Games Inbox: The Legend Of Zelda 3D All-Stars, Mario Golf: Super Rush hope, and Elite Dangerous humour

Has Nintendo missed a trick with Link’s birthday? (pic: Nintendo)

The Friday Inbox is generally disappointed by the latest Nintendo Direct, as one reader is upset at the lack of Shin Megami Tensei 5 news.

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Your announcement is in another castle
Well, that Nintendo Direct definitely reflected the challenges of a company working through a global pandemic.

I had to laugh at the Zelda: Skyward Sword stuff, which felt like a masterclass in trolling: ‘I know you’re expecting news on Breath Of The Wild 2, but there isn’t any so here’s a remaster of a 10 year old game instead’.

Translating the motion controls of the original was always going to be a challenge and the route they’ve taken looks a little clunky. Towards the end of the presentation, it sounded almost like Nintendo were trying to convince themselves that this was a good idea by drawing comparisons between Skyward Sword and Breath Of The Wild. Talk about clutching at straws…

That said, I think it’s great that a lot of smaller titles, which at any other time might not even have made a ‘proper’ Direct, got some coverage. There were some interesting looking titles that are definitely on my radar now and might otherwise have flown under the radar.

The happening
Well, I wrote in many months ago pleading for a Nintendo Switch version of Mario Golf because it had been 20 years since Toadstool Tour.

It happened.

The rest of the Direct went by in a haze of endorphin goodness that I can’t remember. Mario Golf is back.
NewRadical (NN ID)

Surprise birthday party
Imagine watching Rory McIllroy, Tiger Woods, etc. all hit a ball and run after it, then try to be the fastest to putt the ball. I would certainly watch golf if we got Speed Golf like in the new Mario Golf game.

As for the Direct itself, meh. Not much there to get excited about. I would have thought that Nintendo would show a few seconds of the new Zelda but the key thing is they are working on the game. Concerning those rumours of the 35th Zelda anniversary, all I can say is we should always expect the unexpected from Nintendo.
Alek Kazam

GC: The anniversary is on Sunday. If they’re planning a surprise it’s going to be very last minute.

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Some exceptions may apply
You have to laugh (or cry) at Nintendo. That Direct… man oh man, talk about NOT giving the people what they want.

Third parties do seem to be coming through for Nintendo at the moment at least, especially out of Japan, so the Switch release schedule is actually pretty stacked in the run up to the summer. When people complain about that it seems they usually mean there’s no big first party game ready for imminent release, which is true there isn’t. However, with the Switch still selling like hot cakes I’m not sure Nintendo’s ‘new’ software woes are that much of an issue outside the hole of a major Christmas release. While I can’t wait for it, surely Shin Megami Tensei 5 isn’t the big holiday game this year?

On the topic of the Direct though. You have to question Breath Of The Wild 2 now, if they can’t even put together a short trailer of new footage at this point it’s release must still be quite far out. ‘More information later in the year’ doesn’t sound like a Christmas release but who knows, maybe there’ll be a Zelda 35th Birthday Direct.

And on the topic of Zelda, if Nintendo think I’m putting down £50 on the HD port of Skyward Sword they’ve really lost it. For a Zelda 3D All-Stars OK but for just that Wii port? Forget it. Full price for old ports is a Nintendo business model that needs to be pushed back on ASAP, at least with Super Mario 3D World we got Bowser’s Fury and that was unexpectedly generous by their standards. I will add Outer Wilds (if the port holds up) and World End’s Club to the backlog.
PS: You have to laugh at the continued Doomguy Smash rumours…

GC: Why? Bayonetta is already in Smash and she’s also from an 18-rated game about killing angels and demons, and it’s not just gory but sexually suggestive too. Not that we think Doomguy is very likely either.

No peaking
As an amateur streamer on Twitch, who has no dreams of making it big due to the crushing hours and repetitive nature of it, I don’t get the complaints about stream snipers. As far as I am aware you can set a delay in your stream settings from zero to 30 seconds. Why don’t the ‘big names’ (that no one outside of Twitch viewers would know) just do that? That way they can have a fair game and stop complaining about the cheaters.

This is only a comment about the modern version of screen peeking, not the terrible abuse that some people suffer online.

GC: Seeing their loadout and general tactics is also considered to be an unfair advantage (or an excuse for when they lose).

Forlorn hope
Whilst futile I know, I have been trying to second guess Nintendo and specifically why they decided to exclude Super Mario Galaxy 2 from Super Mario 3D All-Stars.

I’ve come down to one option that I feel is both unlikely and very un-Nintendo – and therefore could be exactly what happens! On the 31st March, 3D All-Stars completes its limited release. On 1st April (and knowing it may get written off as an April Fool’s Joke) Nintendo announce that everyone who bought the game will find that Galaxy 2 is now available on the game’s menu screen and will be downloaded on demand. No physical copy, no official release, just a bonus game to thank all those who bought 3D All-Stars.

Here’s hoping anyway!
Jon Foley

Partially correct
So, my predictions for the Nintendo Direct were mostly wrong, though I did get Mario Golf and Zelda: Skyward Sword correct!

Truly bizarre that they didn’t even reference Zelda’s 35th anniversary, but hey, that’s Nintendo. I don’t think I’ll be forking out £45+ for Skyward Sword though. If I recall, it was reviewed very highly at release, even GC award it a rare 10/10 unless my memory is deceiving me (it happens frequently!) but I feel that over the past decade it’s actually become the least favoured 3D Zelda.

I think it was a necessary stepping stone to get to Breath Of The World but the overworld in Skyward Sword was awful; I felt the most restricted I’ve ever experienced in a Zelda game. Though, as GC pointed out, it does feature some fantastic dungeons. I predict a slew of 8/10 when it’s released this July.

Mario Golf looks amazing! I just hope that there’s a mode that allows me to play a basic game of golf online with friends, no power-ups etc. Mario Tennis on the Switch was kind of a let-down – they never did add the ability play a full tennis match with sets.

Otherwise, there’s nothing else that interests me. That’s not necessarily Nintendo’s fault, and I did just pick up Super Mario 3D World, but I just find it crazy that four years into the Switch’s life we have no Virtual Console equivalent. I also just want the Metroid Prime Trilogy in HD. Maybe next time.

GC: We liked it – particularly the motion controls – more than most but our opinion of it has certainly soured over the years, and we think that’s true of most people. We’re actually very interested to play the whole thing again in a post-Breath Of The Wild world.

The wait continues
I have to admit when watching that Nintendo Direct last night and the beginning of the Splatoon 3 Trailer came on. I looked at the barren wasteland, the hairs on my arms rose up and I thought, ‘any minute now a spaceship is gonna come crashing down and Samius is gonna come bowling out, stopping just shy of the camera with a thud with a dust cloud surrounding her’.

I’m not disappointed to see another Splatoon, I’m just a bit deflated not to see even a hint of Metroid. Oh well, I’m sure it’ll all be worth it when it does finally see the light of day. A launch title for the next Nintendo console perhaps? Wouldn’t be a bad foot to start off on to be honest.
freeway 77

GC: That’s probably more realistic than anyone hoping for it this year or next.

Space for everyone
Regarding the letter from a reader about Elite Dangerous and his disappointment, I think he’s playing the wrong game for him. I appreciate his memories of the original but in this game you make your own narrative. It is exactly what I want it to be.

I’ve been playing on and off for years and my chosen path was explorer, I’ve made it my mission to discover more Earth-like worlds across the galaxy more than any other commander. I’ve not been back to the bubble for four years, I’m 66,000 light years from Sol and I’m slowly on my way back to cash in all my data and see how I’ve done. Will take months to get back in real-time. I’ll have enough credits at that point to buy anything I want and maybe try a new discipline.

Anyway, I love the game, I play it in VR mostly and being out in the galaxy amongst the hundreds of billions of star systems and nebulae I’ve seen some amazing views, I find the game relaxing and almost therapeutic. As long as I’m not reckless, I can even be doing other things while playing out of VR. It’s a bit of a grind fest but I think that’s kind of the point mostly. It’s a game I’ll always likely play on and off in bursts for years to come.

it sounds to me like you want a more narrative driven game. Something with a beginning and an end. Or less of a sim. Have you played No Man’s Sky? See, I couldn’t get on with that. It’s nowhere near sim enough for my tastes.

GC: The original didn’t really have a story either, but it did have a sense of humour. Dangerous is a good game but we agree with the previous reader that we do miss that aspect.

Inbox also-rans
I’ve been trying to get my hands on a PlayStation 5 disc version since launch day for my son, it was to be a Christmas present but as of yet I haven’t been able to get one and it’s really getting to me now.

GC: We greatly sympathise. The way the lack of stock has been handled has been terrible. Or rather, it hasn’t been handled at all, just left to play out as it will – which has filled the pockets of scalpers and frustrated ordinary customers.

Can we all admit now that the 35th anniversary celebrations for Super Mario Bros. were just made-up nonsense to cover for the fact that they had no new games? The 35th clearly means nothing to Zelda and what are they going to do next? Celebrate the 45th of Super Mario instead of the far more significant 50th?

This week’s Hot Topic
The subject for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Austin, who asks what game do you remember thinking would never be beaten in terms of graphics… and now looks laughably outdated.

I can be any game from any era or format, as long as you thought at the time that graphics were never going to get any better (or at least not by much). Was the thought justified and did the game in question prove to be an important milestone in gaming or just one you happened to be impressed by?

Are you still regularly impressed by video game graphics or do you worry that they’ve reached a plateau and are now only slowly improving? What do you think of next gen visuals so far and what’s impressed you the most?

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The small print
New Inbox updates appear every weekday morning, with special Hot Topic Inboxes at the weekend. Readers’ letters are used on merit and may be edited for length and content.

You can also submit your own 500 to 600-word Reader’s Feature at any time, which if used will be shown in the next available weekend slot.

You can also leave your comments below and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter.

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