What did last week's Nintendo Direct mean for gamers?
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What about the new Zelda? Nintendo announced a while back that they would be making a new Zelda game for the Wii U - pretty obvious, right? Franchise producer, Eiji Aonuma, pointed out how they wanted to change how Zelda played even further from Skyward Sword. While there weren’t any screenshots or other piece of media depicting how the game would look, Aonuma greatly focused on redefining typical Zelda conventions such as the completion order of dungeons. Just like how Skyward Sword changed combat in Zelda, the Wii U Zelda aims to change how we interact the various conventions we came to know and love in the past. Nintendo wants us to get eager for this new Zelda title not because it’s different but because they too are excited for it.
There were announcements that new games were coming in the future but Nintendo also teased Super Smash Bros. for the Wii U. Specifically, they mentioned there will be news about the game at E3. Nintendo already made big announcements for their systems, why are they holding back? If you know how to play a good game of cards you should know that unveiling your entire hand, or plan, is never a good thing. While Nintendo wants to draw in new players to their new console and keep their current ones interested, they’re also concerned with making sure Sony and Microsoft know that they have a tough fight ahead of them. If gamers are riled up after these announcements and that wasn’t even all of it, imagine when E3 comes and Nintendo announces even more amazing news.
Beyond the games, Nintendo is also promising to make some software updates to the Wii U making it feel smoother when using its interface. In addition, Nintendo is seeking to make its hardware more appealing by adding new Miiverse features. Obviously Nintendo isn’t telling the world what they’re planning to do with the system entirely but this sneak peek is a good appetizer for what might be in store for the future. It shows that Nintendo is willing to put their all into the Wii U.
Most importantly, what does this series of announcements mean for Nintendo as a whole. While it’s important to analyze the bits and pieces, it’s good to see the bigger picture. Earlier I mentioned Nintendo not revealing everything and them being aware of Sony and Microsoft. There’s no doubt that Sony and Microsoft’s new consoles will be the big focus at this year’s E3, assuming it’s ready for show. If this is the case then it’s easy for Nintendo to be overshadowed by their competitors. Despite how awesome the games may be, hardware is usually given more attention. Nintendo wants to avoid their announcements getting swept up during this mess.
Nintendo additionally wants to spread out their announcements by removing some of what they could’ve said at E3 to what they did this week. After all, they teased the new Smash Bros. for E3. It’s clear that they have something to show at E3 and while it’d be cool if they bombard gamers everywhere with a dozen game announcements, I believe it works better if they spread them out. It gives the games more focus and rather than being overwhelmed, we can savor each bit of news we get.
In short, I believe this week’s news is only a piece of what to expect from Nintendo. We’re getting a glimpse of what the company has to offer with the Wii U and they’re teasing us bits at a time. It’s a great tactic and I think gamers will be excited to hear a constant steady stream of news rather than all at once and don’t hear anything for a while. Once again, Nintendo knows what it’s doing and I have faith that what they did this week is only the beginning.