We may have had four press conferences on the first day of E3 yesterday, but the main event was saved for this afternoon. The next generation doesn’t start until Nintendo says it does. And it says it starts right now.
Nintendo has confirmed in Los Angeles today that its next machine is called Wii U.
The console will launch next year, and features a tablet-style controller. You can read a full report on the machine, its reveal and everything else related to it right here.
The other stuff
Wii U wasn’t the only thing on display, though. The event kicked off with a Zelda montage to mark the monster property’s 25th anniversary. The movie showed every game from the history of the series, building up to Ocarina’s upcoming 3D remake for 3DS.
Skyward Sword was then shown, followed by the game’s anniversary logo.
Shigeru Miyamoto came out on stage in a suit and tie, speaking through his usual translator, Bill Trenen.
He spoke about Zelda, saying the gameplay and visuals have constantly evolved with each hardware system.
He stuck to music as theme, saying sounds create feelings, giving opening crates in Zelda as an example. He made the resident orchestra play the Zelda jingles for opening chests, solving puzzle and the fairy fountain.
We’re now coming to you live from the Nintendo E3 press conference. It’ll be starting in a few minutes. This article will be updated as the event unfolds.
Links Awakening will be available on Virtual Console today, it was announced, as part of the 25th birthday celebrations. Ocarina of Time will release for 3DS next week, Miyamoto said.
DSiware is to get a Four Swords game for free in September, and Skyward Sword was confirmed as releasing this year for Wii.
A special gold Wiimote is to release alongside the game. Legend of Zelda symphone concerts are to be held around the world this year. Two Zelda music CDs are also to be released: those who register Ocarina 3DS first with Club Nintendo will get first dibs.
Eiji Aonuma and other Zelda dev legends were brought out on stage, before Miyamoto thanked the fans and closed the Zelda anniversary segment off.
This is E3’s main event. You cannot miss this. We’ll have live updates from the conference floor, and you can watch live on Nintendo’s site. We watched all of yesterday’s streams on GTTV, and it held up amazingly well.
Satoru Iwata came out, talking about who plays and how we play.
Moving instantly on to talking about gaming hardware, he said that the games console hasn’t been created yet that caters for all.
He said the next Nintendo console will provide deeper game experiences and have a wider appeal than Wii.
“It will let everyone see games in a different way,” he said, before telling the crowd he was going to leave full details till later.
They moved onto 3DS using “new experiences” as an excuse. Mario Kart was shown first in a trailer, followed by Starfox, Mario and Kid Icarus.
The first ever look of Luigi’s Mansion on 3DS was shown, before Reggie came out on stage.
“You want the buzz of the new,” he said. “You want comfortable, and you want surprise.”
“Something for everyone” stood as a logo on the screen behind him.
He rolled into a Mario Kart 3DS movie, which is a “tricked out version” featuring underwater sections, flying and kart customization.
It’s out this year.
Starfox 3DS was next. It features tilt features for control, but you can use normal buttons if you wish. A camera feature for multiplay was shown.
Reggie confirmed a September release for it, before moving onto Mario, saying it’s the first 3D Mario created from scratch for a handheld.
Gameplay was shown in a trailer, confirming use of the raccoon suit, as was teased at GDC. The game’s out this year.
Kid Icarus came next, showing a colourful reinvention of the fan-favourite. Multiplay was see with various weapons being used in angel-based combat. A large Medusa was seen at the end of the demo, and augmented reality combat was also seen.
Three-on-three multiplayer will be on display at E3 this week. Again, the game’s out this year.
Luigi’s Mansion 2 was then fully announced, with a gameplay movie being shown. It looked very much like the Gamecube original, although there seemed to be much more variation in the game’s environments.
Reggie said it’s an entirely new game and will feature “several new mansions.”
The NoA boss moved onto 3DS third-parties, showing a trailer including Resident Evil: Mercenaries, the Mario and Sonic olympic title from Sega, Cave Story 3D, Tekken 3D, Ace Combat and MGS 3D.
Reggies bigged up the 3DS eShop, which launched yesterday. He confirmed that demos are coming to the service later this year.
An “enhanced Pokédex” is releasing for 3DS. It’s a search and sort tool for Pokémon fans. Pokédex 3D is only available by download through the eShop. It’s free.
“3ds means social, connection, it redefines interaction,” Reggie said.