E3 2012: Nintendo’s Press Conference Wrap-Up
As you all probably know, Nintendo was coming in strong into this year’s E3 with its soon-to-be-released Wii U as well as game announcements for it. While they did reveal some of the console’s feature on Sunday, the emphasis during Nintendo’s conference was a lot more of the games. Here is what they had to present.
The press conference started in Miyamoto’s dressing room, in which Pikmins were moving around, only to have one of them fall into the famous game designer’s vest front pocket. After talking a bit about the Wii U Game Pad, Miyamoto officially unveiled Pikmin 3. Coming to the Wii U in the near future, this title is improving on the same formula while still adding a few new additions such as a reworked camera, new types of Pikmins (including the Rock Pikmins), the ability to control up to four leaders at a time, a replay function, and the use of the Wii U Game Pad to see the game’s map.
Nintendo of America’s Regis Fils-Aimé then jumped on stage to present some information about the Wii U. First of all, many entertainment options will make their way to the console such as Amazon Video, YouTube, Netflix, and Hulu. These will all make use of the Wii U Game Pad additional screen. It was also confirmed that unlike what was previously announced, the Wii U will support up to two Wii U Game Pads at the same time. However, Nintendo of America tweeted that this feature would drop both of the controllers’ framerate down to 30 frames per second. In addition to this, it was confirmed that the peripheral would include a stylus for added precision, rumble, a built-in microphone, a headphone jack as well as a dedicated volume control slider.
We then got our first official look at New Super Mario Bros. U, a 2D Mario launch game for the Wii U. Just like the precedent title launched on the Wii, this new game will feature four-player Coop, Miiverse support allowing players to post messages on the game itself (as shown in Sunday’s surprise press conference), as well as the Boost mode which allows a player using the Wii U Game Pad to place blocs around levels to help the other players out.
This was followed by Warner Bros. Interactive’s Martin Tremblay who presented Batman: Arkham City – Armored Edition. This port of the popular superhero game launched last Fall will add Wii U support through the Game Pad by allowing the players to unleash special moves through it (called the BAT mode), access Batman’s inventory, look at the game’s map, as well as reading more information on the game’s characters. The port is developed by the newly opened WB Montreal studio. Then, Scribblenauts Unlimited was also announced. The game will take the popular gameplay from previous games and add an item creation mode (that can be shared with other players), a brand-new multiplayer mode as well as a new story mode.
A short montage was then played to present some of the other third-party titles currently in development for the Wii U: Darksiders II, Mass Effect 3, Tank! Tank! Tank!, Tekken Tag Tournament 2, Trine 2: Director’s Cut, Ninja Gaiden 3: Razor’s Edge, and Aliens Colonial Marines.
Reggie then took place its spot on stage to talk a bit about Wii Fit U. The game will make use of the Wii Balance Board as well as the Wii U Game Pad to bring gamers more fitness possibilities than ever. The new Fit-meter (which is basically a pedometer) will allow gamers to make their real-life activities count by transferring their steps count into Wii Fit U.
This was followed by another short clip to present SiNG. From the makers of DJ Hero (Freestyle Games), this new karaoke title will make use of the Wii U Game Pad by having lyrics show up on it as well as funny challenges for everyone in the living room to execute.
The focus then shifted to the 3DS with some brand-new titles. It all started with New Super Mario Bros. 2 which will be “all about the Gold” and will include the return of Super Mario Bros. 3’s Power Meter. The game will be launched on August 19th. Paper Mario: Sticker Star was briefly shown and will feature new clickable stickers that players will be able to collect and use afterwards. The game will be available both physically and digitally this Holiday. A little bit of gameplay for Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon was then shown, showing some new ghosts that Mario’s brother will have to face. The game will be available this Holiday. They ended this 3DS specific segment with a short montage showing Castlevania: Lords of Shadow – Mirror of Fate, Disney Epic Mickey: Master of Illusion, Scribblenauts Unlimited, and Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance.
After that, a new LEGO game was presented. Taking place in an open-world city and featuring a kind of Grand Theft Auto-like game for kids gameplay, LEGO City Undercover will make use of the Wii U Game Pad to allow gamers to get information about what is going on in the city itself. This title will be available for both the Wii U and the 3DS.
Ubisoft’s Yves Guillemot was then invited on stage. The first game to be shown was a new entry in the popular party dancing franchise Just Dance with Just Dance 4. With this fourth title, the Wii U Game Pad will enable a non-dancer player to choose choreography moves that players will have to execute as well as some other fun options such as asking players to “strike a pose” for as long as he wants. A little bit of information about ZombiU was also presented in a short trailer. Players will be able to use the Wii U Game Pad as an inventory selector, a scanner, a sniper scope, to push enemies away, and to hack doors. It will also feature a small “zombifier” photo application, allowing you to zombify yourself or your friends. The Ubisoft segment ended on a short montage presenting other titles that are in development for the Wii U at Ubisoft: Assassin’s Creed 3, Rabbids Land, Yourshape Fitness Evolved 2013, Rayman Legends, Sports Connection, and Avengers: Battle for Earth.
Nintendo’s press conference ended with the announcement of Nintendo Land. Coming to Wii U on the console’s launch day, this sort of mini-game collection will feature a huge theme park filled with 12 Nintendo-themed attractions including The Legend of Zelda: Battle Quest, Animal Crossing: Sweet Day, Donkey Kong’s Crash Course. The first mini-game that was shown was Luigi’s Ghost Mansion, which basically is a hide-and-seek mini-game in which a player playing on the Wii U Game Pad must get away from other players (using Wiimotes) to attack them using stealth.
That’s it! Stay tuned to That Gamer Hub for more of our E3 coverage this week!