7 Things From Nintendo Direct We’re Still Geeking Out About

Legend of Zelda Tears of the
Courtesy of Nintendo

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Nintendo’s most recent Direct just ended, but we’re still buzzing with excitement. This event was chock-full of many different announcements, some of which were expected and others that no one had any idea was coming. Of course, there would be news about Breath of the Wild II, but I doubt anyone expected Pikmin 4 to make an appearance.

If you missed the Nintendo Direct and want to watch it yourself, you can catch the replay on Nintendo’s YouTube channel.

  

Fire Emblem Engage

Nintendo came out swinging with a brand-new entry in the Fire Emblem series called Fire Emblem Engage. It’s a return to the traditional isometric strategy game after a brief break with Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes and its musou-style gameplay.

The biggest surprise, though, was the appearance of Marth. The hero (known to most people as that guy from Super Smash Bros) is one of the classic protagonists of the series, and players can interact with him and others through the use of magical rings. Fire Emblem Engage is set to release on January 20, 2023, with a special Divine Edition for those that want collectibles. Nintendo also mentioned there would be another Direct detailing more about the game before launch.

  

Octopath Traveler II

The original Octopath Traveler set the standard for 2.5D graphics, but the unique art style has since been used in quite a few other titles. It’s easy to see why: it’s easy on the eyes and makes the world look alive, far more than a basic 2D game might. Octopath Traveler II keeps that new art style but introduces a cast of eight brand-new characters, each of which has its own storyline.

The traditional JRPG-like gameplay is a welcome return, as is the polished voice acting and deep storytelling. Each of the characters has their own story that intersects with those of the other characters, with different scenes depending on the composition of your party. Octopath Traveler II will release on February 24, 2023.

  

Pikmin 4

This is the announcement that took most people by surprise. When Miyamoto takes the stage, everyone listens—but only because we were all waiting for more news on Breath of the Wild. No one expected Pikmin 4 to be announced, but it has been years since the last title officially released. Remember, the Switch port of Pikmin 3 was just that: a port. It released in 2013 on the Wii U, so this sequel is long overdue.

Details were slim about the gameplay itself, but Miyamoto did confirm the viewpoint would be from the ground, on the same level as the Pikmin. This will make the world seem much larger and more immersive. He also teased a release in 2023, though no specific date was given.

  

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom

Everyone, and we mean absolutely everyone, expected something about the upcoming sequel to Breath of the Wild. Finally, after many long months, Nintendo delivered. The sequel’s official title is The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom. And it releases May 12, 2023.

There was a video clip attached that’s not long enough to truly be considered a trailer, but it did show some of the gameplay from the title. The game is already available for preorder from most retailers, too (but it might be worth holding out for a special edition of the Switch OLED or even a collector’s edition).

  

Tales of Symphonia Remastered

The Tales franchise is one of the most beloved JRPG series of all time, and Tales of Symphonia holds a special place in most people’s hearts. The game saw its original release on the GameCube and was an introductory point for many new fans to the Tales franchise. Now, a new generation gets the chance to play it sometime in 2023 with a remastered version for the Nintendo Switch.

There’s also a collector’s edition (appropriately called the Chosen Edition) available for preorder that includes a steel case, the game itself, a series of stickers, and several art prints. The game releases sometime in early 2023.

  

Kirby’s Return to Dream Land Deluxe

So many incredible Nintendo games were relegated to the Wii and Wii U platforms and were somehow missed by an entire generation. Nintendo seems to be on a mission to correct that, and it’s one we can stand behind. Kirby’s Return to Dream Land was originally released on the Wii but will now see a Switch release on February 24, 2023.

Besides the improved graphics, the game also adds new copy abilities, more sub-games, and the ability for multiple players to be Kirby simultaneously.

  

So Much More…

So many titles were announced, including the new Crisis Core remake, Atelier Ryza 3, and even a Switch port of Factorio. It’s hard to pick just one game to be excited about, but this list hits the big names. We would also mention Bayonetta 3, but everyone already knew that was coming October 28, so it’s not exactly a new announcement.

There were also updates to the Nintendo Switch Online service and the inclusion of classic N64 titles like Pokemon Stadium and the original Mario Party. Nintendo also let fans know that the first official Splatfest for Splatoon 3 is coming soon, adding even more hype to an already-incredible game. Throw in the surprise announcement of golf mode in Nintendo Switch Sports, along with eight-player online support coming this holiday season, and Nintendo has all but guaranteed fans will be glued to their Switches all winter long.

Many of the rumored releases, like Switch Ports of Twilight Princess and Wind Waker, didn’t see an ounce of screentime. Does that mean they won’t ever release? Not at all, but the focus seems to be on Tears of the Kingdom (isn’t it nice not to say Breath of the Wild 2 now?). Should there be a more Legend of Zelda-focused Direct before the release, Nintendo might drop those other titles and turn the Switch into the single best platform for experiencing Zelda games.

Don’t want to miss anything? You can check out the entire Nintendo Direct event from September 13 in the video below:

  

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