Nintendo Direct Smashes Out New Releases

Kaden Hughes, Magazine and Backpage Editor

Many passionate Nintendo fans were waiting for 2021’s Nintendo Direct on February 17th, but weren’t very blown away by the results. 

The Nintendo Direct is an biannual livestream from immensely popular gaming company Nintendo. These shows introduce new and upcoming games that will be released by many of Nintendo’s development teams.  

The stream started off strongly, introducing the newest character to the ‘Super Smash Brothers Ultimate’ lineup. This character, Pyra, from the poplar Xenoblade Chronicles, is yet another sword-wielder for players to choose. However, a unique ability for this selection allows her to transform into Mythra, a second character from the Xenoblade Chronicles. The inclusion of Pyra and Mythra leaves only two characters left to be announced, most likely in the next Nintendo Directs. 

A majority of the announcements were short clips, displaying smaller games and new DLC’s. Hidden amongst these was the newest addition to the Mario sports genre: Mario Golf: Super Rush. The game features controls similar to Wii Sports, but modernizes them with the edition of the Super Rush race mode. The multiplayer and story mode will be released on June 25 2021. 

By far the longest clip of the Direct was to announce Square Enix’s newest game, Project Triangle Strategy. The story follows three kingdoms in a fight for control of resources. This strategy RPG, similar to Fire Emblem, is in very early development, with a full release date unknown at this point. 

Among these announcements, most popularly, was the remaster of Wii game ‘The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword.’ This remaster will feature updated graphics and newly translated combat mechanics to allow for both joy-con and controller gameplay. This title is set for release on July 16th, 2021. 

Finally, the last clip of the stream featured a familiar face, Splatoon’s Inkling. Featuring a desert and a new city, Splatlands, the Direct’s finale was one of the biggest surprises for the audiences. While the clip showed very little gameplay, it officially announced the newest installment of the Splatoon franchise: Splatoon 3. Not much is known about the project at this time, besides its new inclusion of bow weapons and its release in 2022. 

Many fans were hoping for the announcements for the newest Zelda Game and the Pokémon Diamond and Pearl remakes. Many were left disappointed when these did not come, and felt a though the Direct underperformed this year with the lack of a standout announcement. 

These games were the topics of many gamers posts and livestream reactions, leaving many fans left unsatisfied with the anticlimactic reveals.