E3 2016 Nintendo Treehouse Day 2 Impressions

Nintendo continued their digital presence at E3 with day two of their Treehouse event.

Pokemon GO

Day two kicked off from the E3 show floor with about 45 minutes of Pokemon GO conversation. The sound mix wasn't the best as they had nine people onstage and whoever was running the board wasn't always able to catch the new speaker, meaning a lot of questions and discussion wound up happening off-mic.

The panel featured a mix of Pokemon GO playtesters who are experiencing the ongoing field tests, some developers of the game, Shigeru Miyamoto, and some translators. They talked about the game a bit. Pokemon exist in the world and are assigned to different areas accordingly through geo-caching (near the ocean, you'll probably find more water Pokemon; near a forest, you'll find more grass and flying-types; etc.). Players will be encouraged to go out to public places to find new Pokemon. The Pokemon GO Plus accessory is the little bluetooth device that looks like a cross between a Pokeball and a google map pin and will be available for $34.99, alongside the game itself, starting in July, according to Miyamoto.

I might end up picking it up for something else to do on my ever-increasing number of trips around the country. Maybe it'll replace my addiction to 3DS Street Passes. The game will be launching solely with Kanto region Pokemon but they did allude to the idea that they hope to support the game to the point where people can "catch 'em all." Because of course they were going to. Who doesn't want piles of money?

Ever Oasis

The next title shown during the stream was a new 3DS title called Ever Oasis. This RPG from developer Grezzo is produced and directed by Koichi Ishii, known for his work on the first three Final Fantasy games. The game looks like a mix of a world-building sim and dungeon-crawling RPG. Don't know that I'll wind up following the game but it's nice to see that there's still new IP out there coming to Nintendo.

BoxBoxBoy

A follow-up to the critically acclaimed puzzle game BoxBoy for Nintendo 3DS, BoxBoxBoy launches June 30 with new puzzles. I didn't play the first one but I've heard good things about it. And now, Box Boy can create two sets of boxes. It looks like a cute, simple little puzzle game. Maybe something work picking up for the aforementioned travels. The original game is also on sale. So maybe I'll go grab that now.

Mario Party: Star Rush

A new Mario Party game for the 3DS. Launching November 4, all four-players play simultaneously. No more turn-based moving. That will at least make the game go a bit quicker. Additionally, the boards are less linear now. But for the most part, I stopped having people to play Mario Party games with quite a while ago so I don't foresee this making its way into my catalog.

Yo-Kai Watch 2

Yo-Kai Watch 2: Bony Spirits and Yo-Kai Watch 2: Fleshy Souls, released in Japan in 2014, follows November's North American release of the original game, when they come to the Nintendo 3DS on September 30. I don't even have time in my life of a Pokemon game anymore, so there's no way I'm going to fall down the rabbit hole of this series. Next.

Monster Hunter Generations

Launching July 15 on 3DS, it seems like another Monster Hunter. A new trailer focused on a new monster type: Deviant Monsters. I know virtually nothing about these games either. This recap has got to be getting old for you...

Dragon Quest VII: Fragments of the Forgotten Past

Finally, a game I care/know about.

Dragon Quest VII is one of my favorite entries in the series and it looks like they've done an amazing job modernizing it from it's original PlayStation version. It's a hell of a long game. As I've repeatedly said, I put 100+ hours into it back on PlayStation and still never beat it. If you haven't played the game here's the basic premise: you start on a tiny island that is the only land in the world. But eventually use start finding these shards that lead you to visit new lands in the past. Experiencing these smaller, often self-contained stories, when you solve the problem of a given island in the past, you restore it to the world in the present-day. These individual stories make the game ideal for the occasional pick-up and play nature of gaming on something like the Nintendo 3DS.

Buy this game when it comes out September 16.

Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE

Aaaand we're back to games I know nothing about... JRPG from Atlus. A mix of Fire Emblem and Shin Megami Tensei. Super Japanese game. Comes out June 24th on Wii U. Enjoy Xyger!

Paper Mario: Color Splash

The newest Paper Mario game comes to the Wii U October 7. Still the same delightful art style of the Paper Mario series. The new catch this time out is that an evil force is removing color from the world and Mario and friends need to restore it with a magical paint hammer. I used be a huge fan of the series but haven't really felt any urge to return to it in recent years. If the game reviews well I might give it a look but seeing something like the card-based combat doesn't really instill me with confidence. I do appreciate that it seems to be featuring the Koopalings (Morton was shown in the gameplay demo).

Rhythm Heaven Megamix

After a couple more sessions of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, they came back with one last demo for Rhythm Heaven Megamix. A mini-game-filled title with lots of cute little rhythm games in the mix. The 100+ new and old minigames within the title are available now. Looks cute. Probably not anything I'll pick up myself but it you're into rhythm games, it might be for you.

So...mostly a day of games that aren't really up my alley. Oh well. It's still nice to see Nintendo exploring so many different ideas (even if it still feels like they've mostly given up on supporting the Wii U at this point).

Now that the two-day stream is done, let's check in with my predictions.

  1. Mother 3 finally gets localized for Wii U Virtual Console. Nope. 0 points.
  2. Dragon Quest VII: Fragments of the Forgotten Past and Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King will get Western release dates. Dragon Quest VII will be available next month. Dragon Quest VIII will be available December. Dragon Quest VII is coming in September (not July). And no word on Dragon Quest VIII. .25 points.
  3. Pokemon GO release date announced for July. Nailed it. My only full 1 point of the week.
  4. Link has a voice. And we'll see and hear from Zelda and Ganon, too. No? There was voice acting and it's likely that the girl in the trailer/opening telling Link to wake up is Zelda, but unconfirmed. 0 points.
  5. The Legend of Zelda gets a proper title. Releasing March 24, 2017. It will likely coincide with the NX launch but Nintendo will stick to their guns and NOT announce NX details here at this event. The event did, indeed, kick off with the new title Breath of the Wild but no release date was ever announced. .25 points.

So once again, I wound up with 1.50 / 5.00 points for Nintendo, tying Bethesda and Ubisoft.

Overall, that leaves me at 7.67 / 30.00 points - or just over 25%. Not bad for a bunch of complete nonsense.

Thanks for reading!