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Nintendo Direct February 2021 Recap

We called it.

After a tragically long hiatus, we finally got a full-length Nintendo Direct and it was just as brimming with hype as you would expect.

We opened on a video showing Rex of Xenoblade Chronicles 2 fame searching for his partners after the events of the game… only to realize that the legendary blades Pyra and Mythra will be the newest characters added to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Some people may be disappointed to see more sword fighters added to the game, but their flashy animations and incredible stage coverage so far seem to be more than enough to get the rest of us excited. Even more exciting is the fact that they represent a return to the 2-in-1 switching character first seen in Zelda and Sheik in Melee, though exactly how different they will be remains to be seen.



Our first of many “Nintendo Switch headlines”—as general manager and host Shinya Takahashi called them—showcased Switch ports of Fall Guys, The Outer Wilds, and the classic 8-bit sleuth adventures Famicom Mystery Club: The Missing Heir and its sequel, The Girl Who Stands Behind which are already available for pre-order.

As for new games, we saw short trailers for Samurai Warriors 5 which follows the exploits of legendary Japanese warlord Nobunaga Oda; Legend of Mana Remastered which promised a new minigame and rearranged soundtrack, and Monster Hunter Rise which showed us more of its feudal Japanese flavor in a trailer that emphasized town-defense and monster control.



But the biggest surprise in this section was easily Mario Golf Super Rush, featuring motion control and unexpectedly technical additions that seem plucked out of a golf simulator rather than a Mario game. That will probably make real golf fans happy, but those looking for a more footloose experience will likely spend their time with Speed Golf, a new fast-paced game mode best described as golf by way of Mario Kart. Speaking of modes, a story campaign featuring players’ Miis was also announced, just in case you thought the game needed even more content.

More ports were announced next: Tales from the Borderlands, Capcom Arcade Stadium, and cult-classic action game Stubbs the Zombie. But the real action came packaged with the latest trailer for No More Heroes 3, whose entire story will apparently revolve around a massive tournament arc, in case any of you were worried it would not be anime enough. We then got a taste of Neon White, a light-gun game set in heaven that seems worth the price of admission for Steve Blum’s voicework in the lead role. We also saw DC Superhero Girls: Teen Power which promises to balance school life and superhero action, Plants vs Zombies Battle for Neighborville Complete Edition which ties all the game’s content and downloadable additions into one package, and Miitopia making easily the least likely return seen in the entire show.



We then learned Animal Crossing: New Horizons players can look forward to some Super Mario-themed items coming for a belated 35th anniversary celebration in a free update coming February 25th. And speaking of celebrations, we then launched into a cinematic trailer for Project Triangle Strategy, the strategy RPG successor to Octopath Traveler. Though the genre may be unfamiliar territory for the series, the gorgeous HD sprites, complex character relationship system, and epic music are not, as the presentation seems to uphold its predecessor’s high standard.

Some rapid-fire looks at other upcoming releases followed, namely:


  • Star Wars Hunters, a free-to-play shooter set in the franchise’s sequel timeline.
  • Knockout City, which seems to be trying to do to dodgeball what Splatoon did to paintball.
  • World’s End Club, a side-scrolling narrative adventure game
  • A physical edition for the acclaimed Hades with a download code for the game’s Soundtrack and art book.
  • Ninja Gaiden: Master Collection set to combine the best versions of all 3 games in the reboot of the classic action series with all their DLC included.


Speaking of DLC, Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity is getting some spiffy new updates via a season pass featuring new weapons, items, battle skills, and of course new characters, stages, and vignettes. These are planned to come in two waves, first in June and later in November with new weapons and costumes as a purchase bonus available starting May 28th. Unfortunately, what these goodies may be is currently a secret to everybody.



We then got to see more of Ghosts ‘n Goblins: Resurrection and its new unique power-ups, SaGa Frontier Remastered and its new characters and scenarios, plus a Switch port of FPS battle royal Apex: Legends which does not seem to offer anything new, but with such a fine game available on the go, who can complain?

Then we were directed to Zelda producer Eiji Aonuma who confirmed he had nothing to share on Breath of the Wild 2’s development but did have a Skyward Sword HD remaster in the works to tide fans over. The title features improved motion controls, button-only controls for portable play, and some sweet branded joy-con skins. Hopefully this will give the underrated game a newfound appreciation among series die-hards and casual players alike.



It was then time for the final announcement. If the sight of an Inkling in a Mad Max-esque desert before venturing to a revamped Inkopolis and joining an all-out turf war with new maps and floating platforms didn’t get your heart pumping, you may just need to speak to your cardiologist, because the upcoming Splatoon 3 looks amazing so far.


Author's Note: What did you think of this Direct? Are you heartbroken at the lack of new Zelda content? Are you excited about the metric ton of ports coming to the Switch? Have you already set Pyra as your main? Let us know in the comments below.

Credits
Editing & Graphics (@Zerp)
 
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Will "Octrockandroll" Bertazzo Lambert

Comments

Not huge on their reveal (Pyra and Mythra I mean). Never played Xenoblade and I have never found sword characters to be very fun. Plus I don't think Smash has enough legacy characters, not when Bill Rizer, Arthur, Space Invaders, Dr. Eggman, and many others are all still waiting for their chance.
But I'm still happy that my favorite Mario sports game is getting a sequel on an HD console. That more than made up for the two-for-one deal.
 
There goes Kos-Mos..... Namco this was her only chance ;(

Now here to pray DANTE gets in he now has 3 chances left and no confirmation of a fighters pass 3 ;(
 
Pyra and Mythra were the best possible additions to smash, because of them
image_2021-02-17_213056.png

(assuming nothing bad happens) we will end on a nice, even number instead of a wack 81.

But for real, I really love them and I can't wait to play them. The stage wasn't what I was hoping for, but if Gramps gets voicelines that'd be pog to me. And the music, mwah, absolutely beautiful.

  • I guess I like Splatoon 3, but man was I disappointed to see that the western-like shot WASN'T another Dillon game. I think I have more hope than others that the series could still be alive, but man that was a punch to the gut. Is this how Rex fans feel like? If so, I'm so sorry for your existence.
  • Mario Golf isn't Mario Baseball so I am likely not gonna buy, but that speed golf (I think it was) looks interesting.
  • MII, MOTHER FLIPPIN, TOPIA, BAYBEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!
  • Everything else, to quote Scott the Woz," It looks fine
 
Thoughts:
  • I’m actually hyped for Pyra/Mythra, despite having no real connection to Xenoblade
  • I‘m glad Skyward Sword is getting an HD remaster
  • Mario Golf Super Rush is a hilariously fun concept (let’s just hope the game itself isn’t super rushed ba dum ts)
  • I‘m so happy that the two FDC remakes are getting localized!
  • PvZ was something I wasn‘t expecting because EA lol but I’ll take it
The rest I didn’t really care about, but not bad for the first Direct in over a year! 7/10
 
for me just all about the nintendo stuff interested me bar mario golf and not really any of the 3rd party things looked interesting
 
LOVED the Pyra and Mythra reveal! I've never played Famicom Detective Club, but after reading about how popular Ayumi is in Japan, and how Sakurai wanted to add her to Melee but felt she was too obscure outside of Japan, it makes me happy to see the series getting remakes that will release outside of it! I was hoping for the return of Mario items to Animal Crossing. Fall Guys is a natural fit for the Switch, and Skyward Sword getting the remaster love is great. Capped off with Splatoon 3, and I think this was a pretty great Direct :)
 
Not huge on their reveal (Pyra and Mythra I mean). Never played Xenoblade and I have never found sword characters to be very fun. Plus I don't think Smash has enough legacy characters, not when Bill Rizer, Arthur, Space Invaders, Dr. Eggman, and many others are all still waiting for their chance.
But I'm still happy that my favorite Mario sports game is getting a sequel on an HD console. That more than made up for the two-for-one deal.
I would also have liked to see more legacy well known characters that have been in multiple games or made gaming history per say. Raymans, Bombermans, crash bandicoots. Legends and gaming icons. But maybes dlc has become more so a way to promote things. Or perhaps some of these legacy characters are no longer popular or make business sense for nintendo without anything in the pipeline to promote (Outside of crash, who still may be in).

Happy for those who know the characters though, but I do wish the rpg character choices were more unique like a Geno. I actually wanted chrono trigger as an rpg rep but thats basically hero. Anyway , again happy for those who enjoy these characters. They may be fun.
 
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I really don't care for Pyra nor anything after Chronicles (I really hate 2's artstyle), but eh I'm indifferent at least she was requested.

That being said that direct was pretty good.
 
Not hyped at all over Pyra & Mythra. I think their reasoning was: "Well, Rex barely made the cut in the project plan but he missed out, so we have to compensate that somehow by adding Pyra & Mythra!" Just as it feels Sephiroth was added just because Final Fantasy VII lacked spirits and music... (To compensate.)

Splatoon 3 looks cool though.
 
Never played Xenoblade (on my list of things to play though), but I loved the Pyra & Mythra trailer. They look like a lot of fun and am super excited for their release!

Mario Golf looks kinda fun and Splatoon 3 I'm sure will be good. Random "that's kinda cool" situations here and there, but overall the Direct was meh for me. I don't think it was bad, lots of game info and things like that, just nothing that struck me like a Mario Kart 9 / BoTW2 would have done.
 
Not hyped at all over Pyra & Mythra. I think their reasoning was: "Well, Rex barely made the cut in the project plan but he missed out, so we have to compensate that somehow by adding Pyra & Mythra!" Just as it feels Sephiroth was added just because Final Fantasy VII lacked spirits and music... (To compensate.)

Splatoon 3 looks cool though.
I also think it's their obsession with choosing unpredictable roster choices.
 
I find it sad that some people are mad about Pyra/Mythra because they're "anime swordsman". Like, I can only hope that's a joke, because if not, then they both don't understand the inaccuracy of that signifier in the first place, nor the reason it was even started as a complaint in the first place. Pyra/Mythra look like they have an actual unique moveset, like Byleth, like Sephiroth, like basically all the sword characters of late. How this is still a talking point at all is beyond me.
 
I find it sad that some people are mad about Pyra/Mythra because they're "anime swordsman". Like, I can only hope that's a joke, because if not, then they both don't understand the inaccuracy of that signifier in the first place, nor the reason it was even started as a complaint in the first place. Pyra/Mythra look like they have an actual unique moveset, like Byleth, like Sephiroth, like basically all the sword characters of late. How this is still a talking point at all is beyond me.
I saw someone on Reddit also posit that misoginy is another motivator for this wave of hate.

Given how disproportionate the hate for Pyra/Mythra is in comparison to others like Sephiroth I find it hard to argue against that.
 
I always said that I'll take any character for DLC, but goddamnit, I'm sick of these "Luigi before Mario" picks. It kills my OCD to know that we have playable secondary characters because the main character was a Mii Costume.
Who's next? Coco before Crash?
As far as the rest of the Direct, it was meh. Too JRPG heavy. Very little first party content. Skyward Sword is cool, but the Wind Waker / Twilight Princess rumor better be true, because I need my... well, can't call it Modern Zelda because of Breath of the Wild, and can't call it Classic Zelda, because that's the 2D overhead games. But I am a big fan of preserving older games for newer consoles.
Honestly, I hope Nintendo builds up Switch like as a platform and allows every game to be transferred to the new console with perfect compatibility. Kinda like how Steam games can be played on new hardware no matter how old.
 
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Honestly, I hope Nintendo builds up Switch like as a platform and allows every game to be transferred to the new console with perfect compatibility. Kinda like how Steam games can be played on new hardware no matter how old.
They will, now yours for only $59.96. No worries though, an extra mode will surely make it worth it.

Seriously though, I don't mind ports but they don't need to put in the effort in doing that when lazily doing another VC would be miles better that what we got.
 
I saw someone on Reddit also posit that misoginy is another motivator for this wave of hate.

Given how disproportionate the hate for Pyra/Mythra is in comparison to others like Sephiroth I find it hard to argue against that.
You're kidding, right? Because of misoginy? And not because of the oversatured (anime) swordfighter trope?
 
Not hyped at all over Pyra & Mythra. I think their reasoning was: "Well, Rex barely made the cut in the project plan but he missed out, so we have to compensate that somehow by adding Pyra & Mythra!" Just as it feels Sephiroth was added just because Final Fantasy VII lacked spirits and music... (To compensate.)

Splatoon 3 looks cool though.
Or, because it's Sephiroth, literally one of the most iconic villains alongside the likes of Bowser, Ganondorf, and Dr.Eggman. Him bringing FF content is a bonus.

I didn't grow up playing FF, I still have never played a FF game, but even I can recognize he got in on his own merits due to who he is.


Do I believe there were probably deals that Square made to get more FF content in Smash? Obviously, it's Square we're talking about here, but looking at Sephiroth of all characters in that kind of way is pretty damn funny, ngl. Dude's iconic enough that the literal first note of his themesong was enough for most people to recognize who was the new character before they even saw him.
 
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Or, because it's Sephiroth, literally one of the most iconic villains alongside the likes of Bowser, Ganondorf, and Dr.Eggman. Him bringing FF content is a bonus.

I didn't grow up playing FF, I still have never played a FF game, but even I can recognize he got in on his own merits due to who he is.


Do I believe there were probably deals that Square made to get more FF content in Smash? Obviously, it's Square we're talking about here, but looking at Sephiroth of all characters in that kind of way is pretty damn funny, ngl. Dude's iconic enough that the literal first note of his themesong was enough for most people to recognize who was the new character before they even saw him.
Maybe, but I'm sure I can list 5 characters that are more iconic than him. (Not that that should be the only metric when choosing characters btw.)
 
Maybe, but I'm sure I can list 5 characters that are more iconic than him. (Not that that should be the only metric when choosing characters btw.)
I can too.

But in regards to villains specifically? No chance in hell, even Sakurai himself(Take his word for what you will), compared him to Bowser and Ganon in terms of iconicness.


If we're playing the "I can name characters more iconic than him", then sure, so can I, but villains? Eggman maybe.... and then..... most are either already in Smash in some form(Playable or Assist), or aren't even on his level.
 
You're kidding, right? Because of misoginy? And not because of the oversatured (anime) swordfighter trope?
If that term hadn't been overused to the point of meaninglessness already I would point out that Sephiroth is another sword fighter with an anime aesthetic and received no such backlash.
 
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If that term hadn't been overused to the point of meaninglessness already I would point out that Sephiroth is another sword fighter with an anime aesthetic and received no such backlash.
As someone who's actually excited for Pyra/Mythra, there may be a little, but I don't think that's why tbh.

I mean, I saw Sephiroth hate, but it was also Sephiroth, and as a lot of people put it, he's "The" anime swordsman. Sephiroth got hate, you can probably find plenty of it digging through the Reddit thread of his reveal, and Twitter(Or here, for that matter), but it's also Sephiroth, I think in a lot of people's eyes, he gets a pass just because of who he is.


XB2, is a controversial game, and always has been. I think the people who are genuinely happy are happy because, frankly, for as much as Nintendo pushes Xenoblade, the series always felt odd to only have a single rep in Shulk, so it's very nice to finally see it get a new rep(s).... But on the flipside, a lot of people hate how not just P/M look, but more or less all the designs of the Xenoblade 2 cast in general, and how anime trope-y it is.


Now there's a debate to be had about people swooning over shirtless Sephiroth but calling people who are happy for P/M weebs, but I'm not cut out for difficult discussions like that.
 
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As someone who's actually excited for Pyra/Mythra, there may be a little, but I don't think that's why tbh.

I mean, I saw Sephiroth hate, but it was also Sephiroth, and as a lot of people put it, he's "The" anime swordsman. Sephiroth got hate, you can probably find plenty of it digging through the Reddit thread of his reveal, and Twitter, but it's also Sephiroth, I think in a lot of people's eyes, he gets a pass just because of who he is.


XB2, is a controversial game, and always has been. I think the people who are genuinely happy are happy because, frankly, for as much as Nintendo pushes Xenoblade, the series always felt odd to only have a single rep in Shulk, so it's very nice to finally see it get a new rep(s).... But on the flipside, a lot of people hate how not just P/M look, but more or less all the designs of the Xenoblade 2 cast in general, and how anime trope-y it is.


Now there's a debate to be had about people swooning over shirtless Sephiroth but calling people who are happy for P/M weebs, but I'm not cut out for difficult discussions like that.
I know there was some Sephiroth hate but looking at forum posts here that I lurked in at the time and especially the YouTube response I would say he had a way more favorable reception overall.

But you're right, Sephiroth is a character with a massive fanbase who appeared in an all time classic game so he does benefit from the greater renown that that brings.

Either way it sucks to see such a wave of negativity flow out from so mich of the playerbase in response to what's honestly a pretty innocent development. I don't claim to know for certain what the core reason is, but I can say confidently that it's not because P/M use/are swords.
 
I know there was some Sephiroth hate but looking at forum posts here that I lurked in at the time and especially the YouTube response I would say he had a way more favorable reception overall.

But you're right, Sephiroth is a character with a massive fanbase who appeared in an all time classic game so he does benefit from the greater renown that that brings.

Either way it sucks to see such a wave of negativity flow out from so mich of the playerbase in response to what's honestly a pretty innocent development. I don't claim to know for certain what the core reason is, but I can say confidently that it's not because P/M use/are swords.
I mean, it kinda is still, just not in the way you're thinking. I think it's not a case of them being women and instead being anime-styled sword users.... with an asterisk here, because there's something to note.

Because for as much as the Smash fanbase ******* about anime swordsmen, if you read between the lines, it's never just "Yuck, another anime swordsman", and instead, "Yuck, an anime swordsman that I didn't ask for."


1613808466722.png
 
I can too.

But in regards to villains specifically? No chance in hell, even Sakurai himself(Take his word for what you will), compared him to Bowser and Ganon in terms of iconicness.


If we're playing the "I can name characters more iconic than him", then sure, so can I, but villains? Eggman maybe.... and then..... most are either already in Smash in some form(Playable or Assist), or aren't even on his level.
You were the one bringing up iconicness, not me. And it's not about villains - it's about "(anime) sword characters". (And it's not only about that btw.)
 
You were the one bringing up iconicness, not me. And it's not about villains - it's about "(anime) sword characters". (And it's not only about that btw.)
I mean, real talk, I've never understood the big deal with that to be blunt. Only 1/3rd of the roster uses swords, which is a lot sure, but not even all of those are anime, you have characters like Meta Knight, Mii Swordfighter, the Links, etc.


I can understand fatigue sure, but also, it's a Japanese game, you kinda have to expect that just due to how many characters in Japanese made games use swords, ya know? If Smash were made by an American dev team, I can almost guarantee you that people'd be complaining about too many guns.
 
I know there was some Sephiroth hate but looking at forum posts here that I lurked in at the time and especially the YouTube response I would say he had a way more favorable reception overall.

But you're right, Sephiroth is a character with a massive fanbase who appeared in an all time classic game so he does benefit from the greater renown that that brings.

Either way it sucks to see such a wave of negativity flow out from so mich of the playerbase in response to what's honestly a pretty innocent development. I don't claim to know for certain what the core reason is, but I can say confidently that it's not because P/M use/are swords.
You don't think it's because they are/use swords? Okay...

If it is about misoginy then why didn't people hate on Min Min?
 
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I mean, real talk, I've never understood the big deal with that to be blunt. Only 1/3rd of the roster uses swords, which is a lot sure, but not even all of those are anime, you have characters like Meta Knight, Mii Swordfighter, the Links, etc.


I can understand fatigue sure, but also, it's a Japanese game, you kinda have to expect that just due to how many characters in Japanese made games use swords, ya know? If Smash were made by an American dev team, I can almost guarantee you that people'd be complaining about too many guns.
Yeah, that's the point?
 
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