Instead of doing a traditional and more general E3 prediction post as I’ve done in years past, I figured it’d be more fun to take a deep dive into various topics this time. So lets kick things off with Nintendo and what I think they’re bringing to the table this year.
It feels like each year around this time, I find myself writing about how Nintendo finds itself in a critical spot and needs to convince the masses that they should be a WiiU owner. With the WiiU having been on store shelves for almost three years now and sales continuing to stagnate, it’s time may have already passed. You could make the argument that Nintendo knows this as well as they’ve confirmed to be working on their next console currently using the code name NX. Another telling sign is the black hole that is the WiiU release schedule this year.
2014 was a great year for Nintendo and it’s struggling console, seeing major first party releases like Super Smash Bros and Mario Kart 8 alongside strong third party games such as Bayonetta 2 and Hyrule Warriors. The momentum unfortunately hasn’t carried over into 2015 as Nintendo’s other big franchise, The Legend of Zelda, galloped off into 2016 making the release calendar even more vacant than it already is.
It’s because of this that I’m hoping Nintendo brings out some big guns. Here’s where I think they may be going:
Star Fox WiiU – This one is a gimmie considering Miyamoto himself revealed he was working on a Star Fox game for the WiiU last year. While news has been scarce since that reveal, we did learn that Nintendo planned to release this new Star Fox game prior to the Legend of Zelda in 2015. Sure, that gap has widened since Zelda’s delay, but this one now seems like Nintendo’s big 2015 title.
Super Smash Bros DLC – With the recent release of MewTwo and with Lucas on the horizon, I can’t see a reason why Nintendo wouldn’t want to continue the momentum and reveal one or two more roster additions for the popular brawler. While they’re at it, I’d love to see some of the polling data from their promotion letting fans vote for characters they want to see in the game.
Fire Emblem – Yes 3DS fans, I didn’t forget about you. Announced a few months ago during a Nintendo Direct event, E3 would be the perfect time to actually show some gameplay for the wildly popular series.
Yoshi’s Wooly World – Seemingly the biggest “announced” WiiU title left this year, Nintendo would be foolish to not promote this stylish platformer.
More Amiibo – There’s no denying that these figures have been a smashing success for Nintendo. My guess is that they capitalize on this trend by announcing even more figures based on some of their more beloved franchises. Click here to see who I think is joining the Amiibo party.
Pokemon – Something, something Pokemon because it’s one of Nintendo’s insanely popular franchises.
Nintendo Discusses It’s NX Console – While this new console was revealed earlier this year, no additional details were given. While part of me questions if Nintendo would risk cutting into potential WiiU sales by detailing a new console, the other part of me sees them viewing this as a big opportunity to get fans back on board with what they’re bringing to the table.
Besides, we don’t even really know what this thing is anyway. Maybe it’s a new, more powerful WiiU. Perhaps it’s a brand new piece of hardware. There’s still so much we don’t know, perhaps Nintendo will offer us some answers.
The Legend of Zelda (WiiU) Gets A Name – Yes, the game is now coming in 2016 and yes we do know that the game (surprisingly) won’t be shown at E3 this year. Hey, perhaps we’ll at least get an official name for it.
More Mario? – This one is tricky as it seems Nintendo takes a while these days to pump out new and dedicated Mario games (Mario Maker doesn’t count here). With how well Super Mario 3D World was received and with a hole now in their schedule, could Nintendo bump up a new Mario game to fill the gap? A new Mario game is as sure a bet as there is for the company.
WiiU Changes – I’m fairly certain Nintendo is going to announce some sort of change for the WiiU console. I just can’t decide if it’ll be a price cut, a new bundle, or a new hardware type (more hard drive space, new colors, etc etc).
Super Longshot Predictions
A New F-Zero Game – It’s been a long road for fans of the ultra fast racer, made even longer when Shigeru Miyamoto mentioned that he wasn’t sure what direction a new F-Zero could go in.
I don’t buy that. Look at Mario Kart 8 and how well it implemented anti-gravity. Not only that, Mute City and Big Blue are actual tracks in there now. Taking that mechanic and giving it fresh visuals would be enough for me. How cool would it be if Nintendo pulled the curtain back on a new title AND that it was coming later this year to fill the void left by Zelda?
Metroid – As one of my favorite franchises, I’m always holding out hope that Nintendo returns to this seemingly dormant franchise. Granted, Samus is used pretty much everywhere else these days outside of starring in a game from her own universe. Yes, the series seems to struggle in terms of sales and the most recent entry, Other M proved to be more controversial than anything else, but I’m confident with a few tweaks, Nintendo can right the ship. What about a Metroid game that utilizes a classic side scrolling camera angle, and uses 3-D objects and backgrounds? That would give it a classic feel, yet update it to look modern.
At the very least, Nintendo can just copy the success of the recently released PS4 indie game, Axiom Verge. I’m up for either version.
Those are my picks but what are yours? What are you hoping to see from Nintendo this year at E3?