In Like a Lion…

supermarioodyssey_1987273Nintendo took to E3 2017 like a lion! Prior to the Nintendo Spotlight, which was followed by the Nintendo Treehouse Live, reports circulated about about the length of the presentation. Of course, these reports were met my some of the strangest reactions possible. In typical fashion, there were the usual complaints from this person or that, expounding on all of the “reasons” Nintendo was making a mistake, and already on the way to “losing” E3.

These sentiments, however, were wholly premature, as Nintendo absolutely showed off so much information on games that will be coming to the Nintendo Switch and a few to the Nintendo 3DS titles, as well. The Nintendo Spotlight was 25 minutes of packed details, and it was all about Nintendo Switch games coming very soon. Afterward, the Treehouse Live broadcast featured a few additional tidbits.

If you were unable to watch the Nintendo Spotlight, or would like to see it again, check it out below.

A few of the highlights from Day 1 include:

  • Xenoblade Chronicles 2 looks amazing and is due to release Holiday 2017
  • a brand new Kirby game is coming to the Nintendo Switch, due to release next year
  • a new core RPG Pokémon game is in development for Nintendo Switch, but may be more than a year out
  • Metroid Prime 4 is now in development for the Nintendo Switch
  • Yoshi is in development and due to be released next year
  • Fire Emblem Warriors is due to be released Fall 2017
  • The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild DLC Expansion Pass Pack 1 is due to be released on June 30 and is called The Master Trials; and Pack 2 is due to be released in Holiday 2017, and called The Champions’ Ballad
  • Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle was shown off and is due to be released August 29
  • Rocket League was announced for Nintendo Switch and includes console exclusives, cross-network support, and in due to be released Holiday 2017
  • Super Mario Odyssey was packed with tons of surprising content, features amazing music and so many never-before-seen mechanics and abilities, and is due to be released on October 27

“Nintendo Switch provides everyone a ticket for a journey to new worlds and fun, exclusive experiences,” said Nintendo of America President and COO Reggie Fils-Aime. “This journey continues through all of 2017 and beyond, and it’s one that video game fans of all types won’t want to miss.”

Nintendo's E3 2017 Show FloorDuring the Treehouse Live, Nintendo showed off several minutes of game play footage for the upcoming Metroid: The Return of Samus, a new 2D Metroid title for the Nintendo 3DS family of systems. This game is due to be released September 15. In addition, we were also treated to game play for the upcoming Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga + Bowser’s Minions, due to be released on October 6. Also, as many as 12 new amiibo were shown off, and should be available soon.

The Treehouse Live was then followed by the first of three phenomenal tournaments featuring different competitive titles from Nintendo. The Splatoon 2 World Inkling Invitational took place today, pitting 4 teams from around the world against each other in the new Splatoon 2 game that will be released July 21. The remaining 2 tournaments are today and tomorrow, Wednesday June 14 and Thursday, June 15, respectively.

Nintendo Treehouse: Live at E3 returns 10 a.m. PT on Wednesday. The day will include more live gameplay, game details and developer commentary, as well as two competitions. The 2017 Pokkén Tournament DX Invitational is scheduled to start at 10:30 a.m., while the 2017 ARMS Open Invitational is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. PT.

There was just so much to like about Day 1 of Nintendo’s E3 showing, and it was just the first day. What else will they do?!

Which aspect of the day stood out most to you? Were you happy with what you saw? What was the biggest surprise of the day?

As always, gaming is meant to be fun, so keep gaming!!


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Let the Games Begin!

The annual event that most North American gamers look forward to, the Electronic Entertainment Expo, is just around the corner, and it looks like Nintendo is more than ready to deliver an amazing and unique experience this year. Invitational Tournaments are going to take over the show, and fans at home will have a front-row seat for all of the action.

This year’s E3 promises to showcase several Invitational player tournaments, and the excitement can’t get higher. Not only has Nintendo announced there will be the Nintendo Spotlight, showcasing new details on the upcoming gaming landscape for the company, but there will be a Treehouse Live presentation to follow, that will allow us to see many of the games featured in the Spotlight in game play action. In addition, they will treat observers to a display of the competitive nature of many of the games that are bringing so much life to the Nintendo Switch. Splatoon 2, ARMS, and Pokkén Tournament each have their own Invitational Tournament where competitors will go head to head live during the show to see who will come out victorious.

Tournaments
Name: 2017 Splatoon 2 World Inkling Invitational
Date: Tuesday, June 13
Time: 2:30 p.m. PT*
Details: For the first time ever, competitors from four different global regions will compete for world dominance in Splatoon 2. The four-person teams – from the United States, Japan, Europe and Australia/New Zealand – defeated their local rivals and gained the chance to take on competitors at E3.
Format: Teams will battle in a round-robin Turf War tournament that will decide seeding for the next round. All teams will play one another and get a chance to scope out their opponents’ strengths and weaknesses. In the next round, teams will battle in the game’s Ranked Battle modes, in addition to Turf War. The semifinal stage will be a best-of-five battle, while the championship will be best-of-seven
Prize: The winning team will win global bragging rights and its members will have their names engraved on a sweet Splatoon 2 trophy.
Casters: Jordan Kent, Ashley Esqueda and Nintendo of America’s Eric Smith

Name: 2017 Pokkén Tournament DX Invitational
Date: Wednesday, June 14
Time: 10:30 a.m. PT*
Competitors: Eight YouTube and Twitch stars
Format: Crew battle with four teams and two players per team. Random draft order. The first person in each crew must choose one of the new characters; the other person can choose one of the original characters.
Prize: Winners will each receive a Pokkén Tournament DX art piece signed by Tsunekazu Ishihara, president and CEO of The Pokémon Company, and members of the development team.
Casters: Jordan Kent, D1 and VikkiKitty

Name: 2017 ARMS Open Invitational
Date: Wednesday, June 14
Time: 3:30 p.m. PT*
Competitors: Four professional competitive fighting game players (Alex “CaliPower” Valle, Kelsy “SuperGirlKels” Medeiros, Daniel “Tafokints” Lee and Marie-Laure “Kayane” Norindr) will take on four E3 attendees who rise to the top by competing in Nintendo’s booth.
Format: Single-elimination
Prize: The coveted 2017 ARMS Open Invitational Belt
Casters: Jordan Kent, D1 and VikkiKitty

It is utterly exciting to see Nintendo continue to embrace their competitive roots when it comes to their games and the esports landscape. Over two years ago, Triforce Johnson was often quoted as saying that through his observations, Nintendo was positioning themselves to seriously move back into the esports and competitive scene with many more of their games, beyond the Super Smash Bros. franchise. Shortly after that, Nintendo announced their Nintendo World Championships event at E3 2015. Now, more and more, we are seeing the company embrace their competitive gaming roots.

Splatoon 2 and ARMS are games that lend themselves perfectly to tournaments, and E3 is an ideal venue to bring people together to compete,” said Doug Bowser, Nintendo of America’s Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing. “These friendly tournaments will highlight the fun, competitive nature of these games and the Nintendo Switch hardware for people at home and on the show floor.”

One staple that has grown to be a major fan-favorite that started at an E3 event and has returned for several key events, is the Treehouse Live presentation. This is where we fans tuning in to Nintendo’s E3 presence from home get the opportunity to get a lot of the insight into Nintendo, and of course, what they have to offer us in the coming days and months. That is why I am thoroughly excited about what we will get the opportunity to experience next week!

Nintendo Treehouse: Live at E3
What: Members of Nintendo’s Treehouse will once again delve into the details of the Nintendo Switch console and games for the Nintendo 3DS family of systems, including Super Mario Odyssey and Pokkén Tournament DX. Viewers will get an in-depth look at gameplay and hear behind-the-scenes details about Nintendo’s lineup for E3.
When: On Tuesday, June 13, the show starts right after the Nintendo Spotlight: E3 2017 presentation about 9:30 a.m. PT. On Wednesday and Thursday, June 14-15, the show starts about 10 a.m. PT.*
Who: Treehouse members, as well as developers and other game experts, including Tsunekazu Ishihara, president and CEO of The Pokémon Company. Ishihara and development team members will talk about the upcoming Pokkén Tournament DX game for Nintendo Switch.

Will you be tuning in live next week for any/all of the Nintendo E3 2017 festivities? Which event are you looking forward to most (aside from the Nintendo Spotlight, of course)?

As always, gaming is meant to be fun, so keep gaming!!


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Flavorful Partnerships

Nintendo is doing a lot of different and even remarkable things to promote their brand new console this Summer, and leading into the Fall/Winter seasons. As a large bulk of the company’s populace are moving into their Summer break from school, this unique promoting is to not only get the word out about the system, but also to generate more anticipation for it.

It is no secret that the demand is/remains extremely high for the Nintendo Switch, so having the opportunity to get your hands on the system is proving a little difficult for many. In situations like these, where supply and demand are quite effectively feeding each other, it is vitally important to make sure interest remains high throughout. That is where partnerships like the one that Nintendo has created with Pepsi/Frito-Lay play such a pivotal role.

Brand awareness is important, and connecting Nintendo Switch with staple brands like Pepsi and Frito-Lay are incredible, even for a “HOT” item like this because it goes a long way toward making sure that especially throughout this first year on the market, the company has its highest possible level of interest and enthusiasm for the console.

The next time you pick up a Frito-Lay Variety Pack, one of the flagship brands from PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay division, you also might pick up a Nintendo Switch gaming system. Between now and July 8, Frito-Lay is giving away one Nintendo Switch system and a game every single hour! Specially marked Frito-Lay Variety Packs contain information about how U.S. residents can enter for a chance to win.

I like the way in which this type of promotion is coming at the start of Summer vacation, because as students are getting out of school, parents are buying snacks like these for the kids who are home a good majority of the day. Something to snack on is a necessity. So, why not pair the two and make it a win for both partners! Why not?!

“Nintendo Switch sprung out of the gate as the fastest-selling Nintendo home system in history,” said Doug Bowser, Nintendo of America’s Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing. “It’s no secret that snacks and video games have always gone together, and this is a great chance for people to get their hands on a Nintendo Switch and a game.”

Even for those of us who are “past school age”, we still like our snacks as well, and when you’re talking about the Frito-Lay brand, you can’t really go wrong.

Frito-Lay Variety Pack includes pre-portioned bags of everyone’s favorite Frito-Lay snacks, such as: Cheetos cheese flavored snacks, Doritos tortilla chips, Fritos corn snacks, Funyun’s onion flavored rings, Lay’s potato chips, Rold Gold pretzels, Smartfood popcorn and SunChips multigrain snacks. Variety Packs are available at retail stores nationwide for a suggested retail price of $3.60 – $8.99. For additional details about the Frito Lay presents the Nintendo Switch Giveaway, visit http://www.flvpgamegiveaway.com.

It’s hard to argue with the logic that went into this decision, and I wouldn’t even attempt to because I really like the move. Whether I win a system or not, I do believe this promotion will be amazing for Nintendo and the Nintendo Switch. I remember back in the early days of Nintendo as a home gaming entity, and the number of promotions that went into making sure EVERYONE knew about the NES were astounding. In fact, many companies employed a lot of the same tactics…and they worked wonderfully well! I mean, to this day, I cannot eat Reese’s Pieces without thinking about ET: the Extra Terrestrial (and I love my Reese’s).

Of note: Nintendo and Pepsi also have another promotion for the Nintendo Switch that is also serving to help Pepsi promote their new flavor, Pepsi Fire (cinnamon flavored). For more details visit: Pepsi Fire Sweepstakes

What do you think of this latest promotion by the company with regards to the Nintendo Switch? Will you be trying to win a console? Do you like the snacks that come in the Variety Packs? Are you a fan of Pepsi products, in general?

As always, gaming is meant to be fun, so keep gaming!!


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New Pokémon Direct Tomorrow Morning

Nintendo announced that the company will holding a Nintendo Direct in the morning. This Direct will be focused on Pokémon, and presumably the company’s plans for the rumored, yet unannounced, Nintendo Switch offering.

In one week, Nintendo’s E3 will kick off with their Nintendo Spotlight presentation, followed by the Treehouse Live streams, but it seems the company wants to lead into the event next week by sharing some potentially blockbuster news this week.

It will definitely be interesting to see what the company does with this 8-minute video presentation, and I look forward to seeing it all. The company has a track record of sharing big news leading into E3, with mixed results to follow, but with all that Nintendo has been doing to push forward their message and advance their momentum, I am supremely confident that their recent history will go a long way toward establishing a winning week ahead.

Are you a Pokémon fan? What do you expect to see during the Direct? Do you think this is foreshadowing for the coming E3 information?

As always, gaming is meant to be fun, so keep gaming!!

Nintendo Switch Online Coming in 2018

Nintendo has finally given details on the highly anticipated paid online services coming to the Nintendo Switch. The service was mentioned at launch, with more details to come soon, and now we have those.

Several key aspects of the online service have finally been revealed, as they were definitely pieces of the puzzle that we needed to know. One thing to note immediately on this announcement is that the service is due to launch in 2018, not later this year, as was initially explained. This could quite possibly be due to delay with the smartphone app that ties the entire service together. I’m pretty sure the app was to be launched shortly after the launch of the console, but now a free, limited version is due in the Summer of 2017.

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Nintendo Switch Online features.jpg

We learned of the pricing plans that will be available in order to access the paid-specific features, we also learned of the Nintendo eShop deals that will be available solely to subscribers, and of course the smartphone app.

Nintendo Switch Online pricing.jpg

Nintendo eShop deals

Special offers for subscribers may include discounts on select digital games and content.

Online lobby and voice chat

Our new dedicated smart device app will connect to Nintendo Switch and let you invite friends to play online, set play appointments, and chat with friends during online matches in compatible games─all from your smart device.

A free, limited version of this app will be available for download in summer 2017.

As it stands now, we have a lot of new information, but we’re also being advised to check back for more details before the official launch in 2018.

It’s really exciting to see the full Nintendo Switch system coming together. As more and more of the features and amenities are fleshed out, the more and more attractive the console will be for even more people around the world. Nintendo is already setting personal records for sales with the Nintendo Switch, and as it becomes even better, it will appeal to the masses that much more.

Are you excited to experience the full scale online service? Are you pleased with the pricing model? Will you subscribe to the Nintendo Switch Online service?

As always, gaming is meant to be fun, so keep gaming!!


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Nintendo Scores BIG With ARMS Global Testpunch!

Over the course of the last 2-3 years or so, Nintendo has subtly and even aggressively changed the ways in which they share their message with the fans, and the gaming audience, on the whole. Gone are the days of the confusing messaging; gone are the days of “is it a new console, or is it an add-on?”; and gone are the days of “when will Nintendo make a new IP?” The company is swiftly moving into the realm of “This is what we are doing now, and you are going to love it”…and they’re absolutely right!

During the Wii U generation, the company was forced to make some aggressive and even unprecedented moves to ensure their messaging was exactly where they needed it to be. A new advertisement firm was hired to get the word out about Nintendo and their products, new personnel were hired to lead Sales and Marketing, and overall, the company has just done an amazing job of getting their hardware and software into the hands of potential purchasers.

dasumihxgaef3qcThis past weekend (Memorial Day weekend in the US, by the way) Nintendo launched a Global Testpunch for their new and quickly-releasing franchise, ARMS. Similar to the Global Testfire held for the Splatoon franchise, the ARMS Global Testpunch allows Nintendo Switch owners to play a demo version of the game globally during set time slots. This not only allows fans to get an early look at/play of the game, but also give Nintendo an opportunity to stress-test the servers in preparation to launch the game next month.

Another wonderful side effect of these Tests is the opportunity to raise awareness and anticipation for new titles as they prepare to launch. ARMS is definitely benefiting from this treatment as it is climbing up the Amazon Best Sellers chart this weekend as people get a taste of the game and what it has to offer.

Amazon Best Sellers as of May 27 at 10pm

Amazon Best Sellers List for Video Games as of Saturday evening, May 27, just after 10pm EST.

Having avenues to continually connect with fans, gauge demand, and gain feedback is imperative for the company and it appears to be working wonders for them thus far. I am constantly remarking that this is an amazing time to be a Nintendo fan, and it seems that each week Nintendo keeps proving me right. The company’s mission to put more smiles on the faces of the people they come in contact with by the use of their strong and storied IP is only bolstered by their stellar performance in the marketplace right now, and the surprises that are sure to come over the next couple of weeks are sure to keep that performance going.

Were you able to participate in the ARMS Global Testpunch? What were your impressions of the game? Are you anticipating getting the full retail version? What do you like most of the Nintendo Switch, so far?

As always, gaming is meant to be fun, so keep gaming!!


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Nintendo’s Summer of Play

Since early March, Nintendo has been keeping their proverbial “foot on the gas” so-to-speak when it comes to promoting their new home console, and even their still-successful, yet aging, handheld device, as well. The Nintendo Switch is selling out as soon as stock can be replenished at retailers worldwide. That, in addition to the continued success of the Nintendo 3DS family of systems (the New Nintendo 2DS XL, included), make the coming months and even years absolutely critical for Nintendo as a company.

Traditionally, the Summer months are slower than the rest of the year, as companies look to push out their BIG titles in the Holiday season. Nintendo, however, has a separate agenda than those other companies, as they are viewing this Summer as a time that is meant to advance momentum. After all, the Nintendo Switch did just launch only two and a half month ago, globally!

“For families looking to purchase Nintendo Switch or a new handheld in the Nintendo 3DS family of systems, the Summer of Play tour is the perfect opportunity to give these popular systems a try,” said Doug Bowser, Nintendo of America’s Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing. “And since each stop is filled with familiar Nintendo characters and camera-ready visuals, the tour is a great place to spend a summer afternoon, take photos and create long-lasting memories with everyone in the family.”

The Summer of Play Tour will visit the following cities on these dates:

Date City Venue
June 9-11 Irvine, California Irvine Spectrum Center
June 16-18 Pleasanton, California Alameda County Fair
June 23-25 Bloomington, Minnesota Mall of America®
June 30-July 2 Milwaukee, Wisconsin Henry Maier Festival Park
(Summerfest Grounds)
July 7-9 Chicago Navy Pier
July 14-16 Glendale, Arizona Arrowhead Towne Center
July 20-23 San Diego Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina
(San Diego Comic-Con)
July 28-30 Arlington, Texas The Parks Mall at Arlington
Aug. 4-6 Miami, Florida Aventura Mall
Aug. 11-13 Bethlehem, Pennsylvania Musikfest
Aug. 18-20 New York DUMBO Waterfront
Aug. 25-27 King of Prussia, Pennsylvania King of Prussia Mall
Sept. 2-4 Baltimore Harborplace

So, as you can see, the entire Summer will be full of events from Nintendo all over the United States, and lead right into the Holiday season where not only will the excitement over the games that people will play at these events will be selling, but the highly anticipated titles of the Fall/Winter will begin to release, as well. Heightened awareness of Nintendo, their systems, and software is exactly what the company wants to create in the marketplace right now, and this series of events will go a very long way toward making that possible.

Nintendo Switch games scheduled to appear on the tour include:

Nintendo 3DS games scheduled to appear on the tour include:

On top of all the fun and games, My Nintendo members who check in with their My Nintendo QR Code will also be able to receive a free gift item (while supplies last). For more information, visit https://my.nintendo.com/news.

Will you be able to attend any of these events this Summer? Have you been able to get your hands on either of the new Nintendo devices, yet? If not, do you think attending one of these events will help you decide whether you will pick up one sooner or later?

As always, gaming is meant to be fun, so keep gaming!!


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