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|Debut||Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3 (1994)|
The Wario franchise is a spin-off from the Super Mario franchise featuring a former arch-villain of Mario known as Wario. The Wario franchise encompasses several very different series of games whose one common factor is Wario as the title character.
Wario was initially introduced as the villain of the 1992 Game Boy game, Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins. This led to a spin-off with the next game, which was called Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3. Despite Mario's name still being present in the title, this game featured Wario as the title character on his own adventure where he quested for riches. With this, the Super Mario Land series transitioned into the Wario Land series which spanned several further installments for the Game Boy, Virtual Boy, Game Boy Color and Game Boy Advance. These games were sidescrolling platformers similar to the Mario games, but the gameplay was altered to reflect Wario's personality. Wario came with his own special tackling move and was even invincible in some of the games. These games were also more centered around collecting riches and treasures, and in some cases there were special ranked endings based on how much was collected.
Wario had brief foray into 3-D with 2003's Wario World for the Gamecube. This was Wario's attempt at a 3-D platforming adventure in the vein of Super Mario 64, but it apparently did not perform well enough for follow-ups. In that same year, WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgame$! was released for the Game Boy Advance. This game was a vast departure from the Wario Land titles in that it was centered around Wario founding a video game company in Diamond City, one that specializes in making micrograms, which are minigames that are played in the span of just seconds. Thus, rather than being an adventure game, WarioWare acts as a collection of microgames to play through. Wario also received a unique wardrobe change for this appearance.
WarioWare then became its own series with installments coming out semi-regularly for the following years, on the Game Boy Advance, Gamecube, Nintendo DS, Nintendo 3DS and the Wii U. Throughout this time, there have only been two Wario platforming adventures released. One was the 2007 Nintendo DS game Wario: Master of Disguise, and the other was the 2008 Nintendo Wii follow-up of the Wario Land series known as Wario Land: Shake It!.
Despite having his own games, Wario has continued to maintain a presence in the Mario sports, party and some other spin-off games, while being absent from the mainstream platforming and RPG games with the only exception being his unlockable playable role in Super Mario 64 DS. Dr. Mario 64 did also notably act as a crossover between Dr. Mario and Wario Land. Additionally, despite the Mario sports games introducing Wario's purported brother Waluigi in 2000, he has yet to actually appear in any Wario games.
In addition to those appearances, Wario has also been featured as a playable character in the Super Smash Bros. series from Super Smash Bros. Brawl onwards, with his appearance being based on a mixture of his portrayals in Wario Land and WarioWare. The Smash Bros. games also feature stages and Assist Trophies based on the WarioWare series in addition to music from all of the game.
List of Titles
Wario Land Series
- Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3 - GB, 1993
- Virtual Boy Wario Land - Virtual Boy, 1995
- Wario Land II - GB, 1998 and GBC, 1999
- Wario Land 3 - GBC, 2000
- Wario Land 4 - GBA, 2001
- Wario World - GCN, 2003
- Wario: Master of Disguise - DS, 2007
- Wario Land: Shake It! - Wii, 2008
- WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgame$ - GBA, 2003
- WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Party Game$ - GCN, 2004
- WarioWare: Touched! - DS, 2005
- WarioWare: Twisted! - GBA, 2005
- WarioWare: Smooth Moves - Wii, 2007
- WarioWare: Snapped! - DSiWare, 2008
- WarioWare: D.I.Y. - DSi, 2009
- WarioWare: D.I.Y. Showcase - WiiWare, 2009
- Game & Wario - Wii U, 2013