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The title is a compilation of microgames from across the franchise, including a number of new additions as well. Many returning microgames, however, have been updated to new control schemes, scenarios and visuals. Overall, WarioWare Gold features 316 microgames, the largest collection in any WarioWare game to date, a record previously held by WarioWare: Twisted! for the Game Boy Advance.
WarioWare Gold is also notable as the first game in the series to feature fully voiced cutscenes. Though Charles Martinet reprises his role as Wario in the English version, other characters receive new voice actors.
After stealing a golden pot from a temple at Luxeville, Wario comes to the realization that he is completely out of money. While reflecting on this in his house in Diamond City, Wario sees a report on television about Super Pyoro; a new entry in the Pyoro video game franchise that fans are eager to get their hands on. Acknowledging the money that could be made in the booming industry, Wario again sets out to capitalize on the video game craze. Using his laptop and a recording device, Wario streams his latest scheme to the residents of Diamond City; a gaming competition with a steep entry fee, but a ten million coin reward to the victor. True to form, Wario calls up his closest friends to do most of the work for him and again, they agree. With his fortune on the line, Wario sets out to begin Diamond City's first "Wario Bowl" games. Unbeknownst to Wario however, a small girl named Lulu is pursuing him in attempt to retrieve the golden pot that was stolen.
Story Mode is divided into four leagues. The first three leagues all use a different control scheme: the Mash League (using the buttons like in WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgame$!), the Twist League (using gyro controls like in WarioWare: Twisted!), and the Touch League (using the touch screen like in WarioWare: Touched!). The fourth league is called the Ultra League and it uses all three control schemes plus a fourth involving blowing the microphone, which is unlocked by beating all three other leagues. The first three leagues each consist of 5 stages, with each one having its own theme. The first stage is always an introduction stage hosted by Wario. The other 4 stages are hosted by one of Wario's friends and have one of the following themes: That's Life, Fantasy, Sports, and Nintendo Classics. All themes appear once in every league. In the Ultra League, there are 3 stages, including two "remix" stages which compile all the microgames from six of the previous stages, and center on two of the themes, and a final stage hosted by Wario's newest alter-ego, Wario Deluxe, which compiles all the microgames from the introduction stages and a brand-new set centered on a new theme: Anything Goes.
These characters appear in Story Mode as side characters. Mike and Fronk have their own sets of microgames, but they are exclusive to the remix stages in the Ultra League.
Challenge Mode is unlocked after completing Story Mode and features stages with altered rules. The following Challenge stages are as follows:
Names in other languages
WarioWare Gold is a collection of 300 microgames (not counting the boss microgames), 54 of which are new to the series. Each microgame falls under a specific genre – "Intro Games," "Sports", "That's Life", "Fantasy", "Nintendo Classics", "Anything Goes" – and a control scheme – "Mash", "Twist", "Touch", "Blow".
Similarly to WarioWare: Twisted! and Game & Wario, WarioWare Gold features extra content in the form of souvenirs, obtainable via the Capsule Machine. These souvenirs are divided into eight categories: Minigames, Phones, Studio, Movies, Cards, Nintendo, Records and Miscellaneous.
Missions are certain milestones that could be achieved, similar to medals in WarioWare: D.I.Y.. Once a mission is completed, the player is rewarded with certain number of coins.
List of changes
As in Game & Wario, the characters have been redesigned in a much more simplified style, with some details being removed like Wario's gloves lacking Ws and characters looking far more angular such as Dribble.
All returning microgames in WarioWare Gold were reprogrammed and redrawn from scratch. To select microgames for inclusion, Goro Abe polled the staff on their favorites and then ranked them according to other factors, such as how easily understood the microgame is or if it did not feel dated. The team aimed to update the microgame with new scenarios, more gameplay variables and also created connections between them that did not exist in their original form, with Abe citing how the remade versions of Hookin' Up, Love Tester, Rocky Reunion, Tearful Reunion, and Long Lost Love depict "a drama between a man and woman that spans several microgames." The Split Screen challenge mode was an idea that the WarioWare development team had wanted to do since the days of the Nintendo DS, but the concept had been too taxing on the hardware.
Speaking about the design of the unlockable souvenirs, Goro Abe explained that while WarioWare: Twisted! and WarioWare: Touched! featured a large number of toys centered around the touch screen and gyro as both technologies were still fairly novel at the time, the team felt such unlockables were unnecessary for Gold due to how commonplace both forms of inputs had become, and that with the end-of-development crunch, they preferred to focus on extras that didn't require as much programming effort like Records.
Pre-release and unused content
An early version of Penny Crygor's intro cutscene exists in the game's files. This cutscene mostly consists of sketches by the game's character design Ko Takeuchi, and features a few minor differences in character and background designs as well, like for the laboratory in the background.
References in later games