It happened! It finally happened! It has been 532 days since the last general Nintendo Direct and on Tuesday, February 16, Nintendo announced a new Direct for us. Merely seconds after the Direct was announced, predictions for the Direct started flooding the internet. It may have not lived up to the hype of most people’s predictions (myself included) but seeing the excitement and enthusiasm that this Direct generated was wholesome and contagious. Here are the top ten things that stood out to me in the fifty-minute-long presentation from Wednesday.
10. Age of Calamity DLC – AoC Website
Age of Calamity was Nintendo’s controversial big hit for holiday 2020! The game was packed with incredible characters that all had such unique styles of combat and now we’re getting more character skills, more challenges, and an expanded roster. If you were a fan of this game, the DLC should be extremely exciting!
9. Animal Crossing x Mario Crossover – Animal Crossing Website
The quarantine hit of 2020 Animal Crossing continues to receive support by bringing in events with new items and tasks to do. This time, to celebrate Mario’s 35th Anniversary, Animal Crossing will have Mario theme items and clothing for our islands! The update includes Mario, Peach, and Luigi costumes as well as blocks, bricks, Bowser flags, and warp pipes. I’m really looking forward to the warp pipes since they will function to have you zip from one pipe on your island to the other side.
In lieu of the releases for Monster Hunter and Zelda Skyward Sword, Nintendo has released a Pro Controller for Monster Hunter and new blue Zelda-themed joy cons. I personally love the designs on both, and apparently so do many others—pre-orders are flying off the shelf! The Monster Hunter Pro Controller releases on March 26 and the Zelda joy cons release on July 16.
7. Pyra and Mythra come to Smash – Fighter Pass 2
Sakuri keeps us on our toes again with the latest addition to the Smash roster with Pyra/Mythra. Xenoblade has gained so much popularity over the years so it’s no surprise that they would have a little more inclusion for the series in Smash. The plot of Xenoblade Chronicles 2 revolves around the main character Rex who goes on an adventure to escort Pyra “The Aegis” to Elysium where she can live in peace. The new fighter is set to be released in March.
6. Fall Guys comes to Switch – Fall Guys Website
They’re here. After Among Us was just released, it’s no surprise that Fall Guys is coming to Switch! Fall Guys had a consistent player base of over 100,000 players one month after it came out, which is incredible for a new IP. This game is a battle royale type game where up to 60 players compete in mini games to advance to the next round. I’m very interested to see how the online multiplayer is going to hold up for this game. It’s set to release in Summer 2021.
5. New IPs coming to Switch
Even though ports have been a huge factor in the success of the Switch, new IPs have been a big part of its success as well. Our friend at Boss Rush Network, Eddie V., wrote an in depth article breaking down his top 5 new IPs he was looking forward to from this Direct. Check it out and let him know what you think!
4. Splatoon 3 – Splatoon 3 Website
The trailer didn’t reveal much of what Splatoon 3 is going to bring to the table, but it’s very exciting to see Nintendo fully support one of their newer IPs. They still give a lot of support to Splatoon 2 on the Switch with constant tournaments that continue to generate lots of excitement. I’ll be really looking forward to more news as we get closer to their 2022 release date.
3. Mario Golf Super Rush – Mario Golf Website
Mario Golf is back! This will be the first Mario Golf installment since the 2014 release of Mario Golf: World Tour in 2014. Aside from Mario Tennis Aces, there’s been quite the drought for Mario sports titles in recent years. This installment has an RPG style story mode where you build your Mii to play in tournaments and gain skills along the way. There’s also a speed golf mode and a classic mode which you can play online with friends. I cannot wait to see the character roster for this! I really hope they have tournaments where you can unlock costumes and characters like Tennis Aces as well.
2. Project Tringle Strategy (Working Title) – Download the Demo Here
The game that still has no name is my most highly anticipated game from this Direct! This quasi sequel to 2018’s beautifully designed Octopath Traveler is going to be a strategy RPG similar to Final Fantasy Tactics. The demo is available to play right now, and I had an absolute blast playing it. The music is wonderful and has a strong feel for the environment, the gameplay was fantastic and unique, and the overall art design is amazing. This game seems to have a heavier focus on its story (which even Octopath’s most die-hard defenders were asking for) and a finely-tuned battle system, so if you’re a fan of the strategy RPG genre I have a hard time imagining that you’ll be disappointed with this title. This game is set to release in 2022.
1. Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword – Skyward Sword Website
Does Nintendo secretly hate this game? We all know we’re going to see some news for the Zelda 35th Anniversary this year so why wasn’t this game a part of it? Did they just not want it to be part of the lineup? Who knows. Legend of Zelda Skyward Sword is the only 3D Zelda that hasn’t received a port yet and now it’s finally coming to the Switch. This HD Remaster seemed to spark mixed feelings across the internet; whereas, when it was originally released on the Wii, it had received a lot of criticism for its motion controls being a little clunky, the world designs being lazy and having to go back to the same three locations multiple times, and a lot of dead space when you land on planets. In this remaster, there is an option to use only the buttons for the controls which I’m sure people will enjoy. I’m very interested to see if they give it a little extra content like they did in Xenoblade DE (Future Connected) and Mario 3D World (Bowser’s Fury). This game is set to release July 16, 2021.
There you have it, my top ten takeaways from our most recent Nintendo Direct! Let me know what you think in the comments section or message me on Twitter @DCDM99. Thank you for reading!