E3 2014: Nintendo’s Wii U Presentation

Whilst all the others opted for showy live presentations on Monday, the Japanese gaming giant instead delivered what they dubbed a ‘Digital Event’ this morning – essentially a pre-recorded nearly hour long presentation of their upcoming games.

As per usual with the company it was often playful, framed by segments and gags that looked to be straight out of “Robot Chicken”. In between was gameplay footage and the designers discussing their goals for the games.

However, quite a few of the elderly Japanese male designer interview segments were dubbed over by two men, one sporting an almost California surfer accent and vocabulary, which made for a strange effect.

A big part of Nintendo’s plans are interactive figures which they dub “amiibo” with ten to be available at launched and more made available throughout the holiday and into 2015. The figures can be used with the GamePad and interact with multiple Nintendo games, the first being “Super Smash Bros.” for Wii U.

Whilst Nintendo appears to have lost much third party support for the Wii U, their first party efforts aren’t slowing down with over a dozen new titles announced for coming months. The biggest appear to be the return of familiar franchises.

“The Legend of Zelda” is coming to Wii U next year and this entry is designed to be the first truly open world game in the series. “Hyrule Warriors” is also coming to Wii U this September and merges the Zelda world with “Dynasty Warriors” style art to create a hack-and-slash adventure.

“Star Fox” is making a comeback with the Wii U GamePad turned into the cockpit view of Fox McCloud’s Arwing fighter. Sonic the Hedgehog is also returning in “Sonic Boom” which puts the emphasis on exploration and teamwork. Bayonetta is back in the sequel “Bayonetta 2” which comes bundled with the original game as well.

“Xenoblade Chronicles X” brings the console a massive sci-fi role-playing game, whilst “Devil’s Third” gives us a military third person shooter set in a world suddenly without satellites. The cutest looking game on display was “Yoshi’s Woolly World,” a Yoshi platform game where everything from the characters to the environments appear to have been knited from a ball of yarn.

In terms of other Mario characters, “Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker” gives the toadstool character his own adventure. There was also “Mario Maker” which allows you to design levels for a Mario game with the help of the Wii U GamePad. The look can be switched between classic “Super Mario Bros.” and the more recent “New Super Mario Bros. U”.