The latest Nintendo livestream has brought plenty of surprises, and disappointments, including a new Zelda remake and more Captain Toad.
The biggest news of the night, in the first proper Nintendo Direct of the year, was the annoucement of a remake of Zelda: Link’s Awakening – which you can read about here.
There was a mountain of other games featured though, both old and new, but unusually for Nintendo most of the big ones had already been leaked earlier in the week (the only tip that proved wrong was any mention of Pokémon).
Super Mario Maker 2
The night opened with Super Mario Maker 2, which fans have long assumed to be a given on the Switch but which Nintendo has never announced until now. At first glance it didn’t seem markedly different to the original Wii U and 3DS versions, although you can see it features a much wider range of enemies and background elements, as well as new power-ups like the cat suit from Super Mario 3D World.
26 April 2019
A new BoxBoy game had already been rumoured for the Switch, but the assumption was that it would be a compilation of the previous three 3DS titles, the third one of which was supposed to be the last one. This is a whole new game though, with 270 puzzles and a brand new two-player co-op mode. The originals were very good, and it’s interesting that both this and the Zelda remake are on the Switch and not the more obvious home of the 3DS.
Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker Special Episode
14 March 2019
The charming puzzle platformer is getting two slices of new DLC, with the first one being a free two-player co-op mode which should be available right now from the eShop. Then in March there’s paid-for DLC that will add 18 new challenges and five new courses, one of which you can play today if you pre-order.
Dragon Quest XI S Definitive Edition
It won’t mean much in the West but as Dragon Quest is one of the biggest franchises in Japan, and always closely associated with Nintendo, this will be very big news over there. There seems to be a lot of new features too, including new story quests for each of the main characters and a super cute retro 16-bit mode you can switch to (do you see what they did there?) whenever you want. There’s also a new fully orchestrated soundtrack and the choice of English or Japanese voiceovers.
Fire Emblem: Three Houses
26 July 2019
This was the only title Nintendo confirmed would be in the Direct before it started and they spent the longest on it of any game. Although they showed precious little of the turn-based combat and instead focused on the Hogwarts style setting of a school for budding knights. The subtitle refers to Harry Potter style houses that you can choose to lead, with some Persona style bonding when you’re away from the battlefield. The game was supposed to be out this spring, which technically is anywhere up to the end of May – so the delay to July is relatively minor.
30 August 2019
Nobody’s heard of Astral Chain until now but the fact that it’s by PlatinumGames, creators of Bayonetta and NieR: Automata, instantly makes it of interest. It seems to be an action game not a million miles away from Bayonetta but where you seem to be controlling a robot on a leash. Or at least that’s what it looks like from the short trailer. It may also be co-op, given the prominence of the two main characters. Bayonetta 3 was mentioned briefly, with Platinum apparently being ‘hard at work’ at the sequel. Which if you’re being optimistic could be construed as a hint that the game will be shown off later in the year.
Best of the rest
A huge number of other games were also featured, but few got a specific release date. Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order is down as just summer, while a Ver. 3.0 update for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate was announced for spring – with DLC character Joker promised for before the end of April.
Starlink: Battle For Atlas is getting some new Star Fox themed DLC in April, which is a surprise as the game didn’t seem to do that well. And while the 29 March release date for Yoshi’s Crafted World was already known there is a demo of it available now from the eShop.
Square Enix announced the next game from Tokyo RPG Factory, makers of I Am Satusna and Lost Sphear, as Oninaki, and that’ll be out this summer. Online game Tetris 99 is out now though, but only if you’re a Nintendo Switch Online subscriber.
Also available now, for everyone, is a demo of Daemon X Machina, from one of the creators of Armored Core, and on 28 February you’ll be able to download the equally free Deltarune: Chapter 1 from Undertale creator Toby Fox – with other paid-for chapters available later.
Other surprises included Codemasters’ GRID Autosport this summer and a port of Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice, even though Microsoft now owns the developer. What wasn’t surprising though, because it had been leaked already, is that Assassin’s Creed III Remastered is coming to Switch on 21 May.
There were plenty of other games namechecked during the Direct, so the whole thing is worth watching below. It’s 36 minutes long but shows Nintendo has plenty lined up for the first half of the year – which in turn implies that Animal Crossing and Luigi’s Mansion 3 won’t be out until the second half.
Email email@example.com, leave a comment below, and follow us on Twitter
by – metro.co.uk