On the 25th June I had the wonderful opportunity to head to London. “Why was heading to London a wonderful opportunity?” I hear you asking. Good question. Well folks I got to meet the guys at Nintendo and play some of the great new games which were announced at E3!
Before I delve into the event and games in detail let me tell you a little about myself. For those that don’t know me I am a massive Nintendo fan, so this was a brilliant day of playing games from my favourite company. On top of this I am a huge Legend of Zelda fan…
Warning: The following opinions are that of MYSELF (Nathan Mills) and not that of Invision Gaming Community.
So what games did I get my hands on? Take a peek below;
The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Two Worlds
The Legend of Zelda: Windwaker HD
Mario Kart 8
Super Mario World 3D
Sonic: Lost World
Quite a nice list of games there, right? Each game will be talked about in the order they appeared in the list. Under each game I will give a rating between 1-5 on how excited I am for it. 1 being low and 5 being high excitement. Well we might as well begin!
The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds
At E3 Nintendo finally had a demo of the latest instalment to the Legend of Zelda series. Fans had been speculating a Majora’s Mask 3D remake (similar to how Ocarina of Time had its own 3D remake) but were instead given something a little different. The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds (which we will abbreviate to LoZ:LBW) is set in the same world as The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, and is a top down game as Link to the Past was. It has been stated that LoZ:LBW is a sequel to A Link to the Past which I was instantly interested in when hearing.
Though less background information and more talk on the gameplay demo! When the demo started I had the choice to either wander around the Over-world or to explore a Dungeon.
The over-world resembles that of A Link to the Past with me being placed outside Link’s House (or what I assumed from A Link to the Past). There isn’t really anything new I could discuss in this section though I can say that the game looks gorgeous, bright and vibrant when playing. One thing that was noticeable within seconds was that the 3D feature isn’t really needed, adding nothing to the game what so ever.
The dungeon is the one you will have seen in the game’s E3 trailer, consisting of a tower with several levels for Link to traverse. Two things which I noticed instantly when playing were that; the Magic Meter is used for everything now and also Link has a new power which lets him attach to walls. So the elephant in the room – the Magic Meter. The Magic Meter now goes down from the use of the Bow and Arrow as well as magic attacks. This does in-fact mean that in LoZ:LBW you will not need to find arrows in the world, as you will have unlimited arrows as long as your magic meter has enough juice. Link’s new cartoon wall merge (yes it probably has a MUCH cooler name given to it) is a great new ability to be introduced to the series. Some puzzles seem impossible until you remember you have this power. When playing near a wall you simply hit ‘A’ to merge with the wall, though you are limited to your magic meter… if that runs out you turn back into your normal self. In the demo this ability allowed you to leave one room and enter another through the window grates – which was a brilliant little puzzle to try and work out. One complaint I did have on the demo so far is that the dungeon was fairly easy, though bear in mind this demo seems as if it is early on within the game.
Out of 5 I give this game a 4/5 – I am looking forward to this game so much!
The Legend of Zelda: Windwaker HD
Remember many years ago before Windwaker was announced? Yes back when fans of the Legend of Zelda series didn’t like the style of the game? Well seems like fans may have grew attached to the game because Nintendo are re-releasing Windwaker in glorious HD on the Wii U.
Now Nintendo had a Gamecube setup and Wii U setup of Windwaker so you could see the difference in quality, and wow have Nintendo made Windwaker gorgeous. The differences are better seen than explained, so if you want to see the difference have a look at the Windwaker HD trailer from E3 to get an idea of how beautiful the game looks now.
So what’s new with Windwaker? Are we just getting a crisper looking game? Well there are two new features I know of from the demo, though I am sure Nintendo have more up their sleeves as this demo was pretty limited. First of all was the Tingle Bottles. If you played the original game you will remember the Tingle Tuner, this device allowed you to link up your GBA and get items etc. With the Wii U connecting a GBA was, well, impossible so instead Tingle Bottles were born. When the player is given the item from Tingle they can place notes in a bottle into the sea, these bottles then *using Miiverse* appear in other people’s games seas. I love the way the game uses Miiverse features and think that it is a brilliant way to incorporate the Tingle feature, even if it isn’t quite the Tingle Tuner.
The second feature which many fans will probably love is the ability to speed up while on the sea. Remember those long journeys between islands? That is all cut down with the ‘Boost’ option. The Boost option makes you go significantly faster and allows you to get to places at quicker speeds.
Control wise the game plays similar to how it originally did, except now you are able to edit the inventory on the Wii U gamepad. The inventory is similar to Ocarina of Time 3D in the sense that you arrange stuff on the touch screen, and are able to assign certain items to the key buttons. I did ask Nintendo if GamePad play (where you play the game only on the gamepad) would be possible but at this time they gave no comment on the feature.
Out of 5 Windwaker is getting a full-blown 5/5! – Please hurry up and let me play you…
Mario Kart 8
Start your engines ladies and gentlemen because a new Mario Kart is hitting the Wii U. The latest addition to the Mario Kart series is named Mario Kart 8, looks like we’re sticking to numbering the series now! The first thing you will have noticed from any E3 footage is the sheer change in quality from the Wii version to the Wii U. Colours, power-ups, effects and much more instantly look gorgeous and beautiful with the power of the Wii U.
So what’s new this time?
You spin me right round – Mario Kart 8 now has an anti-gravity upside down feature. Yes. You heard that right. Mid-course you will find yourselves turning upside down, with one track showing the castle is upside down as you drive past… or are you upside down? Who knows. On top of this brilliant feature we still have our favourite gliders and under-water segments coming back.
Two wheels is all I need – Bikes are back at last after being strangely absent from Mario Kart 7. While this isn’t huge news, it is somewhat important to bring up. The fact that it was completely missed on the 3DS version of the game and has now been re-introduced shows that fans may have missed those bikes a little too much.
While there isn’t much announced yet, these are the two big features I have noticed… alongside the HD graphics of course. The Mario Kart 8 demo was excellent and felt like any other game in the series, so you know what you should expect. Gamepad controls can be either using the analog stick or using the gamepad’s motion controls. I played on both modes and the gamepad motion controls were thoroughly enjoyable and felt easy to get a grip of. Analog stick mode felt as if you were playing it on the 3DS, giving you more control on your turns.
The game is shaping up to be a stunning entry to the Mario Kart series, let’s hope there’s even more brilliant features to be seen within the months up to launch.
Out of 5 I give this game a 4/5 – Take my money now Nintendo!
Super Mario 3D World
Nintendo confused me at E3 with Super Mario 3D World. I was pretty sure it was going to be a Nintendo 3DS title but nope it was for the Wii U. Now I’m not going to complain, the game looks beautiful in high definition and is a welcome Mario game on the Wii U, I just thought with 3D in the title we may be seeing an entry on the 3DS.
I got to experience I few levels from Super Mario 3D World (SM3W) with writer Lauren from the site. When playing you get a choice to play as Mario, Luigi, Peach or Toad and each character controls differently to each other. Mario controls as you know Mario does currently, Toad is pretty similar to Mario except that he can run faster, Luigi has the higher jumps and faster run and Peach is able to float with her skirt. Having co-op with different ability characters is a much needed addition to the multiplayer mode of Mario.
The new ability in SM3W is the cat power-up which I LOVED playing as. It may not look much in the E3 trailer but it really adds a few new gameplay elements which are enjoyable. One of these is that you can climb walls and the flagpole to get you to higher places, so this means with the cat powerup you can reach much higher on the flagpole that you landed! Another feature is that when you have climbed a wall you can pounce down and attack enemies. I loved this feature so much I climbed walls to kill every enemy in the level I could… it really never got old.
I can’t really say much about this game other than I thought it was really fun and incredibly enjoyable. The Wii U Gamepad feels comfortable when playing and the multiplayer is a lot more fun with the addition of the new characters. If you liked Super Mario 3D Land then you will probably like this game. It’s not quite Galaxy though sadly.
Out of 5 I give this game a 3/5 – I want to buy this game, though I can wait a little longer for sure.
Sonic: Lost Worlds
Now this game will have a much shorter section as I didn’t get much time to play on the Sonic: Lost Worlds demo.
If you’ve played a Sonic game before you will well and truly know how the game will play. You will probably also know that Sonic has a very hard time fitting in these days. I can assure you from the demo I’ve played – this is the best Sonic game I have played to-date, not including Sonic Generations of course.
The demo looked similar to the quality of Sonic Colours on the Wii with slightly improved graphics. On the demo I played a level where the world was all broken up and floating in the sky, this gave some brilliant gameplay where you traversed at high speed through long chunks of the world and hopped between the smaller parts.
If you’re a fan of Sonic this is definitely one game you are going to want to check out!
Out of 5 I give this game a 3/5 – An interesting game, though I think I want to see some more gameplay before purchasing.
Let me get it out there in the open right now – I’ve never played a Pikmin game. Nope neither of the two Pikmin games were played by me whatsoever. As I’d heard the hype of these games in the past I made sure I had a play on the Pikmin 3 demo, and wow I’ve been missing out.
The demo level I played had me using Pikmin to collect fruits to take back to the ship at first, though as I explored further I had to kill bugs which were blocking my path to progress. Essentially the point in the level was to collect as many points by returning fruit and other objects back to our ship. The Wii U Gamepad controls are extremely easy to use after you get used to them, though my first play of the level had me confused on controls for most of it.
I also played a multiplayer mode with Lauren which paired as together as a team to get the highest score possible. Co-op mode is good fun though the problem is you can steal each other’s Pikmin, which was a pain at times… when I had no Pikmin!
What I can say from the demo is that Pikmin 3 looks excellent. I am definitely going to be picking up Pikmin and Pikmin 2 before the release of Pikmin 3, as I have been missing out on a great game series.
Out of 5 I give this game a 5/5 – Why have I not tried these games out before?
On-top of all the games Lauren and I got to play there was also Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Winter Games. It was an interesting and fun little game which Lauren and I had a lot of hand waggling fun with.
So what are your thoughts on Nintendo’s E3 announcements? Are they what you expected or are they not up to scratch? Leave your comments down below.
A massive thanks to the lovely folks at Nintendo for giving a Nintendo fan a great day out, oh and also supplying some brilliant beverages!