By Operation Rainfall Contributor / May 7th, 2016
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article do not reflect those of oprainfall or their affiliates.
Nintendo has announced their E3 line-up for 2016, and it isn’t much to write home about. The only playable game on this year’s show floor will be The Legend of Zelda Wii U. This news is often followed by, “Oh, great! I get to play Zelda on Wii U!” And then it hits you: that’s all that’s going to be there. And then you realize the embarrassment this company is setting themselves up for.
Nintendo revealed earlier this year that The Legend of Zelda Wii U will be delayed till 2017 and will also be released on the company’s new console: the NX. Additionally, they have announced there will be no talks about the NX at E3 2016. What this means is that Nintendo’s entire show floor will feature a dozen-or-so versions of their new Zelda game; all being played on what is to be considered old hardware by the time the game releases next year. For a company who has games like Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE and Paper Mario: Color Splash planned to release this year, to throw those aside and show a game that isn’t coming out till next year makes me wonder, “Do they even care?”
The lack of Nintendo exclusive titles is a huge problems for the loyal fans that have purchased the console and this topic deserves to be brought into this discussion. Nintendo needs to be honest with their fan base, but to do that the company would need to admit that they did something wrong. They were wrong to tease The Legend of Zelda Wii U in 2014, only to slowly back out of their promise to the fans who bought the Wii U system (after the initial reveal of the game) only to have to wait three more years. And to top it off these early adopters were told that the game will be released on a new, more powerful console.
Let’s not stop there. What needs to be asked is “Why E3, Nintendo?” Let us remember that E3 is not a fan event. Most gamers only dream of attending the show in their lifetime. The majority of attendees are members of the industry or games media. Meaning, Nintendo is going to show this one game where their competitors are showing dozens, ultimately becoming overshadowed and lost in the constant stream of video game coverage coming out of the show. Why not show this game at an event where die-hard Nintendo fans will be able to get their hands on it? You remember those fans, right, Nintendo? The ones that buy every game you put out no matter what changes it goes through. Those are the gamers the company needs to be showing this game to; not members of the press who are pretty much “stoked” for any game that fits their personal agendas. Aside from that, Nintendo could have used E3 to prove that Metroid: Federation Force isn’t the terrible game fans think it is (which for all I know it is as bad as we think it is). Or they could even announce a new series of Amiibo.
There is no reason why Nintendo as a company should waste their time and money making an appearance at the show this year. The company should follow what EA and Activision have done and exclude themselves. My advice to the company: Let the Wii U go: unplug the life support on the console that was destroyed by bad marketing and poor third party relationships. Showing off the old version of the new Zelda is not going to make people buy a Wii U. If anything, it’s going to make people wonder how much better the game is going to be on NX. In addition to that, save yourself the embarrassment of paying for your E3 floor space and host an event for your fans. In a Time interview, President of Nintendo Tatsumi Kimishima stated, “I think our first job right now is to make sure that the customers, those 10 million customers who have a Wii U at home have software to play, and we need to make sure that they are satisfied with their purchase and continue to enjoy playing on this platform.” Well, Nintendo, this was your chance to prove that you haven’t given up on your fans, and it seems you have failed.