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Direct Reaction: Highlights and Lowlights from Nintendo's E3 Event

Posted on Tuesday, June 10 @ 10:50:33 PST by ryanbates

Nintendo's Digital Event, held the morning before the E3 show floor opening, wasn't necessarily a huge blowout, continuing the general E3 2014 feel of “just you wait and see on the floor.” But Nintendo did point out a few things that establish their usual persona as the buddy that just wants to have fun. And fun it will be, showcasing ventures that may hit, may miss, but certainly stand as unique offerings.

The Mario Machine certainly seems to be banking on their new collectible character element named Amiibo, following in the footsteps of Skylanders and Disney Infinity. Mario, Peach, Link, and other Super Smash Bros. for Wii U fighters will have figurines that can be touched to the Wii U Gamepad to be your own personal version of that character. It's interesting, but after the other two, is it something we're wholly excited about? I don't know if I can go that far. It was the same with the other two series... I started gung-ho about them – I even still have unopened Infinity figures – and then the desire drops off. If they don't come up with some great uses for the figures, it could be a very expensive blow.

I know I'm going to be crucified for this, but Splatoon looks like a buttload of fun. It's cartoony, it looks silly, but it doesn't mean it won't be a good time. Plus, with the online features getting better and better on the Wii U – thank you, Mario Kart 8 – this could be a surprise sleeper hit. On the same level, I have unabashed love for Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker. The Captain Toad levels were one of the most fun side challenges in Super Mario 3D World, and the adorable little dude is going to star in his own treasure hunting game, and I just cannot wait.

A lot of news that was already unearthed got shown the light of day, but with a few twists. For example, Nintendo announced that they would package the original Bayonetta with Bayonetta 2 at launch, for more bang for your buck. They also mentioned that the previously-announced Hyrule Warriors would feature a playable version of Midna from The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. Palutena and Miis were announced as the latest fighters in Super Smash Bros. for 3DS and Wii U, and Mario Maker turns out to be a real thing, which for those who like level editors, stands to position itself as a new addiction. But what we didn't see is a new StarFox or Metroid. While I think the loudest kvetching is going to come from hard-up Nintendo fanboys, I frankly don't miss a new StarFox. Sorry, I said it, moving on. And if no new Metroid means getting Samus Aran out of Bounty Hunter Barbie status and making her kick ass again, I'm okay with waiting more.

But let's talk about the Smash (heh heh) Hit of the event, even though it only took a few minutes of its time: Zelda U looks great, promises open-world design, and – yes, this did cause a squeal of excitement in base camp – stars the titular character, Zelda. As I mentioned last month, I cannot wait. I literally want it in my hands right now. RIGHT NOW. In fact, I'm going to stop typing and hope it appears in my hands as soon as this sentence is over.

Damn. It didn't work.


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Tags:   Nintendo, E3

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