It’s become an E3 tradition that Nintendo, well, eschews E3 tradition. The company will hold an hour-long presentation during E3 2017 instead of a big press conference like the majority of the show’s headliners. Also unlike its competitors, Nintendo’s given us at least some sense of what to expect out of its E3 livestream.
We’ll break down what we know is definitely getting the spotlight during this year’s Nintendo Direct — along with some games (and people!) just as likely to appear. Tune in on Tuesday, June 13 at 9 a.m. PT.
Nintendo Switch games
Super Mario Odyssey: Nintendo confirmed that its E3 presence this year will be centered around Super Mario Odyssey, this holiday’s marquee Switch title. This time, Mario’s heading to New Donk City — and a bunch of other, probably less-hilariously-named places — with help from some magical hats. That’s about all we know about the first sandbox-style Mario game in years, but we’ll get gameplay, more footage and our first in-depth preview of it at the show.
Splatoon 2: We’ve already seen plenty of this Splatoon sequel, which launches in July. But Nintendo would be remiss to not give it one final promotional push at E3. Whether it’s just a small teaser or a full-on segment dedicated to this squid-filled shooter, here’s hoping that there’s plenty of that famously good music scoring Splatoon 2’s spot.
Arms: Arms has the misfortune (or maybe fortune?) of launching right at the tail-end of E3. We’re sure Nintendo will take time to remind us of that, as well as devote plenty of airtime to the Arms tournament it’s hosting during the big event this year. (There will also be a Splatoon 2 tourney going on for good measure.)
Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle: This game may go down as E3 2017’s worst-kept secret. Signs have pointed toward this bizarre mashup heading to Nintendo Switch since earlier this year. Last month, we got our first big confirmation that, yes, Mario was teaming up with Ubisoft’s Raving Rabbids crew for one big, weird game. Pictures and a supposed internal presentation surfaced, and they paint Kingdom Battle as an action role-playing game that must be seen to be believed. (Selfie-obsessed Peach and dabbing Donkey Kong? ... OK.) If Ubisoft doesn’t show this game off first, then Nintendo definitely will.
Fire Emblem Warriors: Koei Tecmo is collaborating with Nintendo once again for this Fire Emblem-Dynasty Warriors crossover. We’ve slowly started getting details about the game in recent weeks, like a few of the playable characters to expect. What we haven’t seen is any gameplay, so let’s hope Nintendo delivers on that.
Xenoblade Chronicles 2: The sequel to this Wii role-playing game is supposedly out on Nintendo Switch this year — that’s what Nintendo said when it announced the game in Janury, at least. Perhaps we’ll see whether that’s still the case at E3, if Nintendo dedicates some of its livestream to Xenoblade.
A bunch of indie games: Nintendo is eager to give more independent game designers the spotlight on the Switch. We saw it first during GDC 2017, when the company devoted an entire half-hour presentation to the console’s smaller titles. It would make sense for the company to update us on the Switch’s indie gaming future — with recognizable games like Stardew Valley sure to make an appearance in any roundup.
Some unannounced, familiar faces: Nintendo’s trying to think months, not years, ahead. Although the company is eager to keep this year’s presentation focused on this year’s games, we’d be shocked if the company didn’t have some unannounced Switch titles up its sleeves. A new Super Smash Bros. game, perhaps? The return of Animal Crossing? Something in the Mario Party, Mario sports or Mario Maker vein? If we’re lucky, maybe we’ll get all of the above.
Nintendo 3DS games
Miitopia: This is one of a few Nintendo 3DS titles Nintendo’s confirmed for release later this year. It’s like Tomodachi Life crossed with a fantasy-RPG, which is as hilarious and weird as it sounds. There’s not much else to know about or see from Miitopia, but Nintendo is sure to remind us that it’s on its way.
Hey! Pikmin: Same as above for Miitopia. Hey! Pikmin is out this July, so Nintendo’s got to get that promo time. This isn’t much like the Pikmin games you remember; instead, it’s a sidescroller starring Captain Olimar and various herds of the little plant guys.
At least one big new title: Nintendo’s still supporting the 3DS, even though the Switch technically satisfies that portable console need. The New 2DS XL system is out on July 28, so the company will surely reveal some eye-catching game to get people onboard this year. Our money is on a version of Mario and Luigi: Superstar Saga, based on what dataminers dug up earlier this spring.
People to keep an eye out for
Reggie Fils-Aime: Good ol’ Reggie will get plenty of screentime during this year’s Nintendo Direct. If there’s anything we can count on in this world, it’s this.
Shigeru Miyamoto: Miyamoto is always good for a guest spot, even if his appearances are typically brief. Mario is his baby, so he’s due to talk up Super Mario Odyssey for at least part of the livestream.
Bill Trinen: Bill’s the senior product marketing manager over at Nintendo of America, and he’s often seen at Shigeru Miyamoto’s side. We look forward to hearing his pleasant voice talk about some of these big-deal games during the event.
Yoshiaki Koizumi: Maybe you don’t know his name yet, but you definitely know Koizumi’s face. He hosted the big Nintendo Direct back in April, a spot he likely won after getting a lot of face time during January’s Switch reveal. Koizumi’s already great at the gig, so we’re hoping to see him help out during Nintendo’s big E3 show.