
  19. ^ a b "WarioWare Gold reviews". Metacritic. Archived from the original on August 9, 2018. Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  20. ^ a b c O'Connor, James (2018-07-31). "WarioWare Gold Review – Worth Its Weight". GameSpot. Archived from the original on 2020-10-10. Retrieved 2021-05-17.
  21. ^ a b c Hilliard, Kyle (2018-07-27). "WarioWare Gold". Game Informer. Archived from the original on 2021-05-17. Retrieved 2021-05-17.
  22. ^ a b c d "メイドインワリオ ゴージャスのレビュー・評価・感想" [Made in Wario: Gorgeous Reviews, Evaluations, and Impressions]. Famitsu (in Japanese). Archived from the original on 2021-01-29. Retrieved 2021-05-18.
  23. ^ Machkovech, Sam (2018-08-03). "WarioWare Gold: A fine example of Nintendo's weird "end of life" history". ArsTechnica. Archived from the original on 2020-11-09. Retrieved 2021-05-17.
  24. ^ Romano, Sal (2018-08-08). "Media Create Sales: 7/30/18 – 8/5/18". Gematsu. Archived from the original on 2021-05-18. Retrieved 2021-05-18.
  25. ^ Romano, Sal (2018-09-09). "Media Create Sales: 9/10/18 – 9/16/18". Gematsu. Archived from the original on 2021-05-18. Retrieved 2021-05-18.
  26. ^ Craddock, Ryan (2020-01-21). "UK Charts: WarioWare Gold Leaps From 827th To Fifth In Very Successful Week For 3DS". Nintendo Life. Archived from the original on 2021-03-01. Retrieved 2021-05-17.

Attribution

External linksEdit