A couple weeks back, we asked: Is Oct. 27, 2017 — when Super Mario Odyssey, Assassin’s Creed Origins and Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus all launched — the biggest release date in history? The answer was an emphatic “no,” it turns out. Instead, it seems like there’s another real contender for the busiest release day in history; that day is Nov. 21, a.k.a. today.
Nintendo has leaned upon Nov. 21 as a major release day several times over the years. It’s a convenient time to put a game out, as it’s right around Thanksgiving and the subsequent holiday shopping season. Looking at the sheer quality of games that Nintendo has released on the day speaks to Nov. 21 as more than just convenient, though. It’s also the shared birthday of an unbelievable amount of classics.
Here’s that full list to really put this into perspective; credit goes to the Nintendo subreddit’s handy, daily “On This Day in Nintendo History” bot.
- F-Zero launched in Japan on this day in 1990 as the racing series’ debut.
- Super Mario World came out alongside it in Japan, also in 1990.
- The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past arrived in Japan the following year, in 1991.
- Yoshi’s Cookie launched on both NES and Game Boy (again, in Japan) in 1992.
- Donkey Kong Country made it to North America on this day in 1994.
- The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time was Nintendo’s big Japanese release on Nov. 21, 1998.
- Pokémon Gold and Pokémon Silver launched for Japanese fans in 1999.
- Sin and Punishment came to Nintendo 64 this day in 2000 as a Japanese exclusive. It wouldn’t make it overseas until its Wii Shop Channel release in September 2007.
- Super Smash Bros. Melee launched in Japan on Nov. 21, 2001.
- Pokémon Ruby and Pokémon Sapphire launched in Japan in 2002, exactly three years after the series’ previous entries.
- Pokémon Colosseum followed in Japan in 2003.
- The Nintendo DS changed Nintendo’s handheld line dramatically when it launched in North America in 2004.
- Metroid Prime Hunters: First Hunt, a demo for the Nintendo DS game, launched in 2004.
- Super Mario 64 DS was another system launch title in 2004.
- Donkey Kong Country Returns revitalized the Nov. 21 tradition for North America in 2010.
- Super Mario 3D World launched on Wii U in Japan on Nov. 21, 2013. (It came out in the U.S. the next day.)
- Pokémon Omega Ruby and Pokémon Alpha Sapphire arrived worldwide in 2014, exactly 15 years after their predecessors.
- Super Smash Bros. for Wii U launched in North America alone on the same day in 2014.
- Animal Crossing: amiibo Festival was Wii U’s most notable release in both Japan and Australia in this day in 2015.
- Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp brought the life sim series’ mobile debut worldwide on this day in 2017, a day earlier than expected.
For many of us, Nov. 21, 2017, just seems like Tuesday. But for Nintendo? It’s a golden opportunity to continue years of quality game releases. Here’s to Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp for being the latest member of that legacy.