E3 2016 is almost here, and it’s one of the most enigmatic yet when it comes to Nintendo!
Less than two weeks ago, we were under the impression we’d see nothing but Zelda from company, but the recent announcement that other games will be making an appearance, such as Pokémon and Monster Hunter Generations, has opened the floodgates to speculation and predictions.
Just like we did for E3 2015, our team has banded together to share what we think may come up in the two days of Nintendo Treehouse Live streaming! Be sure to give it a read – we’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
- Mother 3 localization for Nintendo 3DS, titled Earthbound Endings
With all the EarthBound love that’s been happening lately, coupled with the slight drought of game releases leading up to NX in March, the timing for a surprise announcement of this magnitude feels right. Not only will it be localized for western audiences, but will receive a physical release as well sometime in the fall.
- A line of Pokémon amiibo cards is announced, first set to launch alongside Pokémon Sun and Moon
Scanning each card unlocks their respective Pokémon for use in the game. Players can also choose to save and store their personally trained pokemon to their respective cards to be traded amongst friends in the real world.
- Firm release dates for Dragon Quest VII and VIII
Much more in the realm of possibility, it’s high time we learned when exactly we can look forward to revisiting these storied classics. I expect VII to be released in the fall with VIII following suite in early 2017.
- Mario Kart 8 Battle Mode DLC
Mario Kart 8 is, by most accounts, a nearly perfect entry in the series. The only strong and consistent complaint that can be levelled against it is its lack of a proper battle mode. That and I just really want an excuse to start playing it again.
- NX reveal event will be revealed
Nintendo has made it clear that the NX will not be appearing at E3 this year. They must also be acutely aware that the fervor to find out what the heck this thing is is at a fever pitch. A massive reveal event for the new console will be announced and dated sometime during the show.
- Super Mario amiibo line will be expanded
New additions will include Super Mario baddies like a Goomba, Koopa/Para Troopa, Piranha Plant, Boo, Bullet Bill, Shy Guy and most importantly (by far) Dry Bones.
- Zelda line of amiibo
I feel this is going to happen regardless of if they reveal it at E3 or closer to launch, but with confirmed amiibo compatibility thanks to the Wolf Link amiibo, Nintendo is assuredly going to cash in on their most anticipated game in years with a new line of Zelda amiibo.
- NX reveal event will be revealed
I believe Nintendo when they say they won’t reveal NX or new stuff this E3. However, I wouldn’t be surprised if they reveal the official date when they will hold their own press conference to finally reveal the NX. I’m not banking on it, but I don’t think it would be too unexpected.
- Mother 3 Virtual Console release
I think this might finally be the year they release Mother 3 officially in the West. Normally, this would be a joke-worthy pipe dream, but the first Mother game, an older, more obscure game that people haven’t been demanding as much, already came out West as Earthbound Beginnings last E3. Lucas was also added to Smash as DLC and received an amiibo figure. I honestly believe Mother 3 will make its way over here, and I think this would be the best year to reveal it. It wouldn’t overshadow Zelda or anything, but would be a nice surprise for fans.
- The next Zelda finally gets a name
This one is pretty much a given, so I’ll be more specific: The new name will be revealed right at the very end of the first, proper trailer for the game, kicking off the Treehouse Live stream with a bang.
- Pokémon Gold, Silver and Crystal confirmed for 3DS Virtual Console
Just looking at the eShop charts makes it clear the digital re-release of Pokémon Red, Blue and Yellow was a massive success for Nintendo, and it wouldn’t surprise me at all if they fast tracked the Johto games for the 3DS Virtual Console. With Sun and Moon rapidly approaching, the company will want to make the most of the building PokéHype.
- No new game announcements
Considering the NX is releasing early next year, I really doubt Nintendo will be pushing the development of any new Wii U or 3DS games. Honestly, I can see Paper Mario: Color Splash being the last major first party game we’ll see for the system, and the 3DS may get a few smaller titles to fill the gap. I’d love to be wrong on this one, though.
- Pokémon GO, Sun and Moon compatibility
This might be a shot in the dark, but I think that there is a chance that there could be some compatibility between the Pokémon GO phone app and the 3DS Sun and Moon games. I’m not exactly sure how it could be done, but it could be similar to the PokéWalker. Again, a total shot in the dark, but you never know with Nintendo.
- Zelda Wii U online functionality
It has been said that the new Zelda game will have some kind of online functionality. I remember reading about the possibility of players being able to leave hints for other players in dungeons a while ago. Since a 90-minute demo will be available for players to try out on the show-floor, this would be the perfect time to showcase it in action. It would be great to see how players will interact with each other, whether they’ll leave helpful hints or lead people in circles. I’d probably lead people in circles, or to their doom.
- Zelda Wii U title reveal
This might seem like an obvious prediction but seeing as how Nintendo is going to be going all out with Zelda Wii U at E3 this year, it seems fitting that they will finally reveal the official title for the game. It’s a little funny because I had predicted they would reveal the title last year. I think that after all the stringing along that we’ve gotten with Zelda Wii U, the very least that they owe us is a name.
- Confirmation of a girl Link playable in Zelda U/NX
We’ve been hearing rumors and speculation about it since the first video announcement for Zelda U, and now, with our “immersive Zelda experience” on the horizon, I believe that it is finally time that Nintendo reveals that we will be able to pick the gender of our hero for our next Zelda adventure.
- Pokémon Ga-Olé gets a US announcement
Back in April, it was announced that Pokémon Ga-Olé would be replacing Pokémon Tretta in Japan in July. Given that it’s recently been confirmed that Ga-Olé will use QR codes that are compatible in Pokémon Sun and Moon, I believe we’ll see it announced for the West, with a released date around the same time as the Sun and Moon launch.
- Pokémon Sun and Moon New 3DS XL variants will be revealed
I am hoping beyond all hope that E3 2016 will give us the reveal of some sort of interesting special edition consoles. Personally I would love for them to be Pokémon related, but deep down I just want Nintendo to bring interesting special editions back to the table.
- Detective Pikachu heads West
Along with all of the new information about Sun and Moon, I expect the charming spinoff starring Detective Pikachu will make its way overseas to tide us over until the new games release in November.
- The Pokémon amiibo line will be unveiled
Yes, it’s finally that time. With the Animal Crossing series of cards wrapping up, it only makes sense for Nintendo to announce the inevitable Pokémon amiibo card series. The first wave will roll out this fall and feature the original creatures from Kanto.
- Fire Emblem on mobile will feature a brand new cast of characters, and the new lord will be added to Smash Bros.
What better way is there to reinvigorate interest in Smash while also promoting the new mobile game? Now, I know Nintendo doesn’t think E3 is the time to show off mobile games, but I think they’ll make an exception for Fire Emblem given its new popularity in North America. Even though Sakurai and his team have moved on from Smash 4, I can see Nintendo pressuring them to go back for just one more new challenger.