Let’s Chat: So, That Nintendo Direct Was Pretty Great, Huh?

– This article was originally posted on 12th March 2018 and is being updated and archived here. I am bringing over the back catalogue of Let’s Chat gradually, and finding that going back to these moments in time has a nostalgic appeal! –

Fellow gamer Ashley Harrison and I experimented with a discussion format a while back, when we talked for way too long about The Last of Us Part II. Now, this format is coming back as a regular feature; starting here, the newly-named Let’s Chat will discuss a specific topic in each article. There was not much competition for the topic this time, as Nintendo blew us all away with a whole load of announcements in a Nintendo Direct last Thursday. Right, then – let’s get into it!

William Robinson: Hey Ash, how you doing? Recovering from the bombshells dropped by Nintendo? That Nintendo Direct last Thursday showed off the confident Nintendo we have at the moment, with a load of third-party support backing up massive announcements like Super Smash Bros., and, of course, Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker! What was your initial reaction to the Direct?

Ashley Harrison: I think my initial reaction to the Direct was “I think Nintendo is finally going to be recognised as an actual console again!” because let’s face it, during both the Wii and Wii U days, the majority of “major” AAA developers skipped out on the console since it did not stand up to the rivals. However, with the ports of South Park: The Fractured But Whole and whatnot, I think it is finally going to change.

WR: I have gotta be honest, I think that realisation happened a while back. Nintendo has been riding the Switch wave for a while now, breaking sales records and releasing incredible games. We did see a bit more of the third-parties this time, but more on that in a bit; how about that Smash trailer, huh?

AH: Now, you are gonna hate me for this, but I honestly could not have cared less about it. I dislike Smash as a game, and I dislike its fanbase even more, so it did nothing for me personally. Although, I guess having the Smash logo show up in the Inkling’s eye was a pretty cool way to start.

WR: Hey, there is no problem with that opinion. Some games are not for everyone – though what if they put Spyro in? Also, that is how good the trailer was; even someone who is not a fan, like you, can see that it was awesome! What was your favourite reveal of the Direct, then?

AH: Nah, not even Spyro could save it for me, sans the ability to set everyone else on fire and win the game instantly. My favourite reveal was definitely Luigi’s Mansion on Nintendo 3DS! It is one of my favourite time killers, and knowing that the game was originally built with 3D functionality even back on the GameCube makes it cool that it is finally being realised on the 3DS.

That is one way to welcome a new participant

WR: Luigi’s Mansion? Wow, that is not what I expected. Do you not think it is an odd announcement though – not only that it is not on Switch, but that it is a game less feature-packed than the successor Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon? What are your general feelings on Nintendo continuing to make 3DS-only games like that and WarioWare Gold?

AH: Nope, I do not think it is an odd announcement at all. Let’s face it – Nintendo pretty much has 100% of the handheld market share; why not continue to produce games for the 3DS?

Let’s face it – Nintendo pretty much has 100% of the handheld market share

Ashley Harrison

WR: Because, well, people want their Switch games. The 3DS has to be near the end of its lifespan, right? You are seriously telling me you would not prefer Luigi’s Mansion on Switch?

AH: It is not that I would not prefer it on Switch, it is just I do not mind it is only coming to 3DS either. Not everything has to be put on Switch.

Luigi and the Mansion return! Say it with me: Maaaarrrrrrrio?!

WR: Right, we have gotta keep going, as there is a lot to cover here. Let’s talk ports – there are a lot of quality titles coming to Switch, but are you worried about how many are releases of old games?

AH: Nope, not at all. I have never understood people who are upset about re-releases, why not just enjoy the games you are getting? Just because you have already played something on another system, does not mean everyone has. It makes no sense to me.

WR: I agree with that, but the ratio of ports to new games was very lopsided in that Direct – I am not worried at the moment, but I hope we see some new games released alongside other consoles, which I think will happen with series like Call of Duty later this year.

AH: I am thinking the majority of new games are going to be saved for E3, this Direct just seemed like “here’s some old games that are coming to fill spots in our release schedule this year.

One of the series on the way to Switch is Dark Souls, adding to the library of games

WR: Yeah, and, “oh here is Smash Bros. too” However, the main focus of the Direct, at least according to Nintendo (they are trying) was Mario Tennis Aces. That do anything for you?

AH: Not really, I would be more interested in a new Mario Strikers game more than any other kind of sports spin-off. So yeah, Nintendo. Give us a new one of those.

WR: YES ASH. Those games were so good (and brutally tough) – I would love another one. Right, what else was there… Well, speaking of the ports, let’s run through a few. Crash BandicootSouth ParkUndertale… you think third-parties are committed to the Switch now?

AH: For sure I do, and I think the amount of third-party games shows that. Hopefully the releases keep up and don’t drop off!

It is great to see more and more games make their way to Switch – for example, Undertale

WR: Other than Luigi’s Mansion, what else stood out?

AH: Detective Pikachu! I have not got the slightest clue as to WHY I want it, all I know is that I NEED it!

WR: I like how you are that one guy excited about all the 3DS stuff. You are the one keeping it going, haha! Do not tell other fans, they will be after you…

Unlike in the Wii U days, there is really something for everyone

William Robinson

AH: This Direct just was not for me particularly, haha! Looking at the Switch announcements, I am not interested in Smash Bros. or Splatoon, and I already own the third-party games on my PlayStation 4, so I do not particularly want to double dip. Whereas on the 3DS side of things, it is stuff that either is not on a current generation console (Luigi’s Mansion) or just looks bats**t crazy (Detective Pikachu) and that is the kind of stuff that stands out and grabs my interest.

WR: It is nice to see that sort of different view though, and justifies Nintendo keeping their approach so scattershot at the moment. Unlike the Wii U days, there is really something for everyone – even just in that Direct. Would you agree with that view?

How did Detective Pikachu happen? All we know is that somehow it did

AH: That I would. And just to prove I am not trying to be some kind of weird hipster, I’m also super looking forward to Octopath Traveler. The Bravely Default games were among my favourites on the 3DS, so I am excited to see where this spiritual successor is going to go.

WR: The biggest shock was that name reveal. Who knew that Project Octopath Traveler would be called, wait for it, Octopath Traveler? In all seriousness, those hoping it would be called Final Fantasy XVI – there is a speculation line, and you crossed it. On a different topic, though: Nintendo has shown their hand with Smash, so do you think that is the focus for E3 (in the same style that The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Super Mario Odyssey have been for the previous two years)?

AH: I saw a thread on Twitter the other day, and each of the 4 playable character we have seen so far fit when you use OCTOPATH as an acrostic (?) O – Olberic C – ? T – Tressa O – ? P – Primrose A – Alfyn T – ? H – ? But yeah, I am fairly sure that Smash will be the focus of Nintendo’s E3 conference, especially with the game scheduled to release later on this year.

The art style of Octopath Traveler is stunning

WR: That is a cool theory that I actually can see being real. Yeah, and if they deck out their booth as a Nintendo Smash museum, that is gonna be awesome; in your mind, is E3 the next time Nintendo makes major announcements?

AH: It has to be if you ask me, but knowing Nintendo, I am sure we will hear of a new game before then with the usual “you’ll see more at E3” spiel.

WR: Makes sense. Before we go, I just want you to realise how much I have been restraining myself from making the whole conversation about Captain Toad. HE IS BACK, so who needs Smash Bros. (unless they put him in… )?

AH: I was wondering how long it would take for you to mention him, haha. I never played Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker on Wii U (it came out after I had lost all interest in the Wii U, to be honest) so it is definitely on my list of games to pick up on Switch – it just looks so much fun.

New Super Mario Odyssey-themed levels are being brought to Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker as well!

WR: Do it. That guy needs more recognition, doing all the hard work collecting power-ups for Mario. Such an ungrateful plumber.

AH: Let’s face it – he was the real star of Mario Odyssey and he deserves respect.

WR: I somehow still haven’t played Odyssey, so I am going to end this discussion and run away. See ya next time!

AH: You haven’t? God dammit, Will.

WR: Byeeeeee -disappears into the horizon-

Hopefully this format is working for you; if you have any suggestions on how we can improve this new series, you can let us know in the comments! Until then, you can also go here for the new archive page of Let’s Chat!

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