Before the new year hits, Nintendo decides to slip in one more Nintendo Direct. Next to the E3 Direct, this is arguably the best one we’ve gotten this year.
Last December we had Fire Emblem x Shin Megami Tensei, this year, the surprise title is a new Zelda game on its way in 2014. Tecmo Koei and Nintendo are collaborating on a new Dynasty Warriors themed Zelda game simply known as Hyrule Warriors for now. The gameplay is a mixture of Zelda gameplay and Dynasty Warriors gameplay. Link is seen taking down whole armies of enemies on screen, much like you’d see in the Dynasty Warriors games. They even changed up his appearance somewhat, as he dons a blue scarf. President of Nintendo Satoru Iwata emphasizes that this is not the new Zelda U title, but a spinoff game. Hyrule Warriors is expected to be released this summer.
Next up is the latest Kirby game, Kirby Triple Deluxe. Iwata talks about the new features such as enemies attacking you from the background, and the ability to switch between the foreground and background in levels. It appears that Nintendo wants to make good use of the 3DS‘s 3D feature for this game, even mentioning that puzzles will be designed around this new mechanic. Even more new abilities make an appearance; circus has Kirby balancing on a ball, sniper gives Kirby a bow and arrow (and a cool looking hat), and of course there’s more footage of the big bang. Apparently, you can suck up just about anything, no matter the size. Kirby’s mouth is basically a black hole once he acquires this ability. Sub games also debut in this Direct, the first being Kirby Fighter. Kirby Fighter is basically multiplayer with Kirby, you can face your friends or the CPU using various abilities. Next is De De De’s Drum Dash, which has you controlling De De De as he bounces on drums, collecting coins. Kirby Triple Deluxe comes out 2014.
The next game is Yoshi’s New Island, the upcoming Yoshi game for 3DS that was teased on E3. A new trailer is shown, with tried and true Yoshi’s Island gameplay. Beautifully done hand drawn graphics are displayed as Yoshi explores a vibrant world filled to the brim with shy guys, bumpties, and other familiar baddies. Yoshi’s New Island will be available spring 2014.
Chibi Robo fans will be happy to know that the cult classic Chibi Robo is getting a sequel on the Nintendo 3DS. Originally released on the Nintendo Gamecube, Chibi Robo was a platformer that starred a cute little robot named “Chibi-Robo”. You were tasked with cleaning houses, and performing other chores and good deeds for humans. Doing so would earn you happy points, collect enough of them and you become the highest ranking chibi-robo in the world. In the sequel Chibi Robo: Photo Finder, it’s your job to help a curator with starting up his new museum. In order to do this, you’ll utilize the 3DS’s camera, and take pictures of real life objects. If they match the ones that the curator needs, you can add them to the museum. Of course, the good old traditional Chibi-Robo gameplay is still present. You still get missions in which you’ll be cleaning up rooms, performing several chores, and defeating enemies for characters in the game.
President of NoA Reggie Fils-Aime showcases the next game, Bravely Default. He discusses a neat feature in the title, known as sleep points. You can earn these by keeping your 3DS in sleep mode while Bravely Default is running. Sleep points earn you some nice new weapons, so they’re worth considering if you want to have an easier time with this game. Of course, you can also purchase them on the eshop as well, though they’re not really required to beat the game. A Bravely Default demo has also been announced, and will be available on the eshop next month. The game itself will be in stores and on the eshop February 7th, 2014.
The intro to Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze has finally come to light in this Direct, and it looks great. The Kong family is celebrating DK‘s birthday. As they gather around the table to watch DK blow the candle out on his cake, a cold wind rushes by to extinguish the flame. A single snowflake lands on it, making the wick sizzle out. They look in the distance and see warships heading their way. The vikings, known as “The snowbads” use a creature that looks like a giant bird made of ice to freeze the island over. The visuals are stunning, every little detail seems to surface in the intro movie; and of course, we can’t forget the gameplay as well. Some more shots of new levels can be seen, as the kongs bounce their way through a jungle made of jello, navigate around dangerous and sharp brambles, and swim in lagoons. Donkey Kong Country Tropical Freeze is available February 21st.
A new downloadable Wii U title called NES Remix (also known as Famicom Remix in Japan) is next on the list. This game takes some very important parts of older games like Super Mario Bros, and “remixes” them so to speak. For example, instead of just fighting Bowser on a bridge over lava like you normally would in SMB, you fight a super-sized version with some slight graphical improvements. Another example of these changes is Excite Bike, where you’ll be racing on a track in the dark, with only a set of headlights to guide your way. NES Remix is available for download on the Wii U eshop today.
The year of Luigi is almost over, but Nintendo has one more Luigi themed game in store. Dr. Luigi makes its debut, and it’s a pretty neat twist on the Dr. Mario formula. Instead of pills simply falling from the top of the screen, you get L shaped pills in your arsenal. One nice touch to the game is Luigi hats you see after a virus has been eliminated. Another change is in VS mode; when players pull off combos, they can send L shaped pills to their opponents. The colors on these L shaped pills will resemble the ones you destroyed over in your column. Of course, what good Dr. themed game would be complete without a little online play to spice things up? You can play against other people all over the world, so if you’re not keen on being restricted by region, Nintendo’s got you covered. Finally, there’s virus buster mode, which has the player using the gamepad in a vertical position as they control pills with the stylus. Dr. Luigi will be arriving to the eshop December 31st, 2013.
At long last, we receive more footage of Super Smash Bros. In the beginning of the trailer, you can see Kirby flying by on a warp star over Rainbow Road. He joins Mario and Donkey Kong as they furiously race across the track. Suddenly we see a star much like the ones that would appear in Super Mario Galaxy. A stream of light flashes by, knocking Kirby off balance. After he falls onto the track, Kirby and gang are greeted by none other than the princess of the stars herself, Rosalina. We see a few short clips of Rosalina fighting, and looks to be quite a unique character to use in battle. Like Mewtwo, she can make objects levitate towards her, and even use them telekinetically. She’s accompanied by a luma in battle, and can use it to attack her opponents from a distance.
If you thought that was over, then think again. Mario Kart 8 is the last of today’s content, and a fine way to end a great Direct. The first stage that is displayed in the trailer is a Super Mario Sunshine themed level. Some very interesting looking course features appear, like a plane flying over your head as you drive across the runway. As always, the lighting use must be complimented, as this stage looks as gorgeous as ever. They captured the feeling of Super Mario Sunshine well. Other courses, such as what looks like sky garden from Mario Kart Super Circuit make an appearance as well. In this stage, you get a great view of the giant airships in the background as you race around giant beanstalks on top of the clouds. You’re then taken through a lightning storm on a metallic track. Mario Kart 8 will be released this spring.