Did Nintendo demonstrate to gamers that this is the year the Wii U will deliver games galore?Nintendo had an atypically subdued showing at this year’s E3 conference. In 2011, Nintendo took to the main stage and revealed their Wii U console. Nintendo is in a tough position this year, with the Wii U absolutely tanking at retailers. Did Nintendo demonstrate to gamers that this is the year the Wii U will deliver games galore?
Nintendo disappointed many fans, as their showings this year were extremely conservative. A new 3-D Mario (though nothing like the far-out design of the Galaxy series), a new Smash Brothers (now starring Capcom’s Mega Man!), and a remake of the Gamecube’s Zelda title, The Wind Waker, were shown for Wii U. Notably, Nintendo finally allowed the prodigal developers at Platinum Games to show off their two exclusive Wii U titles, Bayonetta 2 and The Wonderful 101. Development of these two brilliant titles is going excellently. Why Nintendo chooses to closet two of the most compelling reasons to own a Wii U baffles.Nintendo fans can’t help but feel the superior talent at Retro Studios is squandered on titles like Donkey Kong.Nintendo also revealed the long-awaited game from Retro Studios, developers of the groundbreaking Metroid Prime series on Gamecube and Wii. Many gamers were hoping for another atmospheric Metroid adventure, or that the team would tackle the perpetually absent Star Fox franchise. Instead, they showed a new Donkey Kong Country game, which looked fun and ambitious (for a DK title, that is). The action looked largely unchanged from the SNES original, and even Nintendo fans can’t help but feel the superior talent at Retro Studios is squandered on titles like Donkey Kong.
Nintendo also detailed Mario Kart 8 for Wii U. Bringing updated graphics and new gameplay mechanics, Mario Kart 8 looked like a blast to play. Featuring vehicle morphing, flight, anti-gravity, and stellar track designs, Mario Kart 8 will likely sell like hotcakes. Pikmin 3 was also demoed, which is a whimsical take on the real-time strategy genre that puts you in control of a legion of loyal plant creatures. Helmed by videogame godfather Shigeru Miyamoto, the Pikmin series has demanded another entry since its last title on Gamecube, and Pikmin 3 looks to deliver deep gameplay and stunning graphics.
EA teased gamers with a new edition of the popular Battlefront series. In other exciting E3 news, EA, hot off their huge acquisition of the Star Wars license, teased gamers with a new edition of the popular Battlefront series. Helmed by developer DICE, creators of the hugely popular Battlefield franchise, Star Wars Battlefront combines large-scale warfare and an extensive class system, pitting gamers against each other as the opposing forces of the Rebel Alliance and the Empire. The series, which began on PS2 and the original Xbox, is long overdue for a new entry, and DICE is a perfect fit. Gamers are already salivating at the promise of playing as Sith Lords and Wookies in massive battles.
Other big deal announcements include Square Enix’s bevy of titles going multiplatform. New Final Fantasy and Kingdom Hearts titles, which have only appeared on Sony hardware (barring Final Fantasy XIII) up until now, are coming to PS4 and Xbox One. Similarly, the next Metal Gear Solid is going multiplatform.
Another interesting tidbits from E3: Bungie’s blockbuster sci-fi shooter Destiny, coming to PS4 and Xbox One, cast Game of Thrones favorite Peter Dinklage as the A.I. companion, Ghost. Expect lots of interaction and dialogue between players and Dinklage’s robotic counterpart.South Park masterminds Matt Stone and Trey Parker were at E3 showing their South Park game, The Stick of Truth.South Park masterminds Matt Stone and Trey Parker were at E3 showing off the newest build of their 4-years-in-the-making South Park game, The Stick of Truth. Coming to PS3 and Xbox 360, it looked fun and engaging, and may well be the funniest game ever. Now backed by Ubisoft, The Stick of Truth puts players in the shoes of the new kid in South Park. Making friends, enemies, and crafting a unique RPG adventure are developer Obsidian’s goals as they work closely with the two infinitely busy South Park writers. Obsidian, whose past titles include Fallout: New Vegas and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic 2, are more than suited to bring a great RPG foundation to the world of South Park.
E3’s are always a mixed bag of game reveals, PR stunts, and corporate jingoism. This year was no different, but at least gamers came out on top, with too many new developments and titles to name. With the big 3—Microsoft, Nintendo, Sony—kicking into high gear for another console war, it’s always fun to see what a new generation of hardware and games will bring to insatiable gamers.