Nintendo’s big exclusive game for its Wii U home console is Bayonetta 2. It was Nintendo’s big coup announcement ahead of the Wii U’s launch. Bayonetta‘s notable not just for being good — the first game is critically-acclaimed — but also for being made by a developer other than Nintendo. And hey, it’s October, so that means games are being released into the wild. Among them is Platinum Games’ Bayonetta 2, featuring the stylishly appointed, combat-ready Rapunzel-alike you see above. The series is known for its over-the-top, goofy-yet-calculated style, and we’re gonna put the latest one through its paces in a stream for you just below starting at 4PM ET.
Up for a long nostalgia trip? You’re in for a treat. NicksplosionFX has posted a video showing the start screens for almost every original Game Boy title ever made, ranging from 4 in 1 Funpak to Zoop. Each opener only lasts a matter of seconds, but the sheer volume of games amounts to 2 hours, 42 minutes of monochrome animations and chiptunes — watch it all and you’re bound to find something that evokes your childhood. It’s thankfully in alphabetical order, so you can quickly scrub through if you’re just trying to find that one game you always played after school.
Source: NicksplosionFX (YouTube)
The launch of a new Super Smash Bros. game for the first time in six years on 3DS was great news, but it left us wondering: when the heck is it coming to Wii U? Luckily, Nintendo has quickly answered that question. It’ll arrive to the big console on November 21st in North America for $59.99, and in the UK on December 5th for £39.99 (see the new game trailer below). Being Nintendo, there’s more, of course. You’ll be able to pick up a set of 12 Amiibo figures for $12.99 (with six more coming by December) and even use a GameCube to control your Wii U too, thanks to a $19.99 adapter. In fact, if you want the whole shebang — GameCube, Super Smash Bros. and the adapter — Nintendo’s also offering the complete bundle for $100.
You can replace your Nintendo 3DS’ outer hull anytime you want (provided you’re willing to buy a new system), but that system menu has always been that same void of transparent white space. Not anymore. The handheld’s latest update (much like the PS Vita’s from last week) gifts the 3DS with five basic color themes in red, blue, yellow, pink and black. Looking for something more complex? You’ll have to pay for it — the new theme shop sells character and pattern-based themes for $0.99-$1.99 a piece, including one that harkens back to Nintendo’s origins selling Hanafuda cards. Oh, and if you want to show off your redesigned 3DS, Nintendo’s thought of that too: pressing up / down while holding the Y button now takes a screenshot of the 3DS upper and lower screens, respectively.
– Nintendo of America (@NintendoAmerica) October 7, 2014
Source: Nintendo Support
There is a new Smash Bros. game, and it’s available as of last Friday. You know when the last game, Super Smash Bros. Brawl, was released? In 2008! Six years ago! So today is a pretty exciting day, at least for me. Hi, I’m Ben Gilbert, and I’ve been playing Smash Bros. with far too much sincerity for 15+ years. The new Smash Bros. for 3DS, however? I’ve only been playing that for about two weeks. The reviews are out! Our sister site Joystiq is pretty into it. I am also way into it, and I want to tell you why.
Look, we don’t do this — whatever “this” is — at Engadget very often (ever?). In leading our game coverage, I’ve intentionally skipped previews, reviews and other standards of game coverage; our sister site Joystiq does a great job with that, and only so many of you want to know about the minutia of every video game. I’m making an exception for Smash Bros., mostly for selfish reasons: I desperately want to talk about the best game Nintendo’s released this year.
WHAT IS IT?
Don’t know what Smash Bros. is? Here’s the launch trailer for Super Smash Bros. for 3DS:
Smash Bros. is a Nintendo-made fighting game starring everyone’s favorite game characters. The cast ranges from Mario to Mega Man, and even includes recent cult classics like Xenoblade‘s Shulk. The latest game has “over 40″ characters in total: the rest of the experience is tailored around supporting and extending the nostalgia conjured by those dozens of characters.
If nothing else, Smash Bros. is a trip down gaming history’s memory lane. No other game allows you to pit Sonic the Hedgehog against Pac-Man, on a stage based on Pikmin, while deploying Pokémon balls as weapons. You know how mash-up artists take hit songs and turn them into something new? Smash Bros. is that, but with video games, and it’s made by the company that created most of those games.
Rather than mashing up the gameplay systems from those various games, though, Smash Bros. takes the characters, their characteristics, and some of their game worlds, and brings them into a 2D, four-player fighting game. Players take those characters into one of many game-themed arenas and fight until time or lives run out.
Here’s where things get a little weird: rather than a life meter, Smash Bros. relies on a percentage meter. The higher your percentage, the more likely your character is to be knocked out of the ring. If your character is knocked out of the ring, you either lose a point or a life. Here’s a video that helps to explain:
Like much of Nintendo’s best work, Smash Bros. is blessedly simple: there is one set of moves that applies to every character in the game. The challenge isn’t in memorizing move lists, but in applying one set of basic controls across a vast swath of variables: which character you’re fighting, the items on-screen, and how much more your character can take before being knocked out (among many other things). It is simple to understand, challenging to master.
MORE THAN WARM MEMORIES
Smash Bros. for 3DS is the richest addition to the franchise’s history in over 10 years. It’s a game focused intently on catering to both casual Mario fans and tattooed Nintendo hyper-loyalists. One mode allows you to quite literally fight your way through gaming history, era by era. You start by battling Mario and Donkey Kong, and end up facing off with Wii Fit‘s demo trainer. Yes, really. It’s a game where you’re just as likely to see Brain Training‘s Dr. Kawashima referenced as you are to see Super Mario Bros.‘s iconic goombas.
Beyond the initial hook of nostalgia, enthralling as it is, lies a game of immense complexity. Smash Bros. is a game of variables, and knowledge of those variables makes a huge difference in how you play the game.
If you’re new to the series, the bare bones variables are all you need to know: which buttons do what actions. It’s entirely possible to have a great time playing Smash Bros. with a base level knowledge about its many, many systems.
Perhaps you play as Starfox‘s Fox McCloud, and you enjoy firing lasers at your friends as they engage in hand-to-hand combat. Plenty of fun to be had there! But maybe a Pokémon ball lands next to you — one of the random items that drops mid-battle — and you decide to pick it up. You throw it in the general direction of your friends, and a massive Snorlax erupts, sending your friends sky high and netting you two knockouts. Now you know a new variable!
Smash Bros.’s greatest asset — beyond the all-star cast and rich library of worlds to draw from — is its fighting system. It’s no surprise that in tournaments Smash Bros. is played with all items turned off, primarily in an arena known as “Final Destination”: a flat plane. That’s because, though there are only two action buttons and jump, each character is highly nuanced in battle. More than simply replicate reminiscent actions from their respective games, each fighter has a wide variety of moves that are tuned to precision.
Yes, Mega Man has his traditional blaster and Link carries the Master Sword, but it’s what you do with those weapons that makes playing Smash Bros. so fun. For instance, learning which moves have “priority” over your foes is just one of dozens of systems underlying the games’ combat. “Priority” is knowing that your strike is going to beat out your opponent’s strike — if you nail the timing, that is — and it’s that stuff that hooks longtime players like myself.
Smash Bros. on 3DS is a game you should play. There! I said it! Did you grow up with video games? Then you should play it. Don’t like fighting games? That’s okay! It’s still a ton of fun, and there’s plenty of stuff to do that isn’t fighting.
Simply put, Smash Bros. on 3DS is the best game Nintendo’s released this year (and that’s saying a lot considering how good Mario Kart 8 is!). It’s the best Smash Bros. game since the last best entry, Super Smash Bros. Melee.
No, it’s not the full console game we’re all waiting for on Wii U (where is that, Nintendo?). And yes, your hands do occasionally get cramped from playing a fighting game on a handheld console (even the 3DS XL). And yeah, the online still isn’t where it should be (nowhere near as good as Mario Kart 8, anyway). Despite all that, Smash Bros. for 3DS is a fresh addition to the franchise, an excellent game, and an easy suggestion to both newcomers and longtime fans. It is the full console Smash Bros. we’ve all been waiting for, only it’s available on your 3DS right now.
Remember that Pokémon iPad game that was teased not too long ago? Well, if the mere mention of it stoked a fire inside that made you want to abandon Blizzard’s Hearthstone forever, Joystiq has spotted that the pocket monster trading card game is available on the App Store now. Pokémon TCG Online is free to download, but there are a few catches. As the name suggests, it requires an internet connection to play and your Apple-branded slate needs to be of the Retina-display variety — your first- and second-gen iPads won’t cut the mustard, according to iTunes. If you’re already heavily invested in the game on OSX and Windows, Time points out that progress you’ve made in the last three years transfers over to the mobile version as well. Handy! And just like that, a Nintendo property is appearing somewhere other than on one of its own devices. Somewhere, an investor is probably smiling.
[Image Credit: Josh Wittenkeller]
Having too much software isn’t a problem many Wii U owners are complaining about. Nonetheless, perhaps in anticipation of brighter days ahead, Nintendo is updating its troubled console with an improved UI for organizing games and apps. After installing the update, a long press on any of the Wii U menu’s empty squares will bring up a prompt to create and name a folder that you can fill to your heart’s content. The update additionally lets you choose which games and apps appear in the console’s new Quick Start Menu, and also comes with the usual bug fixes. Now, if only Nintendo would hurry up with Super Smash Bros, we might have a reason to take advantage of all these new features.
Source: Nintendo of America
Welcome, ladygeeks and gentlenerds, to the new era of gaming. The one where you get to watch, and comment, as other people livestream gameplay from next-gen consoles. Because games! They’re fun!
Nintendo fans have had it especially rough these past few years. The Wii U is getting better thanks to admissions from the company that there were some serious faults with the system, but, when it comes to software, games take a bit more time in the oven than a firmware update likely does. Today, we’re taking a look at one of the scant few exclusive titles coming to Nintendo’s latest home console for the holiday season: Hyrule Warriors. It isn’t a proper entry in the Legend of Zelda series, though — that comes next year… maybe — it’s an action game from the teams most famous for the Dynasty / Samurai Warriors franchises — don’t expect to be delving into any elemental-themed temples here. Instead, hone your hacking and slashing skills. How does it fare, though? Well, we’re glad you asked! Starting at 7 p.m. Eastern / 4 p.m. Pacific we’re going to be streaming the game right on this very page. Tune in then and see what the Hero of Time is up to this fall.
The annual Tokyo Game Show has just wrapped up, and while there weren’t any major console announcements, we still had our fair share of memorable moments on the show floor. On top of trying several different virtual reality demos, we also watched Japanese girls giggle away at a romance simulation booth, and we even bumped into Japanese porn stars without realizing who they were at the time. Check out our list of TGS highlights in the gallery below.
You might have heard: Nintendo’s refreshing its 3DS family with two new models. Both the New 3DS as well as the larger New 3DS XL will arrive with a diddly analog stick just above the action buttons. (Throw away your Circle Pad Pros!) Plus, there’s built-in NFC for those incoming Nintendo figurines and a new microSD card reader. Unfortunately, in my fly-by Monster Hunter 4G gaming test, I didn’t have the chance to try either of those features — readers love SD slot close-ups — but it does offer an estimation of what Japanese gamers will get in less than a month when both handhelds launch. There’s still no word on an overseas release for either model, but for now, watch me prove how poor I am at Monster Hunter in our video after the break. No, far worse than that.
This time, I was handling the big-screened New 3DS LL (That’s the Japanese version of the 3DS XL), and if we’re honest, there really wasn’t much difference from my now-obsolete 3DS XL at home on initial handling: the corners are still curved, making it, once again, far more comfortable than the OG 3DS, while both screens are bright and vivid — perfect for the palette of Nintendo’s gaming oeuvre. Now, there’s no games that appropriately make the most of the analog stick (at least, not yet). Here at TGS 2014, with Monster Hunter 4G , the right stick was assigned to camera duties, a role it shared with the d-pad and, er, about a third of the touchscreen too. Understandably, the tiny stick was the better option, as it was easier to access and offered a better degree of control.
That’s because the new stick has a rubbery finish, while its location means it’s easy to nudge a little and then swiftly return to the X, Y, A and B buttons. Then there’s those secondary shoulder trigger buttons (which should work nicely with that stick once games arrive): they’re a little smaller but they’re appropriately spaced enough that you’re not going to hit ZR instead of the primary R trigger. It’ll be interesting to see how Nintendo handles transitioning between existing 3DS hardware and these new models, which will likely require completely different controller layouts to make those new buttons worthwhile. Both models launch in Japan on October 11th — and I bravely vow to waste hours and hours on Smash Bros. in the ensuing days to bring you Engadget’s official verdict. (You’re welcome.)