E3 2012: Nintendo Presentation Part 3 – Wii U Third Party Games, Zombi U & Just Dance – Nintendo Land Unveiled!

The Electronic Entertainment Expo runs between the 5th and 7th of June and the Gadget Helpline will be following all the major hardware and software announcements from big industry names such as Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony – as well as offering a Daily Recap on many areas of this year’s show!

[Continued from Part Two]

With the Wii U console and original games under the belt, the Nintendo E3 presentation moved offering some third party offerings the “spotlight they deserve”. The new home entertainment system and 3DS console will receive an influx of new titles in the coming months, but as Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime suggested earlier, there is no way to really cover all of them in just one hour so social resources will be vital to discovering more on these upcoming games for ourselves.

What we did get to see were the newest addition to the Castlevania series Lord of Shadows: Mirror of Fate and Scribblenauts for Nintendo 3DS handheld as well as Disney titles Epic Mickey and Kingdom Hearts. A little more time was devoted to LEGO City Undercover, an anticipated and fun title based on the blocky creative toy and which utilises the HD touchscreen game pad as a way to receive missions and create clever disguises.

Reggie tells us that the Wii U will appeal to the most “hardcore” gamer to the “newest of the newbies” and then introduced French developer Ubisoft’s Yves Guillemot, who struggled a little with the language but his message was clear, stating that the original Wii introduced millions of new gamers and that the inspiring, connective, accessible Wii U will command a similar revolution and he thanked everybody with touching sentiment. Guillemott then told us a few of Ubisoft’s offering for the next Nintendo home console including Rayman Legend and the very cool looking Zombi U (which would be referred to again later).

Yves passed over to Xavier Pox, who introduced a new version of Just Dance asking Nintendo boss Fils-Aime to participate in a little demo to show how interaction on the touchscreen panel relates to movement on the main TV screen, this demonstrated by four “real-life” dancers who came out to perform vast selection of moves at Reggie’s command. When asked how it felt to be the “puppet master” Reggie replied it felt a little like being in charge at Nintendo of America!

We then got to see the meat of that Zombi U game that was glimpsed briefly in the preview. It looks a truly entertaining gore fest and a terrifying title to look forward to. In this game “one bite – you’re dead” says the Ubisoft developer. With this in mind the Wii U second game screen becomes crucial, offering a quickly accessible inventory and a way to scan for undead foes as well as be used for targeting and sniping and much more. Reggie Fils-Aime is also asked to get hands on once again to demonstrate a fun feature involving the game pad’s camera. Holding the viewer up to his eye level his face mutates on the display into the frightening zombie – albeit a bit crude in this early stage this offers up some enjoyable potential when the game in finally ready to be released.

A final rundown of Ubisoft titles is demoed including Assassin’s Creed III, Rabbids Land, Your Shape Fitness, Rayman Legends, Sport Connection and Avengers: Battle for Earth.

Finally, Reggie had something really special to show off which restores faith in Wii U as a multiplayer gaming gadget after a year of wondering how the introduction of a single HD touchscreen game pad would affect one of Nintendo’s most appealing elements – good times with family and friends.

Promising to bring classic characters together in a virtual theme park, Reggie announced Nintendo Land –  a party game with 12 “attractions” based on popular characters including those from The Legend of Zelda, Donkey Kong, Animal Crossing and, of course, Super Mario Bros – five of which are available to visitors to the E3 this week. The Nintendo America Boss introduced Katsuya Eguchi to take over (via translator) and tell us more about this exciting concept.

The twelve special games each featuring characters and themes from popular Nintendo franchises will offer play for up to four gamers. Three with the backwards compatible Wiimote or the new “traditional” style Pro Pad which was unveiled by Satoru Iwata on Sunday – and the other will have a “special role” with the HD game pad. This special role was demonstrated in a game based on Luigi’s Mansion. The player with the game pad take the role of a ghost, able to see all other players, represented by their Mii character, on a map which allows them to pursue the other three, who take on the role of ghost hunters hindered by shadows.

These players obviously have no second view screen so are at a disadvantage. They do however have the rumble feature which tells them when the ghost is stalking and strategy and team play can be employed to corner and capture the ghost and kill it with chargeable flashlight weapons. If one of the team is taken out by the ghost, other players can find them and revive them at the cost of their own power bar.

We then got a quick tour around Nintendo Land, showing off the colourful streets and Mii interactions leading to various doors to each of the twelve games featuring iconography from some of our favourite Nintendo games of all time. Reggie closes this year’s Nintendo presentation promising that this game will become available from day one, alongside the Wii U console with its game pad with will become a “portal to places never seen before” – linking family, friends and social networking and living up to the Wii U promise of “Together, Better”.

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