Nintendo is back with another batch of news fired Directly at your wallet, so let’s get to running down all the headlines!
As always, Nintendo kicked off with a quick rundown of everything coming to the 3DS in the near future. Highlights here were the original Luigi’s Mansion (now with co-op), Kirby’s Epic Yarn just became Epic, some new goodness for Yo-Kai Watch fans and a new Mario and Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story to include a tale for Bowser Jr. As we can see 3DS is still going strong, so I’m sure we can expect to continue to see re-releases and all new games coming to the platform for quite a while to come.
As regards to the Switch, there is a lot to talk about, as usual. Nintendo has plenty of their own stuff on the way, but let’s run through the third party announcements first. Blizzard is bringing Diablo 3 to the Switch on November 2nd, and it seems they’ve put a bit of work in. Not only will Diablo 3 support local and online multiplayer and all of the Switch’s multiple controller configurations, but it will also include some Legend of Zelda crossover items. You can get a Cucco pet, some Majora’s Mask-inspired wings, and a transmog to look like Ganondorf himself. Cities Skylines was announced and released on the day, which is always fun to see. In a similar vein, Civilization VI was announced to be coming to the Switch on November 16th. This next one got a huge pop out of me, Katamari Damacy is finally getting released on something again! Katamari Damacy Reroll is the original game with updated visuals and motion controls for your Joy-Con and it’s due out this Winter.
From Capcom, a bunch more arcade classics (Final Fight! Final Fight!) are on their way to the Switch, as is Mega Man 11 which we got another look at in this Direct. It certainly feels like this game has a lot riding on it. After Mighty No. 9 had its little fiasco, Mega Man really only gets one shot to prove he’s still able to deliver. This could make or break for the blue bomber, we’ll just have to wait until October 2nd to find out.
Square Enix came out SWINGING at this direct, so much they nearly have more games coming to Switch than Nintendo themselves. Final Fantasy XV: Pocket Edition HD, Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles, World of Final Fantasy Maxima, hell even the Chocobos are getting their own game in Chocobo’s Mystery Dungeon. Final Fantasy XII was recently remastered for modern consoles and now it’s headed to the Switch next year. If that wasn’t enough, Final Fantasy VII, IX, X, and X2 are all to follow. It’s nice seeing Final Fantasy back on Nintendo systems, and they’re not just taking part, they’re taking over.
Another one of those nice, “perfect for the Switch” announcements was Asmodee Digital and the tabletop classics they’re bringing to the system. To begin with, Carcassonne is coming in December, Pandemic next March and The Lord of the Rings Living Card Game in April. More to follow, including Catan and Munchkin. Excellent news for tabletop fans there.
Never to be outdone, Nintendo had plenty of their own announcements to make. Two new bundles for the console are on the way, one for the new Smash game and one in line with the Pokémon Let’s Go games. Speaking of, we got another look at the Pokémon Let’s Go, showing off the new ways you’ll get around. Gone are the HMs it seems, as now you’ll use Pikachu or Eevee to surf, cut and fly. You might think that’s a bit silly, but let’s break this down. What’s more ridiculous; surfing on a surfboard with Pikachu, or THE FACT THAT YOU HAVE TO TEACH YOUR PIDGEOTTO HOW TO FLY. The defence rests.
Smash is still announcing new characters. How are there any left? Am I going to be in Smash? Are you? Isabelle from Animal Crossing has joined the fight! She is just as adorable as you think she is and her attacks match. Great news for Smash fans, shame that’s all they had for Animal Cross- BOOM. Animal Crossing is coming back when Welcome to Animal Crossing comes to Nintendo Switch sometime next year. I’ll be honest I’m out of the loop on this one, but I don’t think that matters. Anyone can see from the reaction to this announcement that this is huge news for a lot of people.
Nintendo had plenty more to offer in this packed Direct. There was a new trailer for Super Mario Party, so all you sadists out there have something to look forward to. Mario Tennis Aces has some new content coming, like Birdo, Petey Piranha, and Para Troopa as playable characters. As always there’s more Splatoon 2 to come. To keep the ball rolling for all of us Nintendo fans who just couldn’t bring ourselves to buy the Wii U, New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe is coming to Switch in January. This includes both Mario Bros. U and Luigi U with new content and new playable characters like Nabbit and Toadette. Seemingly, Toadette can transform into Peach at will which raises so so so many questions.
The love for Luigi doesn’t end there, as Luigi’s Mansion 3 has been announced for Switch and is coming sometime next year. This is a big one, so I would imagine we’ll have to wait until E3 to find out more. To round out the Nintendo news, we got a break-down of the Nintendo Switch Online service coming this week so let’s get into it. Much like PS Plus and Xbox Live Gold, NSO will be your paid subscription to play Switch games online. Not all games will require it for online play, but the safe bet is that most will. So what else do you get for your twenty sheets per annum? Well, all your save data will be backed up to the cloud because this is 2018 and honestly who even thought that wasn’t happening already. You’ll get access to a smartphone app for party chat which is, a thing. Exclusive deals in the E-Shop of course, and access to a library of NES games. How exactly that works has been bouncing around for a while, at one point it was just one game per month and you didn’t get to keep the game. Now they say there will be 20 games at launch with a “growing selection of classic games” to follow. We’ll see how that pans out soon. For maximum nostalgia, Nintendo is selling NES controllers compatible with the Switch exclusively for NSO members.
Overall, that was quite the show. Nintendo is keeping the momentum going, the ball has not been dropped since the Switch hit the market. This online service could be a bit of a speed bump, but I think their saving grace is its low price. For PS4/Xbox owners, it’s not a massive extra cost and for gamers loyal to Nintendo it’s a hell of an undercut into the console subscription service market. The announcements were all really solid, Nintendo is fulfilling their promise to bring dozens of third-party franchises into their world. On top of that, the roster of Nintendo classic franchises really starting to fill out on the Switch and I think that’s important. Nintendo’s own games should be the flagship in the fleet of reasons to buy a Switch, and right now they have an armada.