Nintendo have gone for pre-recorded ‘direct’ style e3 presentations for the last few years now (apart from last year which was solely focused on Zelda: Breath of the Wild). This year has been no different and with a run time of only 25 minutes what kind of reaction were they expecting? To be fair it’s being followed by a treehouse live event, where hopefully we can expect some more announcements, but I was incredibly underwhelmed by the whole event. The only thing that got me hyped was the teaser for Metroid Prime 4. I just wish they could have shown some gameplay. Here’s a round up of what was shown.
The show kicked off with a sizzle reel of Switch games, most of which that we already know about. It included the new FIFA for Switch, Arms, Splatoon 2, Pokken Tournament DX and Rocket League, an unannounced vehicular soccer game that looks cool and is up to four players. FIFA on Switch looks good as well, let’s just hope it’s not a port of the Xbox 360 version and, as EA are saying, has been designed specifically for the Switch. Arms and Splatoon 2 we already knew a lot about and while these games looked fun did they really need to be shown? I’m excited for Pokken Tournament DX even though it’s a Wii U port (Could definitely become involved in some drinking games at parties).
Reggie Fils Aime, even though he is an epic Nintendo employee, kept waffling about abstract concepts that really belong in a philosophy lecture, not an E3 presentation (he kept repeating the words ‘fun’ and ‘battle’ and trying to decipher the ways in which they could be interpreted). Xenoblade Chronicles 2 was shown off and I’m liking the graphical style. It’s less realistic than the Wii U Xenoblade game but that makes it more charming. Xenoblade Chronicles 2 has been given a holiday 2017 release date which is a relief for Switch fans as there had been rumours it was being delayed into 2018. There was also a reveal of a Kirby Switch game that looks like it’ll be a good game for the younger fans and is due for release in 2018. A new Yoshi game was also revealed that looks like a cross between Yoshi’s Woolly World and Paper Mario. I was a little disappointed by this because Nintendo constantly pumps out Yoshi and Kirby games yet it’s been 10 years since we’ve had an F-Zero or proper Metroid.
Next, I’m going to talk about two games that were announced for the first time but no gameplay was shown. Pokemon Switch, a core Pokemon game coming to Nintendo’s hybrid, should release next year if all goes to plan. It’ll mark the first time a core Pokemon game has released on a home console. I’m hoping it’s a completely new game and not a variation on Pokemon Sun and Moon. Just imagine the original 150 Pokemon in HD! The next game was, for me, the highlight of the presentation (even though no gameplay was shown) and that is Metroid Prime 4. Rumours have been circulating for a long time about this title and it’s a relief to finally have it confirmed. The game isn’t being developed by Retro Studios, a new team will take the reigns but Tensuke Tanabe (who oversaw the development of the other Prime games) will be involved. Also, perhaps the biggest surprise from Nintendo at this years E3 was Metroid: Samus Returns, a remake of the second Metroid game. The new title is being developed for the Nintendo 3ds by MercurySteam, the team behind Castlevania: Lords of Shadow. So the rumours of two Metroid games being in development were true!
A lot of reveals from the last few days were repeated, such as the Skyrim Zelda skins and Mario+Rabbids. There was also more details on the Zelda: Breath of the Wild DLC packs including that the four champions from Breath of the Wild are getting their own amiibo. The trial of the sword DLC seems to be an expansion on the enemy rush modes of previous Zelda games, with there being (as breath of the wild is known for) more creative ways to dispatch groups of enemies. Kass the Rito also made an appearance in the trailer. Finally, the last thing shown in the trailer was Mario Odyssey. We got to see more gameplay of Mario jumping around New Donk City and got a glimpse of the legendary Pauline from the original Donkey Kong games! Was her appearance a hint that Donkey Kong will be a major enemy in this game? Overall Mario Odyssey looks great, and the world is crying out to be explored. It releases on October 27th of this year.
So that was Nintendo’s E3. A bit of a disappointment to be honest, but a late Metroid 3ds reveal and the teaser for Metroid Prime 4 might have saved Nintendo’s day. At least we’ll have Xenoblade Chronicles 2, Mario Odyssey, Skyrim, and the Zelda DLC to get us through until the new year.