E3 2014: Nintendo lift the lid on Yoshi, Kirby and Zelda's latest games

Cue Everybody Plays meltdown

E3 2014 Nintendo lift the lid on Yoshi Kirby and Zeldas latest games
13th June, 2014 By Ian Morris

In another act of typical Nintendo defiance, the big N chose not to hold a proper conference at giant games show E3, and Reggie's beloved Noh-kia theatre, instead choosing to release a pre-recorded 'Digital Event' as they did last year. Interspersed with some rather strange stop-motion like shorts that featured Bowser and Peach bickering over the last doughnut and a disgruntled diva Mario throwing a hissy fit at his distinct lack of games, as well as laser eye powered Reggie doll torching a trash-talking journalist in a crowd, it was a bizarre showing to say the least. Over the course of the 45 minute show, we got to see some of the upcoming Nintendo games we can look forward to later this year and (mostly) into 2015 - read on for the full lowdown.

Super Smash Bros

Continuing the whole 'wtf are we watching' theme, we were treated to a slow-mo brawl between Nintendo head Iwata and everyone's favourite afroed behemoth, Reggie 'My Body Is Ready' Fils-Amie, the head of Nintendo of America. While we were wondering if Reggie had decided he's had enough of "please understand"-ing, apparently, It's backflips, flying headbutts and super fast punches were intended to as a real-life take on the Smash Bros brawling series, which now has support for Mii characters. This means you can now take everyone from Miyamoto to Ice-T to Abraham Lincoln into battle - as long as you can make a Mii of them, you're good to go.

'Mii Fighter' comes in three flavours, each with their own unique set of moves - Mii Brawlers like to get up close and personal, fighting with their fists and feet, whilst Mii Sword Fighters excel at weapon-based combat, hacking your opponents with their swords, and Mii Gunners have a rather large cannon strapped to their arm, and are capable of firing energy balls, bombs and lasers from one side of the stage to the other. As with every other character in the new Smash Bros titles for both the Wii U and 3DS, you can chop and change each of the Mii Fighter move sets, letting you tailor your Mii to your own fighting style.


Teased in the Smash Bros segment, when Iwata placed a model of Mario onto the Wii U gamepad and had the portly plumber drop into his match, good old Reginald lifted the lid on what appears to be Nintendo's take on the Skylanders figurines. Known as Amiibos, these plastic versions of Nintendo's famous characters can be scanned on the Wii U GamePad, and used to unlock various features, characters and cool stuff in several upcoming games - and one recently released one in the form of Mario Kart 8. While Nintendo were very cagey about what the figures would actually do, besides letting you call in computer-controlled characters to fight in your place on Smash Bros, they'll apparently be popping up in the new Yoshi, Mario Party, and a "number of new Nintendo games". Personally, we're a bit on the fence about them - we'd much prefer if Nintendo were to make a whole Skylanders-esque game for them, rather than trying to shoe-horn them into their existing titles, but for now we'll reserve judgment until we see them in action.

Yoshi's Woolly World

One of many highlights from the Nintendo showing was a more in-depth look at the upcoming sequel-of-sorts to the incredible Kirby's Epic Yarn, this time starring Nintendo's other famous foodie. Set in an adorable knitted world, Yoshi's extendable tongue now not only has the ability to gobble up enemies, but also lets you unravel the scenery to reveal new and hidden areas. In keeping with the woolly theme, the little green eating machine now lays balls of wool rather than eggs, which can be thrown into mid-air to knit platforms to help you reach new areas, hurled at vicious piranha plants to tie their jaws closed, or thrown through breakable walls to clear a path. Promising plenty of exploration and secrets to discover, as well as two player co-operative fun, this one's high on our list of wants for 2015.

Captain Toad's Treasure Tracker

Forever neglected, forever forgotten, and forever relegated to being a fill in character for when his moustachioed contemporariness are already taken, life hasn't been kind to the Toad. But it seems his time in the shadows is coming to an end, as the true unsung hero of the mushroom kingdom is getting his own game this Christmas, in the form of Captain Toad's Treasure Tracker. Based on the puzzle stages that were scattered around the cat-filled Super Mario 3D World, Treasure Tracker sees erstwhile adventurer Captain Toad trying to navigate 3D courses (which are more like mazes) in order to collect green stars, with his only weapon being his big brain (what else can be under than spotty noggin?). With no jump button, no attacks and therefore no way to defeat enemies, it's one of those games where you'll need to play with perspective, and take a good look at how everything fits together with the camera, in order to collect all the stars, and stop yourself getting stuck in a corner. Sad at having completed the final Captain Toad stage of 3D World, we couldn't help thinking that Nintendo could have easily made it into a full game - and it seems, for once, that the big N were thinking the same, although it would seem that while this would be perfect fodder for a downloadable game, Captain Toad may well be a full priced disc release. Here's hoping it has enough substance.

The Legend of Zelda

Looking seriously fancy, we got no more than a passing glimpse at the new Zelda adventure for the Wii U, due out sometime in 2015, but it was more than enough to get us very excited indeed. Promising a vast open world, bigger than any Zelda game in the past, with rolling hills, swaying trees and of course, enemies around every corner, series producer Eiji Aonuma assures us we'll be able to go anywhere we like from the get go - a distinct contrast to the defined path you've had to follow in previous instalments. With the trailer showing a cloaked Link riding on the back of a horse, followed by a huge tree-like enemy with laser eyes and firing fireballs, this was a glimpse of a game that will surely be Nintendo's biggest title of 2015. And we can't wait to see more.

Pokemon Omega Ruby/Alpha Sapphire

Fans of Mudkips unite! Nintendo's digital presentation gave us a few more glimpses of the upcoming Pokemon sequels to Ruby and Sapphire, Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, which are due out on 3DS later this year. Returning to the Hoenn region from the original Game Boy Advance games, a land which has been given a Pokemon X and Y make over, Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire see you and your team of critters off on a journey to catch, battle and train your way across the land, in search of answers to the mysteries behind Primal Groudon and Primal Kyogre, two mysteriously altered Pokemon who appear to have some connection to the new Mega Evolutions. Seemingly following in the footsteps of Pokemon X and Y, the trailer does have some small text which states 'Game in 2D. Some areas also playable in 3D', suggesting that the titles may not take full advantage of the 3DS' top screen (even if we only ever play in 2D anyway). Still, we guess we'll see how things look come the 28th November this year, when Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire launch.

Bayonetta 2

Not quite the sort of game you'd expect from Nintendo, the shooty shooty button mashing Bayonetta will be making its way to the Wii U later this year. A game with a focus on action and pulling off impressive combos of moves, it's one for fans of action games, and something that shows how broad Nintendo's range of games has become.

As a Nintendo-exclusive treat, retail copies of Bayonetta 2 will come with a copy of the original Bayonetta, as well as a number of special costumes - including a Peach-themed mini dress that causes coins to appear, a green Link-style outfit, complete with Master Sword that showers the ground in Rupees when you destroy objects, and what appears to be a Samus' suit from Metroid.

Hyrule Warriors

A spin-off from the main Legend of Zelda series, Hyrule Warriors sees the green-clad hero facing off against huge armies in and around the land of Hyrule in a more action packed, enemy battering game than the usual fantasy adventures. Bearing more than a passing similarity to the Dynasty Warriors series, Hyrule Warriors sees Link as just one member of a larger army scattered across the map, and it's up to you and your army to capture various bases across the land to help push the invading forces back. With immense armies that seem to stretch as far as the eye can see, it might look like a bit of a daunting task for a single elfen boy - which is why you can tackle the game in two player too, with one person's action taking place solely on the TV and the other's exclusively on the GamePad. Playable characters include Link, Princess Zelda, Impa and Twilight Princess' Midna, each with their own unique sets of attacks - with many more favourites still to be announced before the game launches on the 19th September this year. We're still hoping we'll be able to dish out some punishment as the odd elf/gnome thing Tingle. Koolim-PAH!


A sequel of sorts to Kirby's 2005 DS adventure Kirby: Power Paintbrush, the prettily named Kirby and the Rainbow Curse for the Wii U follows a very similar format. Already being rather ball-shaped, Kirby is the perfect mascot for a game that involves drawing lines on the Touch Screen to roll him through each of the game's claymation-inspired levels to the goal, collecting stars and hidden treasure along the way.  By indirectly controlling Kirby, the puzzles revolve more around having to protect the little puffball from harm, drawing lines to shield him from waterfalls, a path for him to follow across a spiked floor or a rollercoaster-like loop to send him flying up high. We also spotted a number of cool looking transformations, where Kirby changes into a tank, blasting his way through walls, a missile-firing submarine or a rocket, in a level where you need to guide his explosive self through a maze. While we're wondering what the point of the TV screen is going to be, we're still stoked at the idea of a new Kirby game - and for us at least, 2015 can't come soon enough. For more incredibly colourful fun, check out the first screens.

Xenoblade Chronicles X

Having seemingly decided the admittedly catchy "New game from Monolith Soft" title was never going to get them mainstream success, the upcoming sci-fi themed role playing game now has an official name! Looking suitably sci-fi-y, Xenoblade Chronicles X sees a girl called Elma amidst a large scale interplanetary war, where Earth has been lost and the few survivors have been forced to retreat. During the ruckus, many of the escape pods get intercepted and crash-land on a far off planet, which is where your adventure begins. Expect an engrossing plot, massive battles and a huge world to explore when it hits the Wii U in 2015, as you seek revenge on the alien race that hope to wipe out all of humanity, your ragtag band of survivors included.

Mario Maker

It wouldn't be a Nintendo conference without something from the little moustachioed guy, and despite his little tantrum at the beginning and Reggie's assurances that they didn't have another Mario game in the (warp) pipeline, here it is. A little bit different to your usual Mario game, Mario Maker is a creative toolset that puts you in the creative seat and lets you put together your own levels, either in retro Mario or the bolder, brighter New Super Mario Bros. styles. Not due until 2015 (as with pretty much everything in this conference), we're expecting this to be more of a downloadable application than a full priced disc release.


A brand new game from Nintendo that DOESN'T star Mario, Kirby or Link?! What witchcraft is this?! Or in the case of multiplayer shooter Splatoon, we suppose it should be ink-craft. Playing in two teams of squid girls, Splatoon sees players splattering the map with coloured ink to claim as much turf as they can in the time limit to win. Characters can transform into a squid to swim through their own colour of ink at a rate of knots, letting you cover more ground faster - but you'll need to be wary of pools of your opponent's, which will slow you down considerably. Having a lot more appeal to us than the average multiplayer game, we do wonder how this is going to fare, seeing as the online modes on most Nintendo games are notoriously empty unless it's Mario Kart or Pokemon. Here's hoping it'll launch with some sort of single player component, or at the very least split-screen functionality, as we approach it's launch, the first half of 2015.


And that's your lot! While there may not be that much for 2014, almost everything Nintendo showed had appeal, with our stand out favourites being Yoshi's Woolly World and Kirby Wii U - two games that make 2015 seem far too far away. While we start constructing a time machine so we can zap ourselves to the future and get our hands on the games that bit quicker, we'll keep our fingers crossed for some more not-so-far-away announcements, otherwise 2014 is going to be a very empty year for Nintendo fans...

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