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Wii U Virtual Console launching this spring

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The Virtual Console will launch on the Wii U this spring alongside a system update, with titles playable on the GamePad controller, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata announced in a Nintendo Direct presentation today.

The Virtual Console will launch with a selection of NES and SNES titles that have been redeveloped specifically for Wii U. Players can save game progress and play these games on the GamePad as well as access Miiverse. Iwata noted that Nintendo plans to release Game Boy Advance titles in the future as well. NES and SNES Virtual Console games for Wii U will cost the same as titles on the Wii Virtual Console.

Players who already purchased and transferred the titles on the Wii Virtual Console must purchase them again at a reduced price on the Wii U. These players can snag NES games for $1, and SNES titles will cost $1.50.

Additionally, to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Famicom system, Nintendo will release a new NES or SNES title on the Virtual Console every month for $0.30 each. The promotion will last until July, after which these games will go back to their regular prices:

  • January: Balloon Fight
  • February: F-Zero
  • March: Punch Out! Featuring Mr. Dream
  • April: Kirby's Adventure
  • May: Super Metroid
  • June: Yoshi
  • July: Donkey Kong

Two more updates have also been scheduled for the Wii U. One will launch with the Virtual Console in spring, and one more will arrive in the summer. These updates will allow software to launch faster and allow users to return to the menu screen faster.