Nintendo Direct Thoughts and Impressions (02/09 Direct)

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Today was the first Nintendo Direct of 2022, going in to watch I had a few things I wished for but kept an open mind and tried to keep expectations down to earth. After watching the full 40-minute Nintendo Direct, I can happily say that I was pleasantly surprised and excited for the next few months of Nintendo content and the summer ahead.

Nintendo is certainly keeping pace to make 2022 an exciting time to be a Nintendo fan and I’d like to discuss a few of the games I am most hyped for that I either expected or was completely surprised by with their announcement.

New Mario Sports Game Surprise

My biggest surprise and the game I’m the most excited about is Mario Strikers Battle League. I have very fond memories of the original Mario Strikers on the GameCube and thought it was the most fun Mario sports game that Nintendo created.

The original Mario Strikers was a fast paced, arcade style soccer game that used items as weapons and had stages that were action packed. I enjoyed the Mario Strikers they made for the Wii as well, but it was not as good as the GameCube original in my opinion. This new take on it for the Switch looks to be going back to what made the original so much fun and is offering new ways to make it potentially even better with its new features of customizing your soccer gear as well as the online capabilities that allow you to make a group of up to 20 people to join your club and make the toughest group of players.

New Mario Sports Game Surprise

Nintendo Brings Back the Wii Sports Formula

The next big announcement that really caught my eye is the announcement of Nintendo Switch Sports, the successor to the popular Wii Sports and Wii Sports Resort. Wii Sports was the first game I played back on the Wii as it was included with my console, and I loved it. There was something addicting about the motion controls and the act of playing these sports. This Nintendo Switch Sports is including 6 sports games with an additional Golf game coming as a free update as well. From the gameplay shown, the motion controls seem to be improved with the Nintendo Switch with the callouts being the Volleyball game and the Soccer game. The Volleyball game looks to be more realistic with it’s set ups and spikes while the Soccer game is coming with a physical strap that you can strap a Joycon to your leg to do a kicking motion to the ball.

Additional Announcements & Final Announcement

There were many more announcements that were big and will appeal to a variety of gamers such as Fire Emblem Warriors, the remastered ports of Klonoa 1 & 2 as well as the remaster of Chrono Cross coming as well. In addition, they also had announcements for their SNES/NES online and the Expansion Pass for the online membership as well.

Earthbound fans will be happy to hear that Earthbound and Earthbound beginnings are coming to the SNES and NES online respectively. Nintendo also surprised us with a season pass for Mario Kart 8 Deluxe that includes 6 waves of 8 additional courses for a total of 48 new courses all remastered from previous Mario Kart games throughout the series. The season pass is included with the additional Expansion Pass that Nintendo added to their online recently. The season pass can also be optionally purchased without the Expansion Pass for $24.99.

The last announcement that really caught my attention was saved for the end with the announcement of Xenoblade Chronicles 3. The first two Xenoblade games along with Xenoblade X were all fantastic games and the series is just getting better and better. While I still need to go back and finish these games myself, I can already tell that the 3rd addition to the main series of Xenoblade is going to be one keeping an eye on for veterans of the series and newcomers.

All in all, I believe Nintendo had a great first direct of the new year and can’t wait to see what more games are coming in the 2nd half of the year.

Jesse Moulding

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