UGO writes: "There was a time when any Nintendo release with the word "Mario," "Zelda" or "Metroid" in the title was a guaranteed gold-standard experience. That's actually still the case – for the most part, anyway – but the length of time between the appearances of these and the developer's other most popular franchises has increased dramatically (Pikmin 2 anyone?). With the Big N now seemingly more focused on personal fitness and minigame collections than anything else, the burden of pleasing the Nunchuk-loving segment of the world's Wii owners has fallen to the third-parties. And based on what we saw of Mushroom Men: The Spore Wars last week, few have risen to the challenge as well as the Austin-based Red Fly Studio has.
Mushroom Men is actually coming to Nintendo DS first, in mid-October, as a side-scrolling prequel bearing the subtitle Rise of the Fungi. The Wii-exclusive Mushroom Men: The Spore Wars will arrive roughly a month later – on November 11 – with a story which exists independently of the DS game. Both titles will be published by Gamecock. Unlike the handheld release, Spore Wars is a fully 3D action-platformer which seems as though it offers enough depth and personality to challenge - or at least make funny faces at – the classics in Nintendo's first-party catalog."