Super Mario World takes off on VC

Portly plumber's SNES debut looms large on the Wii Shop Channel; Gain Ground and Vigilante also new to service.

A new round of games has appeared on the Virtual Console today, headed up by one of GameSpot's Greatest Games of All Time. The downloadable game service is currently playing host to the Super Nintendo launch title Super Mario World, the Sega Genesis edition of Gain Ground, and the TurboGrafx-16 beat-'em-up Vigilante.

While Mario had been "super" since the days of the Nintendo Entertainment System, it wasn't until his SNES debut that he actually donned a cape suiting the moniker. Super Mario World also marked the debut of Yoshi, Mario's loyal dinosaurian steed and a voracious devourer of evil creatures. Super Mario World is available for 800 Wii Points ($8) and is rated E for Everyone.

Originally scheduled for release on the Virtual Console last week, Gain Ground is a port of an arcade top-down shooter. Players take on the role of combatants on a virtual reality sim gone haywire, rescuing other humans and attempting to bring the system down from the inside. Gain Ground is available for 800 Wii points ($8) and is rated E for Everyone.

The final Virtual Console release of the week, Vigilante is a side-scrolling beat-'em-up that puts players in the role of a New Yorker looking to take justice into his own hands after a gang kidnaps his girlfriend, Madonna. The game was originally developed for the arcades by Irem, makers of the previous Virtual Console releases R-Type and R-Type III. Vigilante will cost gamers 600 Wii points ($6) and is rated E10+ for Everyone 10 and Older.

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