Nintendo finally offered a response to fans repeated requests for localizations of Xenoblade, The Last Story and Pandora's Tower. Chances are you aren't going to like what they had to say though. Nintendo's facebook page currently reads, "Thank you for your enthusiasm. We promised an update, so here it is. We never say “never,” but we can confirm that there are no plans to bring these three games to the Americas at this time. Thanks so much for your passion, and for being such great fans!" I am in disbelief. I expected to hear about a Xenoblade localization at the very least, the game is already in English after all. Nintendo of America really needs to get their act together if they even hope to have a chance at winning over the hardcore mindshare with their next system, the Wii U. Not localizing three games that could give the Wii a graceful send off is not a good start.
After a spokesman from Nintendo of France made comments last week that insinuated that Xenoblade, Pandora's Tower and The Last Story would not see localization in the United States fans quickly took to the internet and blew up Nintendo's facebook and twitter accounts, making their frothing demand for the games known. Since then Monado: Beginning of the World, also known as Xenoblade, has become the number one bestseller on Amazon videogames. Earlier this evening Nintendo made the following nebulous posting on their facebook and twitter pages, "Hey fans, we appreciate your enthusiasm. Look for more updates to come soon!" Does this mean that Nintendo has finally heard their fans? Xenoblade is starting to look like a safe bet, but Nintendo may still need convincing on The Last Story and Pandora's Tower. Make sure you let Reggie know you want to see these games released in America!
In case you didn't know, Reggie Fils Aime from Nintendo of America is making an appearance on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon this evening. Many have been speculating that this would be the public reveal of the Wii U, but since launch is nearly a year away that isn't too likely. Instead it seems as though Nintendo's facebook page has spilled the beans, showing the above picture with the following caption, "The sign outside Reggie's dressing room at Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. Tune in tonight!" It seems as though the focus will be squarely on The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword. I hope Reggie has a bit more to show than the trailer we saw at e3. I hope this is worth suffering through the show for!
Everyone expecting new 3DSware, WiiWare or DSiware releases today was probably met with a little disappointment. Nintendo announced that they are changing the day of their downloadable releases from Monday to Thursday, shaking things up a bit due to the launch of the 3DS eShop. It's a shame, Nintendo's downloadable service releases always made my Mondays just a tad bit better. Don't forget to get your free copy of Excitebike 3D!
Today is the final day of e3 2011. What a year it was, we had an information blowout on the PS Vita, a ton of new Kinect games, and even a new Nintendo console. But which of the big three, Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo had the best e3 showing? Not just their press conference, but developer round tables and booths included. Click "read more" to become pleasantly surprised, or possibly upset if you are a fanboy.
Everyone expected to have their socks blown off by the announcement of Nintendo's new system, now known as the Wii U. Did it deliver? I'd answer that question with a resounding yes. Nintendo's goal with the Wii U is to deliver something for every type of gamer, both casual and core. They acknowledged that the Wii's lack of HD support was one of the main causes of this schism in the first place, so Nintendo is making sure this system is a graphical power house. It supports 1080p, is more powerful than the Xbox 360 and PS3 (although we don't know by how much), and can stream content to it's greatest new feature, the touch screen controller. But all of that power wouldn't mean anything without great software, which is why Nintendo announced some of the best third party support a Nintendo system has seen since the NES days. They showed a demo reel featuring core games like Dark Stalkers 2, Ninja Gaiden 3, Aliens: Colonial Marines, Tekken, and Batman: Arkham City. EA, Ubisoft and several other publishers and developers also announced their excitement for the system and their intent to develop for it.
Click "read more" to find out what I think about the rest of the conference, as well as watch a trailer of what The Legend of Zelda might look like in HD
Nintendo will hold its media event at 9AM PDT on Tuesday, June 7. As many already know, Nintendo will be announcing their new home console at this year's e3. I think that this year will be about showing core gamer support, while also offering something different and unique that the casual gamer can get behind as well. The core gamer will obviously get behind the jump in power that Nintendo's next console will offer, rumored to be a half step above that of the Xbox 360 and PS3, whereas the casual gamer might find solace in the 6" touchscreens that are said to be on the controllers. The system will also likely be backwards compatible with Wii games and peripherals. Will the vitality sensor that made an appearance a couple of years ago make a reappearance, this time built into the controller from the get go? The most important rumored detail might be the fact that the system will be able to stream content to the controller's 6" screen, thus making it a portable console on its own. Everyone knows the portable market is king in Japan right now, this might be Nintendo's first attempt at a hybrid of sorts. There will also likely be a surprise or two that no one has even guessed about the system's functionality. After all, Nintendo is anything but predictable.
On the software front I expect a strong line up of both casual and core games, Nintendo no doubt saw the error of their ways last generation. Not creating a destination for core gamers early on left the Wii out in the cold later on in the generation. Whereas power might have been a problem during Wii's life span, its successor won't have to worry about that for at least two years. Even then Sony and Microsoft aren't likely to come out with super expensive machines that will blow Nintendo's out of the water. I imagine Nintendo will tout vastly improved third party support and a much stronger online presence, bolstered by a surprise partner, as reasons for the hardcore gamer to return to the fold.
On the 3DS front we are likely to hear a lot more about the eShop, 3D video and movie support, as well as the next round of high profile titles. I expect to hear a ton of information about Super Mario 3DS and maybe even a 2D Metroid for the series 25th anniversary. The system will need a couple of tricks up its sleeve to compete with the NGP, as it has strong momentum coming into e3 going up against a system that hasn't met sales expectations.
On the Wii front I bet we will see a blow out on The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword information, as well as the U.S. announcement of the new Kirby game by HAL Laboratories. We might even see a couple of surprise localizations like Xenoblade and The Last Story. I wouldn't be surprised if Nintendo also detailed plans on how the Wii's successor would upscale these games to make them look really good on the new system. This is bound to be a really exciting e3 for Nintendo fans.
Nikkei, the same source that leaked the DSi, DSi XL and 3DS has now confirmed many of the rumors that have been floating around about Nintendo's next home console. The controller will supposedly contain a 6" screen for tablet like controls, a front facing camera, and a built in rechargeable battery. Most interesting of all? The confirmation that the controller itself can act like a portable game system. I am frothing at the mouth for Nintendo's e3 conference next week. You can catch it here Tuesday June 7 at 9 a.m. PDT
Eiji Aonuma was on Famitsu's Nico Nico channel to discuss The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D and reportedly mentioned that there would be a new Zelda announced during the week of e3. This is a new Zelda in addition to Ocarina of Time 3DS and Skyward Sword, quite possibly pertaining to the series 25th anniversary. Could this be related to the super secret Nintendo filming Robin William's daughter, who just so happens to be named after Zelda (for real), is participating in? I know I can't wait to find out next week. Too bad it probably isn't anything like this year's April Fools joke.
OmniVision has supplied cameras Apple's iPhone since the device launched, and it looks as though Nintendo might be utilizing their devices in their next console's controller. Rumors have been swirling that the controller has a front facing camera, and interestingly enough, console plans were singled out during Omnivision's quarterly results conference call. This means that the cameras will probably not be for the NGP, unless they are unfamiliar with their gaming terminology, something that is admittedly possible. During the call the company said it had obtained a "significant design win" to supply cameras for a game console that would be ready within the next several months. Ready as in entering production in October, as yet another rumor suggests?