Nintendo Direct round-up: Bayonetta 3, Octopath Traveler 2, and more

The biggest Nintendo Direct showcase for years has revealed a host of new trialers and updates on Mario Kart 8 and Nintendo Switch Sports.

There might not have been a Nintendo Direct in June, when E3 would normally be, but the one on Tuesday afternoon largely made up for it, with lots of new game announcements and new looks at highly anticipated games, including Zelda: Tears Of The Kingdom.

Zelda was left to the very end, but Nintendo led with new game Fire Emblem Engage, which will be out in January. What followed after that was a largely random mix of third and first party titles, with everything from a Switch port of It Takes Two to the already rumoured Project Zero: Mask Of The Lunar Eclipse.

As long as you can spare the time – it lasts over 45 minutes – we’d advise just watching the whole thing but below are the edited highlights and some of the more interesting games that stood out to us.

Nintendo really did throw everything and the kitchen sink into the Direct, including oddities such as Fitness Boxing Fist Of The North Star (Fitness Boxing is already a game, Fist Of The North Star is a famous anime inspired by Mad Max) and remakes of turn-based mech games Front Mission 1 and 2.

There was also a dizzying array of farming sims, including Story Of Seasons: A Wonderful Life (a remake of 2003 GameCube game Harvest Moon: A Wonderful Life), Fae Farm (a new four-player indie game), Rune Factory 3 Special (and a tease of a new series of Rune Factory games), and Harvestella (which has a free demo available from today).

Splatoon 3 will be getting its first Splatfest on September 23, while Square Enix announced the brand new Octopath Traveler 2 for February 24. However, it won’t be a Switch exclusive and will also launch for PlayStation 4 and 5, plus PC.

Square Enix also announced rhythm action game Theatrhythm: Final Bar Line, which will include paid-for DLC that adds songs from the Saga, NieR, Octopath Traveler, and Live A Live series. It’ll be out on February 16 and will also be coming to PlayStation 4.

Nintendo announced a stack of new N64 games for the Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack service, including GoldenEye 007, as well as more free DLC for Mario Strikers: Battle League Football, that adds Pauline and Diddy Kong as players.

Square Enix won the award for most peculiar name thanks to Various Daylife – which is apparently a port of an existing smartphone role-player. Atelier Ryza 3: Alchemist Of The End & The Secret Key took the runner-up prize, with an open world entry in the long-running role-playing series.

Wave 3 of the Mario Kart 8 Deluxe DLC had its release date narrowed down to sometime this Christmas, with sneak peeks at two new tracks: Merry Mountain from Mario Kart Tour and Peach Gardens from Mario Kart DS. And for once there was a sign that the remastered tracks would feature anti-gravity elements.

The promised addition of Golf to Nintendo Switch Sports had been delayed from this autumn to nearer Christmas but will feature 21 holes from the Wii Sports series and an eight-player online mode.

Shigeru Miyamoto turned up to announce Pikmin 4 but the Direct went on for so long that the new Bayonetta 3 gameplay trailer had to be shunted off to its own thing. That’s a bit of a shame as it doesn’t help to promote it to those not familiar with the series, but we advise watching it in full above.

Also of interest was new game Rain Code, from the makers of Danganronpa, which seems to mix elements of that game with a detective game and will be coming to Switch ‘first’ next spring.

Resident Evil Village Cloud will be arriving on October 28, with Resident Evil 7, Resident Evil 2, and Resident Evil 3 also due as cloud streaming games this year.

Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII Reunion will run natively, while the previously leaked Radiant Silvergun is available today (we do wish Nintendo wouldn’t do that, it’s just begging for the game not to be reviewed) and surprisingly is only coming to Switch.

Finally, there were two unexpected remasters, with Tales Of Symphonia Remastered arriving in early 2023 on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch, and Kirby’s Return To Dream Land (a remaster of the 2011 Wii game) on February 24.

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