August was filled with Nintendo Directs about specific properties. First was the Smash Ultimate presentation after EVO, followed by the Nindie showcase later on and the Dragalia Lost reveal to end the month. Yet when it comes to more general Nintendo news… well, we haven’t seen much since E3. So another Direct now is not a great shock, but welcome all the same.
Of course, the question now becomes: What will we see? E3 was very much the Smash Ultimate Direct part 1, with sparse nuggets and announcements for other things. As a result, there’s not much for autumn or winter that we actually know about, meaning we could see just about anything tomorrow. But let’s run down a few things we can hazard a guess to.
3DS fades into the sunset
The 3DS is still clinging to life, ricketing about with a walker in hand and complaining about the kids these days and their Switch begging. And while it’s had some great releases this year like Radiant Historia and WarioWare Gold, there’s still a pulse left in the almost eight year-old console. I mean, the presentation announcement specifically talks about the 3DS, so we’ll definitely see something. It’s just a matter of what.
In terms of first-party stuff, the only games slated are ports of Luigi’s Mansion and Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story. (Where’s Partners in Time?) Atlus — who has a history of keeping neglected portable consoles afloat — might swoop in, as Etrian Odyssey Nexus has already been announced for the West, and Persona Q2 has yet to see a confirmation for North America or Europe. While we may see a curveball or two from Nintendo, I doubt it’ll be anything too ambitious — maybe another port or remaster, but in terms of a substantial new game, it’s doubtful.
What about ‘em Switch games we know jack about?
Hey, remember when Metroid Prime 4 was announced at E3 2017 and everybody lost their minds? I do. Mostly because the entire Nintendo Wire team was screaming in unison when it happened. But we haven’t gotten anything on the title since — admittedly, it was very early on in production when announced, so the delay makes sense. If we do get anything on it, it’ll probably be a small teaser, but as a Metroid fan I’ll take anything at this point.
There’s a slate of other games that have also been pretty informationless. Bayonetta 3 has been absent for almost a year since its announcement at The Game Awards. The Yoshi Switch game was absent from E3, and was delayed to next year, so we might get a snipper or two. And while we finally got a reveal at E3, there’s still a ton we don’t know about Fire Emblem: Three Houses. That game’s probably the safest bet when it comes to new info, but who knows? We never know with Directs. Sometimes they spend time talking about flippin’ Fortnite.
Or ‘em Switch games that we don’t know exist?
While Nintendo has been pretty good about bringing the franchises people want to the Switch, there is one simulation-shaped hole that people have been begging for for almost two years now. Animal Crossing on Switch is probably the last giant Nintendo franchise to lack representation on the console. Given the excellence of New Leaf and the innate portability of the Switch, it seems like a match made in heaven. But we currently know nothing about its potential existence. This would definitely be “the bomb” to drop during this Direct. The question is whether or not it’ll actually happen.
There are other franchises that still need Switch rep, like Star Fox. DLC news is also a possibility — Xenoblade 2’s is right around the corner, Kirby Star Allies still needs its third wave of Dream Friends, and people have been curious about Mario Odyssey DLC for a while. Nintendo has stated that there will be more stuff to fill out the end of the year, so I imagine there’ll be some sort of new announcements. But it’s up in the air as to what.
We also don’t know anything about Nintendo Switch Online
UPDATE (9/12/18): We now know that Nintendo Switch Online will be launching on September 18th!
The paid Nintendo Switch Online service launches this month, and… ok, saying we don’t know “anything” about it is a little disingenuous, but it really feels that way. So far, all the info on the service has been dumped without ceremony at random times, and certain aspects (such as the full library of NES games available) is still in the dark. While the Direct description doesn’t mention NSO directly, it would be very strange for them not to talk about it.
So what will we see? Since we already know the (fairly generous) pricing, the main thing to detail would be benefits to the service, how cloud saves work, etc. A release date also seems certain. There’s a number of ways it could pan out fine, and many more that leave the internet bearing torches and pitchforks.
Ok, there’ll be Smash too
And once again we come to the Hype Machine. An entire Direct for itself last month wasn’t enough, eh? Y’all still hungry for characters? Skull Kid? Isaac? Bandana Dee? Geno? A Chargin’ Chuck from Super Mario World? Well, here’s a bold, hot prediction for all of you: the Smash character revealed tomorrow will be from a video game. … The sad thing about that overly broad statement is that it does, in fact, disqualify certain characters people beg for.
Unfettered pleas to Sakurai aside, what I’m most curious to see more info about is the masked “Spirits” mode from the last Direct. While internet detectives parsed out the name, we still don’t know what it is — an adventure mode? Subspace Emissary 2? The most educated guess we can make is that it’ll include bosses (Dracula, Rathalos, and whoever else), but that’s about it. Either way, strap yourself in, because as Barret Wallace once said: Ain’t no gettin’ offa this train we’re on!
That’s just a sliver of ideas as to what will be announced during the Direct tomorrow. What are your wants and predictions? Let us know in the comments and on Twitter.
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