Nintendo of America recently shacked up at the W Hotel on South Beach and invited media to try out some of their upcoming first-party titles for Nintendo 3DS and WiiU. Cultist had the pleasure of playing some of these games for a couple of hours. Because journalism.
Get our impressions on where Nintendo's heading after the jump.
5. Nostalgia's here to stay.
One of the surprises out of Nintendo's E3 Direct event (in lieu of a splashy press conference) was the return of an old friend, Donkey Kong.
Nintendo is an expert when it comes to tugging at the heartstrings of now-adults who grew up with iconic characters such as Mario, Zelda, and Donkey Kong. They are such great characters, you're only a tech improvement away from shelling out for the latest installment. Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze is no different--we found ourselves humming along to the familiar refrains while collecting bananas, Diddy (Kong) on our back with his trademark baseball cap. The old magic is still there, plus the addition of making the world more of a 3D environment.
4. The return of the drunken house party game!
Wii Party U will provide 80 different party games for your next shindig this October. We played one particular entry which used the Wii U gamepad in a game of charades. You take a picture of the suggested face with the gamepad, and the rest of the party has to guess what you're trying to convey. Thankfully, it doesn't appear to have a "suggest a face" feature, otherwise we'd probably flood it with "Comiendo mierda."
3. DAT WII U GAMEPAD.
Between the one gamepad vs. three Wiimotes options in Wii Party U and the map/playback features in the adorable and gorgeous Pikmin 3, Nintendo is bringing it in terms of first party second screen experiences. The gamepad also allows for entire games to be played on it while freeing the TV for something else--a great option in homes where TV space is at a premium.
2. Don't sleep on handhelds!
Still want some Nintendo goodness without springing for the Wii U? Go portable. We also had the chance to try out some titles for the 3DS, including Mario and Luigi: Dream Team. In this title, we hop into Luigi's side-scrolling dreams as Mario and co. are joined by Dreamy Luigi. While the side-scrolling platformer occurs on the top screen, you see a snoozing Luigi below. REM sleep Luigi isn't just cosmetic. By messing with Luigi in his sleep (tweaking his mustache, etc.), you can actually influence change in the world above. No word on what happens if you put his hand into a glass of warm water.
1. Kitty suits.
Super Mario 3D World is the newest installment of Mario games for the Wii U. The co-op mode is reminiscent of the Wii's New Super Mario Bros. Wii, which features four-player cooperative/competitive play. You and up to three of your friends can move through a 3D world as either Mario, Luigi, Peach, or Toad, and you all can turn into CATS (think the Tanooki/Racoon suit from SMB 3, but way cuter).
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The crazy cat lady in all of us is going to rejoice at seeing our little kitty characters pounce at enemies, climb up walls, and leave little pawprints around the world. It was enough to incite cries of "Shut up and take my money!" every time we saw Kitty!Peach bat a baseball with her little paws.
The preview event shows that Nintendo is still a force to be reckoned with, and is bound to deliver on pure fun and wonder this last half of the year. While Sony and Microsoft duke it out over hyper-realism and brown shooters, you can take a break from all the gore and just collect some bananas and bells for old times' sake.