Big Nintendo Announcement Coming Soon [Rumor]

Nintendo has had a big year so far. They launched the Nintendo Switch, the first home gaming system you can play anywhere. In a surprise announcement, they announced the New 2DS XL, coming alongside two new 3DS games. They wowed us at E3 with a big shocker: Metroid Prime 4, as well as showed other new games coming to the platform such as Kirby, Yoshi, Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle, and Super Mario Odyssey. And most recently, they continued their coverage with more at Gamescom 2017. However, if you thought Nintendo was done this year, they’re not.

We all know Nintendo produces news throughout the year, with some of its biggest announcements at E3. But Nintendo likes to surprise us when we least expect it. Though this year’s E3 was great, there was something still amiss.

As Reggie Fils-Aime said in several interviews, Nintendo will bring all of its major franchises to each platform. So what haven’t we seen on Switch yet? We have not yet seen Animal Crossing, F-Zero, Donkey Kong, Star Fox (though we are getting Star Fox 2 on the SNES Classic), Earthbound, and of course, Super Smash Bros. Additionally, we still have not seen Retro Studios’ new IP or anything from Next Level Games. So what’s coming next?

According to SupermetalDave64, a prominent Nintendo YouTuber with industry contacts, Nintendo is preparing a large announcement very soon.

He says the first announcement will not be from Nintendo, but it may be related. The second, he says, will be from Nintendo, and may come in the form of a mid-September Nintendo Direct.

Since the first announcement won’t be from Nintendo, we can only speculate it will be a big third party announcement for the Switch. Currently, it could be anyone’s guess, but if I were to bet on it, it would be a AAA third party game from 2K, Ubisoft, or Activision. Rumors have been pegging Assassin’s Creed, Call of Duty WWII, and LA Noire for Switch, so we will find out.

PlayStation has a big press conference on September 19, so it may also be something announced here:

https://gematsu.com/2017/08/2017-playstation-press-conference-japan-set-september-19

As for Nintendo’s own announcement, it is also unknown at this point. However, it is slated to be coming soon after. Nintendo is holding a special panel on September 1 at PAX West to possibly talk about something that will be revealed just before it. It could potentially be about an already announced game such as Super Mario Odyssey or Metroid: Samus Returns. Or it could be about something brand new.

If we were to put any immediate bets on what would be unveiled next month, it would be Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo Switch, or Retro Studios’ new IP. Or maybe even Metroid Prime 4? Virtual Console is also a good bet, with GameCube titles recently appearing on Nintendo’s websites.

What else could it be?

Additional speculation suggests Nintendo could be revealing a new console. Not only has SuperMetalDave hinted at this before, but our own independent developer source from previous interviews has stated that there were three parts to the NX: one portable, one docked, and… something else. And one has not been shown off yet.

We will see soon.

SuperMetalDave64, the rumor’s perpetuator, has been hinting at this for weeks, saying there are two parts to this, and plans to hold a livestream to discuss after each announcement. He also hints that Nintendo will hold a Direct or a special event in mid-September for the final announcement.

SuperMetalDave has gotten things correct before, such as two new Metroid games being announced at E3 2017. So there is reason to put faith into his presumptions.

He’s put together a rather interesting teaser trailer hinting at what is in store.

Stay tuned to Gamer Splash for the latest on this topic.

-Noah Sanchez, Gamer Splash

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Inti Creates Anime Expo 2017 Panel Footage [Exclusive]

Anime Expo 2017 hosted a variety of great content, including a strong gaming presence, as well. Inti Creates hosted a panel titled “Publishing Japanese Games for a Worldwide Audience on Nintendo Switch” and we were in attendance to bring you exclusive footage from the panel on YouTube!

The developers went through their history as a company and explained how they came to develop games for worldwide release and get into the the American indie scene.

In a surprise no one was expecting, they also unveiled both Shovel Knight and Shantae as playable DLC characters for Blaster Master Zero and invited the original franchise devs to play the DLC live for the first time!

Additionally, they held a Q&A session where some interesting details were shared.

Check out the full panel (with exclusive footage of their Inti Creates history video) below:

Check out Blaster Master Zero Shovel Knight DLC gameplay with Nick Wozniak, the Pixelmancer from Yacht Club Games!

Check out Blaster Master Zero Shantae DLC debut live gameplay with Matt Bozon, the creator of Shantae, from WayForward!

-Noah Sanchez, Gamer Splash

E3 2017 Highlights and Cool Photos!

Hey there!

I went to E3 for the first time and it was amazing! I have a very fun story to share about it, but I’ll keep it brief. While there, I visited the Nintendo, Xbox, and PlayStation booths, along with Sega’s!

In regards to news, much of that has been shared online already. However, I will offer my impressions of my experiences and some great pics I took of each booth I visited. So without further ado, let’s get started!

Nintendo:

Like last year with Breath of the Wild, Nintendo put you into the world of Super Mario Odyssey for this year’s E3 booth. You walked into New Donk City as a Nintendo player, and were surrounded with friendly New Donk citizens (Nintendo employees), as well as many fans eager to try all the latest Nintendo games. Nintendo had a great range of titles to play, from Super Mario Odyssey to Splatoon 2 to ARMS to Pokken Tournament DX, as well as third party titles, such as Mario + Rabbids, FIFA 18, and Sonic Forces.

I got to play Splatoon 2 (both Turf War and Salmon Run modes) and Super Mario Odyssey. I played Odyssey several times and had a blast. I even got to try it in portable mode and do both stages! I love how it feels similar to Sunshine and 64 as a sandbox Mario game is my favorite type of Mario game. There was a lot to do in New Donk City and many hidden areas, which I really enjoyed. This was also something I live about Sunshine that was brought back, so it made me happy. The wall jumps and triple jumps were also a welcome return, and Mario and Cappy felt great to control with the JoyCons.

Splatoon 2 Turf War was also very fun, and I enjoyed playing with all the new weapons available. It felt great to play with the new Splatoon 2 Pro Controller on a TV, and I enjoyed winning with my team and getting a Splatoon 2 shirt and pin! I was most eager to play Salmon Run and finally got to on my third day (the systems kept glitching out at the end of day 2, so they told us to come back the next day.) Salmon Run was very fun, and we got a different Splatoon 2 pin for playing! It was played exclusively in portable mode. I enjoy the concept of Salmon Run and it feels like teamwork and communication is even more necessary to succeed in this one. It is longer than an average Splatoon match with employees saying each round would last 15 minutes. It still breezed by, however, and it was very fun and well balanced. It was worth the 2.5 hour wait.

Sonic Forces felt great on the Switch and the graphics weren’t too much worse than it’s counterparts on other systems. Did not notice a huge difference at 30fps. It was great switching from 2D to 3D and I found it surprising how much it felt like 2D Sonic but also was relieved that it felt there was a bit more to do in the 3D environment coming from a Sonic Adventure fan like myself. It is great on the Switch, and you can play it portably, which is the point.

Also played FIFA 18 with my friend, and it was a blast. The graphics were not too great, I could not see any detail on the characters faces. However, the gameplay was sharp and very responsive. It is a great GAME for Switch, even if the graphics aren’t as up to par as the other versions. Again, it’s also portable.

Booth pics:

 

Sega:

I went to the SEGA booth and tried out both Sonic Forces and Sonic Mania. I played on a PlayStation 4 console both times. Both were super fun, and I got to try out new levels and take home posters for both games! I played as Tails on the Saloon level in Sonic Mania and found it great to be able to nearly constantly fly everywhere. Great level design with a lot to explore. In Sonic Forces I played the second level and had a blast switching from 2D to 3D. The game is better than it looks once you play it! Also saw the other half of GameXplain in line!

Booth pics:

 

PlayStation:

The booth was blue as you’d expect. Gran Turismo Sport looked stunning on a 4K HDR TV. I did not get to play anything, though. I didn’t have the chance to take as many pics here, but here is what I have:

Booth pics:

 

 

Xbox:

Xbox had one of the best shows of E3 in my opinion (alongside Nintendo and Ubisoft) where they showed off the new 4K Xbox One X, and a ton of new games coming to the system! I got invited to a VIP after-hours party at the booth for ExpertZone members, and was able to try nearly all the games I wanted to! I played Dragonball FighterZ (super fun and a deep fighting game with beautiful hand-drawn art style), Forza 7 (looks sharp in 4K, but the detail looked about the same to me as Forza 6), Need For Speed Payback (graphics were beautiful, enjoyed how the game felt and played. Played a mission where we had to take down a truck and some cars), and Sonic Forces (tried custom hero level, Park Avenue. Could not beat it! Very difficult platforming.) I also got to hold the Xbox One X!

Here are my booth pics:

 

 

So there you have it! My first E3 was super fun, and I have to thank my friends Daniel and Juan for helping me go with them.  It wouldn’t have happened this year, otherwise!

Can’t wait to cover E3 next year in an even bigger capacity!

Till next time,

-Noah Sanchez, Gamer Splash

What to Expect from the Big Three at E3 ’17

Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft all have a big E3 ahead of them. Microsoft is announcing their Project Scorpio console, Sony will bring new PlayStation 4 games and updates to already announced games to its press conference, and Nintendo is bringing new Switch and 3DS games into the spotlight.

What to Expect

Microsoft

Microsoft will be showing their new Xbox One console, code-named Project Scorpio, a console they are labeling “the most powerful console ever,” with 4K rendering and AMD FreeSync capabilities. New games expected to be announced are Forza Motorsport 7, Crackdown 3, something from 343 Industries (not Halo 6 or Halo 3 remastered), State of Decay 2, more info on Sea of Thieves, and more first-party surprises.

Third party games will also be heavily featured, with games like Red Dead Redemption 2, FIFA, Call of Duty WWII, and Destiny 2 likely making an appearance, as well as indie games. Expect Microsoft to show off how well games, new and old, run on its new hardware.

Microsoft is first to kick off E3 with a press conference Sunday at 2PM PT:

http://www.xbox.com/en-US/e3?&ocid=PORTALS_SEM_google_xbox%20e3&cid=PORTALS_SEM_google_xbox%20e3

 

Sony

Sony is set to have a big E3, showing off new games, and updates to other previously announced games like God of War, Gran Turismo Sport, Spiderman PS4, Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite, Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, and Days Gone confirmed.

The Last of Us Part II, the Final Fantasy 7 remake, Detroit: Become Human, Dreams, and Kingdom Hearts III are also likely to make an appearance. It may additionally introduce brand-new games and IPs, and showcase a good amount of new third-party content such as Star Wars Battlefront II, Call of Duty: WWII, Destiny 2, Resident Evil, and Red Dead Redemption 2.

Sony is also likely to announce new games and experiences for PlayStation VR, as well as more exclusive indie games.

A new PlayStation portable and exclusive Monster Hunter and Bloodborne 2 games are also rumored, but unlikely to be shown at this time.

Sony’s press conference will be on Monday at 5PM PT:

https://www.playstation.com/en-us/e3/

Nintendo

Nintendo is set to have a huge E3 this year, as it is the first year the Nintendo Switch is on the market. They will focus on Super Mario Odyssey, but show off other games previously announced, such as ARMS, Splatoon 2, Xenoblade Chronicles 2, Fire Emblem Warriors, and Pokken Tournament DX for Nintendo Switch.

They will also likely announce a new Metroid game, a Smash Bros. 4 port, a new IP from Retro Studios, as well as the new Mario Rabbids Ubisoft collab game here. In addition, Nintendo will likely show a glimpse of new DLC content for The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, and possibly 1-2 Switch.

Other Switch games that could be announced are Pikmin 4, a new Luigi’s Mansion, Animal Crossing, F-Zero, and Mother 3, as well as the Virtual Console service for Switch. Animal Crossing and F-Zero will not likely be announced at this time, though Mother 3 does see a great chance at showing up this time, as previous Mother games were announced for Wii U at E3 in past years.

Third party heavyweights like Call of Duty WWII, Payday 2, Shin Megami Tensei, Monster Hunter, Dragon Quest, Skyrim, FIFA, NBA, Sonic the Hedgehog, Suda51’s new Travis Touchdown game, Star Wars, Resident Evil, Yooka-Laylee, Redout, RiME, and other independent games are possible to make an appearance here, as well.

Besides Switch, new 3DS games such as Ever Oasis, Pokemon Ultra Sun and Pokemon Ultra Moon, Hey! Pikmin, Miitopia, Kirby 3DS games, as well as an unannounced port of Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga, are all up to make an appearance.

As always, Nintendo may also surprise us with another brand new game or two, as well.

Nintendo could also show us its VR concept for Switch, but we doubt it will reveal it this year, to keep the focus on its upcoming games.

After the Nintendo Spotlight at E3 event, Nintendo will host a Nintendo Treehouse live event with live gameplay and commentary of many of the new games, as well as invitational tourneys for Splatoon 2, ARMS, and Pokken Tournament DX.

Watch Nintendo’s event starting Tuesday at 9AM PT:

https://e3.nintendo.com/

 

Are you hyped for E3 this year? Anything else you’d like to see? Leave us a comment below.

-Noah Sanchez, Gamer Splash

Two New Metroid Games Being Developed by Retro Studios and Climax Studios [Rumor]

Update: SuperMetalDave64 has since stated that there is still a Metroid game coming at E3, but the studio may be another studio Nintendo has worked with before, if not Climax Studios. Climax Studios has denied involvement with the game on Twitter.

Original story follows:

According to popular Nintendo YouTuber, SuperMetalDave64, two new Metroid games are currently deep into development for Nintendo Switch, with at least one being highly likely to be shown at E3.

Dave appeared on SpawnCast Saturday to share this information.

According to him, Retro Studios has been hard at work on a new 3D Metroid Prime game (he refers to it as Metroid Prime 4), as well as a new IP.

This would line up with recent reports from Emily Rogers, stating the studio has been developing a new title for over three years.

Second, Dave also mentions that another studio, Climax Studios, is developing a new Metroid game, and it’s “probably not going to be a 2D Metroid.” He says that while both projects could be shown off at E3 this year, the Climax Studios project is much more likely to be revealed.

Climax Studios has a history of 2D and 3D games. They released Silent Hills: Shattered Memories for the Wii back in 2009, the 2.5D Assassins Creed Chronicles series in 2015/2016, and are working on the space title Riftstar Raiders. They would be a great fit for the Metroid franchise given the types of games they have produced.

This news would also make sense, as others have speculated that the reason Metroid-like games such as Axiom Verge have not come to Nintendo Switch yet, is that a new 2D Metroid game could be coming soon, and Nintendo wants to keep Metroid to itself once it is announced, to ensure no similar game competition and the most excitement around its announcement.

A new pair of Metroid games would certainly be exciting, and this E3 may be the perfect time to announce one.

Watch the full clip discussing it here:

Would you be interested to see Climax Studios’ take on a Metroid game? Are you excited to finally see Metroid return in 3D? Let us know in the comments below.

-Noah Sanchez, Gamer Splash

Nintendo Switch – New System Features Detailed, Coming This Year [Unconfirmed]

The Nintendo Switch has been out for nearly two months now. While it has been selling spectacularly, there has been little in the way of system updates. The updates to the system so far have been minor, fixing bugs or improving stability, but there have been no new features added since the day one update.

According to our source, an independent developer close to the company, Nintendo will be adding valuable new system features to the Switch this year. The details are likely to be announced by Nintendo during their E3 presentation or a later Nintendo Direct.

The new features are as follows:

Nintendo Switch notifications – The Nintendo Switch will show notifications from the exposed part of the screen while docked. Notifications may also show up when in portable mode similar to a smartphone screen.

Friend Messenger – With the online service will come messaging between friends. Notifications can be shown on the Switch screen.

Nintendo Switch Themes – Currently, there are two themes to choose on the Nintendo Switch. More will be coming in a future system update, tying in with new games such as Splatoon 2. The new themes will come with music. There will be a theme shop similar to the 3DS.

Streaming Apps – Streaming apps such as Netflix, Hulu, and YouTube are being prepared and will come this fiscal year. Nintendo wants to release the apps all at once, which is why they have not been released yet.

Cloud Saving – Game saves will be stored in your Nintendo Account, provided you are subscribed to Nintendo’s online service, this Fall.

Web browser – The Nintendo Switch will get a full-fledged web browser this year, similar to the Wii U’s offering. The Switch already has a built-in web browser, but its use is limited and not very accessible.

Wii U Pro Controller and GameCube controller Support – In order to support the Super Smash Bros. release this fiscal year, Nintendo will enable compatibility with Wii U Pro Controllers and GameCube controllers, with a new USB adapter for the latter.

If these features come to fruition, they would be a welcome addition to the Switch, already a stellar gaming console.

What do you think of these features? Would you like to see them come to the Switch? Leave us a comment below.

-Noah Sanchez, Gamer Splash

Breath of the Wild Frame-Rate Issues Are Not Power-Related, Originally Ran at 60fps on Switch

According to independent Nintendo developer Bplus games, the frame-rate issues in Breath of the Wild are not related to the game’s resolution or system power, as previously thought. Instead, the developer says the issues are due to programming bugs.

The current notion is that the frame-rate drops in the Switch version of Breath of the Wild are power-related, because the game tends to perform better in portable mode. It is thought that because the game runs at 720p in portable mode, that is why it performs better than in TV mode, which is reported to run at 900p.

However, according to the developer, this not the case. Instead, he asserts that the Switch does have enough power to run the game well in both modes, even at a higher resolution. He says the frame-rate drop problem is due to poor optimization of the programming for the game in TV mode:

Most of the frame-rate issues in Zelda are just programming failures. If Nintendo sets the right people to it they can totally fix them.

Some dev friends and I have the same feeling about that. Because sometimes it is just a specific zoom ratio that makes the frame-rate drop. Just zoom in a bit closer or further away and it runs super smooth.

The problem is that the game wants to show both near and far LOD (Level of Detail) objects. This is a frame-rate killer if two objects are in each other. To show that, it would need around 10 times the power.

And if you see Kakariko Village, the framerate hell there, and then the more beautiful Hateno Village, which runs super smoothly, you see that doesn’t make sense. So something else is going wrong there.

I mention that in my experience, the frame-rate issues usually only happen when there is a lot of grass near Link. I believe this is because of all of the detail and animations there are to render for each piece of grass on screen at once.

But he explains:

Yes, but if you zoom in just an inch or two, it has to show even more details of grass, yet it runs super smoothly again. Same thing when you zoom out just a bit. So on that one zoom ratio, it needs to render too much. It is an LOD problem that is known by the devs that need to handle that.

So indeed, it is not even an issue directly with the grass itself, but instead an issue of how much detail is rendered at certain zoom ratios.

I mention that the portable mode does change more things besides resolution, as noted by Digital Foundry, so this means more things change in TV mode too.

He agrees, but says there are even more changes beyond those.

A lot of things change between docked mode for Switch, besides the resolution.

The distance for LOD’s are changed, the types of texture filters, the distance of texture filters, levels of tri-linear mappings, etc.

All depending on graphics. But for example, the zoom ratio of the LODs are changed, which is a coding part. That also would bold the issue with the zoom level frame-rate issues.

So yes, it is a programming issue in TV mode that doesn’t relate to power.

I’m sure Nintendo has the right people to know the issue and to solve it, so we’ll see if they issue another patch soon.

So indeed, the frame-rate issues in Breath of the Wild are a programming issue that can be easily solved by Nintendo, if it is simply the case of having the LOD set to the wrong values at certain zoom ratios.

If so, it should be reassuring to people who thought the Switch wasn’t strong enough to run Zelda in TV mode at a higher resolution – it’s simply a programming issue, not a raw GPU power issue. If the issue is indeed this simple, it would seem easy to fix, so let’s hope Nintendo issues an update soon!

One more interesting tidbit:

If you take a closer look, you can see a lot of things changing. BUT they could have done more!

From what Nintendo devs told me, the whole game originally ran at 60 frames on Switch. But they did not want it to have too many hiccups. So they focused it down to 30 frames.

There is enough of power there to run the game well. Just some programming issues.

I understand an open world at that size, it is unbelievable how smooth it all runs when you think of what it does load all the time and that it all works in real time.

-Noah Sanchez, Gamer Splash