Nintendo’s disappointing sales of the 3DS are well documented, so the most poignant discussion point has been how Nintendo plans to breathe new life into the handheld system. Today we learned how: launching a sequel to The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, an SNES classic and one of the most-beloved Zelda games of all time.
News of a new 3DS game set in The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past world headlined a bevy of 3DS updates, most of which are bound to be overlooked entirely because of the Zelda knowledge bomb. The new Zelda game for 3DS is scheduled to launch this holiday season.
Nintendo didn’t share a final or even a working title for the new game in The Legend of Zelda series, but they did share that Nintendo developers are working on “a new game set in the world of The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, which launched for Super NES in 1992.” The game makes use of the 3D abilities of Nintendo 3DS, and allows Link to become a drawing and move along walls. A 3D video of the new game is now available to download in the Nintendo eShop for Nintendo 3DS.
So yeah, that’s your cue to go download it immediately.
In other 3DS news, a new game in the Yoshi’s Island series is also being developed for Nintendo 3DS, as are some Mario, Luigi, Donkey Kong and Animal Crossing titles. Individually these would be big news, so we’ve shared below all the info we have at this time. However, as stated above, the other game announcements will surely be seen as secondary news related to the Zelda info.
- Yoshi’s Island: The third installment in the beloved franchise is making its way to Nintendo 3DS. Yoshi and Baby Mario are back with flutter jumps, ground pounds and egg throws, plus a host of new actions that use the unique features of Nintendo 3DS. More details about the game, as well as launch timing, will be announced in the future.
- Mario & Luigi: Dream Team: The game takes place on a mysterious island, and challenges Mario to go between the real world and Luigi’s dreams to rescue Princess Peach. The game will be available in stores and in the Nintendo eShop on Aug. 11.
- Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D: This hand-held update of the smash-hit for Wii adds eight new stages that players can enjoy after they have completed the main game, as well as a New Mode optimized for hand-held play with new items and mechanics. The game launches in stores and in the Nintendo eShop on May 24.
- Mario and Donkey Kong: Minis on the Move: This Nintendo eShop exclusive challenges players to place tiles on the bottom screen to guide the Mini Marios to their goal on the top screen. The game offers more than 180 stages in four different modes. Players can also create and share their own stages, and play those created by other players around the world. The game will launch on May 9.
- Animal Crossing: New Leaf Hardware Bundle: A special Nintendo 3DS XL system featuring designs from Animal Crossing: New Leaf that comes pre-installed with the new game will be available on launch day, June 9, at a suggested retail price of $219.99.
- Mario Golf: World Tour: Players who connect their Nintendo 3DS systems to the Internet can play competitive real-time multiplayer matches against others across the globe. They can also use the community feature to find others to golf with. The game is scheduled to launch this summer.
- The Legend of Zelda – Two Classic Games: The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages and The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons will soon be available for the first time since their original release on Game Boy Color in 2001. Originally developed by Capcom, the games are headed to the Virtual Console service for Nintendo 3DS. The games are interconnected: Playing one unlocks secrets in the other. The games are scheduled to launch in the Nintendo eShop on May 30.
- Party Like it’s the Year of Luigi: A new game in the Mario Party series is scheduled to launch for Nintendo 3DS this winter. The game features seven different game boards, each with its own set of rules. The game offers 81 new mini-games that test speed, concentration and luck. In addition to the board game elements, players will be able to play mini-games exclusively or try their hands at a 30-floor tower climb, AR Card games and StreetPass battles.
- Bravely Default: This role-playing game from Square Enix adds a new risk-reward twist to the genre: Players can skip a turn in battle to do more damage in later turns. The game includes AR functions, multiple endings and unique wireless features. Nintendo has partnered with Square Enix to publish the game in North America in 2014.
- Professor Layton is Back: The third game in the second Professor Layton trilogy, Professor Layton and the Azran Legacy, includes more than 500 puzzles and is scheduled for a 2014 launch.
- A Nintendo eShop Trio from LEVEL-5: LEVEL-5 has assembled a collection of Japan’s top developers to create original games that will be headed to the Nintendo eShop for Nintendo 3DS soon. THE STARSHIP DAMREY, from Kazuya Asano and Takemaru Abiko, puts players in a suspenseful adventure where they will have to search for any information available to discover the truth about their circumstances. In BUGS vs. TANKS! from Mega Man creator Keiji Inafune, players control a tiny customizable tank in battle against swarms of giant bugs. In Kaz Ayabe’s ATTACK OF THE FRIDAY MONSTERS! A TOKYO TALE, players will take the role of a young boy who lives where the giant monsters from Japan’s 1970s TV shows come to life every Friday.
- Shin Megami Tensei 4: When this game launches on July 16 from ATLUS, every copy in the initial shipment will be a Limited Edition Box Set that includes a 176-page Strategy & Design Book containing the official starter strategy guide and full-color artwork ranging from concept art to in-game pieces to never-used designs; the Shin Megami Tensei Music Collection CD that offers tracks specially selected from across the 20-plus-year history of the SMT series; and a deluxe-sized Collectible Slipcase featuring key art designed by character designer Masayuki Doi.
These games may not singlehandedly rescue 3DS sales figures, but they certainly offer a big, fat life ring of hope for Nintendo. We would’ve expected a barrage of news like this for E3, not in mid-April, so Nintendo will surely have some other big news to share in a couple months’ time. Until then, check out the batch of Wii U updates that Nintendo also shared with us today.