We might only be half way through February but Nintendo have just wrapped up their third Nintendo Direct Broadcast of the year. The first one was Pokémon focused, while the second looked at upcoming Wii U features and titles. The third had more of a 3DS flair, with Nintendo announcing and dating many games.
Satoru Iwata kicked things off by celebrating Luigi – the Mario brother who has always stood in his red-hatted sibling’s shadow – by pointing out that they’re well aware that Luigi hasn’t had his turn in the limelight. To rectify this, Nintendo are dubbing 2013 the year of Luigi.
Firstly, they detailed the 3DS game Luigi’s Mansion 2. It’ll feature the same Poltergust Vacuum from the first game, though it can now suck up other items as well as ghosts. This creates interesting puzzles, including one where you have to spin a ceiling fan in order to get a key.[drop2]There are lots of other new upgrades, too, such as ghosts needing to be stunned by light before you can suck them up and various types of ghosts, including different themed bosses, the classic Boos, poltergeists and even ghost dogs!
There will also be a four player co-operative mode – set in the Scarescraper – which can be played both locally and online. The game releases on the 28th of March.
A new Mario and Luigi RPG game is also in the works, set to release this summer. The game is set in Luigi’s dreams and Mario takes a background role this time round. Also releasing this summer is a new Mario Golf game, which features Luigi and many other familiar Mario characters.
Since this is the year of Luigi, New Super Mario Bros. U is getting a revamp in the form of DLC which only features Luigi. All of the courses will be redesigned and the game will be renamed New Super Luigi U. This will release later this year.
Zelda was mentioned, though no new games were announced – just the confirmation of a Miiverse community, where fans can discuss upcoming Zelda games going live today. Ocarina of Time 3D will also be on sale on the 3DS eShop in Europe from today for €29.99.
Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate will be getting Wii U and 3DS bundles when it releases next month and will also feature cross-console play, similar to some of Sony’s games on the PlayStation Vita. This means 3DS players will be able to play with their Wii U counterparts and, since the games share the same save, you’ll be able to continue from the same place in each version.
More 3DS games were detailed and dated, including Fire Emblem Awakening which is finally releasing in Europe on April 19th along with a limited edition blue 3DS XL. Project X Zone – which features a medley of Namco, Capcom and SEGA fighting characters – will release this summer.[drop]Three new downloadable games were also revealed: Splash or Crash, in which you have to guide a ball past obstacles down a well; Code of Princess, a sidescrolling RPG with over 15 playable characters and online co-operative play; and a new Mario vs. Donkey Kong title, where Mario and Donkey Kong team up.
Splash and Crash will release February 28th, with Code of Princess following this spring and Mario vs. Donkey Kong some time in Q2 of this year.
Nintendo went all out with locking in release dates for upcoming 3DS games: the new Pokémon Mystery Dungeon game – Gates of Infinity – will launch on May 17th, featuring co-operative play and all-new 3D dungeons. Animal Crossing: New Leaf releases on June 14th, which features a new town with more to do than ever before.
Finally, they announced a new entry into the Donkey Kong Country Returns series for 3DS. This should be brilliant fun when it releases this summer and you’re able to see it in all of its 3D glory today with a video available to download on the 3DS eShop.