Simply put, Nintendo really do not know how to keep a secret.
There were few surprises in this year’s E3 announcements from Nintendo. Mainly as they already made their surprise announcements in the days beforehand and some announcements were more like a decision rather than anything concrete.
The focus from Nintendo was on the very fun looking upcoming Mario game Super Mario Odyssey with a run-through of some of the game play as well as the very important announcement of its October 2017 release date.
I must admit, I was becoming fatigued with Nintendo’s plumber over the past few years and steered away from many Mario-focussed games. Games such as Super Smash Bros and the Mario Kart series held their own because the focus was not on the Italian guy and I fully supported Nintendo’s decision to promote other Mario characters with these titles. Even with Ubisoft featuring Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle at their conference, the focus is more on the Rabbids (and Princess Peach with a gun of course). Nintendo are taking big chances with Super Mario Odyssey, and the game is certainly different enough to warrant interest. On what we have seen, it does look amazing, and has the potential to re-boot Mario as a character who can hold his own.
On this note it was quite disappointing not to see a Super Smash Bros announcement for the Switch, and it is quite surprising considering the popularity of this game on previous consoles. Also, fans of Animal Crossing (I am sure they exist) are still left waiting for a Switch game.
The inclusion of the Switch port Pokkén Tournament Dx (Dx meaning deluxe) during E3 was a tad lack-lustre, as the big announcement was made days previously. And news of this tournament style Pokémon fighting game became old fast, with not much really being offered apart from a new character. They did make a good choice with the Pokémon chosen – the newest grass starter Decidueye, a grass/ghost Pokémon based on the now extinct Hawaiian Stilt-Owl, and the other two starters Popplio and Litten seem to be included only as supporter Pokémon. Being Nintendo, I am sure extra characters will be announced closer to the launch date of 22 September, and I hope this game does well. This is a fun and graphically superb game that suffered from a release on Wii U so close to the console’s demise and I hope it will expand further on the Switch.
Now while many, including myself, are very excited over Pokken Tournament Dx, there were rumours running for quite a while that a Pokemon RPG title will be announced for the Switch. And there was. Kind of. Coined as the “Untitled Pokemon RPG”, there is nothing officially known about this game apart from that it is currently under development. This was also the case for Metroid Prime 4 where the teaser trailer was just the title and the statement that this game was also under development. Is this a clever marketing technique or are Nintendo jumping the gun a bit?
For those of you who haven’t heard of the Monster Hunter series, shame! (with bell ringing and all). Nintendo have announced a Japanese version of Monster Hunter XX (double cross) but not only was this game not revealed during E3, it may never make it to Australia. Fortunately, Sony’s E3 made up for this for Monster Hunter fans with the announcement of Monster Hunter World. While there have been many Japanese titles ported over for ‘Western’ audiences, this is still a largely untapped market.
The trailer for Xenoblade Chronicles 2 looked amazing (if you ignore the voices), fans of Zelda Breath of the Wild would be happy with the announcement of its first DLC, Fire Emblem Warriors will bring all your favourite Fire Emblem characters together in one game for the Switch and 3DS, and Rocket League is also being ported for the Switch.
Nintendo did prove me wrong for a few brief moments with two unexpected highlights – Yoshi and Kirby. Both games look cute and fun, however both are scheduled for release sometime in 2018.
Does this mean Nintendo are already telling people what is on the roster for their E3 2018 announcement?