Pikmin and Mario Power Tennis Wii-makes bound for North America

It looks like the “Wii is not Gamecube 1.5 Defense Force” is going to be mobilizing its army sometime next year, as Nintendo of America has confirmed that Pikmin and Mario Power Tennis will be the first games in the “Play on Wii” series to reach North America in 2009. Previously announced at Nintendo’s fall press conference, the “Play on Wii” series aims to bring popular Gamecube games to Wii owners who may have missed them on the first go-round. The Wii-makes will reportedly be budget priced and retrofitted with control schemes that take advantage of the system’s pointer and waggle capabilities.

While the cynics among us may decry it as a quick and dirty cash grab by the big N, we think the “Play on Wii” series is a great idea for a number of reasons. Titles like Pikmin, Donkey Kong Jungle Beat, and Chibi-Robo, while popular with critics and gamers alike, never received the mainstream recognition they deserved, but the Wii’s ever-expanding install base gives them a second chance. Plus, what else but greatness and hilarity can come from adding waggle to a chaotic multiplayer doubles match in Mario Power Tennis?