Nintendo completed some Nintendo Network maintenance in brief windows during the Holiday season, along with some minor downtime, resulting in a fairly stable period overall. The latest announced maintenance has, however, caught our attention.
The timing and length of the planned maintenance is interesting; there'll be around ten hours of downtime and it's falling almost two months to the day since the last Nintendo Direct of 12th November - assuming we treat the Super Smash Bros. presentation of December as a separate entity. Of interest is the fact that the last 10 hour maintenance window in December actually came shortly before Masahiro Sakurai's Smash Bros. video presentation - standard maintenance often runs for anything between 1-5 hours.
At present the official website is simply stating that 'some network services' such as 'online play, rankings etc' will be unavailable on both Wii U and 3DS. The dates and times are below.
From Monday, January 11 at 5pm Pacific / 8pm Eastern until Tuesday, January 12 at 3am Pacific / 6am Eastern.
From Tuesday, 12 January at 1am UK / 2am CET to Tuesday, 12 January 11am UK / 12pm CET.
This could, of course, be dull but important behind the scenes work that will have little impact on us, preparations for system updates, or if we're really lucky the timing could point to a fresh Nintendo Direct. The company has stated that the broadcasts will remain a part of the landscape, and in past years presentations often came at intervals of 6-8 weeks.
We shall find out soon enough.