pikaby / Member

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Nintendo E3 2012 Conference: Come on, it's not that bad!

Nintendo's conference....the first ten minutes was a really exciting time with the reveal of Pikmin 3 and all, and despite my apathy towards the New Super Mario Bros. aesthetic style I actually cheered and clapped for the Wii U version because it actually looked sufficiently different from the other NSMB games. Also, as Reggie said 'What's a new Nintendo console release without a Mario game?'.

It's either that or Zelda, so I don't understand the people who got over-excited about the Zelda HD tech demo as if it was an indicator of the second coming. It is, after all, still just a tech demo. I'd wait until next year or so for a Zelda game; the brand is going into fatigue after the massive 25th Anniversary celebration last year which saw four Zelda games being released in close proximity to one another.

Following that were the 3rd party Wii U games, and although they're prettied-up ports of PS3/X360 games with screen controls shoehorned in, they're fine by me since I've never got a chance to play them. I'm sure a lot of others have though. There were a few unexpected surprises in there, like Mass Effect 3 being ported and Tank Tank Tank from Namco Bandai finally making it to home console (it was an arcade game, an excellent and underrated one at that). Scribblenauts Unlimited also made me really happy, I'm a big fan of the series and they actually made Maxwell more adorable that he already was in the DS versions!

But the greatest 3rd party offerings of all were from Ubisoft, which showed off ZombiU and Rayman Legends. Ironically, Ubisoft's two big hitter games for Wii U made full usage of the screen controller even before Nintendo did. They're way more enthusiastic about this than anyone else, which is both good and bad. Good because a 3rd party is actually making an effort to innovate and use the screen, bad because it shows a lack of interest on even Nintendo's part. Where's your usual cleverness, Nintendo?

Now, one 2D Mario game was fine for me. Two in one go is overkill. As soon as the conference moved into 3DS territory I groaned as New Super Mario Bros 2 came on the screen. Literally, I groaned. It looks nothing like its big brother on Wii U and almost like the DS game's forgotten twin, they were so freaking alike. The new emphasis on coins don't help its cause. Luigi's Mansion and Paper Mario 2 were most welcome, however.

The hate showered upon the casual territory, while understandable, is rather unjustified; we've already got our own heavy-hitters a the beginning of the show, it's time for Nintendo to show the rest of their stuff to the newbie gamers and their own investors. It's not like we never got to see anything we wanted to see. Wii Fit U and Just Dance 4 look like high-quality pieces of kit, though I can't say the same for Sing. Karaoke games on a console has always been a terrible idea to me.

The absentees: Kirby's 20th Anniversary and all the other rumored games. They managed to make a whole hoo-ha over Zelda's 25th Anniversary last year, so what happened to Kirby? Is he going to be celebrating his birthday in Dream Land by himself? Or maybe he just wasn't the type of character to show on the conference; I don't recall any Kirby game being shown on the screen other than Epic Yarn. Who knows? There was some consolation for the cute pink ball though, because news going around E3 is that Kirby's Wii compilation is still on the way, slated to release this September.

As for the rest? Frankly I could care less about all the bovine excrement that was spewed out over the past few months. Rumors of Metroid Prime 4? New Zelda for 3DS and Wii U? New Starfox crossover with F-Zero or what have you? New Smash Bros? Okay maybe the last one could have had more confirmation after the statement made last year but still, there's no evidence that any of these are being worked on to be shown off at E3. It's 2010 all over again; gamers making unrealistic expectations of Nintendo to show off everything they want to see even though all they've been hearing is crap in and crap out. I shut my ears off to all Wii U related nonsensical rumors from a few months back, including all developer quotes and talk about tech specs and potential games, because there were so many of them and all of them conflicting with one another that I just didn't care anymore. Overhype kills.

It was a strong start and weak finish for Nintendo's conference, with good first-party titles and 3rd party titles revealed in the first half and casual stuff for the latter half ending with Nintendoland, another minigame compilation which most people would just yawn off unless it was a pack-in with the console or with another screen controller.

Unlike last year, I came in to this conference with low expectations. All I wanted to see was the Wii U itself and maybe a couple of games. The only thing I didn't get to hear were pricing and release date of the new console, but other than that I'm satisfied as a whole. Of course, it could still have been done better, but at least it wasn't as bad as the confusing train-wreck Nintendo did last year. I'm fine with it.