DISCUSSION: WHAT WE’RE PREDICTING FOR THE POKEMON DIRECT

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We’re just hours away from the most anticipating Pokemon Direct yet. There’s been a lot of speculations lately, such as leaked images of logos for what could be the new Pokemon games. Pokemon ‘Sun’ and Pokemon ‘Moon’ has been trademarked – of course we don’t know what’s in store, so as per usual we discuss!

Tina of Nintendo Social Group: “I’m very pumped up for the Pokemon Direct. I have a few predictions – first would be a release date of Pokemon GO! A worldwide release date. However because they haven’t even shown how the app will look like, maybe we’ll just get a sneak peak…hopefully. Secondly, the Detective Pikachu game getting a western release. It’s only available in Japan right now.

As for the ‘main’ games I am mostly expecting an announcement of Pokemon Z. I feel as though Zygarde will obviously be the main star, legendary wise. With Volcanion and Magiana, they will most likely make it a side story post game kinda like with Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire.

Now, with Sun and Moon…I still have my doubts. Mainly because I feel that it is far too early for a brand new gen of Pokemon. Could it be remakes of older games? Could it be tied in with the Kalos region? Well, the only way to find out is eagerly wait for the Pokemon Direct to take place. Either way I’m still very excited and I cannot wait!”

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Adam of Nintendo Social Group: “In the Pokemon Direct, I’m hoping to see details on a new Pokemon game and to see if Pokemon Sun and Moon is actually going to happen! I would like to see Pokemon Z, because seeing as there is a lot more details on Zygarde having different forms and having the Z cells, it would be a pretty nice story to see in game .I also hope to finally see Volcanion and Magearna in a game. They could introduce an episode at the end Pokemon Z, to show a story for both of them just like in the upcoming movie which is about the pair of them. More information on Pokemon GO is something I can see happening in the direct too!”

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Claire of Nintendo Social Group: “Twenty years! Man I feel old! I remember buying a Gameboy from my best friends younger brother for ten pounds then going out the next day and buying Pokemon Red…my very first game I ever bought myself!

That game saw me through the summer hols and I loved it! I have high hopes for the re release on direct as it gives many of the original fans a much needed nostalgia trip. Not only that but many of these original fans will have little ‘Pokemon trainers’ of their own who will have never had a chance to play the original – let alone hold a Gameboy!

I am hoping – strange as it may sound- that they keep the game more or less the same as it was. The charm in the game, above many things, is how well it did in an age of PS1 and the aging but ever popular SNES.  It proved that it didn’t need to be big and flashy as long as it was enjoyable to play… and it WAS!

Of course I am expecting a couple of new features, Nintendo will no doubt want to show off new shiny things that 1996 kids could only dream of doing!

I personally will be buying red AND yellow as I had them before and am looking forward to being reunited with an old friend… and also not needing a flipping link cable should I wish to trade!”

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Henry of Heythrop College Pokemon Society: 20 years of Pokemon and on that very anniversary, Nintendo announce a new Pokemon Direct. Earlier this Wednesday, they also released a new Pokemom photo booth app. Is that related? Who’s to say? But there is a certain gravity to the announcement brought about by the date. The last main series Pokemon games, Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, came out in 2014, meaning it’s coming up to around two years. In recent years, this has been a fairly long drought in terms of new content and this leads me to think there’s no doubt that another release for the Nintendo 3DS is likely. But being Nintendo and being full of surprises, I can’t yet say for certain what the content of said game would be.

Of course, the “third” game for X and Y is not yet released. The names and the presence of Zygarde make a Pokemon Z a solid bet. Yet there’s also a question of Magearna, a newly discovered Pokemom that has not appeared in any previous games. The past would then suggest an entire new region with the rest of Magearna’s friends; then what of Pokemon Z?

As it’s also the 20th anniversary of Pokemon Red and Green, there’s also the possibility of a second remake for these original games. This is a less likely possibility, but the story of the Kanto region and Team Rocket, Professor Fuji and Mega Evolution, the fate of Red and Gold, all these storylines have untapped potential. Perhaps not a remake but a fully fledged direct sequel, like Gold and Silver were 16 years ago.

And as a final point, it needs to be said that we could even see something utterly unexpected. Danny Devito confirmed for Detective Pikachu’s localisation? A release date for Pokemon GO? Perhaps even the long elusive Pokemon MMO? Also consider the possibility for a Wii U release of a main series game. But the occasion surely deserves something a little bigger.

One thing’s for certain. If the announcement is only 5 minutes long, then expect a quality over quantity announcement. Perhaps we’ll only get a brief peak at the logo or the like. Whatever we get will leave us desperate for more. But remember, wanting and greed is an endless cycle that only leads to brief satisfaction and endless suffering”

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DISCUSSION: THE NEW NINTENDO 3DS/3DS XL

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The New Nintendo 3DS and New Nintendo 3DS XL are now a year old. As owners of the newly improved Nintendo handheld, we all look back on what we really liked about the New 3DS.

Tina of Nintendo Social Group: “I own the small New Nintendo 3DS. I’m a sucker for personalisation of items that I own, so you can imagine how much I adore the coverplates they have for it – especially the Animal Crossing plates. But other than that, I really like how fast the New Nintendo 3DS and I’m so glad Nintendo made the 3D function a lot more balanced. The fact that it stabilises after detecting your eye movement, you can really tell they put a lot of effort into it. They could really do with making more use of the c-stick. As far as I know, only games such as Smash Bros, Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate and Xenoblade Chronicles 3D enable it. Well, other than that I’m extremely satisfied with the handheld!”

Adam of Nintendo Social Group: “With the New Nintendo 3DS XL, I love how well games run on it compared to the old 3DS XL. I like the extra button, the c-stick which I can use when I play the Smash Bros 3DS demo – it tempted me to buy the full game. I’d also like to point out that the 3D has improved so much! It’s definitely better…I mean, it’ll keep stable no matter what angle you hold your 3DS!”

Andrew of Streetpass Southend: “It was in February 2011 when I first played The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D at a promotional event that was held before the release of the Nintendo 3DS. This awesome experience convinced me to preorder my handheld console that very day. Fast forward five years and I still use my 3DS on a daily basis. Nowadays I play games such as Super Smash Bros, Shovel Knight and even the StreetPass games. Whether you’re 7, 17 or 70, there’s a game on the Nintendo 3DS out there for you.”

 Henry of Heythrop College Pokemon Society: One year since the New 3DS came out, huh? Looking back it really does have a ridiculous name. People already struggle differentiating the 3DS with the previous DS so hearing that Nintendo were going to add an extra layer of confusion between the New 3DS and the 3DS already had me a little sceptical. Regardless, I was still set on buying one (and would actually go on to buy two, the New 3DS and the New 3DS XL). And at the end of the day, I think that’s what Nintendo were going for. All of the new features that the New 3DS has are aimed at those who had experienced the shortcomings of the older model. The 3D in the new model is much less cumbersome with the expanded sweet spots, the extra nub is the perfect answer to working the camera in any three dimensional game, which was a big issue with the original 3DS, and the face plates, well the faceplates are just a nice added bonus on top of it all. In that regard, it seems Nintendo recognised that it didn’t really matter if your regular Joe didn’t understand all the differences as long as their core fanbase did. In the Valentine’s spirit, one might even call it a love letter to Nintendo’s supporters and fans, especially the exclusive Ambassador model (although a £180 odd love letter that the recipient has to pay is more than enough for most people to be a little sceptical).

At the same time, die hard Nintendo collectors can now save a little by simply buying faceplates instead of entirely new consoles to celebrate their game releases (but there’s still limited edition new 3DS XLs for those who still have too much money). In built amiibo support also gives said collectors more motivation to pick up their favourite characters. Codename S.T.E.A.M, Chibi Robo: Ziplash and of course Super Smash Bros for 3DS all use amiibo functionality for an extra little bit of value, especially for the Fire Emblem characters.

The extra nub is another heavily under looked feature. For Super Smash Bros., it’s a little too imprecise and unwieldy for letting off those smash attacks (I also resent not being able to change them to tilt attacks) but it’s been an absolute Godsend for both Monster Hunter 4U and the Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D (which I believe we’re both released on the same day as the New 3DS. Certainly not a coincidence). The nub is perfect for navigating Volcanic Hollows and Pirate Dens, to the point where going back to Ocarina of Time 3D or Shin Megami Tensei IV feels incomplete. Combined with the increased processor speed, this year with the new 3DS has given Nintendo handheld games that much further to the “console in your pocket” experience. Just look at the upcoming Hyrule Warriors: Legends, especially comparing footage between the 3DS, new 3DS and Wii U version, or Xenoblade Chronicles for the Wii and Xenoblade Chronicles 3D!

Now, Nintendo looks to once again be taking command of the February month in 2016, at least for fans of the turn based. Fire Emblem: Fates comes out soon in the US, while us Europeans get a first taste of Square Enix’s Bravely Second. There’s also the elephant in the room, Pokemon, which is getting Virtual Console releases of the original Red and Blue on 3DS, and even the Mystery Dungeon games have already arrived on the Virtual Console for Wii U. Of course, with extra relevance to the theme of this article, there’s also the new Charizard and Blastoise face plates for the New 3DS.

There’s also an entire multitude of rumours for Nintendo’s new console, codenamed the NX. If they’re to be believed, it’s something that is somehow neither handheld nor console. What is it and how will it interact with the New 3DS, if at all? Nintendo’s foray into the mobile market might also affect handhelds somehow, and the new Nintendo online networking service. One thing’s for sure, and that’s the fact that one day we will all die. Enjoy your time alive while you still can, kids.”

If you’ve got the New Nintendo 3DS/3DS XL, comment what you like about it!

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DISCUSSION: TOP 10 FAVOURITE WII U/3DS GAMES OF 2015

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2015 will be coming to an end soon so us, Nintendo Social Group, have decided to list our favourite Wii U and 3DS games for this year.

Top 10 Wii U games

  1. Mario Party 10
  2. Xenoblade Chronicles X
  3. Super Mario Maker
  4. Splatoon
  5. Yoshi’s Woolly World
  6. Kirby and the Rainbow Paintbrush
  7. Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker
  8. Project Zero: Maiden of Black Water
  9. Mario Tennis: Ultra Smash
  10. Animal Crossing: Amiibo Festival

Top 10 3DS games

  1. Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer
  2. Chibi-Robo! Zip Lash
  3. Dragon Ball Z: Extreme Budoten
  4. Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate
  5. Hatsune Miku: Project Mirai DX
  6. Dr Mario: Miracle Cure
  7. Cooking Mama 5: Bon Appétit!
  8. Pokemon Shuffle
  9. Harvest Moon: The Lost Valley
  10. Gravity Falls: Legend of the Gnome Gemulets

Give us a list of your top 10 favourite Wii U/3DS games of 2015 in the comments!

 

DISCUSSION: SMASH BROS FINAL PRESENTATION

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So the final Smash Bros presentation we’ve all been waiting is taking place today at 10pm (if you’re in the UK).

Co-founders Tina and Adam discussed what they’d like to see during the final presentation. Here are the results!

What characters would you like to see get announced for Smash Bros?

Tina: I would love to see Cooking Mama get announced for Smash Bros. I voted for her for the Smash Bros fighter ballot. I already told people how I envisioned her final smash. I’d draw it out, but it would look odd.
It would be cool to have Rayman in the game too, but I have a feeling it wouldn’t happen. But then again, if Cloud got announced then maybe there’s hope?

Maybe it’s too late, but Chibi-Robo would make a great character for Smash.

Adam: In the Smash direct, I would love to see Bomberman make an appearance as it would bring an old school character back and it will be interesting to see what moves are incorporated with him. I think if Bomberman was to have a final smash in the game, it would be a bombardment of bombs that are launched in a direction where anything the bombs hit will be launched out.

I believe that seeing him or Ice Climbers make an appearance will be amazing to see, as it would make a lot of people in the Smash community happy!

 

What kind of stages do you think would get announced?

Tina: Well, from the games I’ve played for the Wii U this year I think they could do with stages based off games such as Kirby and the Rainbow Paintbrush, Yoshi’s Woolly World and Animal Crossing: Amiibo Festival. Why Amiibo Festival? I just imagine the season changing on the stage and having characters like Isabelle and Digby cheering people on, with balloons flying in the air.

Perhaps with games from the 3DS, maybe they could make stages based on Pokemon ORAS, Cooking Mama: Bon Appetite! And Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam Bros.

Adam: I believe that a Splatoon themed stage would be perfect or a FAST Racing NEO stage, where cars will appear at the bottom and players will need to avoid them.

What have you predicted so far for the presentation?

Tina: As much as it pains me to say this, I have made a prediction of Goku being announced as a playable character. It will annoy me because I’ll start to feel like Smash Bros will lose its uniqueness and start throwing in characters fanboys/girls are demanding for. That’s how I felt with Cloud from Final Fantasy.

I also predict more outfits for Mii Fighters, of course. I feel like it’s bound to happen!

Adam: I predict that they will announce more Mii Fighters skins from games like Shin Megami Tensei, as well as more details on Cloud from Final Fantasy. More stages and potentially 1-3 new characters.

 

What have you predicted so far for the final Smash Bros presentation? Let us know in the comments, we’d love to read on your discussions!

 

LET’S DISCUSS: FAVOURITE AMIIBO AND HOW MANY AMIIBO’S DO YOU OWN?

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Yesterday, it was amiibo’s first anniversary. It has sold very well, ever since its release and Nintendo deserve a pat on the back!

This is a little discussion thread – we want to know what’s your favourite amiibo and how many you’ve collected so far.

Us? We’ve got about 20-25. Our favourites have to be the Animal Crossing amiibo’s and the Pokemon amiibo’s. (This doesn’t include amiibo cards – got far too many!)