Release Dates & Trailers Galore
Along with shows dedicated to American and Japanese gamers, yesterday saw Nintendo releasing a new edition of Nintendo Direct for European gamers, highlighting some of the games we can expect in the near future for Wii U and the 3DS. Once again hosted by Satoru Iwata (who was briefly a LEGO man) the show kicked off by taking another look at LEGO City Undercover, before showing off the latest builds of many other titles and announcing Fire Emblem: Awakening. We’ve got a full round-up, including trailers from the featured games, after the jump.
Should you wish to watch the entire 45 minute show to see everything, you can do so by clicking here. Otherwise, here’s the round-up:
LEGO City Undercover
Demonstrating some of the open world aspects of the game, including the use of the gamepad as a scanner, we also got an extended preview of the prison level (complete with Morgan Freeman impersonator.) Although no concrete release date was given, Iwata stated that the Wii U exclusive would be coming out in “Early 2013.”
Continuing to look incredibly shiny, the new footage of Pikmin 3 showed off some new enemies, but Iwata teased new gameplay mechanics that they apparently aren’t ready to reveal. Again, a vague release date was given, but expect Pikmin 3 to be in stores in the second half of 2013.
Zen Pinball 2
After finding success on other systems, Zen Pinball 2 is making its way on the Wii U eStore later this month. As with the Vita version, players will be able to download the base game for free and pay for the levels they want to keep, which include the Marvel pack and Plants Vs Zombies.
Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed
One of the few games from yesterday’s show that are already out, it seems Ninty want to give this game a little more awareness to its install base. The main points hammered to viewers were the Wii U’s ability for asymmetrical multiplayer and the ability for 5 players to play locally at once.
Mass Effect 3: Special Edition
Just in case you wanted to see it, here’s the video highlighting the Wii U version of Mass Effect 3.
Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor’s Edge
We got another look at Ninja Gaiden 3 for the Wii U, with the video highlighting the additional for the upcoming enhanced edition. The big news was that as well as getting all of the DLC in the main game, Wii U owners will get additional playable characters for free, including Ayane, Momiji, and Dead Or Alive’s Kasumi.
Carly Rae Jepson dominates most of this trailer that once again demonstrates how the gamepad can be used in the karaoke title, as well as the dancing sub-game for other players. See it (along with a rather awkward high-five) below.
Another title that is already out, the gamepad features are the focus in this trailer. Showing off the various ways passes, shots, and team management can be done in the Wii U version, you can find the trailer below.
In Other News…
In one of a handful of specific launch dates given in the entire show, we know now that Scribblenauts Unlimited will be coming out on February 8th, which is good news after it was pushed back from originally being in the launch line-up. Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate also got a release date for its dual launch on the Wii U and the 3DS - March 2013.
Game & Wario looks to bring the Waio-esque madness to the Wii U, taking advantage of the gamepad in a series of mini-games. Expect to see it at the first quater of 2013. Iwata also took the opportunity to show off some non-gaming apps coming to the Wii U, the first of which is Google Maps. Nintendo has been working on using the gamepad to enhance the Street View function of the service to provide a true 360 degree look of the world. The Panorama App was also announced, which will provide users with the ability to look around a video with 360 degrees of freedom thanks to the gamepad. Various experiences, such as a London bus tour or flying with a flock of birds, will be purchaseable from the eShop. The app will appear on the eShop in the first quarter of 2013, along with a demo version for users to try out first.
The 3DS got some announcements, including a few release dates. Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon is aiming for March 2013, while Animal Crossing: New Leaf was given a rather vague date of the second half of 2013. The same cannot be said for Dr Kawashima’s Devilish Brain Training, which will be busting out move devious puzzles to solve from March 8th on the 3DS. It will be appearing on the eShop early next year,
Castlevania: Lords Of Shadow – Mirror Of Fate, a 3DS exclusive which takes place 25 after Lord of Shadows, got a March 2013 release date confirmed for Europe. Perhaps the biggest news was left until last, with Iwata announcing a release date for Fire Emblem: Awakening for the 3DS. The turn-based strategy / RPG sequel will be hitting the stores in April 2013.