Pikmin Platformer Announced for 3DS

Pikmin

Almost one year ago, Shigeru Miyamoto revealed that a new Pikmin game was in development and close to completion.  In today’s Nintendo Direct presentation, it seems like that game has finally been revealed.  Granted, it’s not completely clear whether or not this is the same Pikmin 4 game that Miyamoto described then as an official title has not been attached to the game.  The new game is also not exactly what fans would expect to see from Pikmin 4 as it will release exclusively for the 3DS and will be a 2D platformer as opposed to the unique RTS-style that the series is known for.

This unnamed Pikmin game still has a focus on gathering hordes of the sentient plants that the series is named for and commanding them to solve puzzles and battle giant beasts, but the core gameplay has taken a shift to simple, side-scrolling action.  Red, blue, and yellow Pikmin will all appear with their unique traits from the main series intact.  Red Pikmin are immune to fire, blue can breath underwater, and yellow can be thrown farther.  It’s currently unknown if the white, purple, flying, and stone Pikmin from the sequels will appear in the game.

The reveal for the 3DS game closed a Nintendo Direct that also revealed new amiibo for The Legend of Zelda series, a massive update for Streetpass that includes five new games, and 3DS ports for Super Mario Maker and Yoshi’s Wooly World.  The game is scheduled to release sometime in 2017.  You can watch the Direct in its entirety here.  What do you think about the newest game?  Does this new spin-off peak your curiousity, or are you just keeping your fingers crossed on the NX?  Leave a comment below and let us know what you think.

Dragon Quest XI Releasing on NX

Nintendo’s mysterious new system, still only known as Codename: NX, is slowly taking shape as more and more games are announced for it.  The latest title joining its line-up is the next game in the popular Dragon Quest series, Dragon Quest XI: In Search of Departed Time.

The newest RPG in the long-running franchise was originally announced for the Playstation 4 and Nintendo 3DS, but an interview in Japanese magazine Nintendo Dream revealed that it will also be coming to the NX with an English translation provided by Gematsu.

The Dragon Quest series has always been a major seller in its native Japan, which bodes well for Nintendo’s new system even if the game won’t be exclusive.  This announcement also reveals that the NX will be compatible with Unreal Engine 4 as that is what Dragon Quest XI is built from.

Dragon Quest XI is the fifth game officially announced for NX.  The remaining titles are The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Ubisoft’s Just Dance 2017, Sega’s currently unnamed sequel to Sonic Generations, and Dragon Quest XI‘s predecessor, Dragon Quest X: Awakening of the Five Race Online.  Dragon Quest X is actually an MMO as apposed to the single-player RPGs that the series usually provides, including Dragon Quest XI.  That shows that the NX will have serious online support.  It’s strange to think that the NX is set to release in March and these last two paragraphs summarize everything we know for certain about the system.

Dragon Quest XI: In Search of Departed Time is set to release in 2016 around the time of the series’ 30th anniversary in late May.  It will have a simultaneous release on Playstation 4 and 3DS and, while it hasn’t been officially confirmed, the wording in the interview suggests that it also release on NX the same day.  It is currently only set for release Japan and it is unknown if it will receive an international release.  Let us know what you think of Dragon Quest XI and the NX in the comments below.

Marin Announced as New DLC Character for Hyrule Warriors

Nintendo already announced that a second season of DLC for Hyrule Warriors with their previous Nintendo Direct on March 3rd that will add an addition four playable characters in total to both the Wii U and 3DS versions of the game.  During a panel at WonderCon in Los Angeles, Nintendo revealed that the first of these newcomers will be Marin from The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening.  Link’s Awakening was the first Zelda game released for a handheld and will have a DLC pack dedicated to it.  How Marin will play is still unknown, but it’s safe to assume that she will incorporate music into her abilities given her penchant for singing and the fact that musical instruments are used as the central macguffin in her game.  Along with Marin, this pack will include a new weapon for Linkle and a new set of missions.  Linkle will be playable with this pack even if you don’t own the Legends Character Pack that she is included in on your Wii U, although she will only be playable with the weapon included and not her original twin crossbows.

There will be two more packs included in the second season with one based around Phantom Hourglass and Spirit Tracks while the other on A Link Between Worlds.  The Hourglass/Tracks pack will include one new character and a new weapon for Toon Link, and the Link Between Worlds pack will include two new characters.  Both will also include new missions to play through.  A pack featuring the new characters and Ganondorf’s trident weapon introduced in the 3DS game Hyrule Warriors Legends will be made available this summer for those who don’t want to buy the portable game.  Finally, the character Medli from Wind Waker will be released as a free DLC character to all players.

What are your thoughts on the new DLC for Hyrule Warriors?  With three more characters to be revealed, who are you hoping to see join the cast?  I’m personally holding out for the sullen chicken-rancher Grog leading an army of Cuccos, even if there is zero chance of that happening.

Pokemon Sun And Moon Announcement: Video Analysis & Theories

Earlier today (26/02/16), fans of the Pokemon game series waited anxiously to hear news and potential confirmation of the newest installments to the series leaked the day before. However, after a very tense wait, the details leaked prior were confirmed and the squeals of excited Pokemon fans echoed worldwide, Pokemon Sun & Moon are officially on the way, due later this year (2016).

Now, in correspondence with the order in which the Pokemon games are usually released, fans were expecting more of a Pokemon Z release, especially after the X and Y game releases followed by the Ruby and Sapphire remakes (Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire). I appreciate this makes little sense to those outside the community of avid Pokemon fans however, those within these borders will understand that it was what we were expecting. Now, that said when the titles Sun and Moon were trademarked, it was fair to say we were surprised however, the excitement for these new installments is still present regardless. Now, let’s look into the reveal video itself.

Although a brief video, we can make several assumptions about what we can inspect in the latest installment. The first notable thing we can see in this video is the new assumed flying type Pokemon, resembling either a woodpecker or humming bird of some kind. This leads us to believe the obvious that there are in fact going to be a number of new additions to the Pokedex in Sun and Moon. Could this mean some more mega-evolutions are going to be unveiled also? Furthermore, we can see numerous conceptual designs for vehicles. The most recent incorporation of cars and land vehicles in the Pokemon game series was in X and Y in which Lumiose City possessed a taxi service to help to traverse the enormous city. Could this be hinting towards a potential follow on to Kalos much like Black 2 and White 2? As it no longer seems we are getting Pokemon Z, or for a while at least shall we say.

 

new pokemon

 

Pokemon Sun And Moon Theories 

As expected of the dedicated Pokemon fans, many theories of the new installments have already arisen in regards to the new designated region, new potential mega-evolutions, legendaries and generally about how the new games are going to tie in with it’s predecessors.

From what I have gathered so far, there are several reoccurring ideas:

  • Zygarde and it’s newly released forms are to be associated with the sun game. This is because of it’s forms needing photosynthesis in order to develop.
  • Sun and Moon are definitely going to have some relation to Kalos, whether they actually be based in Kalos or islands situated around Kalos. This is due to references in X and Y for instance, the sundial in Anistar City (Pokemon Sun).
  • Potential Mega-evolutions of Solrock and Lunatone both representing each of the games, possibly posing as exclusives.

All of these are relatively plausible ideas seeing as Zygarde’s new forms would seem redundant if only used in the new Pokemon movie. Futhermore, it would seem out of character for Nintendo & Gamfreak to not incorporate Kalos into the new games in some shape or form also considering how they are due a Pokemon X and Y follow on of some sort.

 

zygarde forms

 

As this year progresses more teasers are bound to be put out there to taunt us but until the profoundly awesome moment in which these new games are released, it is fair to say we are going to let our minds run wild with these brilliant theories in order to get by.

 

Detective Pikachu Releases in Japan Next Week

In late 2013, Game Freak showed off early development of a Pokémon spin-off game where Pikachu would take the role of a Sherlock-styled detective and would be able to talk.  The concept footage put many fans off due to the inclusion of facial-recognition software to give Pikachu motion-captured animation that fell deep into the uncanny valley.  News on the game has been nonexistent since that early reveal and many assumed that it was an abandoned early concept.  As it turns out, not only is the game coming out, it will be releasing in Japan next week on February 3rd.  Great Detective Pikachu: The Birth of a New Partnership will be released as a downloadable title exclusively for the 3DS.  It will cost 1500 yen, which is roughly equivalent to $12.68 USD.  Whether or not there are any plans to give the game an international release is currently unknown.  The amount of translation that a dialogue-heavy game like this would require would be a great deal of work, but the combination of the Pokémon brand and the simple, morbid curiosity for a title this bizarre is likely to secure enough sales to justify it.

The game will star Detective Pikachu and his assistant, the human child Tim Goodman, as they investigate mysteries in Rhyme City affecting people and Pokémon alike.  There are few details on how gameplay will work or what the story will entail, but it’s worth noting that the showcase in 2013 mentioned the idea of a blue Pikachu acting as the antagonist.  There’s no hint of the blue Pikachu in the trailer, so it’s possible that this idea was scrapped.  Then again, they may also be saving him as a surprise.  What we do know is that, while Detective Pikachu can talk, he’ll still be a rare case in the game as we see another Pikachu only saying its name in the familiar voice we all know.

You can check out the official trailer here.  What are your thoughts on Great Detective Pikachu?  Do you hope to see it available outside of Japan?  Has Pokémon officially jumped the Sharpedo?  Leave a comment below and let us know what you think.

Corrin and Bayonetta are the Final Newcomers for Super Smash Bros

Nintendo has released its final video presentation for Super Smash Bros for Wii U and Nintendo 3DS, detailing the last of the DLC content that will be released for the games.  Tonight, the previously announced Final Fantasy VII DLC will release and include Cloud as a playable character, a Midgar stage, a Chocobo hat for Mii Fighters, and a new Mii costume based on Geno from Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars.  Geno has been a popular pick for the roster for some time, but the character is owned by Square Enix and hasn’t been able to make any sort of return since his initial appearance.  A Mii costume isn’t exactly what fans were hoping for, but it’s certainly more exposure than what the character has seen in years past.

The rest of the DLC is set to release in February of next year and will add two brand new characters to the roster.  First, there will be Corrin, the main character from Fire Emblem: Fates.  Like Robin and Wii Fit Trainer, Corrin will come in male and female versions to match the character’s player avatar roots.  Having manakete blood, Corrin is part-dragon and will be able to perform monstrous transformations.  Corrin’s moveset includes an extremely lengthy side-smash, a back-air that propels him/her forward, a chargeable projectile, a counter, and a spear that can pin opponents to the ground.  Her/his final smash is Torrential Roar, a close-range assassination attack that deals massive damage and knockback to anyone caught in its range.  There won’t be a Fire Emblem: Fates stage added to the game, but there will be two  tracks from the game added to the coliseum stage.

The final character joining the roster, and the winner of the Smash Ballot, is Bayonetta from the series of action games of the same name developed by Platinum Games.  She was the single highest voted character in Europe, in the top five for North America, and was the single highest voted character overall out of the eligible characters.  The Umbra Witch is a combo fiend to rival even the highly technical Ryu, even capable of performing lengthy combos in the air.  Her down special is Witch Time, which acts like a counter, but, instead of directly returning damage, it slows the opponent based on the amount of damage the opponent currently has and the frequency of Witch Time being used.  Even if the timing on Witch Time is off, it will at least reduce the damage Bayonetta receives rather than fully negating it.  Her final smash is Infernal Climax, which sets a Witch Time slow-down for the entire screen and begins a Climax Gauge.  Fill the gauge by damaging opponents and you’ll summon the demon Gomorrah to devour any enemies you damaged while the gauge was onscreen.  If an opponent caught by Gomorrah has 100% damage or more, they will be instantly KO’ed.  There will also be a new stage to accompany Bayonetta called Umbra Clock Tower, based on one of the most memorable scenes from her original game.  There will also be amiibo figures released for every DLC character in Super Smash Bros.

One final addition in the February update will be a final set of Mii Fighter costumes.  Along with bionic armor for the brawler, it will include costumes based on Tails and Knuckles from the Sonic series, Takamaru from The Mysterious Murasame Castle, Gilgamesh from The Tower of Druaga, and Ashley from the Wario Ware series.  You can check out the full broadcast for Smash’s final update here.  What are your thoughts on the final newcomers?  Who did you vote for in the ballot?  Leave a comment below and let us know what you think.

Predicting the NX Launch Title Line Up

All signs are starting to point to 2016 being the year the NX comes out. This is a really exciting time for Nintendo fans because it’s the time for one of the most fun parts of a console pre-launch: speculation!

At this point in time, NX can be just about anything, but when looking at Nintendo’s latest initiatives  and projects, it is not too difficult to see a trajectory of what NX might be. Odds are, it is finally going to be the console that combines the home and mobile consoles. With that being said, it’s time to take a crack at guessing the launch titles, whether that means on the actual launch day or the launch window, for this system! All of this, of course, is an educated guess and we most likely won’t know what will really be launching with the console until E3 2016.

Until then, though: ONWARD WITH THE SPECULATION!

Dragon Quest X and XI

This has already been confirmed by Square Enix, though no release date has been announced. Moving on.

Super Mario 64 HD

Next year marks the 10th anniversary of this very dated, but very important, video game. To celebrate the anniversary, I can see Nintendo making this as a launch game, mainly because all Nintendo home consoles launch with some form of game from the Mario franchise. The textures, game models, and the camera would be upgraded to that of a modern game, but other than that it would be virtually the same with the inclusion of the extra characters and levels from the DS version. Maybe this time, Waluigi will be in the game. A man can dream.

New Retro Studio Project

Retro has been working on something since the release of the last Donkey Kong Country game. No one knows exactly what it is unless they work for Retro, but it’s definitely in development. Maybe it’s a new DKC or Metroid game, but most likely it will be something completely different. Whatever it is, it’s been in development for a while so there’s a good shot it’ll release on the NX relatively close to launch.

Pikmin 4

Shigeru Miyamoto has confirmed this game is in production and almost finished. You can’t get much more clear than that. This will most certainly be a day one game.

Legend of Zelda Wii U/NX

People have been speculating since it was announced that this game was going to pull a “Twilight Princess”. The more we hear about NX, the more that theory seems like it’s going to be a reality. Expect to see it on the Wii U and NX on the day NX is released.

Yooka-Laylee

This game is coming out next fall, and so far it looks amazing. Being that the game is a spiritual successor to an original N64 series, Banjo-Kazooie, I can see Nintendo giving the developers some extra funding to port it to the NX.

Guitar Hero Live/Rock Band 4

To me, this seems obvious. The goal of both of these games is to be a platform, so it would make sense for them to release on the new Nintendo console. Not much more to say about it.

Some Dancing and Sports Games that I won’t Play

Its seems that most consoles are released with some dancing game I never play along with the current game in the major sports franchises. The Just Dance series, I believe, has been a launch title on all major consoles for awhile now. Also, every time a console launches, the current Madden, FIFA, etc. is also available day one. This one seems like a shoo-in.

Mario Maker 2

I am loving Super Mario Maker. I don’t really make levels, but I’m having a blast playing other people’s levels. Due to the popularity and sales of the game, an updated version will probably release for NX that includes more features *cough cough*checkpoints*cough cough*. The only thing that really pokes holes in this prediction is that the NX will most likely be backwards compatible for Wii U and 3DS, which would make a Super Mario Maker successor useless.

Final Fantasy XV

Ok, so the next two on my list are a bit weird and quite a long-shot. So anyone else remember that this franchise was once a Nintendo exclusive? If you don’t, I can’t blame you as it hasn’t been the case for nearly 20 years, not the mainline games anyway. Now, I don’t think FFXV will be an NX exclusive by any means, the game is clearly multi-platform and associating a lot of its marketing with PS4. However, back when FFXIII came out, the franchise finally jumped to Xbox and it is totally plausible for the franchise to now jump back to Nintendo. If the NX does indeed have equal or better internal hardware as the PS4 and Xbox One, it would make sense for the game to also come to Nintendo.

Mass Effect: Andromeda

Remember, the third game in this franchise launched with the Wii U. That’s pretty much my only reasoning to be honest.

Lego Dimensions/Disney Infinity/Skylanders

Whatever the year’s version of these games will be, they will probably come to the NX because all of them are selling well. The NX probably needs these franchises more than these franchises need the NX.

The Amiibo Game

So, all of the other video games with toys actually have games attached to them. This is the one thing that makes the amiibo differ from Skylanders. That being considered, since Nintendo is also restocking many of the more rare amiibo. All of these things considered, I can see the Nintendoland/Wii Sports sucessor that will be bundled will be one based on amiibo. That would make the NX also come bundled with somewhere between 1 and 3 amiibo to get players started in the game. Most likely the bundled amiibo will be a new Mario, Link, and Pikachu.

New Metroid Game

I don’t think this game will be done by the team behind the Prime series, but I do believe a new Metroid Prime-styled game will be released on NX relatively early. I don’t mean a spin-off like Federation Force either (although I do not think Federation Force will be bad) it will be a mainline Metroid game. Since Retro Studios will most likely not be behind this game, I believe a developer like Next Level Games, the people behind Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon,  will be the the ones to take over.

Well, those are all the games I can think of that will be released within the launch window of the NX. Of course, there are other games that are almost guaranteed to be made, like a new 3D Mario and a Splatoon sequel, but I doubt they will release within the launch window. Either way, I can’t wait for more NX info from Nintendo in 2016!

Legends Of Legacy Character Trailer: Meurs and Bianca

Here’s a look at two of the seven main characters in The Legend of Legacy, the upcoming turn-based RPG from ATLUS and developers FuRyu.

With a strong core of exploration and combat, players will get to choose which of seven characters they will select as their main protagonist – and this selection will alter the focus of the story. Players will also start with a fixed three-person party based on the character they choose, but after a short prologue, will be able to switch out the remaining two party members.

Bianca
A young girl with long, ice-blonde hair, Bianca awakens on Avalon with no memory of how she got there. Or anything else for that matter. She is a mild and gentle girl who despite her unfortunate circumstances and loss of memory remains optimistic. Bianca senses that the answers to her memory loss lie deep within the island, and she is determined to recover her identity.

Bianca’s base stats imply that she is well suited for a support class. She has affinities for wind and fire elements, and prefers to use short swords, axes, spears, and bows in combat.

Meurs
One of the few remaining elementalists alive. The elements have been gathering to Avalon for unknown reasons, and Meurs is determined to find out why they’ve been so attracted to the island. He communicates with the elements and travels the earth with the spirits as his guide.

Meurs also makes for a strong support ally in battle and prefers short swords with a shield. He has a strong affinity for the wind element.

Pre-orders and a limited number of launch retail copies will come in this special Launch Edition collectible, featuring a 6″x8″ outer box, a 10-track music CD from legendary composer Masashi Hamauzu, and a 40-page premium hardcover artbook with drawings and artwork by illustrator Tomomi Kobayashi.

The Legend Of Legacy is set to release on the Nintendo 3DS on October 13, 2015, for US$39.99/CA$49.99 respectively and is rated E10+.

Shovel Knight Amiibo Officially Revealed, Featuring the Game Grumps

There have been rumors of a Shovel Knight amiibo figure floating around the internet for some time, but Nintendo, Yacht Club Games, and the Game Grumps (because why not?) have officially revealed an NFC figure for the champion of shovelry.  Scanning the amiibo into a Wii U version of Shovel Knight will unlock an exclusive co-op mode, while scanning it into a 3DS version will unlock exclusive challenge stages.  It will also unlock exclusive customizable gear in both Wii U and 3DS versions of the game.  Sadly, there’s no word on anything like a Legend of Zelda crossover stage in either version to match the God of War and Battletoads levels that were added for free to the Playstation 4 and Xbox One versions of the game respectively.

Naturally, there’s been a great deal of speculation that this sets a precedent for Shovel Knight himself to appear as a DLC fighter in Super Smash Bros, but there’s actually little to support that.  This figure was made specifically for use in Shovel Knight as evidenced by the labeling of the box and that the figure’s base has a different engraving from that used for the Smash line of amiibo as you can see by looking closely at the above picture.  This could be a good sign of his chances at the roster, but it doesn’t guarantee anything.

What this does set a precedent for is Nintendo to license out the amiibo brand to other third-party developers that they work closely with.  Shovel Knight is the first non-Nintendo-owned game to have its own amiibo line.  While we’ve seen other third-party amiibo with Sonic the Hedgehog, Mega Man, Pac-Man, and the promised Ryu amiibo, all of those are tied to the Super Smash Bros line rather than representing their own franchises.  There are the two Skylanders: SuperChargers figures of Bowser and Donkey Kong that double as amiibo, but that’s only for the two characters in the cast based on Nintendo characters and doesn’t extend to any of Activision’s own characters.  We may see more companies release NFC figures under the amiibo banner in the future.  The most likely candidates, given their recent history with Nintendo, would likely be Sega, Bandai Namco, Capcom, Activision, Square Enix, and Tecmo Koei.  Are you planning to pick up a Shovel Knight amiibo?  What other games do you want to see receive their own amiibo support?  Leave a comment below and let us know what you think.

The Legend of Legacy Gets a Launch Edition And Release Date

The Legend of Legacy, a brand new RPG developed by FuRyu and published in the Americas by ATLUS, tells the story of seven adventurers – Liber, Meurs, Owen, Bianca, Garnet, Eloise, Filmia – arrive on the mysterious island of Avalon to pursue their own agenda as explorers. They team up with two of the other adventurers to achieve their objectives – be it exploring the island for treasure, looking for the “god” on the island, or recovering lost memories. But things change when they discover a singing stone that causes the party to see phantasms of Avalon’s forgotten history.

When the game releases this October exclusively on the Nintendo 3DS, pre-orders and a limited number of launch copies will receive The Legend of Legacy Launch Edition.

The Launch Edition will come in a large, collectible outer box that houses two additional treasures alongside the game: a glossy hardcover, 40-page artbook by illustrator Tomomi Kobayashi (SaGa series) and a 10-track Soundtrack CD of the game’s music from composer Masashi Hamauzu (SaGa, Final Fantasy XIII).

The Legend of Legacy is set to release in retail stores and digitally on the Nintendo eShop for Nintendo 3DS on October 13 for USD$39.99/CA$49.99 and is rated E10+.