Tonight’s long-awaited Nintendo Direct included several big game announcements, including Splatoon 3 and Mario Golf: Super Rush, as well as confirmation of an HD release for Zelda: Skyward Sword.
Xenoblade Chronicles 2 characters Pyra and Mythra were also announced as the latest faces to join Super Smash Bros. Ulimate.
Mention was made of Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2, but only to say that more detail would arrive later in 2021. To be clear, Nintendo did not confirm whether the game would actually release in 2021.
Let’s start with the big stuff. The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword HD is launching for Nintendo Switch on 16th July and this time, the motion controls are optional. This year is Zelda’s 35th anniversary, though Nintendo remained quiet on its other plans for the series – for now.
Closing the whole show, Nintendo dropped an unexpected teaser for Splatoon 3. It’s not coming until 2022, though it features an upside down Eiffel Tower and a robot crab. Hopefully it’s worth the wait.
As mentioned already, both Pyra and Mythra join Super Smash Bros. Ultimate from their original appearances in Xenoblade Chronicles 2. The duo are the latest to arrive as part of the game’s Ultimate Fighters Pass Vol. 2, which previously added Minecraft and Final Fantasy characters.
Mario Golf: Super Rush was announced for Switch and tees off on 25th June. It has optional Wii Golf-like motion controls, and a Story Mode where you play as your Mii.
And in other Nintendo game news, 3DS sim Miitopia will arrive for Switch on 21st May, while remakes of Famicom Detective Club titles The Missing Heir and The Girl Who Stands Behind will launch as a bundle on 14th May.
We also got a quick look at Animal Crossing: New Horizons’ long-awaited Mario items. One actually useful addition will be Mushroom Kingdom-style warp pipes you can use to travel about.
Bean battle royale Fall Guys is coming to Switch this summer, and perhaps other platforms too. It first arrived on PC and PlayStation last year.
The well-regarded Outer Wilds is also coming to Nintendo Switch, at some point later in 2021.
Plants vs Zombies: Battle for Neighborville launches in March, meanwhile. It’s the latest game from the Garden Warfare team and the first Nintendo Switch game to use EA’s Frostbite engine.
Project Triangle Strategy is the SRPG successor to Octopath Traveler and it’s due in 2022. It got Martin very excited, and you can try it right now via a sample demo on the Switch eShop.
Star Wars: Hunters is a new free-to-play online squad-based arena multiplayer game set between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens. It’s coming to Switch in 2021 from Zynga.
We also saw team-based multiplayer dodgeball game Knockout City, from Mario Kart: Home Circuit developer Velan Studios, which launches on 21st May. And as previously announced, Apex Legends arrives on 9th March and Monster Hunter Rise on 26th March.
Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity is getting an expansion pass, with two waves of DLC due in June then November 2021. The pass is on sale now priced £17.99, though exactly what you’ll get is still to be revealed.
World’s End Club, from the developer of Danganronpa and Zero Escape, arrives on 28th May. Meanwhile, Samurai Warriors 5 was announced for Switch and will launch this summer.
There’s also a Legend of Mana remake coming to Switch, PC and PS4 on 24th June.
Tales from the Borderlands launches for Switch on 23rd March – a few weeks after its other recently-announced new console versions.
SaGa Frontier Remastered arrives for Switch on 15th April. The Ninja Gaiden: Master Collection turns up on 10th June. No More Heroes 3 launches on 27th August.
A physical version of Hades, Eurogamer’s game of the year for 2020, will be released on 19th March with some extra bits and pieces.
Stubbs the Zombie in Rebel Without a Pulse launches 16th March. DC Super Heroes Girls: Teen Power launches on 4th June.
Finally, here’s the entire 50-minute broadcast to rewatch in full: