Thursday, February 14, 2013

A few thoughts on this morning's trifecta of Nintendo Direct broadcasts

So, the folks at Nintendo provided us with another trio of Nintendo Direct broadcasts this morning. (The last ones arrived less than a month ago.) Unlike the company's previous Nintendo Directs, the three that aired today--watch the North American one here--focused (mostly) on the 3DS. And not only that, but they focused on 3DS games featuring Luigi.

Here are a few brief thoughts on the three 3DS titles that fit the above-mentioned bill:

Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon (aka Luigi Mansion 2 in Japan)--This long-awaited game, which will, at long last, hit store shelves across North America on March 24, looks as gorgeous as always. Also, the online-enabled multiplayer modes sound like a lot of fun.

Mario & Luigi: Dream Team (aka Mario & Luigi RPG 4: Dream Adventure)--This one was a bit of a surprise, wasn't it? I mean, I assumed Nintendo would release another Mario & Luigi game at some point in time, but I never imagined they'd do so as soon as this summer--especially since Paper Mario: Sticker Star only came out a few months ago. Anyway, this iteration looks superb, and it'll likely be my first foray into this AlphaDream-developed series.

Mario Golf World Tour--I guess you could say this announcement was less surprising than the one above given that a new Mario Tennis title has already appeared on the 3DS, but I still found it a bit shocking. The question is: will this game, also due out this summer, be more worthy of purchasing than Camelot's earlier effort? I hope so, as I've been itching to experience another Mario Golf game for some time now.

After Nintendo president Satoru Iwata was done dropping those bombs, he turned the reins over to the crew at Nintendo of America, who chatted about Fire Emblem: Awakening DLC and (finally) pulled back the curtain on Animal Crossing: New Leaf's North American release date (June 9).

They also revealed that Game Freak's highly anticipated rhythmic platformer, HarmoKnight, will hit the eShop on March 28. (A demo of the game will be made available on March 14.) Oh, and HarmoKnight will soon be joined by a curious-looking title called Kersploosh!Mario and Donkey Kong: Minis on the Move and Dillon's Rolling Western: The Last Ranger--the last of which will appear on April 11. All of the above looked good to my eyes, although I'm most interested in HarmoKnight at this point.

Finally, it was announced that Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D hit the streets of North America sometime this summer. I'll probably pass on the title myself, despite the fact that I enjoyed the Wii version of the game, but I'm sure a lot of 3DS owners will snap it up.

One other piece of news a select few of you may be interested in hearing: during the Japanese Nintendo Direct, Iwata discussed the next Daigasso Band Bros. game, saying that it will be able to access and play the more than 9,000 tracks that were created for Daigasso Band Bros. DX. Unfortunately, the title is still without a release date.

Another (Japanese) Nintendo Direct was promised for next week, by the way, and apparently it'll cover third-party 3DS titles. As such, expect a similar write-up about that event to appear here shortly after it wraps up.


Steve Pixel said...

WTF, you've never played a Mario & Luigi game???? They're only some of the best handheld RPGs of all time! You have no idea how excited I am that we're getting this. I thought they dropped the series altogether now that Paper Mario's gone portable. said...

I know, I know. The thing is, Steve, the Paper Mario series has always been enough for me. Plus, and I kind of hate to say this, but I've never much liked the looks of the Mario & Luigi series. I find the art style kind of ... uninspired. I quite like the looks of this one, though, so I'll probably give it a go--although I may not pick it up day one. We'll see.

Mineeva said...

All hail the Year of Luigi!!!! :3

I'm excited for Mario & Luigi Dream Team; it looks fabulous! I love the whole mechanic of poking and pulling on Luigi while he's asleep to get things to change in the Dream Level.

I'm also excited for HarmoKnight (Pokemon tunes? Yes, please!), and anxious to get my hands on the Castlevania LOS Mirror of Fate demo later this month ^____________^ said...

I also like the mechanic in M&L: Dream Team that has players poke and pull on Luigi while he's sleeping, Mineeva. What a cute and creative way to inject something new into this series :)

As for HarmoKnight: YES! I've been looking forward to it since it was announced. Such a great looking game--and it looks fun, too. Right up my alley.

I'm not all that interested in Castlevania, I have to admit, but I'm glad to hear others are. Of course, I haven't been interested in the series since ... the PC Engine CD version, I guess?

Steve Pixel said...

Oh I agree they're not the prettiest games overall. But the DS ones have some really cool special effects that you'd have to see in-motion to appreciate. And having to use both Mario and Luigi at the same time make the battles really complex and strategic in a good way. Plus the scripts are hilarious and top-notch -- every bit as good as their console brethren. I guarantee you'd be hooked after just a few minutes of play time. Well if/when you do get around to playing the 3DS one, perhaps that'll inspire you to go back and see what you missed out on. said...

Oh, I've definitely read that the scripts of the games are top-notch. Of course, which NOA games don't have top-notch scripts at this point?

Anyway, yes, I'm sure that if I like this fourth one I'll go back and try at least one of the earlier ones.

It's kind of like what I'm experiencing right now with DQ Heroes: Rocket Slime--I'm enjoying the game so much that I really want to go back and play the GBA original (even if I won't be able to understand it).

apricotsushi said...

Really disappointed they didn't announce localization plans for Bravely Default or DQVII. Siiiigh

As for the Mario/Luigi-related games, I'm just not that interested. I believe I mentioned I'm not a huge fan of the franchise before. Probably the only Luigi-related item I'm considering picking up is Luigi's Mansion! said...

I was disappointed by that, too, Anne. Here's hoping one or both are announced at E3. Neither is likely to come out until late in the year anyway, so maybe we shouldn't be too concerned that they weren't mentioned today?

As for not being that interested in the Mario/Luigi-related games: I understand. I'm really only interested in Luigi's Mansion 2 myself. I may pick up Mario & Luigi 4, too, just because I've heard good things about the series, but I've never played one before now so I wouldn't be too surprised if that doesn't happen in the end.

Are you looking forward to HarmoKnight, BTW, or is that not really your cup of tea either?

Mineeva said...

Hee, hee! Since Luigi is supposed to be braver and stronger in his dreams, I want him to sport some kinda superhero outfit! Like Super Grover! xD

Can't really blame ya on Castlevania; Konami did kinda use that Metroid formula for quite a while. That's enough to tire anyone out! O.o And the PC Engine version was one of the best in the series, so that's a good stopping point as any :P

I've gotta say, these Nintendo Directs are getting more and more exciting; there's always something that gets me all giddy like a school girly :P said...

That would be great, Mineeva! I wonder if that's exactly what we'll see when we're given more info on this game?

Glad to hear you, too, are enjoying these Nintendo Directs, BTW. I do hope we'll get one soon that'll cover games like Fantasy Life and Dragon Quest VII and Bravely Default, but I'm happy with what we got today, too.

diaglyph said...

Forget about the Year of the Snake - ITS THE YEAR OF LUIGI!! Go Weeeeeji!

Finally have dates for Luigi's Mansion and Fire Emblem, though I'm gonna have to play Luigi's Mansion quickly and finish it before Fire Emblem comes haha

I'm meh on golf....moving on.

Mario & Luigi Dream Team - finally a Mario type RPG!! It was sorely missed in Paper Mario (and thinking on Paper Mario now, is my biggest disappointment about Paper Mario Sticker Star). And its great that Luigi will play the prime role in this game :)
Can't wait to see more on this :)

Fire Emblem date for mid April :) And euro gets special Fire Emblem blue XL pack :)

There will also be Monster Hunter 3DS (all black) and Wii U bundle packs.

And yea I was hoping for Bravely Default news and 3DS Miiverse, but alas..... :(

The Luigi U DLC will be interesting for NSMBU. I might just keep NSMBU now just to see :)

No mention of Harmoknight so I think that is just for US for now (still a vague March release time frame).

Donkey Kong 3DS was kinda surprising. I might take a look at it as I didn't play the Wii release (there is 3D video in the eShop)

Zaphod65 said...

Thrilled to have a release date for Animal Crossing, but it seems so far away. /sigh

Beyond that, I'm still looking forward to Luigi's Mansion. I've never played Donkey Kong Country Returns, so I'll probably pick up the 3DS version when it comes out.

Now I just have to dance around and try to appease the Nintendo gods so they'll bring the Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate Wii U bundle to North America. That game is one of the reasons I'm buying the console in the first place, so they could take all of my money in one shot. lol said...

Oh, yeah, I'm a bit miffed about the AC: New Leaf release date, too, Zaphod65. I mean, it's nice to have an actual date finally, but it's so far away! I was really hoping it would be out in April or May. Oh, well.

Other than that, yes, I'm also looking forward to Luigi's Mansion. It looks so good! If you've never played DKCR, buying the 3DS version's probably a good idea. For me, though, I can't see buying or playing through it again.

As for the MH3U bundle: I'm surprised it hasn't already been announced for NA release, to tell you the truth. Of course, NOA's a bit weird, so who knows. Anyway, here's hoping it's brought here for your sake :) said...

Hey there, Igor!

Wait, you guys are getting Luigi's Mansion before Fire Emblem? If so, how weird is that?

I can understand being meh on Mario Golf. That said, every previous Mario Gold game was great, so I'm definitely interested in it myself. (That said, I may not pick it up in the end.)

Glad to hear you're interested in Mario & Luigi RPG 4, too. It looks really charming, doesn't it? I love that, esp. considering this is yet another Mario game (as many will say).

You guys will get HarmoKnight eventually, so I wouldn't worry about it too much.

Finally, I was surprised by DKCR 3D, too, but I have to admit I wish it were a new game. Not sure why they'd want to just port the Wii game--unless they're planning on making a sequel for the 3DS, too?

diaglyph said...

Yea. Tho with Luigi's Mansion I reckon it should've been early March, to give enough time to play and finish in time for Fire Emblem :p hehe

Yea the Mario & Luigi RPG looks interesting and different! Certainly on my to get list ;)

Harmoknight - I'm ambivalent towards this. Hopefully demo will come here too.

DKCR 3D - its possible! A sequel could be in the works. Who knows, maybe cross platform? (WiiU/3Ds) said...

I'm surprised you're ambivalent toward HarmoKnight. Why is that? Is it too cute? Don't like platformers?

diaglyph said...

It's the rhythm/reflex aspect of it said...

Huh. That's what makes it so appealing to me. Different strokes for different folks, I guess.

diaglyph said...

Just that my reflexes are crap >.< said...

Ah, well, I guess you can't do much about that, can you?

Justin Difazzio said...

I was way excited to hear about Dream Team. I literally clapped when they dubbed this the "Year of Luigi". Best. Year. Ever. said...

Have you played previous Mario & Luigi games, Justin? If so, I'm guessing you liked them?

Jyr said...

I was mildly hyped for DKCR: 3D 'til I realized it was just a gimmicked version of the brilliant Wii version.

DKCR devs, Retro, are hyping a big announcement for the near future, I believe, and I live in hope we see some sort of true follow-up to DKCR. It may even tempt me to invest in the Wii-U.

apricotsushi said...

I suppose you're right - there's still plenty of time for them to announce games like Bravely Default and DQVII! I guess I was more disappointed that they didn't because even with all the news, there wasn't anything that really grabbed me.

And HarmoKnight looks quite cute! I played the Japanese demo, actually... Have you tried it yet? It was fun but, hmm... It's hard to say exactly why but it didn't really grab me. That doesn't mean I won't pick it up sometime, though! It's certainly overflowing with cute, and I never say no to a rhythm game. said...

Oh, I understand that, Jyr. I honestly don't understand why they're releasing this game, to be honest. A sequel or offshoot? Sure, but a direct port (OK, with 3D) seems weird.

Anyway, I hope you're right about a DKCR sequel, especially if it's on Wii U. Not that I'll be completely interested in it, but I know a lot of others will be.

I liked DKCR well enough, but I never quite finished it and that never really bothered me, so I'm not sure at the moment if I'd go for another one or not. said...

Well, nothing but Luigi's Mansion 2 grabbed you, right?

Joking aside, I agree. I actually liked quite a bit of what I saw during the event, but even then I would have loved to hear about Bravely Default, Dragon Quest VII and Fantasy Life localizations.

I'm still hopeful all or at least a couple of these games will be released overseas, though. Hopefully announcements will be made at or before or after E3 :)