Nintendo is on an upward trend. Stock value has been steadily increasing since the launch of mobile apps such as Pokemon Go and Super Mario Run. The Nintendo Switch had both a successful revelation and launch. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild has been a critical and commercial success, and Mario Kart 8 Deluxe was a successful follow up.
But the game is not over yet. Based on a recent Nielsen study, less than half of people who know about the X-Box One and Playstation 4 know that the Nintendo Switch exists – both from a gamer’s and non-gamer’s perspective. So Nintendo still has a lot of ground to cover.
Based on what’s been reported, we know that Nintendo plans to showcase the latest entry in the Super Mario Bros. franchise and arguably their biggest release following Breath of the Wild, Super Mario Odyssey, during this year’s E3. We can also safely assume that we’ll see more of the titles that Nintendo already revealed previously – first party games like Fire Emblem Warriors and Xenoblade Chronicles 2, and third party titles like Skyrim, NBA 2K, and the recently revealed Monster Hunter XX.
But is this going to be enough? There are some revelations that I wish Nintendo (or other major third party developers) would accomplish this year – revelations that I think would put the Switch onto more people’s radars, as well as put the still-alive 3DS back into public awareness. Here’s a list of things that I personally would like to see from Nintendo this E3.
1. A Wallet-Friendly Virtual Console Approach for the Nintendo Switch
Despite already being launched, there are still several questions surrounding the Nintendo Switch – one of which is how Virtual Console is going to work with the new system. Virtual Console is Nintendo’s way of letting its fans play their classic games on current systems. Originating with the Nintendo Wii, the service has been available on both the Wii U and 3DS.
One “problem” about Virtual Console is that the games can’t easily be transferred across systems. If you have a Virtual Console copy of Super Mario Bros. 3 on your Wii, you’d have to buy a separate digital copy of it if you want to play the game on your 3DS as well – and this is a sore point for those who own multiple Nintendo consoles.
Some fans believe that, when you purchase a copy on one device, copies on other devices should come for free. I don’t necessarily share the same opinion (Do we get songs for free on iTunes if we own cassette tapes of them? Can we get DVDs for free if we own copies of the same movies on VHS?) since Virtual Console titles are essentially emulated games and getting them to work on different devices is not a simple copy-and-paste from one storage device to another, I do agree that there has to be some sort of discount to get Virtual Console titles on the Switch that you already own on a 3DS or Wii U. Each Nintendo account has a record of digital purchases anyway, so Nintendo should be able to tell what we own and what we don’t.
Let me throw this thought out there – imagine being able to play Nintendo’s classic games on the go or on a TV, with built-in two player support thanks to the Joy-Cons. Imagine being able to do that paying much less than what we’re currently paying for on the 3DS and Wii U. Now isn’t that a good idea?
2. One or Two AAA Releases from Major Third Party Developers
One of the reasons why Nintendo consoles dropped in popularity amongst the gaming community is the (perceived) lack of third party support. Whether Nintendo does have enough third party support is arguable, but what can’t be argued is that big multi-platform releases have been skipping Nintendo consoles since the days of the Nintendo 64.
Nintendo has been boasting about how the Switch will have support from 3rd party developers, we haven’t really seen any proof of this. Sure, there’s NBA 2K and FIFA, but those games cater to a specific audience. Yeah, I’m looking forward to Skyrim, but remastered or not, this is still a game originally released half a decade ago. Capcom’s offering Ultra Street Fighter II (a remake of a much-older game) and Monster Hunter XX (a franchise that’s been on the 3DS for several years now). Ubisoft has Rayman Legends and a Mario/Rabbids cross-over game. Square Enix has either new titles or Dragon Quest sequels/remakes/spin-offs and no sight of Final Fantasy anywhere. This is it?
Whether from Nintendo or from the third party publishers themselves, an announcement of a major triple A title for the Switch is going to be well-received. Prey? Resident Evil 7? A Batman: Arkham collection? A (*gasp*) Call of Duty game? We need proof that we’ll see some of the big releases gracing the X-Box One and Playstation 4, and this year’s E3 is a great time to see that.
3. One Last Major Release for the Nintendo 3DS
Nintendo keeps saying that they won’t kill off the 3DS just yet. And sure, they have a bunch of titles set for release for the little handheld few thought would last as long as it did (this device has been around since 2011!), but does any of the upcoming releases scream “system seller” (aside from Monster Hunter XX)? We have Ever Oasis, Hey! Pikmin, another entry in the Layton franchise, and Dragon Quest XI.
The announcement of a major 3DS release will definitely surprise current 3DS owners and maybe convince people to still buy their own 3DS units. Maybe a sequel to the awesome Super Mario 3D Land would be big enough or the revival of the Advanced Wars franchise, but the only title that I think can really get people talking is Pokemon Stars – an enhanced follow up to Pokemon Sun/Moon. This or…
4. A New Main Entry in the Metroid Franchise
If there’s one thing that can be learned from the reception that Metroid Prime: Federation Force received upon it’s announcement and release is that Metroid fans are rabid and hungry for a new Metroid game. I can’t blame Metroid fans – Metroid games have mostly been great games, from the classic 2D platformers to the first person Metroid Prime titles. Metroid games offer an experience that no other Nintendo franchise can offer, and it’s been a while since we last had our hands on a Metroid title (Metroid: Other M in 2010).
A 2D follow up to Metroid Fusion on the Nintendo 3DS is good enough to make fans happy, but if you want the kind of reaction that Breath of the Wild received, another first person Metroid Prime title on the Nintendo Switch is the way to go. I bet that the announcement of a new Metroid title is sure to get people talking.
5. A Surprise Nintendo Switch Announcement
I don’t know why, but I have a feeling that Nintendo still hasn’t revealed everything about the Switch. Initially, I believed that a budget-friendly, portable-only version of the Switch is on the horizon but the New Nintendo 2DS XL killed off that theory. Now I’m thinking of a new peripheral or accessory that, when combined with the Switch as it currently is, will definitely “change the game”.
Switch VR perhaps? I mean, just think about this – a light but powerful VR headset that you can connect to the Switch, then you have the Joy-Cons for accurate motion controls with HD rumble. That’s portable VR right there! This is just one idea, of course. I’m hoping to see one big, surprise from Nintendo this E3 – I don’t know exactly what, hence the term “surprise”.
And there you have it, five big announcements from Nintendo that I think would make E3 2017 a success for the big N. I really think that Nintendo needs to make another big bang this year to keep the momentum of the Switch going.
Do you have expectations of Nintendo for this year’s E3? Tell us all about it by leaving a comment or two below!