Nintendo Direct
Image: Evan Amos / Nintendo Life

It's the most wonderful tiiiiiime of the yeeeear. No, not the holiday with the gift-slinging old man (although that's a good one too), it's Nintendo Direct time, baby!

And, of course, as is traditional on Nintendo Direct Eve, we put out a tray of 1-Up Mushrooms and Super Stars for Miyamoto, and we sat around the fire speculating about what we might get. We've been good gamers this year — we never troll, never disconnect, and always say "gg" when it is warranted — so we feel like we've earned some of our wishlist!

Here are our predictions, hopes, and fears for the 40-minute showcase — let us know yours in the comments!

Hardware

Nintendo Switch OLED Comparison
Image: Nintendo

Switch OLED, new controllers, Labo… lol

KATE: We saw that new controller being registered the other day… I don’t know what it could be, but a Game Boy controller would be neat to see, even if it’s just because I’d love to know how on earth they tackle that idea. However, I’d also love an N64 controller, just so the younguns can go through the same “but I don’t have three hands” dilemma we did.

TOM: A Nintendo Switch Online controller definitely seems like a good bet, and I do like the idea of a cute little wireless N64 controller; that would fly off the My Nintendo shelves. It’s so hard to tell with Nintendo though, it’d be funny if it was some wacky Labo-style announcement out of left field.

RYAN: Yeah, I’d also bet on the new controller being related to Switch Online, which probably means that it now won’t be anything to do with it at all. I never felt the need to pick up the NES and SNES controllers, but a quirky little Game Boy or N64 controller might be too tempting to resist.

Ring Fit News

We can hope

Dragaux
Image: Nintendo

KATE: Or, hear me out: More games that use the Ring-Con. I’m not talking about adding Ring-Con minigames to WarioWare: Get It Together, I’m talking about full games designed around that squishy controller. It was expensive! Come on!

RYAN: Maybe a sequel? A co-op sequel for you and your partner/friend/grandma to workout side-by-side. Ring Fit Adventure 2Gether.

Nintendo Switch Online Update

Game Boy, N64

GAVIN: There’s been too much smoke recently for there not to be any fire, even if it’s a tiny little spark rather than a huge blaze of all the retro platforms you could possibly want. I’ve got access to pretty much everything I’d want to play already via original hardware, but I’ll happily download any new app Nintendo puts out before promptly ignoring it.

KATE: This seems pretty certain… but I’d still like to see what exactly this means for NSO. There are tons of games I’d love to see on my Switch, but I imagine that Nintendo doesn’t want to pay licensing fees for most of them. Still, the first-party catalogue is a cracker for Game Boy and N64.

TOM: If the Game Boy reports are on the money, I’d like GBA as well, just because that cool little system had some cracking games and giving players a couple of weeks to play Metroid: Fusion just makes sense. N64 would be neat, of course. I just hope the subscription ramps up in general with some nice extras; I think it’s good for the money, but it’d be nice to see Nintendo change the narrative to something more positive.

Rumoured announcements

Coffee and blood

Castlevania
Image: Konami

GAVIN: That rumoured Castlevania Advance Collection would be a nice little present to ease us into Autumn. Switch might not have Symphony of the Night yet, but Aria of Sorrow is pretty special.

TOM: Alan Wake Remastered looks a solid bet thanks to the ratings that popped up online; like many I’d prefer a simple port based on the original that works natively, but it’ll probably be a (*sigh) cloud version. Because of the weird timing of this stream (terrible for EU, very early for Japan) I don’t expect megatons, but no doubt there’ll be some goodies and an NSO update, maybe that’s enough?

Metroid Dread

Is there anything left to learn?

GAVIN: I’ve had my fill of pre-release Dread details — I’d be happy with a complete media blackout until 8th October.

TOM: What Gavin said.

RYAN: Also what Gavin said.

KATE: What Tom and Ryan said.

Life Is Strange: True Colors

Shining throuuugh

Lifeisstrange
Image: Square Enix

KATE: Square Enix has been weirdly silent on the delayed release date of Life Is Strange: True Colors for Switch, and I’m hoping it’s because of the Direct. I want to play it!

TOM: I just hope the weird silence isn’t the “oh no we announced it and can’t get it to run” kind.

Mario Party Superstars

The one party to rule them all

TOM: I actually want a segment for this, it’s the perfect Christmas game!

RYAN: I’m not usually a Mario Party fan, but something about this one grabbed my attention when it was first shown off. I’d happily see a little more – and I’m sure we will.

Advance Wars

Tanks for the memories

TOM: I adore strategy and tactics-based games, but never played the originals. Shocking, I know, but I’m pretty excited about these stylish remakes. Maybe we’ll get an overview that introduces a new feature; I’d quite like daily and weekly challenges, or something along those lines.

RYAN: I too have never played Advance Wars so I wouldn’t mind seeing more of the remake. There are so many games and so little time these days that I really need to be convinced I’ll like something before bothering to jump in, so hopefully Nintendo’s marketing team can lure me in with some new footage.

Big Brain Academy

Test your pandemic-atrophied grey matter

TOM: They can’t do worse than the reveal trailer with the Dad, the actor’s brief seemed to be ‘pretend you’re permanently peeved and bored’.

Out Now!

There’s always one

KATE: I know this is going to make me sound boring, but if they do a bunch of “OUT NOW” announcements, I hope it’s games I don’t want to play. My list is so long right now, and we’re about to enter the busy season...

TOM: I think their record is 7 ‘out now’ games from the last Indie World - let’s break that record (they won’t, but gosh that’d be fun).

RYAN: Maybe they’ll drag Reggie back just to do a surprise ‘Mother 3 out after this presentation’ segment. They definitely won’t.

Smash Bros. Announcements

blurgh

Wah
Image: Nintendo

GAVIN: At the very least there’s got to be some new amiibo news, but time’s running out for the final DLC Challenger announcement if it’s going to be released by the end of the year. Obviously, Nintendo might save it for The Game Awards, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see Sakurai trotted out for the ‘final’ time. Everyone’s saying Dragaux, but my money’s on Crash.

TOM: Make it stop.

RYAN: Waluigi for the memes? Sakurai himself, also for the memes? I’d quite like Spyro, but I forgot to bombard Sakurai with tweets to let him know so I doubt it’ll happen.

KATE: It's going to be some beefy guy named Craig from a cult favourite Game Boy game that I've never heard of.

Indies

40 minutes means at least one sizzle reel, right?

KATE: When it comes to indies, I just want lots of them. I love having the eShop stuffed-to-bursting with excellent games that I’ll never have time to play, because being spoiled for choice is a fantastic position to be in. Just pipe them all directly into my veins, thanks.

GAVIN: Braid Anniversary Edition was announced ages ago, right? It’s about time we saw that again. I’d take a port of The Witness, too, and I think that completes my indie wishlist on Switch. Switch has practically everything else.

TOM: A 40-minute sizzle reel, can you imagine? We’d all spontaneously combust. But yeah, I love sizzle reels and Indie ‘out nows’, so fingers crossed.

Splatoon 3

Squids in

Switch OLED Splatoon 3
Image: Nintendo

TOM: I think this could be a good bet for an overview trailer that breaks the ‘out in 2021’ rule. Maybe a look at a couple of maps, or perhaps the hub / central area, it’ll look awesome in any case if it makes an appearance..

RYAN: I keep forgetting that Splatoon 3 is a thing so anything – even just another small tease – would be great. Splatoon 2 is one of my most-played Switch games, so I’m sure 3 will hook me in yet again.

KATE: I just really hope the voice chat for Splatoon 3 has a better option than “use the confusing app”.

Danganronpa Collection

Not that there’s anything new to see

KATE: I’m just guessing this one because it’s a winter release (and Nintendo said that’s what to expect) and it’s a massive collection of games. It already has a release date, so I’m not sure what else we can learn, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it gets thrown in there… maybe some extra DLC?

Pokémon?

Probably not?

TOM: The Pokeymans franchise is normally saved for its own shows, though they have occasionally drafted in the Pokemon Company boss to introduce a trailer so… maybe?

RYAN: I can’t imagine anything being shown other than a reminder that the Diamond and Pearl remakes and Legends: Arceus are on the way. Perhaps a new trailer?

Bayonetta 3

Don’t get your hopes up

Bayonetta
Image: Nintendo

GAVIN: I just wish we knew how development was progressing.

TOM: Haha, good one.

RYAN: Hopefully it’s going “very well”.

Animal Crossing DLC/Updates

...please?

KATE: Now that it’s Autumn, you know what we need? A Pumpkin Spice Latte… with pigeon milk.

GAVIN: Nintendo could include the tiniest morsel of Animal Crossing: New Horizons content and it would likely steal all the headlines. New Horizons is seriously lacking in the caffeine department, but more than Brewster, I wouldn’t be surprised to see some sort of Happy Home Designer-sized spin-off, either. Not a ‘proper’ Animal Crossing game, you understand — a new AC product to purchase for your Nintendo Switch entertainment system. Good or bad, it would sell in he-ouge quantities.

KATE: I think AC fans would riot if we got a spin-off “instead of” updates.

TOM: I still play Animal Crossing every day and good grief it needs new content. It’s resembling real life a little too closely - repetitive, settled, predictable. I adore the game, or my islanders to be more specific, but Nintendo has dropped the ball over the past 6-12 months. Like Gavin said anything will do at this stage, give us something.

RYAN: For some reason I hadn’t even considered the possibility of a new game, but Gavin’s Happy Home Designer-like idea is a good shout. Is it also time for New Horizons to receive a Welcome amiibo-style major update to really freshen things up?

Something surprising

Nintendo buys Microsoft

Pikmin
Image: Nintendo

KATE: Alex said Arms 2, so I’m guessing Arms 2. Except I hope they call it “Arms 2: Legs”.

TOM: Miyamoto pops up with a Pikmin in his jacket breast pocket, bringing back decade-old memories, and says Pikmin 4 is in the can and out after the show.

RYAN: Furukawa comes on and says that he’ll personally track down all the people selling retro Nintendo games on eBay for ridiculous prices and make them see sense, finally letting us buy a copy of Metroid Fusion once and for all.

Something disappointing

Microsoft buys Nintendo

TOM: They announce another Smash Bros. expansion pack and devote 20 minutes to showcasing the moveset of exciting new character Bubsy.

RYAN: Oh god, please not another Smash Bros. expansion. Let it rest.

KATE: The only way I’ll be okay with Smash is if they finally let Waluigi in.

GAVIN: Animal Crossing: Amiibo Festival Deluxe.

That one really unlikely thing that you want

Fantasy Life 2

TOM: Sin & Punishment 3.

GAVIN: Rare Replay: Switch Edition. If I keep thinking it and keep saying it, Banjo will eventually appear on Switch — that’s how it worked for Smash. I also just really want to rebuild my awesome USS Enterprise forever lost to time in a Nuts and Bolts save I foolishly deleted a decade ago. An underrated game, that.

KATE: I’d almost given up having hope for unlikely things, but now I want Rare Replay. Give me Viva Piñata on a Nintendo console where it belongs!!

RYAN: I’m going to say a Dino Crisis remaster again. I used to say Pokémon Snap 2 every time and that actually happened, so you never know.


Ah, there's nothing like a Nintendo Direct to kick off the Autumn months. Go free into the comments, my friends, and speculate like there's no tomorrow.