i’ve been working my way through the wario land series, and the next one up was wario land 4 for GBA, and actually one of the earliest releases for the system. i don’t have a whole lot to say about this game, actually, as it’s quite similar to WL2 and WL3; most of wario’s transformations are back, and i don’t think any new ones were added. the visuals are quite nice, and the game mixes things up a bit by incorporating a somewhat slightly warioware-tinged presentation (although WL4 precedes it by a year and a half the two share some of the same voice samples and level groupings (e.g. “nature”)). the biggest change is that the game requires you to find a switch on each level, and once you press it a timer goes off and you have to race back to the start of the level before it runs out. since the route back to the start of the level is often quite different from the route to get to the switch this gameplay mechanic isn’t too much of a burden, although it doesn’t really seem to add much to the game itself. another change is that instead of repeated forays into a level as in WL3, all the levels are self-contained. although you can return to levels to find crystals worth more points in order to earn a higher ranking or a CD to unlock a track in the in-game sound collection, there’s not much motivation to do so. the game apparently features two harder settings that require you to find these often hidden or hard-to-get-to locations instead of having them be optional.
all in all this was a decent entry to the series, although it’s on the short side (only 16 levels and a handful of boss fights) and has the disadvantage of coming after the excellent wario land 3. for newcomers to the series this is a wholly viable entry point, although for long-time fans it just doesn’t offer much that’s distinctive with the exception of a few levels early on that are quite brilliant.
get your grubby paws on this set of wario land 4 links:
– nice entry at mariowiki.com with sprites of enemies, etc. and info on the title’s debut of a new princess, princess shokora (i.e. princess chocolate)
– review at nintendolife.com
– entry at wikipedia