Virtual Boy Wario Land
Virtual Boy Wario Land (also shortened as Wario Land), originally titled Wario Cruise (as seen on its serial number) and Wario's Treasure Hunt in development, is a video game released by Nintendo for the Virtual Boy in 1995. It is the second installment in the Wario Land series, and the follow-up to Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3.
The game begins with Wario landing his Bulldog seaplane in the middle of the Awazon river basin for some relaxation time. The vacation comes to an end however when he spots three Mask-Guys heading behind the Aldegara Waterfall carrying treasure. In claiming the treasure for himself, Wario follows the trio into their secret cavern, but is soon surprised by a trap door which plunges him into the underground chasms below. Now caught in a deep underground labyrinth, Wario swears to seek out his revenge and claim the treasure from the Mask-Guys.
Upon falling down the precipice within the earth, Wario must find his way through fourteen underground stages, including four boss stages, in order to make his way out. An elevator is found at the end of each stage, allowing Wario to climb higher the more he progresses in the game. A gate key is hidden somewhere in each stage, in which obtaining it is vital as it grants access to the elevator. Before each boss, a guard must be defeated before gaining access to the boss of that stage. The power and difficulty of the guard increases with each boss stage.
Each of the ten stages contain a well-hidden treasure, with each one resembling a different real-life object (such as a pocket watch and fountain pen). Collecting all ten treasures will allow Wario to enter a treasure room at the end of the game.
Wario's health and forms
Wario's health system comes in three stages. He starts off in his ordinary form. Garlic bottles and Viking helmets are found throughout ? Blocks, which will transform Wario into Bull Wario. If Wario takes damage at any time by touching harmful enemies, spikes, lava, etc., he will be reduced to Small Wario. Collecting a garlic bottle as Small Wario will restore him to normal form. Taking damage as Small Wario will result in a loss of a life, sending Wario back to the beginning of the stage.
Reaching zero on the twenty minute time limit will also cause Wario to lose a life. Wario begins with three lives. More can be earned by either collecting one hundred hearts or a diamond. If Wario loses all his lives, he receives Game Over and loses all hearts and coins. In a Game Over, one collected treasure will be lost (if any, and the deduction begin from the most recent stage and works backwards).
Wario has three additional forms which can't be reached through the garlic bottle power-up. They are Eagle Wario, Sea Dragon Wario and King Dragon Wario. Eagle Wario is reached by collecting an Eagle Statue, which can be found in ? Blocks. A Dragon Crystal can either transform Wario into Sea Dragon or King Dragon form, depending on the circumstances. If a Dragon Crystal is collected in any form but Eagle, Wario will transform into Sea Dragon. However if Eagle form is present when a Dragon Crystal is collected, he will transform into King Dragon Wario. It can also work the other way, where if an Eagle Statue is collected while in Sea Dragon form, King Dragon form will be reached. The King Dragon form has both the abilities of Eagle and Sea Dragon Wario, being able to fly and attack with flames respectively.
Items, blocks, and miscellaneous
Many coins and hearts are scattered throughout the ten main stages. There are two types of coins; one with a rhombus on it and other with a crown. The more common rhombus coin is worth a single coin towards the score, and the rarer crown coin is worth twenty. All coins collected in a stage are put towards a grand total, which is counted up after entering the elevator in the room before the next stage. There are two types of hearts; one smaller and one significantly larger. The larger heart is worth ten small hearts.
Coins and hearts can spent on playing mini-games between stages.
Many different types of blocks are found in the game. "? Blocks" hold objects or items which can be collected or used by Wario. These can only be struck once. A more common type of block looks like a square stone which can either be broken or cracked. Normal Wario can crack blocks by hitting them from below. Hitting again will break them. Small Wario can only break already cracked blocks, while Bull Wario can break them in one hit, cracked or not.
A much larger version of these blocks can only be broken by Bull Wario. Other methods of releasing an item or breaking a block can be performed through a Barge or Body Slam. Hidden Blocks can't be seen unless they are struck from below, which they will then release the object or item and become visible. Bonfire Blocks are the same size and shape as other blocks, but they have a flame symbol. These kinds of blocks can only be broken by the flames of Sea Dragon or King Dragon Wario. There are also areas of walls or flooring within stages which at first do not appear as breakable blocks. They are able to be broken using flames as aforementioned, and they usually lead to a hidden area.
Jump Boards are able to sling Wario to the background of the stage and vice versa. This is used when there is a separate area which is in the background that contains collectibles. Similar objects appear in the eleventh stage, where many of the Pan Platforms can send Wario into the background. In this stage also contains electric fans placed throughout areas. These fans will periodically turn on and off, and while rotating can send Wario flying in the direction of the wind. Warp Pipes also appear in the game: entering one will send Wario to a different area. Seen in the sixth stage are two secret switches, each with half a Phanto-esque mask shown on the front. Hitting both secret switches will destroy a wall to reveal a jump board that Wario can use to a hidden area.
Behavior and/or combat of enemies and hazards
Many different types of enemies are seen throughout the game, many being unique to a certain stage. Simply jumping on an enemy will not defeat it in most cases, it will usually temporarily stun them. Ground Pounding near an enemy may also stun it. When stunned, an enemy will become harmless and can be picked up and thrown. If a thrown enemy clashes with another enemy before bouncing twice, they will both be defeated. Usually, Wario would need to Barge, Ground Pound or Body Slam a weak spot of an individual enemy to defeat it. A stunned enemy can also be thrown into a coin cloud to redeem coins. An Angry Watermelon is seen blocking paths in Stage 9. Melons dropped by Honey-Bees can be placed on a Watermelon Spring, which will send it flying upwards into the background, possibly hitting the button which destroys the Angry Watermelon, thus clearing the way.
The gameplay theme and terrain varies from stage to stage. Most of the terrain Wario will encounter is made up of solid flooring. Some stages are part or entirely made up of water, where Wario is able to swim in. Some areas contain water currents which are difficult to swim against. The sixth stage is the only one that contains a waterfall, which Wario is able to slowly climb. Shallow bodies of harmful lava are seen throughout the game. Stage 11 contains areas where the player must safely travel over flames along the ground, and sometimes on the ceiling. Conveyor belt flooring is seen in Stage 9, which will move Wario in a certain direction while he is not moving.
Boss stages (marked with an asterisk below) are marked with a skull symbol on the map screen.
Compared to the other Mario games on the Virtual Boy, Virtual Boy Wario Land was well received.
The staff team involved in the development of Virtual Boy Wario Land was smaller in comparison to other Wario Land games in the series. Hiroji Kiyotake co-directed the game, while Kazumi Totaka developed the music and sound effects. If the player waits at the end screen for 1 minute and 15 seconds after beating the game, Totaka's Song will play.
Names in other languages