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Reaction: Our Thoughts on Nintendo's 3DS Direct - 17th April

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Deep breath, count to 10...

So, yesterday brought us another Nintendo Direct, or 3DS Direct to be accurate, and once again Nintendo threw caution to the wind and got enthusiastic fans rather excited. There were some major announcements made, alongside a smattering of pleasing release dates, which successfully covered many bases.

Keep an eye out for our extensive no-holds-barred summary later today that'll give you all of the links that you needs to see what went down, but before then below are the collective thoughts of four members of the Nintendo Life team. As you can tell, we were pretty pleased with Nintendo's efforts, overall.

Darren Calvert

Given the wobbly start that the 3DS had back in March 2011 with its perceived lack of games, it’s amazing to see how Nintendo has turned it around. This Nintendo Direct focused mainly on upcoming 3DS titles and did not disappoint.

Nintendo has never been shy of raiding its old IPs for inspiration, and it seems to me that Mario Golf: World Tour, Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D and Yoshi’s Island 3DS will be a perfect fit for the portable 3D powerhouse. Of course what most excited me was the Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past sequel, which looks absolutely superb. Nintendo sure does know how to give fans of its classic franchises exactly what they want.

This coupled with all the other announcements really fills me with confidence that the 3DS is going to have an amazing year ahead of it; there really is something for everyone to look forward to in this software line-up.

As this was a 3DS themed Nintendo Direct I wasn’t expecting to hear much Wii U news, but it was encouraging to hear that the Spring system update is not far away. Also the New Super Luigi U DLC is something nice to look forward to, along with Pikmin 3 which will hopefully get an August launch in Europe, too. Roll on a Wii U themed Nintendo Direct which should give us even more to look forward to later in the year!

Mike Mason

Once again, Nintendo Direct delivered. The latest broadcast surely cemented 3DS as a powerhouse for the foreseeable future, with more details on previously announced titles such as Mario Golf: World Tour and a couple of new hype-inducing announcements. Based on the present line-up, Nintendo might as well just reach into my pocket and pinch my bank card.

As much as I enjoyed seeing Iwata's face plastered onto a lamp in Animal Crossing: New Leaf, it was the new games that had me most excited. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past sequel looks great, and I'm a fan of the wall-inhabiting new power, which reminds me of glitching in the original. And Yoshi's Island is one of my favourite games ever, so there was never going to be any other response than a gigantic grin to the reveal of the new game.

The best thing of all, though, was seeing evidence that Nintendo is listening to its audience. A localisation of Bravely Default: Flying Fairy has been secured, and I can't overstate my glee at seeing Earthbound finally, finally, scheduled for a European release on the Wii U Virtual Console. I've still not played the game at all – is it wrong for a 19 year old ROM to be one of my most anticipated releases for the year?

I saw several complaints about the lack of Wii U focus, given its current lack of momentum, but I remain optimistic. The system update looks like a huge improvement and even incorporates PlayStation Plus-style features such as automatic game updates, and remember that we're still only a few months from launch. 3DS is getting an overflow of titles now because it's a couple of years into its life and those developments are maturing; I fully expect to see the same treatment extended to Wii U in the next 6 – 12 months as its own games move closer to completion.

Tom Whitehead

Overall, I think that was an excellent Nintendo Direct from the big N, both in terms of the worldwide Iwata segment and then the regional sections. Then again, that's little surprise, as the 3DS is in rude health.

For one thing Nintendo delivered a few nice release dates, reaffirming the summer arrivals of Mario & Luigi: Dream Team Bros. — top of my personal summer wishlist — and Animal Crossing: New Leaf; throw in the likely arrival of Mario Golf, and that's a great time to own a 3DS. On top of that I got a real buzz from the new titles revealed. New Zelda and Yoshi's Island games are absolutely huge, especially the former. If Zelda and the new Mario Party both arrive in time for Christmas, meanwhile, the handheld could potentially have a terrific Holiday bump in sales. Oh, and Bravely Default: Flying Fairy is expected this year in Europe, which pleases me greatly.

There was a bit of Wii U thrown in, which was a relief, but they were token announcements really. The system update and VC can't come soon enough, but it's clear that Wii U's hype generator is being charged for another day. I agree with Mike though that the same flood of exciting titles is likely on Wii U once it matures; I also think the current state of 3DS — robust games library, solid sales in various territories — is a good barometer for where the home console could be a year from now. It needs some things to happen, such as a strong lineup at Christmas and either a modest price cut or, if that's not on the table, a series of attractive bundle offerings.

Nintendo can't wait until Christmas to start the Wii U turnaround, though, and to be fair there are some exciting games coming towards Fall; maybe a follow up Wii U Direct with more footage and some solid release dates is next on the agenda. I hope it comes within the next month, to be honest, as Pikmin 3 is still too far away for comfort, while the likes of The Wonderful 101 still need a release date.

Andy Green

I'm not overly sure what I expected from the Nintendo Direct presentation, but the revelation of some brand new games including a new Legend of Zelda title caught me by surprise!

After watching the show I couldn't help but be staggered by the sheer quality of the 3DS catalogue. I personally feel it's the best console on the market right now simply because of the titles it has on offer both in the retail and eShop environments. With Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon recently being released and the likes of Fire Emblem: Awakening, Mario Golf: World Tour, Mario and Luigi: Dream Team Bros, Animal Crossing: New Leaf, Pokémon X & Y, Yoshi's Island AND The Legend of Zelda all on the way, the dilemma for many 3DS owners will be what to pick up and what to leave on the shelf.

I only wish I could say the same about Wii U, although I'm confident Nintendo has a few big announcements up its sleeve for E3; the delay to Pikmin 3 is a severe disappointment. Don't get me wrong, there are some top titles already on the system but I just feel it really needs that one big-hitting first party title to really help it on its way. We'll see more at E3, keep the faith!

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User Comments (47)

manu0

#1

manu0 said:

No word on Brain Age in Europe...how dare they, that's pretty rude... :/

Hunter-D

#2

Hunter-D said:

Nintendo Direct has been getting better each time and this one is probably the best I've seen yet. Every game they showed I either have it or want it. Also the timing of this was great, we know that there are some BIG titles coming up and we now have the release dates or launch periods for them, this has cleared the way for the Wii U to take centre stage at E3 and continue its turnaround!

McRokert

#3

McRokert said:

So am i to only one that really really was suprised by Mario Party? I Think that will be the game with greatest fun factor on the 3DS!

RonF

#4

RonF said:

It was a great 3DS show. My only criticism is that I agree with Nintendo the 3DS is doing great and, because of that, I would concentrate my marketing efforts on the Wii U. I hope they are saving the best to E3.

Yrreiht

#5

Yrreiht said:

This Nintendo Direct was amazing. I didn't expect that much stuff announced in 1 little live stream. Yoshi's island 3 is what i'm anticipating the most. I'm also really happy for Earthbound :D

DestinyMan

#7

DestinyMan said:

Honestly, I had low expectations for this Direct, so you can guess that I was completely blown out of the water by the surprise annoucements. Yoshi's Island 3DS was my biggest personal surprise, as I have good memories of playing the original and the looks of this new one brought back memories. The new 3DS Zelda seems like something Nintendo would show at E3, but they chose to announce now. And Earthbound, well, it's Earthbound!

I'm just amazed at the 3DS library right now. It's already shaping up to be my favorite handheld. I didn't expect Nintendo to hold three wonderful Directs in a role. I just didn't think they had so many games coming, which makes me wonder if Nintendo has enough unknown games to get people even more surprised for E3.

These surprise annoucements are wonderful, no doubt, but I hope Nintendo doesn't run out of surprises before E3. I know there's Super Smash Bros., 3D Mario, and Mario Kart coming, but we already know they're going to be shown. I know E3 isn't what it used to be, but it's still a fairly important event and both of Nintendo's rivals are going to be showing off their new consoles there. I hope Nintendo has some more tricks up its sleeves at E3, and I'm confident it does. The Wii U really needs a boost and will probably get it at the expo.

XFsWorld

#8

XFsWorld said:

@McRokert I was surprised to see Mario Party too. The ND showed more of Mario & Luigi: Dream Team which makes me want it even more! I'm also interested in getting Lego City: The Chase Begins, and ofcourse the new Zelda title.

Nintenjoe64

#9

Nintenjoe64 said:

They'd better do a Wii U direct soon. I think they will put in a good e3 but would prefer more Nintendo Directs and for us to get the playable demos we keep being told about (W101 and Pikmin 3 for now and Kart or something after e3)

I've been begging for a LttP remake or sequel for years so I should be ecstatic but I wanted an HD rendering of that Hyrule with Skyward Controls which will probably never happen now.

Nintenjoe64

#10

Nintenjoe64 said:

@Shiryu - Spam the Miiverse with F-Zero-U requests. I've made a couple for F-Zero, Eternal Darkness 2 and 1080 Snowboarding. If enough people make enough pictures and gain enough yeahs, they will have to give us something! It might take 20 years if Earthbound is anything to go by!

RetroBillyT

#11

RetroBillyT said:

Really looking forward to playing Earthbound again- one of the best RPGs on a Nintendo system- on par with Link to the Past and Secret of Mana!

Other_DaveStaff

#12

Other_Dave said:

I was impressed and I'm looking forward to several games. The new Yoshi's Island looks hideous though.

Giygas_95

#14

Giygas_95 said:

The only thing I was a little disappointed about not seeing in this direct was Metroid . Hope it comes at E3!

rjejr

#15

rjejr said:

I don't own a 3DS (my family household already has 3) but I was thinking 3DS XL while watching that yesterday. I was going to have to spend my WiiU money to buy one though but Aug. 4 is finally coming. I'll have to borrow one for Dream Team.

As for a WiiU ND, I don't think there is going to be one. They already announced Aug 4 for Pikmin 3 via Twitter. Why do that if there was going to be a WiiU ND? Aug 4 is still 3 1/2 months away. If a WiiU ND was coming before E3 they would have waited. And then there is E3 in 2 months. Nintendo will be going against PS4 and KinectBox, they better save it all for then if they don't want to be forgotten.

Great show yesterday. Now can anybody tell me about that Japan platformer w/ the walking fish in the Japan ND?

ajcismo

#16

ajcismo said:

It was the first broadcast I've seen in its initial airing, so I'm happy it was a good one. Their broadcasts have a very nice personal touch to them, Mr.Iwata's English has improved greatly with each one too. He speaks slowly and deliberately, but with a tone that is almost like he's sitting across from you in your living room. Seems like a nice dude.
I'm very happy the U updates/VC is taking place very soon and the new 3DS Zelda makes me want to do a happy dance. But the release of Mother and bringing more Japanese titles to the US really has me in a good mood. Enjoyed it, can't wait for the E3 lead-ins to start.

mookysam

#17

mookysam said:

I was most pleased by the announcement of European releases for Bravely Default and Shin Megami Tensei IV. The 3DS needs more RPGs in these parts so it it's very good news indeed. All it needs now is Dragon Quest VII!

I already felt there would be a new Zelda on the 3DS this year given how long it has already been since OoT3D, but I am pleasantly surprised that they have returned back to the top-down gameplay style of A Link to the Past. It looks lovely and really pops in 3D. Going back to the series roots could produce a very "pure" Zelda experience. :D

All in all this will be a very busy year for the 3DS and it's great that it is getting so many must-have games.

LavaTwilight

#18

LavaTwilight said:

Perhaps this is one of the unforeseen benefits of the Miiverse?
That it is monitiored, that the presidents of Nintendo all have access and can see directly what the fans are saying in ways they never have before? As much as NL are convinced that Iwata-san takes a few minutes out of his day to browse the NL website (jk) he probably doesn't. Same with all other websites, probably including the official Nintendo website.
But with Miiverse, they see everything the fans are saying! Complete awesomeness!

nilcam

#19

nilcam said:

The Direct blew me away. I'm in for Mario Golf, Mario and Luigi and the new Zelda had me speechless.

I have a feeling that they wanted to get the 3DS taken care of before E3 since that will be all Wii U. They still have a tiny bit of time to beat the other consoles to the punch.

TheRavingTimes

#23

TheRavingTimes said:

My only problem with Nintendo Direct this time is the excessive amount of Super Mario titles. Sure most of them look amazing, but I was hoping Camelot would develop a brand-new Golden Sun. Another complaint I had were the lack of Professor Layton VS Ace Attorney which is a game I have been anxious for since 2011. I also would have liked to hear a little more about the upcoming DLC for Fire Emblem Awakening. All in all, Nintendo Direct certainly has me thrilled with a brand new Zelda game and information regarding Pikmin 3. I do believe that I'll be getting a Wii U once Pikmin 3 hit store shelves.

HeatBombastic

#26

HeatBombastic said:

I love how so many people underestimate Nintendo Direct, and when it's over they say "alijgioawerfhasuhganaperhn"

LDXD

#27

LDXD said:

@Five-seveN man I'm really hoping that's what retro is working on and we get an announcement at e3
I would love if we get a super metroid or metroid 2 like game for the 3ds and a prime for the wii u

rodoubleb

#28

rodoubleb said:

Nintendo made a strong showing here. Could they afford not to?

I'm a little concerned about over reliance on the Mario Bros family of games as heavy hitters. Too much of a good thing desensitizes into a very average play experience.

Rawk_Hawk

#29

Rawk_Hawk said:

I'm excited by the Nintendo news. I think I will plan on getting a Wii U this year

VolcanoFlames

#30

VolcanoFlames said:

My top likes:
1) Legend of Zelda!
2) Mario Party 3D!
3) More details on Dream Team!

My Likes: Just about everything else.

What I need: X and Y news. Wish there were more titles on 3DS to be announced in this ND like Metroid. More Wii U news, but that will be done at E3

Giygas_95

#31

Giygas_95 said:

I would like to see a classic retro looking sidescroller Metroid for the 3DS and maybe another Prime or something entirely new for the Wii U.

PONGbyATARI

#32

PONGbyATARI said:

If you asked me a year ago I would have never said the 3ds is getting the majority of my play time but I can say now its getting a big chunk of it. Overall Nintendo is getting 70%+ of my time between the Wiiu and the 3ds with my Xbox 360 and PS3 and Vita taking up the other 30%. A lot of people will wait until the big first party titles hit before they buy the Wiiu. A lot of so called experts are saying the Wiiu is dead before it starts just like the did with the 3ds what I think most of them forget is Nintendo is the only gaming company that can survive on there first party titles alone with very little third party support.

CowLaunch

#33

CowLaunch said:

Can we declare F-Zero and StarFox extinct franchises now?

Though I'm not especially keen on the new Zelda and Yoshi games (yet at least) there does seem to be a large library of games for the 3DS, with something to please everyone. Early days still, but I can't see a reason to buy a Wii U, rather than get several more 3DS games.

manu0

#34

manu0 said:

@CHECKit095
Yeah, that's what I heard..but the last official announcement from Nintendo was that it's going to be released on 12.04.2013...

MrGawain

#35

MrGawain said:

There is actually two games hat Nintendo could plug for Wii U Chat to fill the drought.

Noughts and Crosses and Hangman.

TheAdza

#36

TheAdza said:

It was a great Nintendo Direct in my opinion. But there still seems to be something missing, and of course, Mario overload. That said, Nintendo are going to send me broke this year. Especially if they start releasing games of this calibur and this quality and quantity for the Wii U.

Stellar job with the 3DS Nintendo. And for listening to the fans by releasing Earthbound to the Wii U VC. Well played. Now just ramp up the Wii U games and kick butt.

lmac99

#37

lmac99 said:

Anyone remember when people were saying the 3ds is doomed? Good times... I believe the same thing will happen with the Wii U. Give it a year or two. Things will be looking great

Dpullam

#38

Dpullam said:

I already knew that a new Zelda game was being created but I didn't think they were this far along! The biggest surprise for me though was the new Yoshi's Island game. This game was just a rumor until now!

ULTRA-64

#40

ULTRA-64 said:

@datamonkey
Glad I'm not the only person dumbfounded by why people are not asking for wave race!! It would be perfect for the Wii u....graphics wise it would show off the power to other nin-haters and always was a gameplay and physics masterclass. Also the pad could show waves/weather top down for maps of 2nd player controls....like need for speed. Just a thought.....

darkgamer001

#41

darkgamer001 said:

I think if Nintendo wanted to F-Zero and Starfox "extinct franchises", we wouldn't have gotten an F-Zero game in Nintendo Land (my 2nd favourite attraction after Metroid) and a 3DS remake for the latter. PATIENCE. I have a sneaking suspicion we'll have some E3 news for at least one of these franchises. I'm guessing it's gonna be Starfox

TheAdza

#42

TheAdza said:

I hope it's not Star Fox unless its truly epic. I think what Nintendo needs is some kind of 3D action adventure game series. Not like Mario, something more like Uncharted, but less realistic, something really Nintendo-y with an epic story. Like Star Fox adventures, but actually good. And not Metroid either. Something new.

Vehemont

#43

Vehemont said:

It's funny this is supposed to be the year for Luigi, but I see him totally being overshadowed by Link in the Nintendo Direct. While I found the beginning of the Direct boring Nintendo really started getting my attention with the new Yoshi's Island game. Oh and I may get that Animal Crossing 3DS XL as I have been on the fence about upgrading!

Emaan

#44

Emaan said:

Such a great Nintendo Direct. I have high hopes for the Wii U now, with the 3DS shining as much as ever lately. Can't wait for E3 :D

Hetsumani

#45

Hetsumani said:

My thoughts are that Bill and Reggie lokked way more stressed than Iwata did. Poor guys WiiU sales are hitting them hard.
Also, can't wait for all the Zelda goodnes coming later this year, specially both Oracle ones.
Edit: Looked lol :P

BabyLogey

#46

BabyLogey said:

After finding out that N.A. was getting EarthBound as a Wii U Virtual Console title, I realized that it's time to get a Wii U!

DeathlyDarkness

#47

DeathlyDarkness said:

Guys, I was utterly shocked by this Legend Of Zelda: Link To The Past sequel! I thought Nintendo would have at least spread a rumor before they announced a new game in one of their best series! I was very intrigued by that game called Bravely Default(maybe you've heard of it? lol jk), Mario Golf, Mario Party, and those oracle games, it's a great time to have a 3DS:)..... And it's a crappy time to be broke spending money wise.....:(

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