Another few months go by and here we are with another Nintendo Direct which aired on the third of March. If you don’t know what one is, it is basically a thirty to forty minute pre-recorded presentation where Nintendo talks about their upcoming updates and games. This is the last one before Nintendo take the main stage at the Electronic Entertainment Expo in the summer to probably unveil their next console, so the hype wasn’t necessarily there because any huge updates would be put off until then. Despite this however, Nintendo did still unleash some exciting news and nice surprises. Here is an overview of what was announced.
On the Wii U:
- Another entry in the Paper Mario series was announced called Paper Mario: Colour Splash. It seems to be closer to an action adventure game where you attack enemies with some sort of card system. It looks gorgeous.
- A Namco game called Lost Reavers was announced. Nintendo said it is a free to play co-operative third person action game. Think Left 4 Dead but more Japanese and less variation. Lost Reavers sounds like a cool game, but I feel it hinges on how scummy the free to play parts are which will define it’s quality.
- Star Fox Zero (the new Star Fox game made by Platinum Games and Shiguru Miyamoto) was finally given a release date of the 22nd of April and, if you buy the first print, it comes with a brand new game: Star Fox Guard. The latter game seems to be a different take on a Tower Defence style game where you control and plot down towers to stop monsters attacking your core. What makes it interesting is that you can design levels à la Mario Maker and other people can play them and vice versa. Star Fox Zero’s quality looks suspect, but Guard seems really cool.
- Speaking of Super Mario Maker, Nintendo detailed a new update for the game that adds keys, locks and crazy giant drill things. It is a small thing but the inclusion of keys, which can be held by enemies and split into five different pieces, will really add some new complexity to the game.
- Splatoon will be receiving some balance changes, new weapons and some updates to how Splatfests work.
- And finally, something called Tokyo Mirage Seasons #FE (pronounced “fe-sharp”) is coming to the West on the 24th of June. I am not exactly sure what the hell this game is, but I am led to believe that it is a RPG with some Fire Emblem characters mixed with elements of Atlas (makers of the Shin Megami Tensei games, among others) set during a massive JPOP concert. I dunno man, it looks crazy as shit and I am on-board for crazy-ass looking games.
On the 3DS:
- Disney Art Academy was announced and will be coming out on the 15th of July. It is a tool that teaches you how to draw dozens upon dozens of Disney and Pixar characters including the likes of Elsa from ‘Frozen’, Buzz Lightyear from ‘Toy Story’ and of course Mickey Mouse. It looks well made but doesn’t interest me in the slightest. I like how all the characters have different art styles though.
- Super Nintendo Games are coming to the New 3DS (and New 3DS XL). Super Mario World and Earthbound are out now and then every week from then on more games will be released. The likes of Super Metroid, The Legend of Zelda: Link Between Worlds and F-Zero are all coming out. If you buy one game, you get a discount on the others.
- Fire Emblem: Fates is finally coming out on the 20th of May. The special edition gets a cool Steelbook and reversible poster along with all three games.
- Yet another Monster Hunter game comes out this year. This one is called Monster Hunter: Generations and promises even more ridiculous ways to kill the monstrous wildlife. You will also get to play as the cat species in that game. It is out this Summer.
- One of the things that I am most excited for is Rhythem Paradise Megamix is coming out this year. What it essentially is, is a over a hundred mini-games from across the series (and some new ones) on one cartridge. If you have ever played any of the Warioware games you will know what this game is like, but for those who haven’t what this game essentially boils down to is a collection of rhythm based mini-games that go by really fast and are weird as hell. Think shaving the hairs off of a potato and you would be on point. It looks awesome.
- The highlight for me was the announcement of the new Kirby game: Kirby Planet Robobot. It is a 2D platformer where you play as Kirby, an amorphous pink blob that sucks in enemies and steal their abilities. Only this time he gets a bloody great big mech that also does that. It looks like a ton of fun and I am gutted that it is coming out on the 10th of June.
- Yo-Kai Watch – some sort of re-interpretation of the Pokémon style game that is huge in Japan – is coming to Europe on the 29th of April. If you want to see the stoic head of Nintendo of Europe dance to the theme song(?) to this game…well I have got you covered.
- The new Metroid game, Metroid Prime Federation Force is coming this summer. I am not 100% sure what this game actually is, but it looks like a co-operative shooter set in the Metroid universe. Not for me, but I am sure someone will enjoy it. Maybe?
- Hyrule Warriors Legends, Dynasty Warriors but set in the Zelda universe instead of Feudal China, is coming out on the 24th of March. There will also be a Season Pass for the game available at a later date.
- Dragon Quest VII: Fragments of the Forgotten Past will be out later this year
- One last thing: There are a quite a few indie games coming out on both the 3DS and Wii U. The likes of: Super Meat Boy, Azure Striker: Gunvolt 2, 6180 the moon and other games. I don’t really play Nintendo consoles for indie games, but I am glad that they are being supported.
Phew! That is a lot of stuff! Although, as a Wii U owner, I am rather disappointed by Nintendo’s positively anaemic release schedule for the console. I guess its lack of support just cements that their new console is going to be announced at E3 along with some more information about the new Zelda game they have teased seemingly forever. I love that they are doubling down on the 3DS though. It will certainly go out with a bang, especially when compared to the whimper of the Wii U.