E3 One Year Later: Nintendo Press Conference
Welcome to E3 One Year Later, my look at the biggest E3 announcements of last year’s show. I’ll talk about what was announced and whether or not it came to fruition.
TWO WEEKS AGO: Microsoft Media Briefing
LAST WEEK: Sony Media Briefing
THIS WEEK: Nintendo E3 2011 Presentation
NEXT WEEK: Best Games of E3 2011
This week is all about Nintendo and their E3 2011 press briefing. The Wii U made a big splash, but not necessarily for the right reasons. Was the entire show as underwhelming? Let’s find out, shall we?
NOTE: Because I can’t find a full clip of the conference, I’m using the four parts IGN.com broke the conference into on YouTube. Thanks to IGN for the foresight.
– A performance from the Zelda Symphony Orchestra. Having been in the room for this conference, I can vouch for how awesome that sounded. SCORE: 1/1
– Zelda 25th Anniversary plans. Skyward Sword, Four Swords free 3DS download. Ocarina of Time 3D, symphony orchestra touring the world. All promised before the end of 2011, all delivered. Symphony orchestra is still traveling, actually. SCORE: 2/2
– Iwata talks about “new home console” without going into detail. He says that the full details had to wait until “a little later that morning.” So, what you’re saying is, you’re wasting our time. Not cool, Iwata. SCORE: 2/3
– Mario Kart 7 trailer. Flight, new tracks, 3D, customizable cars. Launched December 7th with all of those things and the best Rainbow Road track and song to date. SCORE: 3/4
– Star Fox 64 3D details. A remake of the fantastic N64 game with gyroscope control, multiplayer, and 3DS camera support for the multiplayer. Launched September 9th, again with everything promised. SCORE: 4/5
– Super Mario 3D Land trailer. Excellent trailer showing off everything Mario 3D Land had to offer, then Reggie announces it for “before the year is over.” November 13 qualifies as “before the year is over.” +1. SCORE: 5/6
– Kid Icarus: Uprising trailer. Trailer showed single-player, multiplayer, and AR card functionality. Reggie mentioned that the game would launch “later this year.” It launched in March 2012. Sorry, Reggie. SCORE: 5/7
– Luigi’s Mansion 2 reveal. First trailer of the next Luigi’s Mansion game, set to launch on 3DS. We still haven’t seen the game hit store shelves, but Reggie didn’t mention a release date. Look for more on it this year, but as far as last year goes, this trailer got the job done. SCORE: 6/8
– Third-Party 3DS trailer. Trailer highlighting a ton of 3DS third-party titles, including Resident Evil: Mercenaries 3D, Mario and Sonic at the 2012 Olympic Games, Cave Story 3DS, and more. All of these games were/are being released on the 3DS, so promise delivered. SCORE: 7/9
– 3DS eShop details. Reggie mentions 3D videos and game trailers, the new 3DS Virtual Console that launched with the firmware update the day of the conference, and free downloads for 3D Classics: Excitebike and Pokedex 3D.
– Wii U introduction. Reggie talks about how they came up with the name and debuts the controller. First trailer shows what the controller can do. Switching from the controller to the TV, drawing on it, playing directly on it, and using it to enhance gameplay. The demos on the show floor did all of these thing, and that Zelda video was incredible, so mission accomplished here. SCORE: 8/10
– More Wii U. Iwata describes the trailer we just saw, including a trailer talking with Shigeru Miyamoto and another video showcasing the Wii U’s graphical power. Reggie introduces the demos that will be playable on the show floor, then talks about the first official Wii U title, Lego City Stories. He then moves into third-party support from all over the industry, including EA Sports, THQ, Namco, Ubisoft and more. A trailer players with third-party games coming to Wii U: Darksiders 2, Tekken, Ninja Gaiden 3, Ghost Recon Online, DIRT, Metro Last Light, and more. John Riccitello, CEO of EA, takes the stage to talk about his excitement. A lot of hot air, but everything they talked about is coming true, slowly but surely. SCORE: 9/11
FINAL SCORE: 9 out of 11.
Holy hell, Nintendo spent an hour and a half talking about barely anything at all. While the 3DS lineup is starting to come alive and the 25th anniversary of Zelda is great, all eyes were on the underwhelming Wii U introduction. Still, the experiences Nintendo promised were available, just not all that impressive save for the Zelda and bird videos. Here’s to hoping that this year’s Wii U re-reveal will make everyone forget that E3 2011 ever happened, leading Nintendo to the top of the pile once again.
NEXT WEEK: I’ll go over the games voted Best of E3 2011, seeing if they actually came through upon release.