The 2000s marked a golden age for Nintendo, as the company released two iconic consoles, including the GameCube, and Wii.
During this era, Nintendo not only introduced innovative gaming technologies but also created timeless classics that continue to captivate gamers of all ages.
In this article, we’ll explore the top 10 Nintendo video games from the 2000s, spanning the GameCube and Wii platforms.
Evolution of Nintendo Gaming in the 2000s
The 2000s were a transformative and exciting time for Nintendo, as the company continued to push the boundaries of gaming innovation. This era witnessed the rise of two iconic consoles that left an indelible mark on the gaming landscape.
The Nintendo GameCube – A Compact Powerhouse
In the early 2000s, Nintendo unveiled the Nintendo GameCube, a console that would redefine the gaming experience. This sleek and compact system was not only a technological powerhouse but also a platform that introduced players to some of the most beloved and enduring titles in gaming history.
The GameCube’s arrival signified a departure from the cartridge-based format of its predecessor, the Nintendo 64, as it embraced mini-DVD discs. This allowed for greater storage capacity and opened the door for more expansive and graphically impressive games.
The GameCube era was marked by its dedication to exceptional gameplay and creative worlds. It’s no wonder that this period is fondly remembered by gamers for its innovative titles that have stood the test of time.
The Nintendo Wii – Gaming for Everyone
As the mid-2000s rolled in, Nintendo once again set the gaming world abuzz with the introduction of the Nintendo Wii. This console marked a paradigm shift by bringing gaming to a broader audience with its groundbreaking motion controls.
The Wii was characterized by innovative gameplay experiences that appealed to players of all ages.
The Nintendo Wii not only revolutionized gaming but also opened up new possibilities for physical activity and social gaming. Its appeal transcended traditional gaming demographics, making it a significant milestone in the history of the medium.
In this way, the 2000s showcased Nintendo’s unwavering commitment to pushing the boundaries of gaming innovation, delivering memorable and enduring experiences that continue to resonate with gamers to this day.
Top 10 Nintendo Video Games from the 2000s
The 2000s marked a remarkable era for Nintendo, with the GameCube and Wii consoles delivering a treasure trove of beloved titles. Here, we present the top 10 Nintendo video games from that decade to enchanted gamers worldwide.
- Super Smash Bros. Melee
- The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker
- Metroid Prime
- Resident Evil 4
- Wii Sports
- Super Mario Galaxy
- The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess
- Mario Kart Wii
- Wii Fit
These games represent some of the most iconic and memorable titles from the GameCube and Wii eras, providing gamers with unique and entertaining experiences.
Let’s take a look back at each game now.
1. Super Smash Bros Melee
Super Smash Bros. Melee
“Super Smash Bros. Melee” is a fast-paced and frenetic fighting game that was released for the Nintendo GameCube in 2001. It’s the sequel to the original “Super Smash Bros.” for the Nintendo 64.
What sets this game apart is its roster of Nintendo’s most famous characters, including Mario, Link, Pikachu, and Donkey Kong, along with other third-party characters like Sonic and Solid Snake. The game is all about chaotic multiplayer battles where players engage in epic brawls.
“Melee” offered an array of game modes, but the heart of it lay in its multiplayer battles. The game supported up to four players, allowing them to pick their favorite characters and stages. The dynamic stages and interactive elements created an unpredictable and thrilling gaming experience.
Players could unleash powerful attacks and special moves to knock opponents off the screen. It’s a game that combined strategy, quick reflexes, and lots of shouting with friends.
“Melee” has had a remarkable competitive scene that continues to thrive. It’s celebrated for its precise mechanics and balanced gameplay.
Players compete in tournaments all over the world, and the game has even been featured at the renowned Evolution Championship Series (EVO). “Melee” remains a beloved game and a testament to the enduring appeal of Nintendo’s characters.
2. The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker
“The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker” is an action-adventure game released for the Nintendo GameCube in 2002. It’s the tenth installment in “The Legend of Zelda” series. The game is known for its distinctive cel-shaded art style, which sets it apart from other Zelda games. It takes players on a seafaring adventure in a vast and open world.
In “The Wind Waker,” players take on the role of Link, the hero of Hyrule. Link’s journey begins on Outset Island and soon leads him to explore a vast ocean filled with islands to discover and mysteries to unravel. The game is revered for its exploration, sailing mechanics, and the use of the Wind Waker, a magical conductor’s baton that plays a central role in the game’s puzzles and progression. The story is a captivating blend of classic Zelda lore and unique twists, making it an unforgettable adventure.
While the game’s cel-shaded art style was initially met with skepticism, it has since become a beloved and iconic part of the Zelda franchise. “The Wind Waker” is celebrated for its charm, creativity, and emotional depth. It was later remastered for the Wii U, introducing it to a new generation of gamers.
3. Metroid Prime
“Metroid Prime” is a first-person action-adventure game that brought the classic “Metroid” series into the world of 3D. It was released for the Nintendo GameCube in 2002. This game marked a significant departure from the side-scrolling 2D gameplay of its predecessors and introduced players to a fully immersive 3D world.
In “Metroid Prime,” players assume the role of Samus Aran, a space bounty hunter. The game combines exploration, puzzle-solving, and intense combat in a richly detailed and atmospheric world. It introduced the concept of scanning to gather information and solve puzzles. The game’s first-person perspective allowed for an unprecedented level of immersion, and the eerie and isolated atmosphere added depth to Samus’s character.
“Metroid Prime” was praised for successfully translating the essence of the 2D Metroid games into a 3D format. It spawned a successful trilogy and was well-received by both fans and critics. It’s often considered one of the GameCube’s standout titles and a pivotal moment in the history of the Metroid series.
“Pikmin” is a real-time strategy game released for the Nintendo GameCube in 2001. It was a departure from traditional Nintendo titles and introduced players to a charming world of tiny, plant-like creatures called Pikmin.
In “Pikmin,” players control Captain Olimar, a miniature space explorer who crash-lands on an unfamiliar planet. Olimar discovers the Pikmin, who help him collect parts of his damaged spaceship to escape the planet. The game emphasizes resource management and strategic thinking, as players command groups of Pikmin to overcome obstacles and enemies. Each type of Pikmin has unique abilities, adding depth to the gameplay.
“Pikmin” was praised for its creativity and unique gameplay. It inspired sequels and became a beloved Nintendo franchise. The game’s charm and originality continue to attract new players to this day.
5. Resident Evil 4
“Resident Evil 4” is a survival horror game released for the Nintendo GameCube in 2005. It’s a departure from the traditional “Resident Evil” gameplay, introducing a more action-oriented approach.
In “Resident Evil 4,” players take on the role of Leon S. Kennedy, a government agent sent to rescue the President’s daughter from a remote village filled with hostile villagers infected by a mysterious parasite. The game introduced an over-the-shoulder camera perspective, allowing for more dynamic and immersive combat. It emphasized strategic shooting and resource management, and its intense action sequences were a departure from the series’ earlier titles.
“Resident Evil 4” is often regarded as one of the greatest video games of all time. It not only revitalized the “Resident Evil” franchise but also influenced the entire survival horror and action game genres. Its success led to various adaptations, including releases on other platforms and a redefined direction for the series. The game’s impact is still felt in modern gaming.
6. Wii Sports
“Wii Sports” is a sports simulation game that was released as a launch title for the Nintendo Wii in 2006. It was a groundbreaking title that showcased the Wii’s innovative motion controls and helped introduce a wide audience to the world of video gaming.
The game features five sports: tennis, baseball, bowling, golf, and boxing. Players use the Wii Remote to mimic the physical actions of each sport, making it an incredibly intuitive and engaging experience. The multiplayer aspect of “Wii Sports” made it an instant hit at parties and family gatherings, as it allowed friends and family to compete against each other in a fun and accessible manner.
“Wii Sports” played a crucial role in the immense success of the Nintendo Wii. It demonstrated the potential of motion controls in gaming, attracting players of all ages and backgrounds. The game became a cultural phenomenon and is often remembered as one of the best-selling video games of all time.
7. Super Mario Galaxy
“Super Mario Galaxy” is a 3D platformer that was released for the Nintendo Wii in 2007. It’s the third 3D Mario game, following “Super Mario 64” and “Super Mario Sunshine,” and introduced players to a cosmic adventure.
The game’s defining feature is its unique gravity-based gameplay. Mario journeys through a series of planetoids, each with its own gravitational pull. This innovative mechanic allowed for imaginative and challenging level design. Mario can perform various gravity-defying moves, including jumping between small planetoids and navigating gravity fields. The game’s vibrant and imaginative galaxies, combined with the power-ups like the Bee Suit and Boo Mushroom, made it a standout in the Mario series.
“Super Mario Galaxy” received widespread critical acclaim and is considered one of the greatest video games ever made. It was followed by a sequel, “Super Mario Galaxy 2,” and its gravity-based gameplay influenced other titles in the series. The game’s imaginative design and captivating story continue to enchant players.
8. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess
“The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess” is an action-adventure game released for the Nintendo Wii in 2006. It’s the thirteenth installment in “The Legend of Zelda” series and offered a darker and more mature take on the franchise.
The game follows Link, the series’ iconic hero, as he’s drawn into a parallel world known as the Twilight Realm. In this shadowy world, Link transforms into a wolf and must work with Midna, a mischievous imp, to save Hyrule from a growing darkness. The game’s dungeons are intricate, its puzzles are challenging, and its combat is intense. It introduced the ability to perform special moves with various weapons, adding depth to battles.
“Twilight Princess” was well-received by both fans and critics and is often considered one of the greatest video games of all time. It was later remastered for the Wii U, introducing it to a new generation of players. The game’s more mature storyline and memorable characters have contributed to its enduring popularity.
9. Mario Kart Wii
“Mario Kart Wii” is a kart racing game released for the Nintendo Wii in 2008. It’s the sixth installment in the “Mario Kart” series and brought the beloved racing franchise to the motion-controlled world of the Wii.
The game retains the classic “Mario Kart” gameplay, featuring a mix of creative tracks and an array of power-ups. What set “Mario Kart Wii” apart was the introduction of motion controls. Players could use the Wii Remote and Nunchuk, the Wii Wheel accessory, or the Classic Controller to steer their karts. The game also introduced bikes as a new vehicle type, adding a layer of strategy to the racing. Multiplayer was a highlight, with the game supporting up to 12 players online.
“Mario Kart Wii” became one of the best-selling games on the Wii, and its accessible yet competitive racing gameplay made it a staple at social gatherings. The game’s influence can be seen in subsequent titles in the series, making it a significant entry in the “Mario Kart” franchise.
10. Wii Fit
“Wii Fit” is a fitness game released for the Nintendo Wii in 2007. It aimed to promote physical activity and healthy living by utilizing the Wii Balance Board, a unique accessory that measured players’ movements.
“Wii Fit” offers a range of yoga and strength training exercises, as well as balance and aerobic games. The game used the Balance Board to assess players’ weight and balance and provided customized workout plans based on their fitness goals. It introduced a fun and interactive way to stay active at home, making fitness more accessible and enjoyable.
“Wii Fit” was well-received for its innovative approach to fitness and became a best-seller. It encouraged players to incorporate physical activity into their daily routines. The game paved the way for the gamification of fitness and inspired other fitness games and accessories in the gaming industry.
These GameCube and Wii titles not only provided immense enjoyment to gamers but also had a profound impact on the gaming industry. Their influence is still felt today, with many of them being re-released and celebrated.
The GameCube and Wii eras of the 2000s marked a significant period in Nintendo’s history, with a focus on innovative gameplay experiences.
These games continue to hold a special place in the hearts of gamers, showcasing the enduring creativity and excellence of Nintendo.