UPDATE (10/28): Takashi Mochizuki of The Wall Street Journal attended Nintendo’s financial results press conference and reported that Nintendo President Tatsumi Kimishima stated that Nintendo Directs are still in Nintendo’s future.
Good news! Nintendo CEO Kimishima says Direct is alive, with at least one coming this year. https://t.co/tLvapAH7vL
— Takashi Mochizuki (@mochi_wsj) October 28, 2015
This is certainly good news! After speculating that a Nintendo Direct must be imminent earlier this week (read below), hearing that we’ll be receiving at least one new Direct in the remaining months of 2015 is comforting. With the holidays and the New Year fast approaching, it’s likely that we’ll be getting a solid amount of information regarding holiday plans and, quite possibly, some hints at 2016’s game roster.
When Nintendo broadcast its first Direct back in October 2011 no one could have predicted just how successful the format would be. Taking advantage of the ever-growing interest in livestreaming, Nintendo chose to move away from the industry’s focus on major events like E3 and TGS to instead reveal games on its own time, free of competition. We’ve seen the likes of Sony, Square-Enix and Microsoft give similar live-streamed presentations in recent years, and it’s more than likely Nintendo Direct was a direct influence on them.
Unfortunately, it’s clear we’re in a Direct drought right now, with the last stream from Nintendo being the E3 Digital Event. We’re no stranger to month-long gaps without major Directs, but we still saw smaller streams dedicated to individual titles, such as Splatoon or Bayonetta 2. In recent months this minor marketing has been replaced by tweets, trailers and press releases. Understandably, this shift is no doubt due to the unfortunate loss of Satoru Iwata back in July, but Nintendo did recently clarify that its Directs will continue.
So could a Nintendo Direct be on the horizon? Over the past few weeks we’ve seen plenty of hints that suggest as much, and we’ll go through a few of them now…
Twilight Princess HD
This is the big one, with data miners discovering files labelled “The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD” hidden away in the Wii U eShop’s code almost two weeks ago. It’s unlikely Nintendo would release a game in the Zelda franchise without first building up hype, so if this listing is accurate we’ll no doubt see something soon.
The game may even follow in the footsteps of Majora’s Mask 3D, which was announced in November last year and released a mere three months later in February.
Maintenance and Club Nintendo’s replacement
With two periods of extended maintenance in just two weeks, Nintendo is clearly doing something with its online services, but the publisher has yet to explain the reason for these interruptions. With only speculation to go on, it’s easy to draw a connection with Nintendo’s upcoming Club Nintendo replacement program, which Nintendo of Europe claimed would be introduced “later this year.” The company later amended its statement, however, removing the specific mention of this release timeframe. It’s encouraging people to sign up for updates on the replacement.
Of course, Nintendo will also be teaming up with DeNA for the new service, which brings us to…
DeNA’s Mystery Mobile Game
One of Nintendo’s most surprising moves of the last year was its partnership with mobile developer DeNA, with both groups teaming up to create the new membership service and mobile games featuring characters from Nintendo’s extensive IP catalog.
As a major step into Nintendo’s future, it would be surprising to see this new mobile game land without any prior marketing. Not only that, but with Nintendo reporting earnings next Wednesday and holding a meeting with investors on Thursday you’d think Nintendo would want to showcase the game soon, as many of those investors were pushing the company to move into the mobile market for years.
So what do you think? Is a Nintendo Direct just around the corner, or is Nintendo biding its time? Let us know what you think in the comments below!Leave a Comment