Just a mere week after the Pokemon Nintendo Direct, here we get another Nintendo Direct. This is Nintendo’s last ditch effort of saying “Hey, we’ll show you the NX at E3 this year…but we’ve got some other stuff too!” I’m looking forward to some of that other stuff. Let’s take a look at it bit by bit.
Star Fox Zero/Star Fox Guard
A lot of people were asking for Star Fox, and this certainly looks like Star Fox. You’re flying, you’re shooting and there’s a lot of branching paths. This is one of those examples where I just don’t know what people want. I was never too into Star Fox, but this definitely looks like classic Star Fox, so I don’t know what more they could ask for. I’ll check this out, and you can too on April 22nd. AND, as a bonus, it comes with Star Fox Guard, which is a planting cameras and shootin’ game where you plant cameras and shoot dudes in a maze.
Splatoon still exists.
Nintendo would like to remind us that Splatoon is still around. Nothing too big from this. On March 8th they’re rebalancing a bunch of the equipment and skills and doing some shifting to matchmaking for the people who still care. The second, which is a bit more substantial, will add preset weapon combos as curated by the weapon horseshoe crab Sheldon. That’s coming at an unnamed date later on.
Mario and Sonic at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games:
Rugby. Ribbon Dancing. Sonic Boom characters.
One time, Mike and I played Mario and Sonic at the London Olympic Games in a party bus at the release of a game at GameStop…and it was like playing a fever dream. This seems like a similar fever dream. Abandon hope all ye who enter here.
Super Mario Maker:
You Mario Maker nuts are getting some admittedly cool stuff to work with. The examples they showed were shaking thwomps to turn em into spiky steel pylons, and shaking P-blocks to turn em into keys. Basically you can gate progression now, and even set up mandatory boss battles. They also added a “SUPER expert” mode to the 100-Mario Challenge that will unlock more characters. They showed Tetra, and that’s good enough for me.
Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE:
Oh sweet Jesus take the wheel. What we once knew as Shin Megami Tensei x Fire Emblem now has the most japanese and most viral name of all time. You literally can’t tweet or Facebook the full title of the game without hashtagging. Though, to be clear, the full name of the game is “Tokyo Mirage Sessions Sharp F-E.” The best.
They showed off the fact that the game is incredibly idol-centric, and that the gameplay sure looks an awful lot like Persona, which I am more than okay with. Plus, there’s an ad for Amrita Soda in the game, which of course is the MP granting drink from Persona. Like I said, the best. It’s coming out 6/24, and that can’t come soon enough.
I…I don’t know how I think about this. You’re on a team of four <ref>a common theme in this direct</ref> running around dungeons and killing dudes, and looting treasures. It looks…fine? I dunno, something about it doesn’t sit well with me yet. But we’ll know for sure when the open beta starts on April 14th. The game comes out in earnest on April 28th.
Paper Mario Color Splash
There’s…potential…here? I don’t know if Nintendo really recognizes why people like the original Paper Mario games anymore. This looks fine for what it is, I guess, but by tying the Paper Mario name to it, I think people are just going to get pissed off. Is it really so hard to make a Mario RPG like Thousand Year Door again? I won’t judge it so harshly because for what it is, it looks like it’ll be a fair amount of fun. You hit things with your paint hammer to bring color back, and you fight by painting cards and throwing them on the game pad. It’s coming sometime in 2016.
We’re all pretty familiar with Pokken Tournament at this point. It’s at Ev0, it’s kinda like Tekken with Pokemon but not actually, and it’s coming later this month. Basically here, we get a deeper look at Lucario, Gengar, and Machamp’s movesets. It’s out on Wii U on March 18th.
Legend of Zelda Twilight Princess HD:
In case you forgot it’s coming out tomorrow. They just wanted to remind you, and tell you about their behind the scenes videos on the Nintendo YouTube page.
So this is what they’re replacing Club Nintendo with. They didn’t specify a lot, but basically if you do stuff on the app, and buy games, you earn points to buy more cool shit. You can pre-sign up for it on Nintendo’s site right now. And if you’re feeling really saucy, you can pre-register for Miitomo, Nintendo’s first smartphone app as well. Though, honestly, I’m still not entirely clear what that even does. Not a lot of details yet.
Mini Mario and Friends Amiibo Challenge:
You buy Amiibo. You scan them. You play 10 puzzles based on the ten characters that work with the game. It’s free. So hey, if you’re looking for shit to do with your Rosalina Amiibo, here you go.
SNES Games on New Nintendo 3DS:
I’m just surprised Nintendo recognized that F-Zero exists. F-Zero, Super Mario World and Pilotwings are all out on the New Nintendo 3DS Virtual Console starting today; Super Mario Kart, Earthbound and Donkey Kong Country are all coming on March 24th; and A Link to the Past, Super Metroid and DKC2 are all coming on April 14th.
Pocket Card Jockey:
Do you like solitaire? Do you like Horse racing? Well, then Pocket Card Jockey is for you, courtesy Game Freak of all companies. You play solitaire, and the better you solitaire the better your horse races. Then, you breed horses and make better horses to race better and the cycle continues. I dunno about you, but I think this looks like it could be a good time. It’s coming sometime in May.
Azure Striker Gunvolt 2:
Somehow, this game and it’s prequel, which were both spiritual successors to Mega Man, made it onto the market before the main spiritual successor to Mega Man, Mighty Number 9. Just…just let that sink in. It’ll be out this summer, and the original game is on sale until June First.
Fire Emblem DLC:
Nintendo just wants to remind you that the third chapter of Fire Emblem Fates, Revelation, is coming out this month. That, and DLC maps are still coming out on a weekly basis.
Dynasty War-I mean Hyrule Warriors Legends
If you’re like me, you thoroughly enjoyed the odd little Dynasty Warriors Zelda crossover, and you’ll probably enjoy the 3DS version too. Today, we learned that the Season Pass comes with a ton of add on content, a costume for Ganonforf, and everyone’s favorite Wind Waker birdperson: Medli. On top of that, some of the characters will be back-compatible with the Wii U game. It’s out March 25th.
Bravely Second: End Layer
Let’s ignore the story controversy surrounding this game for a minute. This looks a lot like Bravely Default. They showed off some of the new classes including the Spell-creating Wizard, and the…I shit you not…Cat-mancer. They summon cats and train them to learn enemies’ spells. Then, much like the first time around, a seperate demo game which launched March 10th.
Then, we see the BALLIN’ collectors edition for the game, with the actual full-length full-size art book. I’m a huge sucker for art books like this. The full game launches April 15th.
Disney Art Academy:
I don’t know what to tell you. It’s Disney Art Academy. You draw Disney characters. Pixar, Frozen, Winnie The Pooh, it’s all in there. Go draw yourself a thing on May 15th.
Dragon Quest VII: Fragments of the Forgotten Past:
It’s good ol Akira Toriyama Dragon Quest action. This was a highly anticipated one in some circles, and it’s finally headed to the United states in all of its 3D glory. You can pick it up yourself sometime later this year.
Monster Hunter Generations
So I never had much of a connection with Monster Hunter. This was known in Japan as Monster Hunter X (Monster Hunter Cross) and it’s like the MonHun people know and love, but with more of an action bent and more customizability as far as movesets. Honestly, if you care about MonHun, you probably already know all there is to know about this game, but it’ll be out in the US this summer.
Metroid Prime Federation Force:
Here’s the biggest controversy of the day. The reaction to this trailer has been SO bad that Nintendo literally had to disable likes/dislikes on the video. Hell, at the beginning of the segment, the designer all but comes out and tells everyone to chill out.
Here’s the thing: it looks fine. Much like Paper Mario Color Splash, it will probably be fun for what it is. You customize your character to specialize in different roles, I.E. healer and warrior, based on what limited resources you take with you.
The issue, of course is that they decided an almost super deformed look was right for the first Metroid Prime game in nearly a decade. For some, it’s a slap in the face. They want their edgy Metroid Prime game, and I get it. But I’ll hold my own judgements personally til I actually play the game for myself, I know I could get into a 4-player co-op Metroid game.
Rhythm Heaven Megamix
It’s a Rhythm Heaven greatest hits. It’s the most fun games from the last two games in the series, and some of the hits from the GBA version that never came out in the US. Coming later this year.
Kirby: Planet Robobot
Someone at Nintendo played a ton of Kirby, then watched the entirety of Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann right afterward and said: “Porque no los dos?” So we get Kirby riding a mech suit that can change powers based on what it comes into contact with. You know, kinda like TTGL. It looks like fun, half Kirby game half mech-riding Kirby game. Plus, it comes with the class-based multiplayer focused game called Team Kirby Clash, where up to four players pick Kirby forms and fight bosses in side scrolling levels. Each player’s role helps take on the boss, and each form levels up independently like in an RPG, which sounds like a fun little distraction mode. That’s coming out on June 10th.
That brings us to the end of our presentation. It’s a lot of 3DS games and a couple games that will no doubt compose the Wii U’s final gasps of air before the impending announcement of the NX at E3 this year. Still, with games like Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE on the horizon, I still think the ol’ girl has some life left in her.