E3 2018: Nintendo Direct

For several years now Nintendo has taken a different approach to E3 with their pre-recorded Nintendo Direct presentations. For better or worse, they're at least a lot less cringey. As a result, they're also much lighter on presentation.

Nintendo's pace this year clipped really fast for all but the last game, so we only got micro-tastes of what they showed. Here are our thoughts on all the games shown.

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  • Xenoblade Chronicles - Graev is really excited for this one. He liked the first one.
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    Pokemon Let's Go Pikachu/Evee - The Pokeball Plus is a cool idea. It comes with Mew, but that's not a big lure for me -- never much liked Mew. I'm disappointed they didn't show anything more than a mere mention.
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    Super Mario Party - Cool! We love Mario Party. The idea of putting Switches side by side and having them interact during the mini-games is neat. Baseball mini game looks fun. I swear they better make online multiplayer.
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    Fire Emblem Three Houses - Graev is excited for this. 
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    Fortnite - I think this is the only console where I might actually stand a chance of competing. It's available today! The "complete" battle royale experience is on Switch. My hope is that they keep the game fully updated and current with PC version. I bet they will.
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    Overcooked! 2 - Nice! Wireless local and online play. This will be a must-buy for us.
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    Killer Queen Black - Looks crazy and hectic.
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    Hallow Knight - We knew it was coming, but all the previous content is available today. I couldn't get into it because it was a little too hectic for me.
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    Octopath Traveler - Coming July 13! Woah. This is that RPG they announced previously that looked cool from Square.
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    Super Smash Bros. Ultimate - This is the only 'fighting' game I've ever enjoyed. I'm not good at it -- quote the opposite. I still enjoy the fun nature of playing beloved characters. In terms of characters, they're saying literally every fighter from every Smash Bros. game is in Ultimate. Probably a balancing nightmare, but this is awesome! The selection is enormous. The process of unlocking and recruiting characters will be telling. The starting roster is small but you'll gain access to more as you do... something. I like the costumes instead of just colors. There's just so much here. And to top it all off Ridley is playable -- people are going to go nuts.

Final Thoughts on Nintendo

Everything shown here was on point. Nintendo nailed what they nailed, but we really wish they would have shown a little bit more. Granted, they do supplemental directs over the year. Unlike the other companies who use this for a year's worth of conference, Nintendo drips info -- sometimes even more than E3.

Worth noting here is the complete absence of the 3DS at E3. As we've noted for about the past year, this will likely be the end of that handheld console with the Switch taking over the "go anywhere" market.

I think they could have left out Pokemon if they weren't going to show us more. That was dumb.They showed way, way too much Smash  

Third-party support for the Switch has been stellar. This week alone we've had a handful of games come out. There has never been a better time to own a Switch.

Overall: "Good"

Update: The Nintendo Treehouse, which is their after-the-show showcase, showed actual gameplay from Pokemon. This was nice to see because it clarified that Let's Go Pikachu is a game about catching pokemon to level up all the other pokemon in your party. Do you end up with lots of pokemon you don't want? Much more research needed here.

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