NES Classic Edition Announced By Nintendo

While we’ll be left waiting for the Codename NX until early 2017, Nintendo has a much more old-school system in the works for this year’s holiday season.  The NES Classic Edition was announced via the official Nintendo Twitter feed and will come preloaded with 30 beloved games of the 8-bit era.  The system has been shown on all of Nintendo’s official Twitter feeds, such as their Spanish, French, and Russian accounts, suggesting a global release.

While the new system is designed after the original Nintendo Entertainment System, it will not actually be able to play old NES cartridges.  Instead, the machine will have a selection of games preloaded onto it that can be readily played after plugging it in.  Many of the games included will be classic first-party games including the Super Mario trilogy, the first two Legend of Zelda games, Metroid, Excitebike, and StarTropics.

It will also feature a variety of third-party titles, including Pac-Man, Mega Man 2, Final Fantasy, Double Dragon II, the first two Castlevania games, and Tecmo Bowl.  You can check out the full list of games here.  The system isn’t designed for internet access or external media, so these 30 will be the only games you’ll be able to play with the system.

There have been plenty of preloaded consoles in the past, some with dubious legality, but rarely has a major developer like Nintendo delved into such a concept.  SNK Playmore released a handheld version of their Neo Geo console called the Neo Geo X in 2012, but infamously ran into trouble with their manufacturer.  While the Classic Mini seems like an easy ticket for printing money, but there is a fair share of potential mishaps that could harm it.  Given Nintendo’s recent problems with supplying hardware like amiibos and the Gamecube controller adapter, there’s a chance that Nintendo may see this as nothing more than a collector’s item and understock it.

The NES Classic Edition is set to release on November 11th later this year for $60.  It will include one NES Controller and will be compatible with the Wii Classic Controller and Wii Classic Controller Pro.  Will you be picking one up yourself?  What NES titles do you wish had been included?  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!

The Problem with Metroid Prime: Federation Force

Like many of you when this years E3 rolled around I was anticipating the release of a new Metroid Game. Its been 5 years since Metroid: Other M and that was a marmite addition into the franchise. Then there was news coming from the many grape vines that a title could be announced at E3 with developers Retro Studios teasing an appearance by posting “Can you dig it” to Twitter. Agreed this is not exactly 100% confirmation however it seemed the likely case. However what was revealed was something that nobody expected.

A game that barely resembles the Metroid universe and yet for some inexplicable reason Nintendo decided to slap Metroid Prime on the front. Now the Metroid title is quite a prestigious name. So regardless of what is shown there will alway be a mountain of pressure behind it. Pressure to deliver another isolated adventure in the farthest reaches of space. This series may not be as popular as Zelda or Mario however it is a key series for them. It adds variety to their already stellar collection of franchises.

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Metroid is not for kids. Its dark, its gloomy its frankly damn right scary at parts. It’s aimed at the older audience and is what draws people to your console. This is Nintendo’s answer to games like Dead Space. Those claustrophobic games where you truly get lost only to jump out your seat from something from within the darkness except with Nintendo’s unique input. Then we were shown Metroid: Federation Force.

For one of the biggest franchises to receive a 1 minute unpolished trailer that include space soccer is insulting. I’m intrigued to find out who approved that trailer and why they thought it was a good idea. I’m not a huge Metroid fan but even I could see this was a bad idea. There must be an explanation for this. Bad research possibly? I dont know but if they wanted to ship games and more importantly consoles this was not the way to go.
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The other side of the coin is that this looks very very early in development do the final product may be completely different. On top of this the spin-off is being developed by Next Level Games known for Mario Strikers, Punch-Out and Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon. Why they didn’t create another entry for Strikers is a question for another day. What you can say about these titles though is they were all reasonably well-received standing the company in good light. The thing you have to consider is none of these games are anything like Metroid. Its worrying why they picked this as their next project.
Retro Studios on the other hand are nowhere in sight. There last entry was 2014’s Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze making everyone believe they would be working on a new Metroid and they might be still but I can not see it revealed until sadly the NX is in place.
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At the time of writing this around 22,000 people have signed the petition for Federation Force to be cancelled. That is a staggering amount of hate for one game and the company are well aware of it with Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime saying “The reaction has been negative. Theres no sugar coating it”. What happens next is anyones guess but can 22,000 people all be wrong? Thats a lot of sales to miss out on.
Many issues are to blame for the negative reaction but the one that stands out to me is timing. About a decade ago Metroid Prime Pinball was announced and that went on to do moderately well. What you have to consider here is that when this was released we just had Metroid Prime 2: Echoes and Metroid: Zero Mission. So I am adamant that if this was shown alongside a true Metroid nobody would have kicked up a fuss. You also have to take into consideration that the team behind this probably were eager to show it off and hear the public’s view. Though somewhere along the line someone should have stepped in and said its not ready yet. This never happened and therefore this reaction was obvious.
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Nintendo have made a mistake, but do not crucify them for it. You never know Federation Force may turn out to be fine however if we go off what we have seen I cant imagine it prevailing. Unfortunately it it likely we will have to wait even longer before Samus Aran explodes into HD on a beautiful desolate planet a million suns away and really isn’t that the biggest problem.
What’s do you think the problem with Metroid Prime: Federation Force is? Leave us a comment below to tell us why.

7 Nintendo Attractions that Universal Studios Needs Most

Nintendo

Nintendo and Universal have announced that they are working together to create attractions at Universal Studios theme parks based on Nintendo games and there is plenty of speculation to be had on what could come out of this.  Sadly, I have accepted the fact that the King Kong/Donkey Kong grudge match of my dreams isn’t going to be made a reality.  However, I do have seven more practical attractions that we’ll likely see manifest out of this partnership.

Rob

7) R.O.B.’s Arcade

Obviously, there has to be at least one arcade involved in a collection of Nintendo attractions and there would be no better figurehead than the Robotic Operating Buddy that helped sell the NES.  The entire arcade could have a unifying theme of old-school technology tying all of the cabinets together, possibly with a large, animatronic R.O.B. in the center of it all.  Granted, an arcade doesn’t really need to be made into an attraction in and of itself, but do you really think Universal Studios is going to cut corners on this?  The only question, ironically enough, is what specific games they would host at any Nintendo arcades.  There are plenty of classics like Donkey Kong and Balloon Fight, but Nintendo has been out of the arcade market for a long time and there are only so many old arcade machines they can drudge up.  Then again, if they bring a few cabinets of Pokken Tournament to the park, that alone would draw in customers.

animalcrossing

6) Animal Crossing Village

Won’t anyone think of the children?  Any theme park has to have an area or two dedicated to small children and Animal Crossing would be a perfect addition for the Nintendo section.  There’s no need to worry about any grander attractions, but plenty of possibilities for colorful and diverse play-areas that would be perfect for kids.  Sure, most gamers won’t care much for it unless they have kids of their own, but Universal does have a wider audience to consider than just you and me.

F-Zero

5) F-Zero Roller Coaster

There is going to be at least one roller coaster involved.  This is a fact of life.  What better choice for a high-speed thrill ride than the series all about high-speed thrills?  Imagine blazing through three rounds of a twisting course of dives and turns while the theme to Mute City booms over the speakers.  I rest my case.

luigi-Mansion

4)Luigi’s Mansion

I’ll get to more straightforward Mario attractions later, but a haunted mansion based on Luigi’s Mansion is too perfect to pass up.  Along with all of the usual trappings, there’s also room for goofy elements to the attraction given the more jovial tone of the games.  Humorous props and even an interactive ghost hunt could quickly make it into a unforgettable experience.  At the very least, it would have to pop up once a year for the Halloween Horror Nights.

Milk_Bar_(Majora's_Mask)

3) Lon Lon Milk Bar

Apparently, one of the new features at a lot of Universal attractions is themed drinks.  Well, Nintendo certainly has no shortage of options for just that and a Legend of Zelda-styled cafe could be the nexus for it all.  The Zelda series has enough potions to base actual drinks off of that it’s already a long-running joke on the internet that Link is secretly an alcoholic.  On top of various colorful potions that brewers would have plenty of creative freedom to work with, there’s also the Lon Lon Milk and Chateau Romani for kids and adults respectively.  Beyond that, there are plenty of in-game items from other games that could easily be made into real drinks.  Celadon City Lemonade, Brewster’s Choice Coffee, Super Star Soda, Palutena’s Divine Wine, Yoshi’s Fruit Punch, Pikmin’s Cream Soda; the possibilities are endless.

metroid

2) Metroid Adventure

Universal Studios is well-known for their immersive and exciting rides like their ones based on Jaws, Spider-man, and Harry Potter.  Mario and Zelda are the obvious picks for such an attraction, but Metroid could have the greatest potential of them all.  Combine the dark, claustrophobic corridors with the horrific, colossal monsters that the series is known for and the ride practically builds itself.  They could make it an interactive shooting gallery or opt to keep the tone serious and frightening.  Even if most of it ends up being CGI, it wouldn’t be that distracting for anyone used to playing the games.

MushroomKingdom

1) The Mushroom Kingdom

There absolutely has to be a Mario attraction, but what kind should they settle on with all of the possibilities available.  Should it be a tour ride similar to the Metroid one I suggested above?  Should they build a real-life Mario Kart race track?  A recreation of Peach’s castle?  The answer is all of the above.  Several of the major attractions at Universal parks have sprawling areas that go above and beyond the attractions themselves and recreate a slice of the worlds that their bringing to life.  The Harry Potter and Simpsons attractions are prime examples of just how in-depth they will go with shops, restaurants, and other props that make you feel like you’ve stepped into another world.  Of course, I don’t expect a complete recreation of the Mushroom Kingdom given the limited space that they’ll be able to allow it, but putting together just the right elements will be all they need.  If there’s one attraction that needs to come out of this deal, this is it.

What do you think of the suggested attractions listed above?  What kinds of attractions would you like to see take form out of the partnership between Nintendo and Universal?  Leave a comment below and let us know what you think.