Following the hilariously disappointing Ubisoft and EA conferences, as well as the surprisingly good Sony conference, it was Nintendo’s turn to shine once again, with their digital event for E3. Considering last year’s fantastic lineup of the likes of Bayonetta 2, Splatoon and Hyrule Warriors, it would be pretty difficult to top. “well, did they top it then?” I hear you ask. Before I answer that, I think we’ll take a look at what they had to show us this year.
After the sneak-peak we got last year for the new Star Fox: Zero for Wii U, It makes sense for them to finally show us what we’ll be getting. The gameplay, thankfully, looks like an updated version of the original Star Fox/Lylat Wars games, with some fairly decent looking graphics and good-though-generic music accompanying it. The most intriguing things in the gameplay trailer were the transformations and various vehicles. Rather than being limited to the Arwing, you have the choice of what’s currently said to be three vehicles – The Arwing, the Landmaster and the Gyrowing, which appears to be some kind of helicopter/plane not dissimilar to Halo’s Mongoose. The Arwing is also given the capability to transform, which is said to be a feature from the cancelled Star Fox 2. Generally, this looks extremely hopeful as a lot of love has clearly been put into it.
Triforce Heroes is clearly inspired by Four Swords for the GBA – multiple different-coloured links working together to get through complex puzzles and beat a boss at the end of the dungeon. This instalment appears to be unique in multiple ways, though. Each player can customise their character with new outfits, with the NPCs in the game being (As Aonuma says) “Fashion savvy”. Different outfits appear to give the player different abilities, one of which being shown that was “Lucky Loungewear” which allowed the player to escape an enemy attack. A gimmick shown was that the players could create a “totem”; Lifting one another above their heads to create a pillar to reach higher places and hit an enemy’s weak spots, in this case being a giant Chu with a weak spot in it’s head. The visuals and 3D-based gameplay is brought straight over from the recent Link Between Worlds, which is certainly not a downfall. The music is guaranteed to be brilliant, being composed by Koji Kondo. This is another game to look out for in the near future.
A little more was told about the title Hyrule Warriors Legends, a “re-imagining” of Hyrule Warriors for the Wii U – It’s to include all of the DLC characters from the Wii U title, as well as Tetra and The King of Hyrule from Wind Waker.
Animal Crossing – Happy Home Designer was something we’ve seen before, but a lot more footage is shown to us. Based in the world of Animal Crossing, you’re designing homes for villagers, as well as what appears to be gardens and outdoor spaces too. At one point there was a bunch of characters in a school, so perhaps there’s some sort of education aspect or perhaps it’s just another building in the town to decorate. This is gonna be cute, relaxing fun to play, no doubt.
A sequel to Mario and Luigi? Awesome. A sequel to Paper Mario? Hella. A combination of the two to make Mario and Luigi: Paper Jam? This is really something that could turn out to be absolutely fantastic. In the gameplay trailer, it was clear that it was a Mario RPG. Everything seemed just right, as part of the Mario and Luigi series particularly. The one thing that is off-putting, however, is the clashing art styles. The low-res sprites of Mario and Luigi and the White-outlined paper characters of Paper Mario don’t really fit very well together, so it’s a little jarring. I do, however, have high hopes for this one.
So that was Nintendo’s E3 for 2015. The presentation of it was silly, as always, and they weren’t taking it too seriously from the looks of things. The digital event format is something that suits Nintendo well, and keeps everything organised. Naturally, the disappointment of nothing being shown about a new Wii U instalment of Animal Crossing or Zelda U is frustrating, but they have at least announced they will be saying more about the latter in the coming weeks. The most uninteresting game shown was by far the Metroid title, which didn’t appear to break any new ground or even look like a Metroid game. Most impressively, Star Fox Zero looks fantastic, and the biggest surprise was in the new multiplayer Zelda title for 3DS.
However, looking back across what was shown, I feel a little let down. Nintendo did an absolute killer E3 conference last year, making the other developers look silly in comparison. This year, however, their lineup was nowhere near as strong, with a couple too many Mario titles and a couple too few games from other franchises. There is certainly some titles that are worth picking up, and I believe they’ve finally made the Wii U worth buying. However bad people may say this press release was, it looks fantastic in comparison to EA’s.
What are your Nintendo conference highlights? Let us know in the comments below!