For one dumb reason or another, I've always preferred playing as Luigi in Mario games. Why? I don't know. There's probably some deep-seated psychological reasoning behind it, some character trait or quirk I find relatable to Mario's perpetually petrified brother. Hell, I even liked him in Super Mario Bros. 2, squirrelly jump and all.
So when Satoru Iwata let it be known during this morning's Nintendo Direct broadcast that Nintendo was referring to 2013 as the "Year of Luigi," my heart did a bit of fluttering. Granted, much of that year will be spent on the 3DS. After showing off more footage of Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon--which is still scheduled to release this March--Iwata eventually went on to announce Mario & Luigi: Dream Team, a new RPG set inside Luigi's mind, where he is a powerful, brave hero (aw!). Shockingly, this new RPG is headed to your 3DS this summer, which is a surprisingly short amount of lead time for an announcement of an RPG. One must assume this has been in the works for a while. At least, one must hope so.
Elsewhere, Luigi will also be the star of the latest DLC headed to New Super Mario Bros. U. This new DLC will feature alternate versions of the game's 80 or so stages, which are all tailored to Luigi-specific nonsense. Lastly, a new Mario Golf game is also headed to the 3DS this summer. Subtitled World Tour, this game of course features Luigi, as well as a bunch of other random Mario characters, golfing in wacky courses, as is customary in this franchise.
Outside of the Luigi-focused content, Nintendo also let a few other details drop about other upcoming games. Animal Crossing: New Leaf, for instance, now has a release date of June 9. And for those looking for a bit of Donkey Kong action, Donkey Kong Country Returns is getting a 3D remake for the 3DS. That will also release sometime this summer.
Finally, if you're one of those people who has been itching to use your new Nintendo console for street maps for some reason, the Wii U street maps feature is now live on the system. It's powered by Google Maps, and is free for a limited time.
That's all from this particular edition of Nintendo Direct. I'm sure Satoru Iwata wishes you a happy Valentine's Day.