E3 2010: Wii Predictions
Posted by James Newton
What to look for at Nintendo's table next week
This year's E3 promises to be a big one for the Wii: although the 3DS has taken most of the limelight in recent months, Nintendo will be keen to spell out its plans to keep Wii on top of the home console market in the face of rejuvenated opposition.
Chief amongst those plans is the long-awaited unveiling of the new Legend of Zelda title, of which so far we know close to nothing save for a few cryptic statements in interviews and a piece of concept art. MotionPlus is essential so more intuitive swordplay is a given, but expect it to play a far greater role in how the game is controlled: the game will hinge on its use, so look for plenty of innovative uses for the add-on and keep your fingers crossed for a Christmas 2010 release.
Another much-anticipated follow-up is Pikmin 3, announced by Miyamoto at E3 2008 but another project that's fallen silent in recent times. Although the game has no confirmed platform it's a perfect fit for Wii, and with New Play Control versions of Pikmin and Pikmin 2 already available for the machine it seems obvious to complete the trilogy on Wii.
Metroid: Other M is sure to be shown off too, and you can probably count on it looking or playing slightly differently to account for the slight delay in its Western release. Don't discount Metroid Dread as well, the oft-rumoured Samus adventure that refuses to die.
Wii Party will take centre stage for the more casual gamers, and you can probably bank on at least two high-up Nintendo executives playing it on stage and making fools of themselves. Hey, it's all part of the E3 spectacle.
We should also have word on any plans to release Xenoblade in the West, and hopefully get our first look at the upcoming Kirby adventure. There's likely to be one surprise entry for a franchise, but don't get your hopes up for a sequel to F-Zero, StarFox or Kid Icarus: it's more likely to be a new Donkey Kong title, or perhaps another Excite title on the way.
Accessories-wise, we'll finally know more about the Vitality Sensor including its purpose and available software. Expect to see a mixture of titles from the health and horror genres, with at least one oddball game thrown in for good measure.
There's plenty of speculation from other outlets that Nintendo will announce a Wii HD or hint at the Wii's successor: this is unlikely to be the case as the company has repeatedly stated that HD is not its priority, and with the Wii not even four years old yet Nintendo's unlikely to want to move on just yet.
Nintendo aside, expect some big hitters to come out for the machine. THQ is bringing de Blob: Underground to Wii and DS, and this should show well after the well-regarded original, alongside its new take on the WWE franchise in WWE All-Stars.
SEGA has two Sonic games to show off, Sonic the Hedgehog 4 and Sonic Colours, but don't expect to see Sonic 4 running on WiiWare as Sega will almost certainly show the Xbox 360 version only. Conduit 2 and Tournament of Legends round out Sega's known line-up, making it one of the more promising booths at the show.
Activision plans to get DJ Hero 2 out to gamers later in the year, so the company is probably more than happy to just shout about it and prevent gamers from forgetting that it is on its way. The initial line-up of producers and artists might be unveiled and E3 attendees could be treated to a short but sharp teaser trailer.
Much like the 'wheels of steel', the Tony Hawk series is due for a return for two main reasons. The first is to offer more value to the skateboard controller that was purchased in conjunction with Tony Hawk: RIDE, and the second is perhaps the more important reason; to justify the skateboard controller which the first title widely failed to do. If Buzz Monkey can take the mistakes that were made with Tony Hawk: RIDE and learn from them, then gamers might be persuaded to invest in this series. If not, Tony Hawk: SHRED could bail on the 50-50 grind and fall onto the metal rail in the most painful way imaginable and never to return.
Capcom has only unveiled Sengoku Basara 3 for Wii so far, but is bound to have one big name title up its sleeve for the console. Take your pick from any one of a number of franchises: Resident Evil, Street Fighter or even a follow-up or expansion pack for Monster Hunter 3.
It promises to be an interesting show for Wii this year, with big news expected on Zelda, Metroid, Pikmin and more. There's unlikely to be much WiiWare on display, if any, but the boxed retail titles should be enough to help the console maintain momentum.
What do you hope to see for Wii at E3 this year?
Thanks to Trevor Chan for contributing to this article.
As always, this article contains a balance of information and speculation. These predictions are made with the best of intentions, but Nintendo Life is not liable if any of them turn out to be untrue.