Wario may have started out as just another villain for Mario to defeat, but he has since evolved into an icon of gaming himself. There are now over 20 games that bear the Wario name on it – whether they are the platforming-based Wario Land games or the bombastic WarioWare minigame collections.
Known for their endearing sense of humour, unique gameplay mechanics, and cartoony art styles, Wario games are always buckets of fun that have traditionally performed rather well for Nintendo in the sales charts. Indeed, the entire Wario franchise has sold a mammoth 25 million copies across all of the games featuring the yellow and purple plumber. SO today, let’s look at the top best selling Wario games to see which one comes out on top.
10. WarioWare: Twisted (0.7 million)
The only game on this list to not have cracked the 1 million sales mark, WarioWare: Twisted is nonetheless a fondly remembered GBA title for its innovative, motion-controlled minigames. That’s right, even before the Wii came out, this game had a gyro sensor in its cartridge that allowed gamers to spin, rotate, and move the GBA around in order to complete the various minigames. A dynamic game, for sure.
9. Wario Land: Shake It! (1.06 million)
As of this point in time, Wario Land: Shake It! is the most recent game in the Wario Land series – and it might just be the best. Shake It! incorporates the Wii motion controls to great effect, attaching some of Wario’s standard moves to a quick shake of the remote. But the classic 2D platforming remains as strong as ever, with some of the best pixel art that we’ve seen from a Nintendo game in a long time.
8. WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgames! (1.1 million)
WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgames! was the very first entry in the now beloved WarioWare series and entertained GBA players with its addicting selection of kooky minigames. This formula has been perfected in later games, but it’s impressive how much the developers got right in this initial attempt. It’s still a rush to return to this game and see how many microgames you can smash through before the timer runs out.
7. WarioWare: Get It Together! (1.24 million)
Switching (pun intended) from the first WarioWare game to the most recent, WarioWare: Get It Together! brought back the chaotic microgame action to a brand-new generation of gamers. Given how recent this game still is, it’s quite possible that Get It Together! will rise up a few places on this list, as it has already smashed the 1 million sales milestone in a little over 6 months. As it stands, Get It Together! is an exceptionally fun minigame collection that carries forth the personality and addictive-nature of its predecessors.
6. Wario Land II (1.48 million)
Wario Land II was the first Wario game that felt confident enough to do without any mention of Mario in the title, and by this point in time, it was well deserved. The traditional platforming sections have been broken up with puzzles and other obstacles, allowing players to experience an adventure unique from what they were used to at the time. Wario Land II remains a classic for the original Gameboy, and despite it’s relatively late release in 1998, it still managed to sell a comfortable 1.48 million units.
5/4. Wario Land 3 & Wario Land 4 (2.2 million)
We now enter the 2 million club, and we a tie for our fifth and fourth-placed best selling Wario games. Conveniently, both Wario Land 3 for the Gameboy Color and Wario Land 4 for the Gameboy Advance both sit on 2.2 million units sold. Both games continue the proud legacy of the original Wario Land titles, with fun gameplay, expressive visuals, and a great sense of humour. The abilities are varied, the levels can be challenging without being overwhelming, and the narratives remain as ridiculous as ever. Both Wario Land 3 and 4 are excellent 2D platformers for their respective systems and performed extremely well in the sales charts.
3. WarioWare: Smooth Moves (2.35 million)
The Wii is the perfect system for WarioWare to make its home console debut, and WarioWare: Smooth Moves did not disappoint in the slightest. As its name suggests, Smooth Moves takes advantage of the Wii’s motion controls to great effect – basing each microgame around a specific motion or specific controller grip in order to keep players on their toes. At 2.35 million, this game was a hit amongst the public. This is especially impressive as the game released so early into the Wii’s life cycle, during a time when it was difficult to find systems.
2. WarioWare: Touched (2.47 million)
If there was ever going to be a game that elegantly demonstrated the gameplay potential of the Nintendo DS’ touch screen, it was going to be WarioWare: Touched. Thankfully, it didn’t slip up with that responsibility, and nearly 2 and half million people have fallen down its rabbit hole ever since. Touched made great use of the DS’ touchscreen, microphone, and dual screens to immerse gamers within its addicting suite of microgames. One of the best games in a series of knockouts, WarioWare: Touched is deserving of its success
1. Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3 (5.19 million)
Despite all the games that have come after it, the best selling Wario game remains the one that started it all. After originally appearing at the main villain of Super Mario Land 2, Nintendo decided to give Wario the starring role in Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3. And despite labelled in the Mario series, this is very much Wario’s own game. The gameplay is a lot slower and more combat focused. Wario lacks the grace and elegance of Mario, and therefore makes up for it with his brute strength. Even to this day, Wario Land is still a blast to play, and with over 5 million copies sold, it dominates all the games that have come after it.
And there you have it, the top best selling Wario games!