Nintendo Live 2023
Image: Nintendo Life

In-person gaming events have gone through a bit of a rough patch over the last few years. E3 is seemingly dead and buried, and although Geoff Keighley is making hay with Summer Game Fest, some publishers are increasingly forgoing physical events for more focused, curated digital showcases.

Nintendo in particular has been especially fixated on its Direct presentations, and it doesn't look as though that's about to change anytime soon. What the company has started, however, is a new in-person event called 'Nintendo Live'.

Commencing in Japan in 2018, the event skipped 2020 and 2021 due to... well, you know, before making a grand return to Tokyo in 2022. Now, for 2023, Nintendo is bringing Nintendo Live over to North America with a new event in Seattle.

This handy Nintendo Live 2023 guide will take you through everything you can expect from the event in September, including specific dates, what games to expect, and more. At the time of writing, specific details are admittedly scarce, but we'll be sure to update this guide as and when we receive new information.

Nintendo Live 2023 Guide - Dates & Details

What is Nintendo Live?

Nintendo Live is described as "an all-ages celebration of Nintendo fun" by the official website.

It's an in-person event open to the public that made its debut in Kyoto, Japan in 2018. It returned in 2019 before taking a two-year break, then made its way to Tokyo in 2022.

Previous Nintendo Live events contained unique in-person concerts from the likes of Animal Crossing's K.K. Slider and Splatoon 3's musical trio Deep Cut.

When is Nintendo Live 2023?

Nintendo Live 2023 is scheduled to take place in from 1st -4th September 2023, alongside PAX West 2023.

Okay, and where will it take place?

The first Nintendo Live event in North America will be taking place at the Seattle Convention Centre in Seattle, Washington.

What's happening at Nintendo Live 2023?

There aren't many precise details to go off at the moment, more vague ideas and evidence based on the previous events in Japan. These include game booths, live stage events (including performances, competitions, and "more", character photo ops, and tournaments (specifically Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and Splatoon 3 tournaments).

We imagine there'll be plenty of merch to pick up, too — exclusive and otherwise.

Here's what Nintendo itself has said to expect from its 2023 Nintendo Live event:

Games: Have a blast together with popular Nintendo Switch games. Play familiar favorites at your own pace, jump into friendly competitions together, or try something new to you!

Live Stage:
Bring your energy and enjoy live stage performances, thrilling competitions, and more.

Photo Ops: Meet and snap a share-worthy picture with some of your favorite Nintendo characters, check out sculptures that faithfully bring in-game worlds to the real world, and other fun stuff.

Cheer on top competitors as they go for the gold in high-level play.

Speaking of sculptures, Nintendo Live 2022 was the first instance we caught a glimpse of the life-size Link statue from Tears of the Kingdom, so that was pretty cool. It would subsequently make its way to Pax East 2023 in North America.

Zelda Tears of the Kingdom Link Statue
Talk to the hand — Image: Zion Grassl / Nintendo Life

So then, nothing earth-shattering, but some general Nintendo fun for all the family.

Which games will be there?

We're not too sure exactly which games will be at Nintendo Live 2023 yet, since Nintendo hasn't announced anything.

If we're to hazard a guess, we'd say the likes of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, Nintendo Switch Sports, Splatoon 3, and Mario Strikers: Battle League are all pretty safe bets.

We're not going to rule out some single-player games too, like The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, but we suspect Nintendo will want to focus on multiplayer experiences.

Will I have to pay to attend Nintendo Live 2023?

No, tickets are free but limited — you'll need to register via the Nintendo Live website and be selected at random.

Registration for tickets starts on May 31 at 9am PT and runs until June 22 at 11:59pm PT. You'll need a US Nintendo account to register.

If you're selected you'll win a ticket for a single day at the event.

Can I go with friends or family?

Groups can apply together, although they will need to be part of the same Nintendo Account family group.

Children 6 or under don't require a ticket as long as their parent or guardian has one. Ages 7 and above will need their own ticket as part of a Nintendo Account family group.

Can I get a ticket on the day?

"Walk-up tickets on the days of the event will not be available." So, nope.

Can I get into Nintendo Live 2023 if I'm a PAX West 2023 Badge Holder?

No. However, registering separately via the PAX West website will give PAX-goers a chance to win tickets. Here is precisely what Nintendo itself has to say on the subject:

PAX West badge holders who are interested in attending Nintendo Live 2023 can opt in to a separate promotion on the official PAX West website for a chance to win event tickets. Please note that a PAX West badge alone does not guarantee entry.

Can I go to Nintendo Live 2023 if I live in another country?

Nintendo says in its FAQs that only US residents with a US Nintendo Account may register. So no, not really.

Will any of the events be streamed online?

Possibly! Given that there will be live stage performances and tournaments taking place, we imagine some of the events will be available to watch online, much like the concerts from Nintendo Live 2022. It might not be uploaded day and date, but you should probably expect something a little later down the line.

Here's a peek at the live concert from Nintendo Live 2022 in Japan:

Can we expect a Nintendo Direct at the same time?

Who knows!

September typically brings a Nintendo Direct, but if we were to put bets on it, we'd wager Nintendo probably won't want a Direct presentation to clash with its Nintendo Live event. The latter doesn't seem like it will be focused on upcoming games, but will rather foster the ol' engagement with the Nintendo community in fun ways. We'd expect a Direct later in the month.

This is all speculation, but looking back to 2021, the September Direct came on 23rd September. In 2022, it was 13th September. You know it makes sense.

Will there be new games announced at Nintendo Live 2023?

Here's what Nintendo says regarding new product announcements:

No such announcements are planned. Nintendo Live 2023 is first and foremost an in-person celebration of Nintendo fun for all members of the family.

Nintendo will save that stuff for a Direct, although it's not impossible that there will be playable demos of freshly announced games.

Is this why Nintendo chose not to attend E3?

Unlikely. As we've mentioned, Nintendo has been focusing on its Direct presentations to showcase its upcoming games, but regardless of that, Nintendo Live doesn't seem like the kind of event to expect big announcements from.

Is Nintendo Live the new Space World?

Pah! No, probably not. It's about as close an alternative as we're ever likely to get, mind.

For those unaware, Space World was a trade show that Nintendo hosted from 1989 to 2001 (though it was called Shoshinkai until 1997). The most famous Space World event probably came in its final year, during which the GameCube and Super Mario Sunshine were showcased, along with the first proper glimpse at The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker.

Nintendo Live 2023 is more likely to focus on the Nintendo community itself and we don't expect to see any major announcements at the event itself. Still, stranger things have happened...

How many times did you type 'Nintendo Life' instead of 'Nintendo Live' above?

Too many. 'Nintendo Love' snuck in there, too.

Do let us know in the comments if you've got any specific questions regarding Nintendo Live 2023 you'd like us to address. In the meantime, will you be looking to attend? Share your thoughts.