The games of November 2012

Franchise frenzy and the Wii U launch barrage – hello, holidays!

November 18 (continued)

Tekken Tag Tournament 2: Wii U Edition

Platform: Wii U
EU: November 30

Just a couple months after its debut on other platforms, Tekken Tag Tournament 2: Wii U Edition will launch alongside Nintendo's console, and the bonus features here should prove incredibly amusing. Most notably, the game includes costumes based on Super Mario, The Legend of Zelda, Star Fox, and Metroid – but they're scaled to match the muscle-bound Tekken brawlers, which creates some definite hilarity. Add to that the new Mushroom Battle mode, in which fighters snag 'shrooms around the stage to grow larger or smaller, plus an array of touch screen combos for newcomers, and this Wii U version should be the definitive one.

Darksiders II

Platform: Wii U
EU: TBA

THQ's Darksiders II is another semi-recent multiplatform release that's going the light enhancement route for the Wii U launch, thanks to a handful of GamePad functions and the addition of previously premium content to the package. As something of an ever-present menu, you'll be able to use the GamePad to look at the map and view Death's inventory, plus the gyroscope allows you to move while on horseback or underwater, as well as dodge attacks and interact with certain puzzles. Additionally, the package ship with the Argul's Tomb DLC bundled in, which THQ says adds five hours of content; we found it to be more like two hours, and it's not essential or well-polished stuff, but free gameplay is free gameplay.

Tank! Tank! Tank!

Platform: Wii U
EU: November 30

Amidst all of the big-name experiences launching with the Wii U, one of the more talked-about early titles amongst the games press has been Tank! Tank! Tank!, Namco Bandai's adaptation of its rousing arcade affair. Essentially a colorful co-op and competitive multiplayer battler, each player mans a cartoonish tank and vaults into quick-hit action as you'll blast each other across a city, pair up in team matches, work together to defeat a giant mechanical boss, or even take the role of a boss against the smaller tanks. Keep an eye out for this one as a potential sleeper favorite.

Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor's Edge

Platform: Wii U
EU: TBA

Tecmo sure does love to release special editions of its Ninja Gaiden games on new platforms, and the launch of the Wii U gives the publisher ample reason to do so with Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor's Edge. Released earlier this year on other platforms, Ninja Gaiden 3 lost focus on what made the previous entries great, with blander combat and a bigger story focus that we derided as "soulless and cold." Razor's Edge aims to step back towards what made the series great with combat alterations, amped-up gore, and the addition of Dead or Alive's Ayane as a playable character, which should bring some much-needed variety back to the adventure.

Toki Tori 2

Platform: Wii U (eShop), PC
EU: November 30

Two Tribes' debut title Toki Tori premiered on a Nintendo platform back in 2000 (Game Boy Color), so it makes perfect sense for the sequel to pop up a dozen years later on the Wii U eShop. The puzzle-solving platformer looks fantastic running in high definition, and it comes with some Wii U-specific features, to boot. Toki Tori 2 is fully playable on the GamePad screen, if desired, plus the included level editor can be ably controlled via the touch screen. Toki Tori 2 is also slated for launch on PC this holiday season, though it's unclear whether it'll launch at the same time as the Wii U version, which is pegged for the system launch.

ESPN Sports Connection

Platform: Wii U
EU: TBA

With Nintendo passing on the opportunity to rethink the Wii Sports formula with the Wii U GamePad at launch, it's up to third-party publishers to fill the gaping sports mini-game collection hole for now. Ubisoft is the first at bat with ESPN Sports Connection (sans ESPN branding in UK), a set that compiles five mainstream sports – baseball, soccer, football, tennis, and golf – with go-kart races for a party-centric affair designed around the second-screen experience. Between motion gestures and touch interactions, you'll mimic the popular sports, plus the kart racing game can be played by up to five players between four Wii Remotes and the GamePad.

Warriors Orochi 3 Hyper

Platform: Wii U
EU: TBA

It's extremely common to see one of Tecmo Koei's Warriors titles at a system launch, so the appearance of Warriors Orochi 3 Hyper alongside the Wii U's debut is hardly a surprise. Sure, it's the first Orochi entry on a Nintendo platform, but story isn't exactly a prime concern for this well-worn hack-and-slash template. If you missed it on other platforms, Orochi 3 does come with a couple of neat hooks, namely familiar heroes from the publisher's other titles (like Ninja Gaiden and Dead or Alive), plus this enhanced Wii U iteration includes co-op with a second player on the Wii U GamePad screen and a hybrid 3D fighter/card battler mode.

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