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Notes from Nintendo Direct: A Link to the Past and Yoshi's Island Sequels, Earthbound to Wii U VC

Plus a whole bunch of release dates and other useful info.

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.

I really wasn't expecting to be writing about a direct sequel to A Link to the Past today, but it sure was a nice surprise.

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.

You can watch the full archived stream from this morning here.

Alex Navarro on Google+
177 Comments
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Posted by whylessness

i didn't choose this life, this life chose me

Edited by Roxasthirteen

Just a little correction its Animal Crossing: New Leaf, not Wild World but good time Alex!

Looking forward to all these games.

Posted by Icicle7x3

About time we saw the return of Earthbound.

Now to get Mother 3 over here and we're set.

Edited by Evelgest

LttP Sequel? Sure, why not.

Yoshi's Island 3DS? Eh.

Mario & Luigi, hell yes.

Another Layton, sign me up.

No Layton VS Ace Attorney news?

Posted by probablytuna

It's a bummer that Bravely Default isn't coming out until next year but I guess I'll probably be too busy in the later half of this year to really notice. Also a set date for SMT IV for American release probably means an Australian date is close! Hopefully the gap isn't nearly as long as Fire Emblem..

Posted by peritus

Some good news. Pikmin is taking way too long though! PS4 will be right around the corner at that time right? Looking forward to Animal crossing!

Posted by ghostNPC

Oh look, no new IP. How surprising, Nintendo.

Posted by EnduranceFun

This was a great stream. One of the best Directs.

Posted by MildMolasses

Wii U and 3DS are making pretty good arguments for me to end my 25 year Zelda hiatus

Posted by Tidel

I'm a bit disappointed by LttP2. I loved the DS Zeldas; I would have loved to see that series continue. With planes.

Posted by iAmJohn

I cannot comprehend how jaded some people are being about this Nintendo Direct. Holy shit you guys a new top-down Zelda that is a direct riff on LttP. Sign me the fuck up.

Posted by wwfundertaker

Im very excited for SMT iv, the final Professor Layton and Bravely default. Did they say all 3 of these games are coming this year for Europe or im i dreaming.

Posted by digitaldiatribe

@ghostnpc: Keeping their cards to their chest, I doubt they'd announce a new IP on a Nintendo Direct. Wait for E3.

Edited by The_Nubster

A direct Link to the Past sequel? That's certainly an odd choice.

The most exciting bit of news from this, for me anyways, is the WiiU's improved system performance. I hate the load times between menus.

Edited by radioactivez0r

@ghostnpc: I hear there is some annual video games conference in early summer, it's probably not a big deal but maybe they will announce something there?

Posted by BasketSnake
Posted by JoeyRavn

Nintendo announces a bunch of cool stuff. The Internet is not satisfied.

I, for one, am extremely excited about the new LttP. 2D Zeldas are my favorite... I can hardly wait to get the Oracles on the eShop to play them again.

Edited by hollitz

Bravely Default localized? Nice.

Posted by RecSpec

The New Leaf bundle is a XL bundle, that's the best news of the whole thing for me.

Posted by JasonR86

Gross. How many different ways can Nintendo resell people's childhoods and get away with it with high praise?

Posted by LordAndrew

I wasn't aware that there was a Nintendo Direct today until I got an email from Atlus this morning. Looks like some good stuff was announced.

Posted by sixpin

@the_nubster: Not that odd really. A Link to the Past is a very highly regarded SNES game. Just Nintendo continuing to dig back into their deep line of nostalgia fueled game titles. I'm tentatively excited for a sequel to A Link to the Past - my personal best Zelda game ever. Hopefully, the sequel doesn't suck.

Earthbound coming to VC is cool. Bravely Default and SMT IV are interesting. And I'm always down for more Mario & Luigi games, as long as they keep up the fantastic writing from Bowser's Inside Story.

Posted by Seb

I bought an XL right after this.

Posted by mrfluke

Bunch of you all are some real cynical fuckers,

totally down for a sequel to a link to the past, they announced some good stuff

Edited by Darji

@joeyravn said:

Nintendo announces a bunch of cool stuff. The Internet is not satisfied.

I, for one, am extremely excited about the new LttP. 2D Zeldas are my favorite... I can hardly wait to get the Oracles on the eShop to play them again.

Maybe because it always the fucking same?^^ How about some new Ideas or IP's

Posted by ICantBeStopped

I can't tell, Nintendo fans. Is this exciting news?

Posted by kalibr

That new Zelda video is gonna make me buy a 3ds

Posted by Dynablade

I am throughly happy with this Nintendo Direct and am looking forward to playing a bunch of the games shown today. A sequel to a Link to The Past, a Mario Golf game that has online multiplayer, new Yoshi's Island, an actual confirmation that EarthBound is getting re-released on Virtual Console. Today is a good day to be a Nintendo fan.

Haters gonna hate, and for that they can go suck a rock.

Posted by Wrighteous86

@darji said:

@joeyravn said:

Nintendo announces a bunch of cool stuff. The Internet is not satisfied.

I, for one, am extremely excited about the new LttP. 2D Zeldas are my favorite... I can hardly wait to get the Oracles on the eShop to play them again.

Maybe because it always the fucking same?^^ How about some new Ideas or IP's

Nintendo games usually have tons of new ideas. They just use familiar IPs to garner attention for them.

I understand the frustration, but it's preferable to almost every other company out there who have no new ideas AND no new IPs.

Posted by deathfromace

All these Zelda games coming only to the 3DS and I don't want to play them that way. It's awesome they are making/remaking them but give them to me on the Wii or WiiU. I want to play the remake of Ocarina of Time but don't want to play it on a 3DS....come on Nintendo make them for both consoles and you would get a lot more money.

Edited by Wrighteous86

@icantbestopped said:

I can't tell, Nintendo fans. Is this exciting news?

I'd say it's good news, but not really exciting news. Games I'm interested in and know I'll get around to playing and most likely enjoy, but nothing that's really blowing my mind or anything.

Like Gears of War: Judgment or something. I like the franchise, I want to play it, and I'll probably have a good time, but it's not scratching an inch or something I crave enough to go out and get it right now.

Edited by Winternet

I'm still baffled by how people are all "Please, no more sequels. Please, no more sequels." regarding other press conferences, but then everyone is excited about Nintendo and what is mostly games from franchises with dozens of games under their belt.

Anyway, either Nintendo has a couple of cards under their sleeves or their E3 event will be a bummer.

Posted by casper_

how incredibly weird.

Edited by Ben_H

August 4th, the day I buy a Wii U. I have been waiting for new Pikmin for far too long. I just replayed Pikmin 2 and it continues to be one of the best games I've ever played. So fun, so challenging, so rewarding. The the last area is absolute hell. So many Pikmin deaths...

So many Nintendo games coming out and I want them all. I still have to get the new Luigi's Mansion.

I am always down for more Mario & Luigi. Those games are among the best.

Edited by craigymail

Sequels everywhere! AHHHH!

Posted by Baltimore

Edited by Gaff

Maybe my heart has turned into a cold, cold chunk of ice, but Link to the Past 2 and Yoshi's Island 3DS look terrible?

Edited by JackSukeru

I'm interested in Bravely Default, heard mixed things though.

Not sure how I feel about another Mario & Luigi, I like the series but had mixed feelings on Bowser's Inside Story. On the one hand it looked great, the battles were fun and the story & characters was a good return to form after the middling-but-good second game.

At the same time there where a lot of needless minigames thrown in and repeated, and the constant tutorializing bogged down the pace considerably , making it somewhat of a chore for me to get through. I'll keep an eye on it for sure, but it's not a done deal just yet.

Posted by bluebird14

Interestingly Bravely Default is set to come out in 2013 in Europe. This suggests that NoE are doing the translation like with Xenoblade.

Posted by SlashDance

I'm still baffled by how people are all "Please, no more sequels. Please, no more sequels." regarding other press conferences, but then everyone is excited about Nintendo and what is mostly games from franchises with dozens of games under their belt.

This times a hundred.

Edited by DarthOrange

@ghostnpc: Keeping their cards to their chest, I doubt they'd announce a new IP on a Nintendo Direct. Wait for E3.

What was their big reveal last E3? Nintendo Land? I wouldn't be surprised if their big thing at E3 this year is a trailer and maybe some gameplay of the new Smash Bros.

I really really really hope they bring out a new IP. Last one we got was Pikmin and that was over ten years ago.

Posted by OriginalGman

What's the over/under on them naming it "A Link to the Future"?

Posted by huser

@joeyravn said:

Nintendo announces a bunch of cool stuff. The Internet is not satisfied.

I, for one, am extremely excited about the new LttP. 2D Zeldas are my favorite... I can hardly wait to get the Oracles on the eShop to play them again.

God forbid being stoked about what you get rather than what you didn't, or you know not bother to click a link when it's clearly about something you weren't fond of anyways (which will be even more awesomely present when the new consoles come out and the next war begins).

Posted by Teoball

Aw, I thought the LttP sequel was for the WiiU too. It would look awesome in HD.
I do have a 3DS, but I don't really wanna play Zelda on a small screen.

Posted by casper_

some of this is real cool and im pretty psyched but i cant help but feel like nintendo is completely shackled to their group of like 4 franchises and we wont be seeing games not involved in those franchises for a bit.

Posted by Patth

@gaff said:

Maybe my heart has turned into a cold, cold chunk of ice, but Link to the Past 2 and Yoshi's Island 3DS look terrible?

Zelda is visually "Okay"and the gameplay seems fine. But Yoshi's Island, man, everything looks prerendered in the worst way with some snippets of 2D sprites...

Posted by RecSpec

Just finished watching it, and more people should be talking about Game and Wario.

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