I am always secretly the most excited for whatever Nintendo have to announce during E3. They’re the only company that can truly inspire a childlike excitement from me in what they could announce. And seeing as how Nintendo are the only company not really in the between console stage right now, you’d hope they have a lot to say this year.
Last year was a bit of a bummer considering all they talked about was Smash. Then again, E3 seems almost irrelevant to Nintendo at this point seeing as they are the masters of their own announcements thanks to their frequent directs throughout the year. We get more exciting reveals randomly part way through the year than we do at E3 from them.
If anything, them doing an E3 announcement is just polite.
Whelp, let’s hope that they humour E3 for at least one more year and have a few nice surprises for me. At least with this being a recording, excited Bethesda man can’t yell over the speaker.
Super Smash Bros.
I used to really like Smash. Like, really, really like Smash. I don’t know what happened, I guess not having a community of people to play around me just caused me to lose interest in what is basically a party game masquerading as a fighting game. Hot take I know, but I don’t get any joy from Smash as a competitive fighting game, to me, it was always a social game.
And now that I have no social circle, it’s lost its appeal for me. Sorry to get real on you right at the beginning, but just felt like lamenting how I’ve lost enthusiasm for what used to be one of my favourite franchises.
Anyway, they show two very cute trailers at the start and end of the show revealing “The Hero” of Dragon Quest fame and Banjo-Kazooie as upcoming fighters in the first character pass. I’m glad to see the rest of the world losing their collective minds over this one. Even if they’re not for me anymore.
I know this isn’t a game or anything. But part of the reason I love Nintendo’s Direct’s so much is that they’re happy to get weird with them and create some cute little skits like this. Skits that would not work the same way if they were trying to do them live on stage.
With Reggie Fils-Aimé retiring as president of Nintendo of America, this was the first direct that would feature his replacement; Doug Bowser. So having a CGI Bowser show up in a tie under the impression he was in charge was pretty great.
Luigi’s Mansion 3
I’m all on board for a new Luigi’s Mansion game. Luigi is always a more interesting character than his brother, I mean he has a character for one.
This game looks like it further expands upon the changes made in the 3DS sequel by adding further puzzle elements and combat mechanics to the game. A plunger that can be manipulated after being fired, and a slam that just lets Luigi brutalise those ghosts that have been giving him ulcers these past few years.
Not to mention there’s Gooigi. Y’know, Nintendo fans have been known to have some strange eccentricities in the past, this feels like one more big meme just waiting to happen. Either way, it’s standard, must buy fare from Nintendo’s first party once again.
I am just totally and utterly charmed by this game. The look of it, the sound and the music. There are powerful forces of nostalgia affecting me when it comes to this game. Doesn’t hurt that it also looks genuinely great. I mean Link’s Awakening was always great game, and the first Zelda same I ever played/beat.
From a aesthetic standpoint, this game is delightful. Something that has been a little divisive amongst many commentators. But then again, it was probably these same people who criticised Windwaker’s visual style when that came out. And that’s one of my top three Zelda games ever.
The one new piece of information that came with this showing of the game was a dungeon creator, which makes me wonder if this is a backdoor testing ground for them ever making a Zelda Maker (in the same vein as Super Mario Maker).
I could just gush about how good the style and music for this game are, but from what I’ve heard from people at the show who have managed to get their hands on it, supposedly, it doesn’t run that well. Which is a huge bummer, I just hope it’s an issue that doesn’t persist through to actual release. Because for everything else I want to love about this game, a performance issue would be a massive let down.
Contra Rogue Corps
I don’t especially have any reverence for the Contra series. I played a fair bit of Probotector on my Game boy back in the day, but never got that deep into it.
I might be a bit more intrigued by this game, but oh boy does it look like garbage. I mean, it’s got a weird and quirky selection of characters, but the game looks so muddy and busy that I just couldn’t help but unconsciously recoil away from it slightly.
I try not to make that many hot takes in here that seem like they’re just to piss people off, but man the Contra series seems like a franchise that just flounders more and more with every game. I haven’t actually heard anything about how the game plays at all in the time since the show opened, but there’s something so unappealing to me about this game after setting example after example of quality Nintendo polish.
Animal Crossing: New Horizons
I know a lot of people who really like Animal Crossing. It’s not a franchise I ever got into. I can’t tell you why. It just seemed to pass me by through no fault of my own or the games. I guess when it comes to massive time sinks of games, all my time went into endlessly playing Pokemon.
But I think now might be prime time for me to get into an Animal Crossing game. The Switch seems like an ideal platform for it too. I wish I could go on about what new features I could see on display, but honestly. I don’t have a clue.
One new thing that seems cool is that players can actually customise the skin tone of their characters now. Which is fantastic. Shame the only reason I know about it is because of the Shitty Gamer Takes twitter page highlighting some people giving Nintendo shit for being “political”.
I swear to God these people…
Legend of Zelda Upcoming game
There were a few other announcements, including a brief snippet of Pokemon Sword/Shield. But there was nothing of substance in there, so I didn’t really think it warranted bringing up.
They did end their show by showing some footage of what looked like a new expansion for Breath of the Wild. But as it turns out, the video was an initial teaser for a sequel to the game instead. Which was cool to see.
I’ll be honest. Nintendo only putting one tent pole Zelda and Mario game out a console generation was always kind of crummy. I know their process is probably hugely meticulous and making those games takes a huge amount of time. But it ended up killing off consoles like the Wii U simply because there weren’t enough big, must-buy games for them.
If Nintendo plan on putting out another game using the same engine as Breath of the Wild, I am all for it. In the same vein as what Majora’s Mask was to Ocarina of Time and Super Mario Galaxy 2. Not every game has to be a huge innovation, and Breath of the Wild was good enough to get at least two sequels out of before I’d be wanting something different.
So yeah, let’s do it!
Overall Thoughts on the Nintendo Direct
Nintendo went and had one of the strongest showings of the “press conferences”, one backed up by a from what I hear was one of the busiest corners of the show floor itself. Nintendo’s method of delivery really works. Like Microsoft, they’re great at making their information clear, concise and to the point. They show the games and then move onto the next thing. It doesn’t hurt that they have so many franchises under their belts that people care deeply about.
On top of that, these video’s are packed with charm and humour that would feel awkward live. The magic of editing and as many takes as you want I suppose.
I’m kind of shocked to realise how over the 3DS I am. After spending time with the Switch, going back to that, much smaller, device feels like a pain I don’t want to deal with. And there was not a single 3DS game spoken about during this whole conference.
While there was nothing shocking or surprising about this direct, it mainly showing games we already knew were coming. I was happy with it. Like I said before, Nintendo will probably have another one of these in three months and blow our minds with the announcement of Super Luigi Odyssey.
Why not check out my highlights from the other shows while you’re at it: