Todays Nintendo Direct announcement brought us some big news today, relating to the Wii U. Seven new games were confirmed, with some due to make proper playable débuts at this years E3. Whilst the names of most of the games were not particularly unexpected, the fact that seven new games were announced at the same time was. If there is one thing new consoles recently have suffered from, it’s not capitalizing on their after release rush, PS Vita being a prime example. New games for the Wii U have dripped through since release, so this news will be music to U owners ears.
As well as the games announced, there was also confirmation that the Virtual Console will be shortly ported over to the U, April in America with other territories to follow shortly after. Pricing will match those found on the Wii VC, though there will be a price for re-downloading games previously purchased which sounds a bit of a swizz, but this is to play those games with enhanced Wii U motion pad controls. Whether games can be re-loaded for free without the extras remains to be seen.
So onto those games, and as previously mentioned they are all mostly familiar franchises. A new 3D Mario game is on the way, as is a new Legend of Zelda game, which Miyamoto has stated will go through a ‘re-think’ and take inspiration from earlier LOZ games. Also announced is a HD remake (HD remake on a Nintendo machine, we’ll get used to that I am sure), of Links Gamecube outing The Windwaker. Criminally overlooked and sneered upon by the masses, Wind Waker was a great game, better than Twilight Princess in my opinion, and should look pretty special in a higher res. Hopefully we’ll see the Wii U motion pad used to port over the Gamecube-GBA interactivity which was a great little feature from the original.
New Mario Kart and Smash Bros games were also confirmed for E3, as was mini-game-athon, Wii U Party.
Looking to cater for those core gamers that stuck by the Wii through think and thin, RPG’s Fire Emblem X and a new RPG from Xenoblade Chronicles studio Monolith Soft, with some suggesting it will a sequel of sorts to Xenoblade.
Of all the announcements, maybe the most unexpected was Yoshi’s Land. Yoshi last fronted a platformer on the N64 with Yoshis Story. Story was the follow-up to the superb Yoshis Island on the SNES, and was a decent game, mainly critised for its low difficulty level, it was however, a nice little game with some lovely visuals and level design. Land will hopefully follow the series fun platforming roots, though initial screen shots show a patchwork visual style similar to that found in Kirbys Epic Yarn.
So whilst E3 may not offer too many surprises from Microsoft and Sony, unless they have some next-gen announcements to make soon, it seems Nintendo are prepping themselves to really push the Wii U to the front of stage. It’s a shame that some old faves have yet to be mentioned (F-Zero where are you?!), but if they can also gather some big name triple A names from third parties, 2013 could end up being Nintendos year.
So did you miss Nintendo’s Wii U direct? Don’t worry you can re watch it in the video below.