Thursday, September 28, 2017

Nintendo Direct 14/09/2017: Not-so-live Impressions

Woo, woo! Nintendo Direct time. It's been quite a while since the last full-on, non-E3 Direct: April by my calculations - a time when if you had asked me if I'd be getting a Switch in time for Mario Odyssey, I'd have said "absolutely". Now though, now that it's nearly upon us, ehh, I'm kind of having second thoughts. I don't know, looking at how the line-up has shaken out so far for the Switch - excluding Breath of the Wild, which I've already played to death on the Wii U - there are a few nice-to-have games there, but for me, there just isn't that wealth of content, or those few must-have games right now that would justify the current price tag. Will today's Direct change anything in that department? Let's find out:

00:12 - And we're off. It's always mildly intriguing to see a PEGI 18 pop up on one of these. Much as I'd be excited for Mario + Extreme Beach Volleyball though, - much as we all would - I suspect it's for a couple of Switch game announcement that I managed to spoil myself on last night. Ooh, secrets.

- What's in store for 3DS? I know I'm being selfish here, but hopefully not much. :D Damn it, Nintendo, you have a hybrid platform now; put everything on that! Cater to my needs only. Is that so much to ask?
00:42 - Booo! They're doing the spoilerific "headlines" in this Direct again. This time I'm just going to straight-up look away.

00:50 - Not quite yet though. First we have some Pokémon Ultra Sun and Moon.
01:30 - Yikes! Those graphics sure look like they're from a 3DS game

01:53 - Yep, Dawn Wings Necrozma. Definitely caught all that in the trailer.

01:42 - I have to admit, they're still killing it with these starter Pokémon designs though.

02:58 - Whoah! The last thing I expected to have announced here: new Virtual Console releases. Pokémon Gold and Silver. Not bad. (Be a lot cooler they were on the Switch though...)

03:51 - I'm not into collecting limited edition consoles, but damn, that Pokéball 2Ds is hot.

04:01 - Limited edition boxed copies of Pokémon Gold and Silver too. Kind of cool, but if they're anywhere near as limited as that freakin' Samus Returns Limited Edition, I'd extinguish any hope of getting hold of those immediately. #SaltyAsHellCommaDamnItNintendo

04:08 - Arrgh! Headlines. Looking over at my retro console cabinet instead. Damn, that's a mess. You know, I'd swear that empty Pepsi bottle's been up there for two weeks. At least. I don't even know why!

04:18 - Okay, looks like it's safe to look again. Oh, this is that Superstar Saga remake - one game I'm not really bothered about missing out on on Switch. Oh, I said it: Superstar Saga was never anything but an average, watered-down Paper Mario. But, but, Fawful! Fawful is mildly amusing for a few minutes, maybe. In a game full of bean and laughter puns. No!

04:22 - I will give it one thing though: Superstar Saga does feature Mario and Luigi doing some actual plumbing for once, which I appreciated.

05:17 - Kirby Battle Royale. Not sure if this was shown at E3, but I don't think so.

05:31 - Then again, I do remember being displeased with the announcement of a Kirby game with local 4-player multiplayer, so they must have at least announced it then. Yeah, I'll never play this. :D

06:01 - Copy ability global poll? Wow; Nintendo really celebrating Kirby's 25th anniversary in style.

06:17 - A new Layton game. I guess it won't surprise anyone to hear that I've yet to try out any of these. I was hoping that with the Switch that Layton and other Japanese DS/3DS franchises might finally make their way onto a TV screen. Hopefully soon.

06:53 - Uh, what?

07:04 - Ohh, Style Boutique. I'm kind of surprised that that series is still going. I guess they must sell okay, but it really feels like these kind of sims have all but died out since the DS era (or, more likely, moved to mobile).

07:59 - Minecraft on 3DS, because of course. Hey, you guys, I played some Minecraft. I picked up a Raspberry Pi recently, only to discover that it comes pre installed on those. So, I chopped down some trees, started digging a tunnel down into the ground and... I don't know; I can still see the appeal of it, it just doesn't really appeal to me. If it had some direction and some goals though, maybe it might. I should give Dragon Quest Builders a go.

08:52 - A compilation of the top 100 Mario Party games. Great! :D Never played Mario party back in the day tbh. I could never justify using up precious funds on these, like, weird board games. Having watched many hours of the Giant Bomb guys playing through them now though, I'm pretty confident that I made the right call. Even the mini games in these - the fun bits, allegedly - look... not great.

09:14 - Really not liking the tux, red pants and hat combo here, Mario. (Looks like someone needs to take a trip to the Style Boutique. (sorry))

09:26 - Wait, what? Why should Smash Bros. fans take notice of Samus Returns, voice-over guy?
09:44 - ...and none of those are reasons Smash Bros. fans should notice. How about "It's like the Subspace Emissary, but good". :D (Those cut scenes were pretty great though.)
09:53 - I'm so salty that I wasn't able to get the limited edition of this. But JiliK, don't you irrationaly hate playing on a handheld? Well, sure. I mean, I wasn't going to play the game. I mostly just wanted it for the soundtrack and all the other chachkies. :D Now I don't know if I'll bother until I get a really good discount on it.

10:03 - Hm, this SNES 3DS I'm not crazy about. Putting "Edition" between grey bars in the logo, where "PAL Version" was back in the SNES days is a nice touch though.

10:13 - Oh, this is good news though. I might have barley touched my 3DS since I got it, but I have been on the hunt for Luigi's Mansion 2 and Mario 3D Land for cheap since then, and they're still both freakin' full price! Which doesn't exactly bode well for getting a bargain on Samus Returns, but...
10:26 - Yep, I'll be grabbing the two of those on October 13th. Actually, you know what.... Just pre-ordered them now on Amazon. £15.99 each. Not bad.

10:43 - Alliance Alive: a new, old school JRPG from Atlus. Looks...urrgh...interesting.,....must...stop...port...begging.

11:07 - And another Ace Attorney game too. Hoping that series makes it's way to the Switch eventually as well. Even some remakes of the old ones would be great.
11:20 - That's it for the 3DS. And not just here I think. It really does look they're winding down the platform now. I get the feeling that 3DS releases are going to be few and far between next year. (Squee!!! Er, I mean how tragic. No more dedicated handhelds. Noo. Why?)

11:35 - Phew! I getting anxious that he wasn't he wasn't going to do it there. I think I'd miss it now.

11:53 - Xenoblade Chronicles 2 still looking great. Still haven't even gotten around to playing the original.
12:04 - "... on the top of it lies Elysium. Matt Damon's trying to get there. It's really boring."

14:33 - Whoah! I genuinely had no idea that this thing was talking. The lip-synching here: oh, boy.

14:45 - Shepard.

16:46 - Sounds like a pretty interesting battle system. I wish I knew how it compared to the other Xenoblade games. Man, I really need to get onto those.

19:46 - Ooh! Dare I say that's a pretty sweet-looking collector's edition. Having just been burned by the Samus Returns limited edition, and the Tokyo Mirage Sessions one before that, I'm not sure I want to get my hopes up for this one. That controller's not so hot-looking though.
19:55 - Headlines! Nope, not looking.

21:15 - So, Splatoon 2 and Fire Emblem Warriors continue to be things. :D Fire Emblem Warriors I don't know if I'll bother with. I did enjoy Hyrule Warriors, but without the Zelda hook, I'm not really sure I'm up for more.

21:53 - ...unless there's a pretty kick-ass collector's edition. :D 3 CDS! I still probably won't bother, but man, I bet there's some pretty great stuff on that soundtrack...

21:55 - Some amiibo too. Yeah, I have no idea what Fire Emblem these are even from. :D

22:55 - More Snipperclips content. I don't know, nothing I've seen of this makes it look that appealing. Then again, puzzle-platformers aren't typically my thing; mostly because I'm freakin' terrible at them :D

22:59 - Morphies Law? Looks like some kind of indie, team-based shooter.

23:27 - Yep, it is. So I guess you can shoot other players' body parts to shrink or enlarge them? Eh, not for me.

24:16 - Rocket League: also still a thing. Looks like they've got the Nintendo-themed cars ready this time though. Quite liking the Samus one here.
24:31 - You know, of the big multiplayer games around at the moment, Rocket League is one I'd kind of like to try out. Maybe on Switch; who knows?

24:44 - Arena of Valor. Finally, a MOBA on a Nintendo playfzzzzzzzzzzz

25:34 - Sure, "timeless epic" is one way to put it; six-year-old port would be another. :D Oh, I guess I should ease off on Bethesda, given what I already know is coming up.

26:44 - So, Doom coming to Switch - a pretty good get for Nintendo. One that you'd hope would encourage other western third parties to take a chance on the platform maybe. I guess that will depend on how well it does though.
26:55 - Wow, Winter - a pretty quick turnaround from announcement to release. I'm guessing January at the earliest probably, with the potential for it to slip a bit later if needed.

27:02 - And the more impressive announcement: Wolfenstein II also coming. Bethesda taking some risks on the Switch. I don't know if they'll pay off, but it's nice to see at least some high profile western support on the platform.
27:10 - 2018 for Wolfenstein II, and no footage yet. I'm guessing this won't be out for a while.

27:25 - Flip Wars. Wait, this is out already? I suppose it doesn't help that I don't have a Switch yet, but I haven't heard a peep about this anywhere so far.

28:04 - Wha...? Mario Bros.? Virtual Console announcement imminent?

28:10 - Whoah! Nintendo are finally putting their own arcade games out again? Sweet!
28:15 - Oh, it's a Hamster joint. These are Aracde Archives then. Those tend to be bit on the pricey side for my tastes, but Arcade Donkey Kong? I might throw down some cash for that. Any chance we'll see Popeye be one of these though?

28:23 - I notice that the little details of the arcade version are blurry as hell, voice-over guy. It's not quite as egregious as the NES games on Wii U, but still not great. Hopefully it's just a bad filter that can be turned off.

28:25 - VS Super Mario Bros, I know pretty much nothing about. I think it's basically just the NES game, but who knows? Well, lots of people probably, but any way...

28:35 - Wow, there were more of these VS games than I thought. Just played some Clu Clu Land a few weeks ago actually. That game's not good. :D

28:38 - Oh! Arcade Punch-Out. Awesome.

28:45 - September 27th for Mario Bros. It's no Virtual Console, but it's nice to finally see some of these games coming out in their original form. I still can't quite believe that Nintendo never released any of these on Virtual Console Arcade on the Wii.

29:01 - The Breath of the Wild champions amiibo only available as a four pack? Boo! I was really only thinking of grabbing Daruk out of these. Now this pack's going to be, what, €60? Eff that!.............................*checks to see if the pre-order is up*

29:15 - Damn it, not looking at these headlines is proving to be pretty inefficient. Screw it! Okay then, basketball, football and Pokkén (again). Ooh, excitement! :D

29:37 - WWE 2K18. Yeah, the Switch definitely starting to pick up a little steam with western third parties now.

29:47 - Voice-over guy, I think you'll find that you could already take the "world's game" on the go with a little game called International Superstar Soccer 99 on the Game Boy Color - the pinnacle of video game football as far as I'm concerned. (I kidding; I played that last year and wow is it horrendous. Even by GBC shovelware standards!)

30:24 - Another spotlight video now. I think for that Square-Enix RPG they showed off back in January. I can't remember the name, but I remember it being pretty stupid. Octopath Traveller, maybe?

30:48 - Okay, some justification for the name here. Still doesn't make it good!
31:26 - Oh right, it was Project Octopath Traveller. That's even worse. :D
31:33 - I am looking forward to this though. It's got a great look; from the Bravely Default devs. It's exactly the kind of smaller, Japanese game that I'm excited to finally be able to play on a TV, thanks to the Switch.

32:59 - Hm, I don't know; the Path Action system here, they seem to be passing off as something that will allow open-ended, tabletop RPG-like player choice, but I get the feeling that it's closer to a mechanic that will allow you to interact with NPCs in fairly generic ways. We'll see.
33:29 - Battles are a fusion of a turn-based battles, and new mechanics. So basically, the same as every RPG ever? I don't know what I'd do without you, voice-over guy.
34:22 - Oh, there's going to be a demo of this. You know. this would probably be the first demo they've announced in one of these that I'd actually download. If I had a Switch. :D
34:36 - 2018 release. Okay.

35:03 - Some Arms news now. To be honest, still a game that I have no real sense of whether I'd get any enjoyment out of it or not. I'm not much of fighting game guy, so I leaning towards "no", but I'll probably pick it up at some point anyway, like an idiot. :D

35:12 - Well the kids do love scary clowns.

35:49 - Dragon Quest Builders. Yeah, like I said before, I'm genuinely curious to check this out now.

35:59 - Oh, it has RPG combat too? I don't know why I'm surprised by that; it's a freakin' Dragon Quest Spin-off. :D But yeah, this looks really neat.

36:47 - Kirby Star Allies. Oh, I guess this the game they showed at E3 as just "Kirby".

37:17 - Holy crap. Whispy Woods is getting fucked up here.

37:22 - Uh, would the the dark force manipulating Dream Land happen to be HGH, 'cause... (Shit, Dedede, what have you done to yourself?)
37:30 - Spring 2018 for Kirby too. Looks pretty good; not a radical re-invention of the Kirby games, but possibly some more puzzely stuff than usual if that trailer's anything to go by.

37:36 - Nindies time. SteamWorld Dig 2 - that's franchise I have two instalments of on Steam that I've never even launched. :D

37:47 - Didn't get around to watching the Nindies showcase from a few weeks ago, but I did catch a glimpse of Golf Story. Looks really cool.

37:54 - Some more co-op business (that I'll never play :D).

38:04 - Oh, Tiny Metal. I think this is kind of a spiritual follow up to Advance Wars.

38:10 - I wasn't great at it (I never even beat the last two levels), but I loved Super Meat Boy. As an endless runner though? I don't know. It's really only through endless trial and error that I managed to get through the first game (which it accommodated exceptionally well). If the levels in this are going to be randomly generated every time, I'll have no hope here. :D

38:28 - Hey, another throwback JRPG form Square-Enix. Sweet!

38:33 - Sonic Forces. I'm quite curious to see how this game's going to turn out. Maybe it's because of Sonic Mania, but there really seems to be no hype around it whatsoever at the moment.

38:41 - Didn't I tell you guys at E3 that Resident Evil was coming? :D The Revelations games are meant to be pretty solid too. Add them to the huge list of games I want to play, but haven't gotten around to yet.
38:47 - Wait a minute. Don't tell me Capcom are putting both games out as separate releases. Bloody hell. Why am I surprised though? They've been doing it since the GameCube.

38:51 - Get hyped everyone, it's your single Rockstar Games release for this Nintendo platform. :D This, I definitely won't be getting, not after grabbing it for a cool €3 in the XVMarketplaceageddon last year.
38:56 - Cool that they're including the DLC. Meanwhile I'll have to pay for it, like a chump. Not sure that'll be a problem though; I get the impression that I'm not really going to enjoy this game much. I mean, for one, just look at how much of a prick that main character is. Yikes!

39:18 - Ah, wrapping up with another Mario Odyssey trailer. I kind of don't need to see any more at this point. I just desperately want to play it. €320 for a Switch though, maaaannn...

39:26 - While I am flip-flopping on the Switch itself though, I kind of.. might have bought Mario Odyssey already... solely because they were selling this stupid hat with it. Yep.

39:54 - The Cap Kingdom; Cappy's sister Tiara. You guys, games are definitely art.

40:10 - Oh, this looks like a new area. Probably the most traditional-looking one they've shown so far. Though it could be another section of the one with the dinosaur too I guess.

40:14 - Whoah, some Mario Sunshine business here. You know, as bad of an idea as this probably is, I been thinking a lot lately of going back to my old save for that and finally trying to 100% it. Those blue coins though: the literal worst. And the camera controls weren't far behind.

40:32 - Huh, so I guess this must be a world map, meaning that New Donk City isn't a hub like I assumed it was. I guess this is a bit more user friendly, but still, I'm a little disappointed; it would have been a nice throwback to the old 3D games. (Oh, and also that moon's way too detailed for it not to be part of the world map.)

40:50 - Steam Gardens. This looks like a new area too. Looks kind of Sonic-y.
40:58 - Wait a minute, I see a chain chomp in Fossil Falls. So yep, that area from earlier was this: the one with the dinosaur in it.

41:01 - Shiveria? Show Kingdom? Come on , guys, you couldn't have come up with more imaginative names here. I mean the Cap Kingdom area is Bonneton - Bonnet On - which is amazing.
41:11 - I have to say, I'm generally a fan of winter areas, but this one looks kind of grim; like Mario's taking a trip north of The Wall or something. Come on, throw a few festive lights in there or something.

41:23 - The sea water has a refreshing fizz? What are you talking about, Koizuma? :D
41:24 - Speaking of Mario Sunshine, Bubblaine looks very Isle Delfino-ish... Nope, nope, nope; stop thinking about 100%-ing Mario Sunshine, JiliK. Only pain and suffering could ever result from such an endeavour.

41:28 - Ooh, this looks cool, kind of Faron from BoTW meets DKC.

41:36 - Arrgh! Fucking what is that!? KILL IT WITH FIRE!!!

42:13 - So the power moons work exactly like stars or shines then. I'm liking that you've got level maps in this with the shines you've found marked on them. Should make it easier to keep track of what you've done.

42:40 - There seem to be so many moons already I can't imagine getting them all unlocks even more, even harder ones to collect. I'd like to see something much more unexpected or off the wall this time. (Now watch it turn out to just be Luigi again. :D)

42:57 - Uncle amiibo. What!? :D So, I suppose instead of paying in-game coins, you can also tap an amiibo to get a hint about the location a power moon. Will the amiibo hate brigade be up in arms about even this minor a feature? Who am I kidding, of course they will.

43:31 - Oh crap, its Dorrie from Mario 64. In shop form!

43:58 - Loving these outfits, especially the ones they've brought back from various Mario spin-offs. This caveman one's pretty dope too though. Wait, why is there a bird on his face?

44:09 - Oh, I guess you can decorate the inside of your ship too. Is that a fake Oscar statuette on the cabinet to the right? (or more like a fake AVN)

44:23 - Snapshot mode. Oh boy, get ready for Twitter to be an endless cascade of Odyssey screen shots in a months' time. :D

44:58 - Whew! Is it me, or did it just get really hot in here?
45:07 - Looks like the photo mode is pretty fully-featured though. Who knows, I might even be posting a few if I crack and buy a Switch in the next few weeks.

45:13 - Well, I guess there was no way they'd have New Donk City as a level and not have it feature some actual old school Donkey Kong, was there?

45:24 - Pauline coming back into the Mario series just makes me really happy. I'm interested to see how they explain that though, if at all. I've heard that the end of Donkey Kong 94 offers some insight - which would be a crazy thing to refer back to to at this point. But man, what if they do?

45:32 - Wha...? Paintings? I'm guessing this is only some kind of shortcut though, and the map screen is still the main entry to each level. I could see these being used to cross back and fourth between levels to solve certain puzzles, Banjo-Tooie style, maybe.

45:52 - These wedding amiibos are so good. I especially like Peach's cover-of-a-romantic-comedy-DVD pose. Grabbed a pre-order for these as soon as I got the chance, which I think puts me at having spent €100 on Mario Odyssey so far, with no means to play it. Man, I'm the worst.
46:11 - If I hadn't already paid for Odyssey, I might have been down for this bundle, but as far as I can see, the price for this was a fair bit more than what I paid for Odyssey and what a standard Switch costs combined. And it's already sold out on Amazon now, because of course it has.

46:40 - And that's a wrap. A few neat new announcements. Not quite in the quantity needed to get me over that €320 hurdle yet, but then again, I wasn't really expecting that to happen here to begin with. Will I remain as resolutely anti-Switch with a copy of Mario Odyssey literally in my hands though? I don't know; it's going to be pretty tough. :D That game: hot damn, looks incredible!

No comments: