Normally gamers rally around the Electronic Entertainment Expo for big announcements. Better known as E3, it is the premiere video game conference that attracts millions ever year. However, due to COVID restrictions last year saw E3 replaced with the Summer Game Fest, an online only alternative.
It was unclear until today if E3 2021 was going ahead but we now know that isn’t the case. Instead, a second Summer Game Fest has just been announced. Much like last year’s this event will host most of 2021’s biggest game announcements. From AAA blockbuster titles to exciting indie projects, just about every upcoming game will be showcased in one form or another.
Plenty of support
Being this year’s largest gaming event, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that most of the industry titans are supporting it. We already know that the likes of 2K, Activision, Electronic Arts, Microsoft, and Sony will all be attending. In fact, the only major publisher that probably won’t make an appearance is Nintendo. The Japanese tech giant has moved away from traditional conference events in favor of its own Nintendo Direct format in recent years.
Furthermore, you won’t have to wait too long to see the Summer Game Fest in all of its glory. It has been announced for June 2021. Once June arrives the festival will be broadcasted across several popular livestreaming website such as YouTube and Twitch.
The main appeal of the Summer Game Fest is that it is where publishers come to announce their biggest titles. Last year’s festival saw highly anticipated titles like Skate 4 and Crash Bandicoot 4 announced. Equally, Sony and Microsoft used the event as an opportunity to showcase both of the new next-gen consoles.
It’s clear then that even the largest companies in the industry won’t hesitate to show what they have made. Expect the Summer Game Fest of 2021 to house the biggest announcements of the year. To keep updated you can sign up to the official SGF website for more information in the near future.
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.
Today, Nintendo held its first Nintendo Direct since the passing of Satoru Iwata earlier this year and it closed with the shocking announcement that Cloud Strife, the main protagonist of Final Fantasy VII, will be joining the playable roster of Super Smash Bros for Wii U and Super Smash Bros for Nintendo 3DS. There was plenty of speculation that a new fighter would be revealed today, but this is one of the most unexpected candidates imaginable. While Cloud is an iconic character of a major franchise, Final Fantasy VII is a game mostly associated with the Playstation brand and has never been released on a Nintendo console. Cloud’s only appearances on Nintendo systems have come as cameos in other Square Enix games such as Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories. It seemed more likely that he would have joined the cast of Playstation All-Stars instead, so seeing him is Smash first is unbelievable. Oddly enough, even seeing Solid Snake from the mature Metal Gear Solid series appear alongside cartoony characters like Mario, Sonic, and Pikachu in Super Smash Bros Brawl felt like it made more sense given he had a history on Nintendo systems.
As expected, Cloud’s playstyle revolves around his massive buster sword for heavy-hitting attacks. His special attacks will include a short-range slash wave, a close-range whirlwind spin, and the ability to perform a Limit Break that will boost the power of his attacks significantly. His final smash is his famous Omnislash technique, which will function in a similar fashion to Ike’s Great Aether final smash. Performing the Omnislash will have him dash forward and knock anyone caught in his path into the air, where he will then rack up damage with a number of slices before bringing them back down with an explosive final swing. Cloud will also have an alternate costume based on his appearance in the film Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children available.
In addition to Cloud, a new stage based on the city of Midgar will also be added to both versions. On the surface, the Midgar stage appears to be a reskin of the simple Battlefield stage, but it comes with hazards based on the various summons that appeared in Final Fantasy VII. The summons will cast their effects on the stage at random intervals with abilities including flooding the stage, bringing down a massive laser, and even slicing the stage clean in half. Of course, there will also be a Final Destination variant of the stage included where the summons do not interrupt the fight. Much like when Ryu was added to the game, the new Midgar stage will come bundled with Cloud. There is a also a new hat added for the Mii Fighters on the way based on the chicken-like Chocobos that serve as the icons of the Final Fantasy franchise, although this most likely won’t be bundled with Cloud.
When Cloud will be released remains to be determined, but there is a special broadcast for Super Smash Bros set to be aired sometime this December. No details were given on what the broadcast would entail, but it’s extremely likely that we will see the winner of the Smash Ballot finally revealed. You can check out the full Nintendo Direct, with Cloud’s reveal trailer starting at 1:04:52, here. What other fighters could come out of left field and join the cast of Super Smash Bros? Which characters are you still holding out hope for? Honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Scorpion from Mortal Kombat join in at this point.
With Nintendo announcing the Smash Fighter Ballot, the gates have been open for the millions of Smash fans to have their say on who they want added as DLC. Nintendo has one of the richest libraries known to gaming, so our choices are almost endless. Here are our top picks that we think will make Smash even better. As a cheeky side note, it would also give Nintendo some extra brownie points with third party developers resulting in the ultimate win-win.
Banjo and Kazooie
Before Rare moved to Microsoft and made a string of questionable decisions, they made Banjo Kazooie. As one of the pioneers of 3D Collect’em Ups, Banjo Kazooie is fondly remembered by those old enough to have owned an N64. They even made a brilliant sequel Banjo Tooie, before eventually breaking our hearts with the complete abandonment of Banjo Threeie. Ignoring all that however, Banjo and Kazooie have a number of sick moves at their disposal when platforming and fighting enemies making them ideal candidates.
Ok, ok this will be the last Rare character I throw into the pot, but not only was Conker an incredibly
controversial game on release, it was also bloody brilliant. Whilst its underlining gameplay was similar to Banjo, the games felt very different and Conker himself is quite the character. Another relic from the N64, it wouldn’t hurt too much to have a bit of juvenile humor thrown into an already ludicrous title such as Smash.
Monster Hunter’s Monster Hunter
Monster Hunter is a massively popular game, and games as massive and popular as Monster Hunter should make an appearance. Whilst having roots on Nintendo consoles, recent titles have been outstanding, arguably the best in the series being the latest iteration of the series: Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate. What makes the idea even more mouth watering is the ways they could implement such a character into the game. Having such a wide variety of weapons, you could either go the “Link Route”, essentially being able to pull weapons out on the fly to suit certain situations or go the “Mii Fighter Route” whereby you can choose a weapon pre-match to suite your style. Probably the hardest character to implement, but certainly one of the most interesting
Castlevania is one of those iconic titles in gaming, with Simon Belmont being up there as one of the most recognizable Vampire Hunters around. Brandishing a 10ft whip of darkness-destroying-holy-righteousness, that can be swung in 8 directions and attach to ledges gives Simon incredible range, coverage and manoeuvrability. Sub-weapons such as the boomerang cross, holy water and throwing axe would make him more of a item user like Link, or Pac-man with a leathery, leathery twist. Considering what they did with Mega Man, I can only imagine how true to form Simon will be when he makes his appearance.
Wielder of the fabled Dragon Sword, and slayer of demons, Ryu is probably King of the Ninjas. Another classic from the NES and long-time fighter in Dead or Alive, Ryu would fit right in with the current cast of characters. His mastery of sword play, acrobatics and martial arts as a whole make him a deadly opponent, and with a variety of special weapons at his disposal, there would be plenty of interesting combos to pull off.
Wonder Red + Friends
Wonderful 101 was an interesting game released on the Wii U by Platinum, and whilst it got some well deserved criticism (mostly directed at the controls), Wonder Red and his 100 Wonderful friends would give a sweet spin on the classic Olimar formula. Being able to morph into whips, fists and even the mighty Valiantium Blade, this is another character with heaps of potential. Whilst having 101 characters on screen at once might be a bit much, it is certainly an idea for their Final Smash, and having a handful of main characters on screen would certainly wet anybodies appetite.
A solid character from Brawl, Snake was painfully missing in the latest iteration. Whilst his inclusion in the game mightcause some minor heart ache for the Phantom Pain not being a Wii U title, but Metal Gear has appeared on Nintendo Consoles, and Solid Snake is already a proven brawler. A simple addition to the game, and one that should never have left.
Making his debut on the GBA in 2002 as the main character of Golden Sun, and also making an appearance as an Assist Trophy in Brawl, Isaac would be an interesting, if somewhat “from the left field” pick
for a character. Being the lead in an RPG, he certainly has plenty of moves at his disposal, his most prominent ability being his use of Djinns and his Master Hand-like environmental control. Nintendo are not against obscure characters considering Ness has been around since the beginning…a character who only recently saw a European release.
Bayonetta is probably one of the most controversial characters in gaming history. Despite being designed as every man’s dream lady, but proportioned in such a ludicrous way you cannot help but be amused, Bayonetta is probably the strongest female protagonist in history. Add to this, she is one of Nintendo’s newest IP’s, and comes from a series of games that excels at high flying brawler action, why was Bayonetta not included in the first place. I want to see Mario get shot in the face via heel-mounted shotguns and thrown across the stage only to be eaten by a demon dragon conjured from hair. Nintendo, make it happen.
So those are our top picks for the Smash Fighter Ballot, do you agree? Who would you want to join the roster, and why? Let us know in the comments. Happy Smashing.
Super Smash Bro’s was the fastest selling game on the Wii U last year, even managing to trump Mario Kart 8, which is a pretty impressive feat. During todays Nintendo Direct a lot of things were announced in regards to Nintendo’s premium Brawler, the biggest being new characters. Despite Smash’s ginormous roster of characters, fans from accross the globe cried for more, and Melee Veteran Mewtwo has been on everybodies list for what seems like an eternity. Nintendo, in their infinite wisdom as granted our request and Mewtwo will be added as DLC to Smash for both Wii U and 3DS on 30th April.
But that is not all, a surprise reveal was…well…revealed. Lucas, one of the most popular characters from Brawl will be joining the crew. Much more than just a pallet swap of Nes, Lucas will bring more Earthbound/Mother action to Smash. He does not have a set in stone release date, but he should be due sometime in May. New additions to the Mii Fighter are also inbound, with a handful of classic character designs to outfit your Mii with. These range from a Link inspired tunic, to Megaman X, although my personal favorite has to be the inclusion of Protoman from the classic megaman classic games. Each costume comes in at around 90p which is a fair price for some sweet swag.
The biggest shock of the show however, was Nintendo‘s dedication to pleasing Smash fans. They are opening a “voting” service, allowing you to submit your ideas for the next Smash character to be released. I for one will be putting in a vote for Castlevania star, Simon Belmont and Nintendo’s newest IP: Bayonetta, but I am a fan of vampire killing whips are creepy hair magic. For a company who has never really “done” DLC, Nintendo are quickly becoming the best of the bunch. Hopefully this trend continues well into 2015.
Todays Nintendo Direct unveiled many interesting and exciting things, but the biggest change however, coming is to the E-Shop. Over a year ago Nintendo announced they were going to make DS games playable on the Wii U. It makes sense right? I mean you have the game pad, so playing all your classic DS games on a Pad/TV combo would be awesome. Considering the DS has one of the best game line ups in history, you cant blame people for getting excited. As of right now, the long awaited dream has come true!
Whilst the library cannot be considered a library at all in its current state, Mario Kart DS and Wario Ware Touched are available to purchase right now. Mario Kart is immensely popular at the moment, so having yet another title on the Wii U is great if you want to relive those glory days of yesteryear on the big screen, and Wario Ware, as usual, is a brilliantly addictive minigame collection. The DS announcement was only half of the story however, as we finally have access to the N64, which again, is full of classics. Again, with only 2 titles to choose from you are somewhat limited but when those 2 titles are Mario 64 and Donkey Kong 64 you can forgive them. Each game can be purchased for £8.99, and for a short time, if you buy 3 of the 4 games, you get the 4th free.
To top it all off, the next 2 Wii games coming to the E-Shop are Pandora’s Tower, a pretty obscure RPG set in a rather large tower…oh and their is a rather creepy old woman obsessed with “Beast Flesh”, and Sin and Punishment, a sequel to the classic N64 ‘Shmup. Pandoras Tower is due for release on the 16th April, whilst Sin and Punishment is coming on the 30th. Additionally both games are 25% during their first week on sale, so grab them on launch.