Nintendo's Wii has a fantastic library of games but unfortunately, it also introduced many gamers to the concept of shovelware: bad games created for a quick buck. However, there are many good games that seem to fit this description so let's start the countdown.
I love puzzle games in the style of Pipe Dream. Therefore, when I took a chance and picked up a copy of City Builder, I was delighted to see that it puts classic path-making Pipe Dream gameplay into a SimCity-looking experience. Dropping down roads as fast as you can to make the population of your future city grow as much as possible makes for one addictive formula.City Builder Review
MiniCopter: Adventure Flight
Another specific genre that I have a soft spot for is toy helicopter simulators. Many similar games are just plain boring, but MiniCopter somehow manages to make accomplishing each stage's goals a rewarding endeavor.
Merv Griffin's Crosswords
Back in 2007, I remember watching the sadly short-lived Merv Griffin's Crosswords on TV every day. I loved the simple premise of filling out a crossword in a game show format. When I saw that a video game was based on it, I had to pick it up. Thankfully, it's just as enjoyable as the show and playing with friends is even more fun. By the way, I wrote a review for this!Merv Griffin's Crosswords Review
When you first take a gander at Magnetica, you'll probably think that it's a clone of Zuma. However, Zuma is actually a rip-off of a game called Puzz Loop which Magnetica is a sequel to. So, if you're up to explore the origins of this style of puzzle game then you can't go wrong by downloading this incredibly fun WiiWare puzzler.
Ultimate Shooting Collection
Besides Sonic's Ultimate Genesis Collection, any game with "Ultimate" and "Collection" in its title is probably going to suck. But, if I said that Ultimate Shooting Collection is a compilation of three pretty decent Japanese shoot 'em ups then any fan of the genre would put aside their bias and take a second look. Being able to play Milestone's classics Karous, Radirgy (AKA Radio Allergy), and Chaos Field all in one place is just awesome and with no hefty import prices to boot.
One thing's for sure; the Wii has way too many light gun games. In fact, there are three of them that have a chicken theme (Chicken Riot, Chicken Blaster, and Chicken Shoot). It goes without saying that most of these are terrible but Pirate Blast is actually a very well done shooter. You play it by aiming your Wii Zapper to shoot streams of water at robot pirates which shorts out their circuits. Its polished presentation, simple gameplay, and goofy premise definitely make it stand out from the pack.
Mushroom Men: The Spore Wars
When you look at a game that stars a cast of mushrooms, it's easy to blow it off as shovelware. However, this is one competent 3D platformer. Sure, it won't knock Super Mario 64 off its thrown but it's definitely a worthy experience. The consistently enjoyable adventure filled with exploration, mini-games, puzzles, and item collecting is more than enough to satisfy any gamer's cravings for platforming in the third dimension. Just make sure you don't mind a little bit of Wiimote waggling.
Over the past couple of decades, there have been countless attempts at modernizing classic arcade games. More often than not, this results in a game that's far worse than its old-school counterpart. The same can't be said about Centipede: Infestation which translates the hectic insect-shooting action perfectly to the Wii. There's even a hidden Missile Command pack so how could you go wrong?
Blast Works: Build, Trade, Destroy
Ultimate Shooting Collection may include three cool shoot 'em ups yet Blast Works allows you to create your own. Doing so can provide hours of creative fun but not every gamer wants to craft an entire shmup. In that case, working your way through the ton of available content while unlocking full games (including Tumiki Fighters which Blast Works is based on) will delight any shoot 'em up fanatic.
Kororinpa: Marble Mania
How much joy could you possibly get from playing with marbles? After a few stages of Kororinpa, you'll realise that the answer is a boatload. Tilting the Wii remote carefully to guide a marble though complex scenarios while flipping upside-down, navigating narrow paths, and discovering hidden areas adds up to one tension-filled yet ultimately fulfilling gameplay premise.