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Nintendo E3 2018: The Good, Bad And Ugly

The best and worst of what Nintendo unveiled during its E3 2018 Direct.

by Jelani James


At long last, the highly-anticipated Nintendo E3 Direct has come, providing viewers a glimpse of what is coming their way in the future; and it’s looking pretty great. Yes, the press conference was dominated by the newly-revealed Super Smash Brothers Ultimate, but that didn’t stop Nintendo from revealing a fair amount of other exciting titles.

Indeed, between titles like Fire Emblem: Three Houses, Daemon x Machina, Super Mario Party and Fortnite, there was something for everyone. Some of these announcements  stole the show (you know the one), but the others were great in their own right. So without further adieu, here is the good, bad and ugly of the Nintendo E3 Direct:

The Good

Super Smash Brothers Everything Edition

When I was discussing the impending Smash Bros. reveal with my brother last night, I swore this game would wind up on “The Bad” section of my rundown if all Nintendo did was reveal the base eight characters and Squid Girl and Squid Boy.

However, I won’t have to do that because the reveal for Super Smash Brothers Ultimate exceeded my expectations spectacularly.

Nintendo revealed basically everything you would want to know the upcoming Smash title and I encourage you to check out some of our other articles which goes into more depth on that subject. For now, all I have to say is that I’m happy Nintendo confirmed that every single character who appeared in the series up to this point will be playable, and went so far as to go over a good number of the changes each of them will have when the game arrives on Dec. 7.

In particular, I appreciate that Nintendo revealed two new characters — Squid Girl/Boy and Ridley, as well as introduce Echo Fighters — Dark Pit, Lucina and Daisy — to address the clone issue that Smash 4 had.

Well done.

Fire Emblem: Three Houses

As someone who has been playing Fire Emblem since the mid 90’s, suffice it to say I’m pretty damn excited about a new title.

We didn’t see too much gameplay, but what we did see promised grander battles where regular soldiers actually participate in battle alongside your heroes, large-scale 3D battles and a fully-rendered world that players can actually run around and interact with others in.

Unfortunately, none of the key gameplay details were revealed, so it’s unclear whether features such as child units (there will never be another Severa), romance (traditional style, please) or multiple story lines (please no) will make a return.

As for when Fire Emblem: Three Houses comes out? Spring 2019.

Daemon x Machina

The trailer was all flash and no substance, but I have been searching for a mecha game that isn’t Gundam, so I was receptive to this.

Of special note are some of the names featured in the trailer:

  • Kenichiro Tsukuda (Armored Core 1-3)
  • Shoji Kawamori (“Macross,” “Aquarion Evol”)
  • Yuzuke Kozaki (No More Heroes, Fire Emblem)
  • Junichi Nakatsuru (SoulCalibur)
  • Rio Hamamoto (Tekken)

This is a blockbuster lineup right here, and if they manage to produce a game that is even half as good as a game involved with names like this should be, then it is going to be an absolute monster.

Until FromSoftware decides to make a new Armored Core title, Daemon x Machina will be filling that void when it arrives in 2019.

Fortnite Makes Its Way On Another Platform

Have you heard of Fornite? Of course you have.

In what was one of the worst-kept secrets of E3 2018, Fortnite is now available on the Nintendo Switch. Epic Games should consider making a Very Special Edition of its own…

The Bad

How Many New Characters Can We Expect?

As mentioned previously, the Super Smash Brothers Ultimate reveal was top notch. However, producer Masahiro Sakurai warned us about one thing near the end: we shouldn’t expect too many new characters.

For what it’s worth, this isn’t entirely unreasonable as there are so many characters already. That said, Sakurai is also a known troll and is known to screw with the fans whenever a new Smash title is announced.

So, should we take his words at face value? Probably.

Again, between all the characters and changes to a significant number of the old ones, there aren’t too many characters that would be worthy additions here. However, it still hurts knowing that even among such characters, only a tiny fraction will likely make the cut.

Also, no Lyn or Waluigi…again.

Where Is Metroid Prime 4?

Speaking of things that hurt, what happened to Metroid Prime 4?

The game was confirmed to exist back at E3 2017 and reports about its development surfaced earlier this year, but Nintendo opted not to show it off this year. I’m sure it is going along well, but my brother and I occasionally joke about the game turning out to be like Other M — quickly turning the jovial atmosphere into one of anxiety and fear.

Please put my mind at ease, Nintendo.

What Happened To Shin Megami Tensei V?

Between Xenoblade Chronicles 2, Pokemon, Fire Emblem and Octopath Traveler, Nintendo shared a good amount of content for RPG fans, but one of the titles I was looking forward to the most — Shin Megami Tensei V — was absent.

We first saw a trailer for the game during another Nintendo Direct earlier this year, but we haven’t heard anything since. Atlus is actually attending E3 this year, so I was expecting to hear something during Nintendo’s segment, but my hopes didn’t come to pass. Unfortunately, it’s schedule doesn’t make any mention of SMT V either.


The Ugly

Mario Party Returns

Everyone has that game that they play because everyone else is playing it, and for me, that game is Mario Party.

Under the guise of a casual, friendly experience, Mario Party has led to more fights and altercations between my friends than any other game we’ve played; and it looks like Super Mario Party is poised to do the same when it arrives Oct. 5.

You think dropping fictional nukes on your friends in Fallout 76 is bad? Super Mario Party will probably make you want to drop real ones.


That’s it for the good, bad and ugly of the Nintendo E3 event. What were your favorite (and least favorite) parts of the event? Do you think Nintendo did a good job overall? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.

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