Nintendo held another Nintendo Direct livestream this morning, albeit one focused primarily on the 3DS and Wii U Virtual Console. Still, if you're interested in either of those platforms, this morning's stream offered no shortage of useful info.
On the subject of the Virtual Console, the main news was that it's coming very soon. How soon? According to Nintendo, the VC will launch the day after this month's Wii U system update, which will also improve system performance. There was no specific day cited for the update in North America and Europe yet, but it is scheduled for Japan next week. Iwata noted during the stream that Nintendo will be looking to bring GBA and N64 games to the platform.
Though it won't launch alongside the Virtual Console, fans of classic, yet underutilized Nintendo RPGs will be pleased to hear that Nintendo will bring Earthbound to the Wii U VC. Apparently the regular prodding from fans on the Miiverse paid off, as the game will launch in North America and Europe sometime this year, after having been out on the Japanese Virtual Console for some time.
That was about it for Wii U stuff (outside of a couple of release dates you'll find further down), but if you're a 3DS owner, you've got plenty of news to look forward to, not the least of which is the announcement of a sequel to The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. Yes, Nintendo is developing a full-on sequel to the beloved SNES entry in the Zelda series, retaining the game's top-down perspective, while using that perspective to design multilevel puzzles. Link can even turn into a wall drawing of sorts, which turns the perspective sideways, and allows him to navigate areas his three-dimensional body wouldn't. The sequel will be out in North America and Europe this holiday season, and Japan in early 2014.
Another sequel was also announced in the form of Yoshi's Island 3DS, a third game in the platforming series starring Mario's best dinosaur buddy. Little information was given on the sequel outside of acknowledgment of its existence, though Nintendo promised more would be coming soon.
Those were the biggest reveals, but here's the other stuff that came alongside these announcements, including release dates for a couple of key Wii U titles.
- Pikmin 3 finally has a release date, and will arrive on store shelves on August 4.
- Mario & Luigi: Dream Team, the newest game in Nintendo's M&L RPG series, will hit Europe on July 12, and North American shelves on August 11.
- A new game in the Mario Party series will be coming to the 3DS this winter.
- Mario Golf: World Tour will be a heavily online focused game, shipping with real-time and asynchronous tournament modes, as well as community features similar to that of Mario Kart 7.
- Professor Layton and the Azran Legacies, the next full-on sequel in the series, won't be hitting North America until 2014.
- Square-Enix's Bravely Default: Flying Fairy will be getting localized for non-Japanese audiences, and is expected to arrive in North America next year.
- Shin Megami Tensei IV for 3DS will be launching July 16 in North America.
- Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D, the remake of the Wii game, will arrive on May 24.
- Mario & Donkey Kong: Minis on the Move will hit the Nintendo 3DS eShop on May 9.
- Game & Wario will release on June 23 for Wii U.
- The New Super Luigi U DLC for New Super Mario Bros. U will be available for download this summer.
- Animal Crossing: New Leaf is getting a 3DS XL bundle that will retail for $219.99 on the game's release date of June 9. The game will come pre-installed on the system's SD card.
You can watch the full archived stream from this morning here.