From:Shea John Driscoll,  Digital Sub-Editor, ST, posted on 11 June at 3:11 PM
11 June at 3:11 PM

E3 2014: 3 things you must know from Nintendo's Wii U and 3DS digital event

2015 could be the year that saves the Wii U

Nintendo devoted most of its 40-minute long digital event to the troubled console, trying to rescue it the only way it knows how - with incredible games.

On that count, it’s hard to say Nintendo didn’t deliver. By far the biggest news was the unveiling of the new open world Legend Of Zelda. With its verdant fields and the promise of freedom, it was enough to make grown men cry.

The Legend Of Zelda

Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker, Kirby And The Rainbow Curse, Mario Maker, Xenoblade Chronicles X, Yoshi’s Woolly World - these games won’t win over the sceptics singlehandedly, but happily help pad out the system’s catalogue.

Add that to the newly unveiled Splatoon and Shigeru Miyamoto’s Star Fox, both discussed further later on, and Nintendo could have a yearly roster of releases rivalling that which saved the 3DS.

Nintendo will always do things its own way…

Splatoon is Nintendo’s take on the multiplayer shooter, but of course, it’s never as simple as that. Even in the most saturated of genres, the publisher has something fresh to say. You shoot ink instead of bullets, and the ink has implications both in attack, defence and in traversing the game’s maps. Splatoon looks bright, happy and full of the assured game design touches that make Nintendo’s games timeless.

That shouldn’t come as a surprise. The company has always marched to the beat of its own drum. At what has looked a blood-soaked E3 so far, the company is simply doing what it has always done, and what it does best: making family-friendly games that somehow always emerge best in class.

...for better or for worse

The problem is that the quality of Nintendo’s games has never been in doubt. Instead, it is the company’s inability to juggle both the Wii U and 3DS, as well as its sometimes backward and frustrating decisions that make being a fan sometimes very difficult.

Take the digital event as a case in point. I thought it ended abruptly, without any major 3DS announcements, or the official unveiling of Miyamoto’s games which were unceremoniously leaked before the show.

Nintendo decided that a post-show recap was the best time to reveal two 3DS titles and a first-party Wii U game, Mario Party 10. It also announced that Devil’s Third - an action game from Tomonobu Itagaki, the man responsible for rebooting Ninja Gaiden - would be a Wii U exclusive in an exclusive stream on IGN. Miyamoto’s Star Fox, Project Giant Robot and Project Guard were also stealthily confirmed in a press release.

Why not have a longer digital event and maximise your time in the limelight? I sat baffled at the event's end, watching news trickle in from other sources. Nintendo should have showed off these games properly, letting them get the attention they deserve. It's not often you have the global audience E3 attracts.


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