10/1/13 Nintendo Direct Features New Looks, Reveals, and Delays

In the latest edition of Nintendo Direct, the company not only revealed a closer look at several of the games coming out this holiday season, but also revealed a previously unannounced title and an unfortunate delay. Following is a recap of the video (seen above) for those unable to view it by way of Nintendo’s press release.

For the Wii U, a new trailer for November 22nd’s release of Super Mario 3D World was shown, and a new website for the upcoming title has been launched, which you can find here. I’ll be taking a closer look at the trailer in a following article, but for now, you can read my previous hands-on impressions of the game here.

wiiu_MarioSonicSochiOlympicGames_Bundle_PackageThe latest character confirmation for the 2014 release of Super Smash Bros. is none other than SEGA’s Sonic the Hedgehog, who can now reenact his fight with Mega Man from Archie’s “Worlds Collide” comic crossover. Before that, though, he’ll have to contend with Mario and his friends in Mario & Sonic at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games on November 15th.

This time around, though, through the power of broadband internet, players will be able to compete in four events: Ski Cross, Snowboard Cross, and Short Track Speed Skating, plus the “Winter Sports Champion Race,” a Dream Event that combines Skiing, Ice Skating, Bobsleigh, and Snowboard into a single event. Four events sounds a little underwhelming, but considering the previous three titles in the series didn’t feature any online at all, it’s still a step up. Keeping true to the theme of the Olympics, players will be competing on behalf of their home country, and each time they win a gold medal online, it will be added to that country’s tally, with the points viewable through persistent online rankings.

The game will be available for $49.99 at retail and in the Nintendo eShop, but for $59.99, you can get the bundle seen above, which includes a special blue Wii Remote Plus controller. Incidentally, the visuals in the trailer seemed far better than what I saw when I went hands-on with it, which you can read about in my preview of it and Wii Party U.

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Speaking of Wii Party U and controller bundles, Nintendo revealed that the physical retail release of the game will come with a Wii Remote Plus controller and a special horizontal stand for the Wii U GamePad, making it easier to place more GamePad-centric multiplayer games such as Tabletop Baseball.

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If those aren’t enough Wii Remote Plus controllers for you, Nintendo has two specially-designed Mario and Luigi-themed versions coming to retail on November 1st for $39.99 each. I’d love to get my hands on those, especially with Super Mario 3D World just around the corner.

A free software update for Pikmin 3 will bring with it a free Mission Mode stage for the game’s multiplayer, as well as an improved global ranking feature which allows player’s to see the world’s highest score at any time. Additional stages are now available for purchase right now, with more still to come in the future, so stay tuned for further updates!

Third-party Wii U releases to look forward to in October include Just Dance 2014 from Ubisoft on October 8th, Skylanders SWAP Force from Activision on October 13th, LEGO Marvel Super Heroes and Batman: Arkham Origins from Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment on October 22nd and 25th, respectively, Sonic Lost World from SEGA on October 29th, and Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag from Ubisoft, also on October 29th.

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze (click here for my hands-on preview) has been delayed once more; first, it swapped release dates with Super Mario 3D World, and now it’s been pushed back to February 2014 “in order to deliver the optimum gaming experience for fans.” Regretfully, Nintendo did not even inform us of what Dixie Kong will bring to the mix when announcing the delay, leaving us to wonder for even longer.

Finally on the Wii U front, a new system update has been made available. Full details of what this update brings can be found here, including the ability to output audio and video to the GamePad in Wii Mode and a more streamlined experience when adding Friends.

Unfortunately, you still can’t use the Pro Controller or GamePad controls even while the Wii games are displayed on the GamePad, so my Wii and Nintendo 64 Virtual Console games are staying right where they are– on my Wii. That said, the Wii Remote controls do work with the GamePad, so if you’re ready for it, there you go.

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On Nintendo 3DS, a new unnamed Kirby title has been announced. Taking what seems to be a cue from Donkey Kong Country Returns and Wario Land for Virtual Boy, our tough creampuff will not only move from left to right, but take advantage of the Nintendo 3DS’s stereoscopic 3D effect to move towards and away from the camera as well. Plus, he now has an all-new ability that will allow him to “inhale everything” in certain areas to help clear a path.

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The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds is coming to retail and the Nintendo eShop for $39.99 on November 22nd, and features an interesting new mechanic I’ll be going over when I preview the trailer more thoroughly. Until then, you can check out my hands-on preview here.

Speaking of The Legend of Zelda: In the Nintendo Direct video at the top of this article, you’ll find a QR code for Animal Crossing: New Leaf. Scan the code on the Able Sisters’ sewing machine to get a lobster shirt like the one Link wears in The Wind Waker.

Also in Animal Crossing: New Leaf, you can acquire a special Fedora Chair at a Nintendo Zone location via StreetPass from now until October 14th. From October 15, a Sushi Platter will be available. StreetPass content for Kid Icarus: Uprising, Super Mario 3D Land, and Mario Kart 7, plus special Gold Pants Mii distribution, will also be available later this year. Additionally, Nintendo will soon be upgrading the Nintendo Zone relay points to distribute to you the data from the last six visitors who have visited, rather than only the last one.

On the Nintendo 3DS third-party front, the following games will be available in October: Etrian Odyssey Untold: The Millennium Girl from ATLUS on October 1st, Skylanders SWAP Force from Activision on October 13th, LEGO Marvel Super Heroes – Universe in Peril and Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate from Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment on October 22nd and 25th, respectively, and Sonic Lost World from SEGA on October 29th. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Dual Destinies will also be available exclusively in the Nintendo eShop on October 24th, but you can download a free demo version to try for yourself now.

Finally, Square Enix’s Bravely Default has a new character trailer available in anticipation of the game’s release in the first quarter of 2014.

“Nintendo is delivering unprecedented value and variety to consumers this holiday season,” said Nintendo of Canada’s vice-president and general manager, Ron Bertram. “From shaking up the way players enjoy the next Zelda adventure to providing fans with more content to enjoy in Pikmin 3, we’re always looking for new ways to deliver the best entertainment experience possible to consumers.”

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David Oxford

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