Loading...

June 13, 2018
Katherine Wright
New Game Plus / Features

After some great and not so impressive conferences at this year’s E3, Nintendo was highly anticipated to bring us some juicy news. With the potential for some much wanted first-party titles for Switch, I stayed up until past 2am with high hopes for news on Pokémon, Animal Crossing, and more. With caffeine and sugar in my system, my body was ready.

Like previous years, this year’s presentation followed the Nintendo Direct format,. The show began starting on a less colourful note with Demon X Machina, a mecha game for the Switch. Following this was Xenoblade 2 Story DLC ‘Torna – The Golden Country’, starting off strong with some footage of the DLC’s gameplay as well as a release date of September 2018.

Shortly after, we were invited back into Reggie’s living room, a familiar place for those who follow Nintendo’s E3 presentation each year. What did the big man have in store for us? What funky peripheral was he here to sell us now?

Say hello to Pokémon: Let’s Go and the Pokéball Plus Controller. You can play the whole game with it alone, not requiring a second controller unless you want to play co-op. We were told Nintendo doesn’t want to ship the Pokéball Plus ‘empty’, which I thought was a very cute inclusion for the younger players, allowing them to experience the excitement of taking a Pokémon home to put it in your game. However, the Pokémon that comes with the controller is Mew, an exclusive legendary. So far this seems like the only way to get Mew in your game, which won’t make the paywall haters happy.

We then got our first look at Super Mario Party, which showed new mini-games and some fascinating ways of playing that utilise two Switches together. It will be released on 5th October.

Up next was Fire Emblem: Three Houses, the newest main line entry in the Fire Emblem series. Mostly showing off cutscenes of war, as well as some gameplay footage, it’s already far more reminiscent of the Gamecube/Wii Fire Emblem games than the recent 3DS ones, which a lot of fans will be pleased about. I’m still on the fence about it until I see more, but the trailer definitely made me curious, and gave me high hopes for the rest of the presentation. The game was given the loose release date of Spring 2019, so it’s still a while away.

The next section of the direct was dedicated to showing off the third party and indie games coming to Switch. Fortnite, which has already conquered every other gaming console and platform, is now readily available on the Switch. Most of the next titles we’d already heard about, either in announcements or leaks. Some of the more notable titles were Overcooked 2, Hollow Knight, and Killer Queen Black for the indies; Just Dance, Dragon Ball FighterZ, Sushi Striker, Minecraft, Arena of Valor and FIFA 19 and more titles are also being brought to the Switch. Regardless of what you want to say about the Switch, you can’t deny that Nintendo is really pushing to have a lot of games available on the system, which is very welcome.

Masahiro Sakurai then tagged in, with a new fancy shirt and looking younger than ever, to talk about the newest Smash game: Super Smash Bros Ultimate. This was a nostalgic dream, with the huge announcement that the game would contain every previous Smash character — yes, even Snake and Pichu. The character selection screen is probably going to be a wild experience to navigate. While it mostly looks and plays the same as Super Smash Bros for Wii U, the game boasts new graphics, character designs and stages. New outfits have been added and many characters have had their gameplay changes. It’s too much to write up here, but with “over 10,000 changes”, there’s something in this new version for everyone. Even Kirby gets a new skill for every character that’s been added; as we’re reminded, “the more characters, the harder Kirby becomes to develop.”

Notably, there are completely new Final Smashes and animations, making that final hit feel even more epic to land. Transformational Smashes have been completely reworked, mostly making them easier to use or giving them more utility. Clone characters have been officially dubbed Echo Fighters, such as Daisy, one of the newly announced characters and an echo of Peach. New and old stages are here, with all stages having Battlefield and Omega options, a welcome addition for more competitive players. Sakurai has also given us new techniques and mechanics including new dodge mechanics, perfect shield timing and damage increase for 1v1 battles.

Of course, the presentation wouldn’t be complete without a new peripheral. In this case it’s a new line of Smash GameCube controllers and adapter, without which the newest Smash wouldn’t be complete.

And… another who character? Who could it be…?

I watched in disbelief as the newest character came up on screen, and the internet was blown away. Yes, that’s Ridley, and yes, meme magic is real — he’s no longer too big for Smash! I guess it’s true that if the fans hassle Sakurai enough, he’ll finally give them what they want. Just don’t ask him for anything ever again. Super Smash Bros Ultimate will be coming out 7 December 2018.

Though the announcement of Ridley was an appropriately mind blowing moment to end the presentation on, it was unfortunate that there wasn’t any news on the next Pokémon RPG and Animal Crossing. Overall, the direct was a good way to recap some information we already knew and focus on Smash, but with more than half the presentation dedicated to Super Smash Bros Ultimate, it felt a bit skewed in terms of what I was expecting, and I feel sorry for any Nintendo fans who aren’t keen on it. I found this year’s E3 Direct a bit more disappointing and less creative than previous years, which is a shame, though it’s clear that Nintendo has cemented a strong lineup for the Switch going into 2019.



August 22, 2019

I can’t think of a game in recent memory that’s genuinely surprised me quite like Fire Emblem: Three Houses. It’s gone from a game that was the furthest thing from my radar when it was announced, to being a real contender for my personal game of the year. It’s also a game that I may need to apologize for a bit, because after years of dunking on Fire Emblem and its horny AF fandom, I think I may have finally come around to see what makes this series somewhat special. I should be clear; this is not my first Fire Emblem. I got into it when Nintendo started releasing the GBA titles in the...

August 14, 2019

The popularity of streaming music cannot be understated, and it’s done well to bolster the popularity of video game music. Spotify has had a gaming hub for years, and the service has embraced by publishers, developers and composers. However, it hasn’t been until this year where several beloved Japanese publishers finally released parts of their backcatalogue onto streaming, embracing the future and finally making their music legally available and easily accessible. Yet with more publishers making their music backcatalogue more accessible, it’s becoming apparent that one particular publi...

August 13, 2019

It’s been a good year for video game soundtracks coming to streaming platforms. Capcom kicked things off with a great selection of music, and adding their most recent works as the year went on. Konami also got in on this, re-releasing a heap of Castlevania tunes. Square-Enix properly joined up around E3 time with a glut of Final Fantasy soundtracks, so it’s great to see the next publisher joining the streaming music revolution is Bandai Namco! Earlier today, eagle-eyed Spotify users noticed official pages for the company, with several Tekken soundtracks avaialble for streaming. We...

August 6, 2019

I have been playing videogames for a long time so I am old enough to remember the bad old days when videogames were blamed for society’s problems. Which was last weekend. Donald Trump today called for the regulation of violent videogames: “[…] we must stop the glorification of violence in our society, this includes the gruesome and grisly video games that are now commonplace. It is too easy today for troubled youth to surround themselves with a culture that celebrates violence. We must stop or substantially reduce this and it has to begin immediately.” Trump has a his...

August 6, 2019

With the annual sports franchises gearing up to release their 2019 iterations over the next few months, one of the last holdouts for announcement has been 2K’s annual WWE franchise. After taking the franchise in some interesting new directions in last years iteration, 2K has announced WWE 2K20, releasing on October 22nd on PS4, Xbox One & PC. The publisher also confirmed the franchise will continue to explore new directions and push further in some other areas, whilst also delivering on some much-requested features and content. The brunt of the single-player content will focus around i...

July 24, 2019

Brisbane-based game developer Defiant Development have announced that after nine years of existence, they will be ceasing development on new titles. The studio will be shifting into caretaker mode for its existing games, letting go of its talented team. Defiant Development was founded in 2010, where the Australian games industry was going through a significant transition period. In the wake of the global financial crisis shuttering studios around the world and AAA development winding down in Australia, Defiant was founded as a studio that wanted to be an Australian-owned studio that didn̵...

July 18, 2019

Riding the wave of momentum following the announcement of the Switch Lite, Nintendo have announced a revised Switch model for anyone wanting to grab a Switch, but would want to use it on their TV. While it does keep the same form factor, the biggest change compared to the original model is battery life. The new model will allegedly have up to 4.5 – 9 hours of battery life, compared to the original model’s 2.5 – 6.5, and the Switch Lite’s  3 – 7 hours, all of which depend on the game you’re playing. This revised Switch may also feature some new chips and pr...

July 16, 2019

In what’s been a burgeoning period for the state, the South Australian government has annouced that Sony Interactive Entertainment will be opening an office in Adelaide. The new office will establish 32 new engineering roles, with no indication whether this will bolster local infrastucture or the greater Playstation line of products. What’s helped to attract Sony to South Australia has been the Economic and Business Growth fund created by Premier Steven Marshall’s Liberal Government, which will be providing $480,000 AUD to Sony to establish the office. “South Australia is ...

July 11, 2019

While the Nintendo Switch has enjoyed an unparalled level of success in the two years since its release, there’s definitely room for improvement. Nintendo has addressed that improvement today with the announcement of the Nintendo Switch Lite, which will be releasing in Australia on September 20th, retailing for $329.95 RRP. There are several big differences over the original model of the Nintendo Switch, aside from the smaller form factor. Notably, the console is designed to be used in handheld mode, as it does not support the Nintendo Switch dock or the ability to play games on a TV. T...

July 8, 2019

The Sega Saturn was released in Australia on this day July 8th way back in 1995. Arcades were still a big deal, even if they were in their last few glory years, and Sega was dominating. Games from Sega AM Departments like Virtua Fighter, Daytona, Virtua Cop and Sega Rally were swallowing money at Timezone like a bank during the Global Financial Crisis. Every time my lunch break ended I’d stare back into the arcade and wish there was a way to play those awesome games at home. And then there was. The Sega Saturn. It was big and black and beautiful. Virtua Fighter 2 with fighting sticks, V...

June 28, 2019

With a brand new expansion releasing next week and an exciting future ahead of it, Sony Pictures Television has announced that they are partnering with Square-Enix to develop a TV show based on the popular MMO Final Fantasy XIV. Heading up the production work will be Hivemind Productions, whose work you may have seen in Amazon’s The Expanse and the upcoming Netflix adaptation of The Witcher. While no specific plot for the TV show has been announced, the show will be set in the world of Eorzea, which blends traditional fantasy and magic, with an undercurrent of technology, and its charac...

Show More Blogs
Latest Videos
Latest Photos & Events
Site by GMAC Internet Solutions