Last night, I was talking to Andrew, (the gent who usually covers these round-ups) and he said that whenever he gets it in his head that it’s time for another Nintendo Direct, it’s never more than a couple hours later that he hears of one happening. Lo and behold, another batch of news from the big N has come our way. Let’s make ourselves a little highlight reel.
Sonic: Lost World gameplay was shown. The more we see of this game, the more crazy and fun the level design looks. It truly seems to be the Mario Galaxy of Sonic games, putting every bit of innovation possible into creating interesting levels. Here’s hoping the game is just as great as we’re hoping. Some cutscene footage was also shown, including the Deadly Six and what appears to be Robotnik’s little hover thing he goes around in because he’s too fat to walk. The game’s Wii U and 3DS versions can connect to each other via local wireless connection. Using this feature, the 3DS player can create RC vehicles to control in the Wii U version to act as support for the Wii U player. Sonic: Lost World will be releasing on October 22nd in the US and October 18th in Europe.
Hey, remember Rayman Legends? You know, that glorious-looking 2D Ubisoft platformer we were supposed to get back in February? Well, Nintendo decided to remind us that yes, it is still coming. A bunch of new footage was shown, featuring both regular levels and Castle Rock levels. Luckily for us, Ubisoft has been using the extra time its had with the game to add some great extra features. These include many stages from Rayman Origins becoming unlockable, “Kung Foot”, a sort of soccer-esque minigame, “Invasion Mode”, which appears to be a sort of speedrun mode, and more online challenges like what we’ve seen with the Rayman Challenge App on Wii U. Exclusive to the Wii U version, you can also unlock a Mario costume for Rayman and a Luigi costume for Globox. It is currently unclear whether any of the other features will be Wii U-exclusive as well, as has been rumored previously. Rayman Legends will release on September 3rd in the US, and August 29th in Europe.
In smaller news, Art Academy Sketchpad was shown briefly. This Wii U app allows you to draw and paint impressively high-quality art, and then share it on the Miiverse. Here’s hoping the Miiverse community for the game looks more like an art gallery and less like one of those “worst of deviantart” tumblr blogs. Art Academy Sketchpad will release on August 9th. Also, another Art Academy title for Wii U is in development which includes in-depth art lessons, a great tool for any Nintendo fans who are also burgeoning artists.
Okay, let’s get hyped, because it’s time to talk about The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds. Iwata began by focusing on the game’s logo.
Ah, there it is now. How convenient. Iwata noted how the logo features not only the golden triforce that we know to represent courage, power and wisdom, but also a black triforce. This suggests that a second triforce exists in a different version of Hyrule. Gameplay was shown including moving between Hyrule and this mysterious “other world”, using cracks in walls and turning into the form of a drawing on a wall in order to move through them. It is worth noting that although this alternate world looks a lot like the dark world from A Link To The Past, Iwata carefully worked around ever naming either world, so it could be something completely new. The game is set for release sometime in November.
The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker HD was also shown briefly, Obviously the game is a port of the Gamecube classic, so not a whole lot needs to be said, other than that it still looks beautiful. Some things have been changed and fine-tuned, including the triforce quest and faster sailing speed. Wind Waker HD will be released on October 4th in Europe. No US release date has yet been announced.
Super Smash Brothers Wii U/3DS were briefly mentioned, as some new screenshots were shown of Luigi in the game. These were somehow newsworthy. *offhanded shrug* NEXT!
Following the worldwide success of Animal Crossing: New Leaf, Nintendo has opened up an official Animal Crossing series community in the Miiverse, perfect for sharing stuff about the people you’ve met, the towns you’ve visited, or how obsessively immaculate your town has become under your glorious leadership. In addition, the Wii U has a new app called Animal Crossing Plaza, a social hub similar to Waru Waru Plaza on the Wii U’s home screen. Here you can share pictures and patterns created, via SD card. You can even create messages about specific animals from the game. Ever suspected that Big Top might be taking steroids? Tell the world! The app can be downloaded for free right now.
The direct wrapped up by switching over to Satoru Shibata with some Europe-specific news. First off, a new Club Nintendo promotion exclusive to Europe has begun for Animal Crossing: New Leaf. If you register your copy of the game between now and September 7th, you will receive a “recommendation code”. If you give this code to a friend and they enter it when registering a 3DS XL within the same time window, they will receive a free downloadable copy of Animal Crossing: New Leaf.
Next, Pokemon Rumble U, Nintendo’s answer to Skylanders. The game will be an eshop-exclusive download on Wii U, to be released on August 15th. All 649 Pokemon from the series exist in the game, and you can capture each and every one of them. Some forms and colors of certain Pokemon will only be available through special codes, to be released through Nintendo’s official Twitter, Facebook, and other outlets.
A music creation app called Korg M01D is coming to 3DS this autumn. Based on actual music production software, this app lets you create complex music using only the 3DS. I can’t wait to hear all the symphonic mixes of kids making fart noises. Really pumped for that.
A new title has hit the 3DS eshop called Steam World Dig. The game is a 2d action/puzzle platformer in a machine-run world. Human civilization has come and gone, and now a steampunk western robot civilization is all that remains. The game actually looks pretty cool, with a unique visual style, and is available now.
A slew of new downloadable indie games are coming to Wii U, and we got a highlight reel of them all. These include Cubemen 2, festival of Magic, FORCED, Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams (a sequel to the classic Mario Brothers ripoff), Ittle Dew, Knytt Underground, March of War, Monkey Pirates, Nihilumbra, Pure Chess, Q.U.B.E: Director’s Cut, Scram Kitty and his Buddy on Rails, So Hungry, Squids Deluxe, Tengami, Teslagrad, TNT Racers, and Wooden Sen’Sey.
Wrapping stuff up with some European release dates, Etrian Odyssey IV has a release date of August 30th, and Shin Megami Tensei Devil Summoner: Soul hackers will be arriving on September 13th. Professor Layton and the Azran Legacy will be coming out on November 8th. And in one final announcement, it was announced that Professor Layton Vs. Pheonix Wright will be coming to Europe in early 2014. Look forward to plenty of mystery-solving and courtroom drama!