Don't Stop Believin': Nintendo Direct 02/04/15

Xenoblade Chronicles 3D isn’t the only major Nintendo thing that happened today. Yesterday, the company announced that they’ll be holding a Nintendo Direct the following day, and it was another entertaining and informative special.¬†

While the Direct was more focused on games, let’s begin with the announcement of several new Amiibo and Amiibo functionality hitting within the next little while. As far as figures go, another wave of Smash Bros figures will be coming in June –¬†Zero Suit Samus, Palutena, Dark Pit and Ganondorf. Nintendo also announced Amiibos for two yet to be released games – Yoshi’s Wooly World (now dated for June 26th) and Splatoon (now dated for May 30th). In particular, the Wooly World Amiibos are actually plush figures!

In addition, Nintendo showed off the first Amiibo cards. These will be used initially as part of a 3DS app called Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer, in which you create an Animal Crossing room. The cards, and the NFC adapter for original Nintendo 3DS devices, will be out later in the year. For Wii U owners, Nintendo also announced Amiibo Touch & Play: Nintendo Classics Highlights, an app that allows you to play a three minute demo of a Virtual Console game by tapping an Amiibo (think the Masterpieces in Smash Bros), will be out in May.

As for game related announcements, there were quite a few. Nintendo announced and dated the first sets of DLC for both the Wii U and 3DS games. Mewtwo will be released on April 28th, retailing for $5 USD for anyone who didn’t register their copies of the game. Various sets of DLC costumes for the Mii Fighters will be hitting on April 15th, ranging from $0.75 USD for a single version, of $1.15 for both versions. These costumes also come with the 1.06 update for the game, which will also come out on the same day. It aims to end the reign of Diddy Kong by rebalancing the game, and adding photo sharing features. To cap it off, Lucas (from Mother 3) was announced as a DLC character for June. Nintendo has also put up a site asking for submissions regarding future DLC for the game.

The Wii U Virtual Console also received some significant updates. More DS games have been announced for the service — two of which are out right now: Mario Kart DS and WarioWare Touched! In addition, Nintendo 64 games were also announced for the Wii U Virtual Console — two of which are, again, out right now: Super Mario 64 and Donkey Kong 64! The latter is extremely notable, thanks to its absence from the original Wii’s Virtual Console.

Fire Emblem also received some major updates. The game, which was teased at the last Nintendo Direct, was given a title for Japan (Fire Emblem If) and dated for 2016 outside of Japan. What we learned about the newest entry in the series is that it’s the biggest Fire Emblem game to date, featuring two dramatically different campaigns. So much so that developer Intelligent Systems are taking cues from Pokemon and splitting the game into two different physical releases, with the other campaign to be sold as DLC! Fortunately, Nintendo has confirmed that we’ll be getting one physical edition, with the other sold as DLC.

Speaking of Fire Emblem, Shin Megami Tensei x Fire Emblem made a surprise appearance, and we got the first concrete details about the game. Firstly, it’s a Wii U game. Secondly, it’ll be hitting later this year in Japan, and sometime in 2016 outside of Japan. While we did see some footage, Nintendo and Atlus were coy about details, assuring people that they’ve got plenty more to show. SMT x FE wasn’t the only surprise too, as Nintendo confirmed that they’ll be bringing over Koei-Tecmo’s Wii U Fatal Frame title later in 2015.

Finally, Mario Kart 8 saw some major love. The Animal Crossing DLC pack will be releasing on April 23rd, earlier than planned. Nintendo is adding a fourth speed class, 200CC, to the game. It is coming out on the same day and will be a free download!

All in all, another entertaining direct. With E3 drawing closer, it’ll be interesting to see what else Nintendo has on offer.