Nintendo kicked things off in style this morning as Reggie Fils-Aime was featured in a Robot Chicken-style animation poking fun at the videogame media. This was followed by a thrilling live-action video of Fils-Aime and Satoru Iwata facing off in an effects-filled battle that led into the first announcement of Mii Fighters in Super Smash Bros. Wii U. There are three different types of fighting styles (sword fighter, brawler, and gunner) for your Mii, and a variety of special moves that you can choose from to make the fighting style more unique.
After an additional montage of Smash 3DS footage, we took a look at Yoshi’s Woolly World for the Wii U. The game is basically a pseudo-sequel to Kirby’s Epic Yarn as the graphics have the same unique yarn look. It has the gameplay of a Yoshi title, with the graphics of Kirby’s Epic Yarn, which so far looks pretty solid.
Next up was a trailer for Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker for the Wii U. It feels like a Mario game, but unique at the same time. Watching Toad move around a 3D world with mining gear may not have been something you expected from Nintendo, but it looks entertaining to say the least.
The Legend of Zelda Wii U followed, but we didn’t get to see much of it. The game’s director, Eiji Aonuma, discussed how to make the game world feel like one vast area instead of divided regions. He then showcased that everything we could see in the Zelda video behind him (frozen on a vast landscape) could be explored from any direction. This allows for new ways to solve puzzles and creates an expansive Zelda world. We then saw Link take on an enemy before the trailer came to an end.
The next trailer was for Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire. The game looks about as you’d expect with no real surprises, but what followed was interesting. Bayonetta 2 looks far more polished than it has in the past, but the real surprise is that Wii U owners will get a bonus copy of the original Bayonetta included with the purchase of Bayonetta 2. In addition, you can dawn Nintendo costumes to help spice things up a bit.
Tecmo-Koei was up next with a discussion about Hyrule Warriors for the Wii U. First the developers discussed how they merged the Dynasty Warriors and Zelda franchises and then showed off some of the playable characters in the upcoming title. For instance, you’ll be able to play as Impa or Midna. The game is set to release on September 26th.
A trailer for Kirby and the Rainbow Curse was up next. This Wii U title looked like a great addition to the Kirby franchise. The little pink puffball even has the ability to turn into a tank now. And while it’s great to see another Kirby game, the next trailer caught nearly everyone by surprise. We saw a quick look at Xenoblade Chronicles X. The game looks great at the moment, but it’s hard to tell much more based on the brief trailer.
We got a quick look at Mario Maker next, which is essentially a development-style game that allows players to create their own Mario levels. You can make the levels look like classic NES Mario levels, or the updated graphics and effects of the New Super Mario Bros. series. Either way you wish to play, the game certainly looks like a lot of fun.
The last new game to be shown was Splatoon for the Wii U. It’s a four vs. four online game that has each team trying to cover the arena with different colored ink. The characters have various abilities depending on which form they’re in (human or squid), and if they’re on their own ink or the opposing team’s ink. For instance, you can hide in your own ink, or swim quickly through it, but if you hit the opposing team’s ink, you slow down to a crawl. As a third-person shooter, the game definitely felt very much like Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare, but far more unique since it’s a new property.
The Nintendo Direct ended with the announcement trailer for Palutena in Super Smash Bros., and a tease at Dark Pit as well. With Palutena, the Mii Fighters, and possibly Dark Pit, Smash Bros. is shaping up quite well. Nintendo definitely had the most entertaining pre-E3 showing, but we’ll have to see how the games play out on the show floor!