Thank the video game gods that E3 is upon us, because I am DYING for some Nintendo news. Day 1 of E3 is in the books and luckily the generous folks at Nintendo gave us fans plenty to dream about. I watched their special event, showcasing what mischief they have in the green pipeline and am here to summarize it for you! However I do insist that if you have an hour free you should absolutely catch the video, which I have posted below for your convenience.
First off let me just fangirl out a bit. Nintendo has owned me, heart and soul, since The Legend of Zelda: A Link To The Past. I still play that game every few months, now on my WiiU, and I'm amazed how relevant and fun it still is after being out for nearly 23 years.
The event starts off in a hilarious, and unconventional way: puppets. Nintendo head honcho Satoru Iwata makes the coolest freaking puppet ever as he gets up from his office to gather the troops for the big announcement.
Next up we get to see the felt version of Reggie Fils-Aime, who is doing pushups on a bench, “Nintendo sixty-two, Nintendo sixty-three, Nintendo sixty-four”. If I ever do pushups again, I don't see how I can count them any other way.
Lastly we see Shigeru Miyamoto pop out of the trademark Mario World green tube. His eyebrows, ya'll.... his EYEBROWS. They're so majestic and clean cut, I can't handle it.
Slowly though, the puppets start to transform, taking on animal parts. A fox nose. A set of bunny ears. A blue, feathered face. Oh my god are they about to talk about...
STARFOX ZERO (WiiU)
I may be yelling at my computer screen. Long have I yearned to be back in space, doing barrel rolls and it finally seems as if the time has come for us to return to the great unknown. StarFox Zero is coming, and it's bigger and better than ever! The graphics look stellar (pun intended) and Miaymoto explains a bit behind the game; the WiiU Gamepad will be a first-person perspective for Fox, and your TV will be a wider view of the area. Utilizing both components is wonderful, and is hard to come by in a lot of WiiU games. It has a more cinematic feel while maintaining that nostalgia we all crave. When it comes to control, the Gamepad will act like a plane's joystick – push down to fly down, pull up to fly up. Not only that, but the number of buttons needed to fire at enemies is down to one. The other buttons will be used to transform the R-Wing into a Walker as well as perform flips and U-turns. The Walker looks badass, like a mini AT-AT. Unless Nintendo surprisingly announces their open world Zelda, I don't know how much more I can freak out about a game than I currently am with StarFox Zero.
Skylanders Superchargers (WiiU)
Amiibos are bound to take over the Nintendo universe and I'm not 100% on board with this yet, but I have to give props for the two newest Amiibos that will be featured in Skylanders Superchargers. Not only will there be new characters, but they are introducing vehicles to accompany them, which is a pretty cool concept. First up, we have the classic gorilla we all know and love; Turbo Charged Donkey Kong will be rolling around in his Barrel Blaster. We also get to see Hammer Slam Bowser, who will be cruising along, crushing skulls in his Clown Cruiser.
The Legend Of Zelda: Tri Force Heroes (3DS)
What do you get when you take 3 people and combine them into one giant Link totem? Well we are certainly about to find out with Tri Force Heroes. The game can be played solo, with dolls in place of other players, but it is optimized for you and 2 of your homies. The graphics have a Wind Waker feel to them, which I will never object to, and have also incorporated the feel of A Link Between Worlds. Wardrobe is crucial in this game, which changes depending on what kind of item you need. That reminds me of how Zelda games in the past have used tunics, and especially masks in the gameplay.
Hyrule Warriors Legends (3DS)
All the DLC characters from the WiiU counterpart will be included in the 3DS version as well as some characters and places from Wind Waker. I can see hours being wasted on this game, and I'm totally okay with that.
Both of these 3DS games are due out in the 1st quarter of 2016.
Metroid Prime Federation Force (3DS)
This game is absolutely still in development and I'm sure Nintendo just wanted to get the name out there. There will be a co-op 4 player with missions available, but a disclaimer says you'll need 'additional systems' to do so. Interesting. Within this game we also see Metroid Prime Blast Ball, which turns out to be a galactic version of Mario Kart battles. It'll be 3 vs. 3 and no doubt, will require an internet connection.
Fire Emblem Fates (3DS)
Good LORD the cinematic for this looks beautiful. The trailer for it shows a whole lot of drama, arrows and tears. There wasn't much in-game footage, so we'll have to wait a bit longer.
This looks like a fun anime-based game, but it's hard to tell if the footage shown is gameplay or if it's made for E3. It kind of threw me off, watching this one, because one of the character's boobs were like... insane. Does she use her breasts as a weapon or something, because let me tell you one thing... they don't normally bounce like that. Just sayin', in case you weren't schooled in the fine physics of the tatas. Catch this one in 2016!
Xenoblade Chronicles (WiiU)
Any time I can play a sci-fi/space game, I'm in, and this is no different. The in game-footage looks crisp and chaotic, as it should be. Combat showed a feature where everything but the target being out of focus, which helps enhance that particular fight. This is one of the few games that has an actual release date: 12/4/2015... just in time for Christmas.
Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer (3DS)
This is one obsession I have stopped myself from getting into, but I can totally understand why people love it so much. It's adorable, insanely customizable and is very kid-friendly. Take the Sims, toss in some animals and you've got your own-pocket sized world. I love building games, so I may have to invest in a 3DS afterall! You can get this come September 25th, 2015.
Animal Crossing Ambiio Festival (WiiU)
This reminds me of a toned-down Mario Party, with you moving characters around a game board to earn different types of currency. You just take away the fun part of the mini games, really. You MUST have an Ambiio (as suggested in the name) to play, which is kind of crappy. I don't feel the need to go out and buy a figurine, when the characters should be in the game that I've already paid for. But alas, that is the way things are moving nowadays. This will be out for the holidays this year.
Yoshi's Woolly World (WiiU)
This is a game I've had my eye on for a couple months now. It's cute as hell, has the lovable Yoshi and incorporates the soft, fuzzy and warm feel of yarn. Yoshi can transform into many different shapes due to the fact that he is yarn, which is a very cool game mechanic. Take Paper Mario and yarn-itize it in 3D and you'll have an idea of the capability of this game. Gameplay showed a solo-player situation but also a 2 player situation, working together to unravel and wind up the Yoshis to get over, under, around and through obstacles. I absolutely must own this and then sit on my couch squealing as I make Yoshi poop out little yarn balls. The release date is slated for October 16th, 2015.
Yo-kai Watch (3DS)
Another anime-feeling game (yes, I realize Nintendo is a Japanese company) that is bent more towards a younger crowd. It has a Pokemon type feel, with you wandering around gathering Yo-Kai and storing them in your watch. It uses the stylus supplied with the WiiU so that players can draw patterns for attacks, rather than mash buttons to get results. We'll see this land at some point during the holidays this year.
Mario And Luigi: Paper Jam (3DS)
Two Italians are better than one and in this 2D-looking 3D game, they're out to save the world once again. You can build a Mega Mario to beat the crap out of some Mega Goombas, which looks really neat. The world of Paper Mario meets the 3D world of most other Mario games and each character is designated to a certain button in regards to what ability they have. I like the combination of the two, and am happy they're seamlessly merging 2D and 3D. We'll see this in stores in the Spring of 2016.
Mario Tennis: Ultra Smash (WiiU)
Ever wanted to kick Toad's butt at Tennis? Well here's a new chance to do so. Between getting power ups to become 40ft tall and the hardcore serves you can send across the way, this game looks like it could be a supersized amount of fun with friends. The little puffs of cloud that come from under the players feet when they move rapidly make me smile - it's the little details that make Nintendo who they are. Plus, they have the cutest looking clouds around. I love Wii Tennis so hopefully they can incorporate the Wiimote so you're actually moving around. Throw in online capabilities and I'm there!
Super Mario Maker (WiiU)
Here's another game that I think will live up to the hype. Mario has been around for longer than most of us have been alive, and it's celebrating it's 30th anniversary this year. The developers discuss the science behind bringing the old school Super Mario Bros. to life, explaining how difficult it was to change the levels if they needed tweaking. They've come a long way, baby, now giving the power of level creation and manipulation to the gamers. They've made it so things like Goombas can appear under water now, and will have different reactions to the environment they're in (such as floating or rotating aimlessly). You will also be able to take your Amiibo and tap it to the WiiU Gamepad to change the appearance of Mario himself. In honor of the 30th anniversary, they're releasing an 8-bit Mario Amiibo, making in-game Mario larger than normal. The Amiibo looks cool enough to collect though, I'm not sure I'd even use it. Alongside this, they're putting out a booklet showcasing some gorgeous Mario drawings along with ideas for new courses. Maybe with Super Mario Maker we'll see a whole new crop of game designers emerge, and we'll be able to thank Nintendo for that! Start sketching your mind-blowing courses now, because this game is due out September 11th, 2015.
In finality, Nintendo is all about transformation this year. While I believe it, I also think they're setting up for the next generation of game consoles, and I can't help but feel disappointed. Star Fox Zero was abso-freaking-lutely amazing to see and I am no doubt excited for that. But I didn't get any kind of hint about Zelda for the WiiU and that's what I want most. The fact that it didn't show up this year kind of makes the case about the concern for the next console. Please, Nintendo, don't make me buy a whole new console just to play Zelda.
I watched E3 last year and Nintendo had a great show with Smash and Splatoon, but something feels disconnected this year. They offer up titles we know, but aren't necessarily in love with what they've done with them. And I'm certainly not trying to discredit what they do at Nintendo – I, for one, would have no interest in gaming if it wasn't for them and I know they are probably the hardest working folks in the business. I can't help but applaud what they do, even through criticism, because they stick to their guns and have brought some of the best games in history to life. But they don't feel like home anymore and don't give me the consistent thrill like they used to.
Also, do something about your online store, you don't have enough N64 games and that needs to change! New is good (when it's actually NEW), but respecting the classics and making them available again like you have for other titles is what will win fans over and bring old fans back. If this beloved company is going to compete with the powerhouses that are Sony and Microsoft, they will have to do way better and stay more than 1 step behind the curve. Yes, I said behind.
What did you guys think of the showing that Nintendo had at E3? Was there a game you were head-over-heels for, or are you disappointed there was a game missing?