Games Inbox: What is Nintendo’s next big game?

The Friday Inbox thinks the next generation should be delayed by at least six months, as one reader is unimpressed by Days Gone.

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The year that Nintendo forgot
OK, I admit it. I have no idea what’s going on with Nintendo right now. Why would they not announce anything new? Do they not like having people be hyped for their games? Why release Panzer Dragoon the day you give it a release date? I know that’s not Nintendo’s game but call me old fashioned but I like a chance to read up on reviews and save up before I buy a new game.

Are we really looking at a future where Bravely Default 2 is the Switch’s big Christmas game? It looks fun, and I like that there’s a demo, but surely it’s not their headliner. And if it’s not then what is? I can’t even really guess what it is in an ideal situation, other than a brand new IP, so would it really have hurt to throw us a bone here? What a bizarre and completely avoidable situation that doesn’t seem to benefit anyone.

The only positive I got from the ‘mini’ Nintendo Direct is that Nintendo is still interested in pushing ARMS, so it could be in line for a sequel, and that appearing as a spirit or assist trophy doesn’t rule a series out from having a proper fighter in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. So my hope that we’ll get a Resident Evil rep. (hopefully Jill Valentine) is still possible. Although who knows when we’ll hear about that…

Soon is a long time coming
OK, I think Nintendo has officially gone off the deep end now. It’s half a year now since they had the last proper Nintendo Direct and I’m not even sure they actually announced anything new in that one, just talked about their Christmas game. What’s going on?!

If I wasn’t stuck inside I would seriously be thinking about selling my Nintendo Switch right now. Animal Crossing is not for me and that means I have precisely nothing to look forwards to at the moment. I don’t even know what to hope for as everything points towards Bayonetta 3 and Metroid Prime 4 still being years away and Nintendo has literally nothing else scheduled except a remake of an old Wii game I had no interest in the first time around.

What am I supposed to be using my Switch for in the meantime? Indie games are great and all but I bought the console to play Nintendo games and apparently… they forgot to make any this year? That sounds like a joke but at the moment it seems literally true, since Animal Crossing was only out this month because it got delayed from last year.

Could we seriously go through a whole year without a single major Nintendo release? I don’t think that even happened in the darkest days of the N64 or GameCube. Everyone keeps saying they’ll announce new games soon, but soon seems as far away as ever. I think there’s now a very good chance that we won’t hear anything till not-E3 in June. Which also means no new games till June. That’s not good.

Empty shelves
Apart from Bravely Default 2, which I hope lives up to the original, there wasn’t really much of interest for me in the Nintendo Direct Mini. But surely by clearing the decks like this, Nintendo must have some exciting stuff up their sleeves for the proper one that should be imminent. Maybe they’ve been so quiet cause they’re going to go absolutely nuts with announcements? Or it’s just going to be Wii Music 2…

Good news on the Epic Games publishing deals. I love Inside and The Last Guardian so it will fascinating to see what those two studios come up with next, especially without financial strains. It’s nice to see a company support games without the bottom line as their main motivation.
Ryan O’D

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Surviving the T-virus
As much as I’m looking forward to Resident Evil 3 the whole idea of a virus infecting a city and everyone running from cover or changing into zombies is a bit… awkward. Obviously Capcom didn’t know beforehand, and the game is a remake of a really old game, but it could put people off. Or maybe they’ll really get into the idea of surviving an epidemic by shooting their way out and solving a few weird lock and key puzzles. If only the current self-isolation was that simple.

I’m also curious to see if more games get released in April that weren’t originally planned. There’s some big games out next month but hardly anything else, I guess because they knew how everyone would be playing Final Fantasy 7 Remake and didn’t want to go up against it.

But now people have got more time on their hands we could do with more indie games and other stuff to fill up the time. Also, it’s cheaper and I know I can barely afford the two remakes now, even though I’ve been planning to get them for ages.
Cole Slaw

Rubbish party
I’m a little late to the party, I know, but just wanted to write in to say how disappointing Days Gone is. I knew it hadn’t reviewed well at the time it came out, so all I hoped from it was something to pass the time until the The Last Of Us Part 2 comes out. But geez it’s a really hard game to get along with!

The main characters, who I think we’re supposed to like, are just horrible idiots. The weird spider sense thing that’s used to find clues is ridiculous (at least in The Last of Us it’s a heightened sense of hearing), and the amount of bugs in it is weird for such a big budget game.

In the very first action scene of the game I came to a spot on the road that had been blocked by cars. Except there were no cars! I drove past the spot only to find my partner being attacked on the other side of a now clearly visible roadblock. I couldn’t get back through to him and had to run down to a river and back up the other side to assist. I think it’s the earliest I’ve ever seen a bug in a game like this.

It just makes me appreciate even more how great The Last Of Us was.

Happy new year
I personally think that the next gen consoles should be delayed by six to eight months.

The coronavirus has devastated lives and battered the economy, with many people either losing their jobs or having huge wage decreases for the foreseeable. I can’t imagine many folks are going to be flush come November time and I would argue that even Christmas is going to be lean this year.

The best thing that Sony and Microsoft can do at the moment is delay and use that time to manufacture more consoles, because as the country and world pick themselves back up from this, the demand will be huge come early to mid-spring next year, they will have the product to cope with demand and hopefully jobs will be settling down again.

I sincerely hope that the people who do have present or future job uncertainty can weather this storm. I know my job is now hanging in the balance and the last thing I’m thinking about is buying a new console at the end of the year, as any money I will have coming in will be paying off debts.

I’d like to wish the best of luck to everyone in these uncertain times and stay safe.
Phil Spearpoint

GC: Well said.

Open hub
With reference to Jowbullman’s request for inspiration on open world games.

Firstly, I noticed you had a PSN ID, so not sure if you also have an Xbox, but if you do I highly recommend Banjo Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts. Although more of a hub world, than an open world I do think it would scratch that itch you have at the moment. It’s on Game Pass under Rare Replay, so give it a whirl!

Catch up on every previous Games Inbox here

Ticking over
My theory as to what’s going on with Sony and Microsoft at the moment is that they don’t have much more of an idea of when the new consoles are out than we do. The Microsoft CEO talking about people not having the money/inclination to buy a new console sound right to me and I think they’ve probably both realised that it’s probably best to let the current gen go on for six months or a year more than have the new one be dead duck for the same period.

Sony can wait things out because they’ve got a bunch of PlayStation 4 exclusives still to come out and they could just ration them out a bit more or they could just end up getting delayed naturally. You’d think that would put Microsoft at a disadvantage but they’ve already said the Xbox Series X won’t have any exclusives in the first year or so. So logically that means anything coming out for that period will also be on Xbox One – so they’ve got plenty of exclusives too.

Maybe they’d want to hang on to Halo but there’s bound to be smaller games, like Bleeding Edge, they can put out to keep things ticking over, as they also rely on multiformat games. That’s what I’d do anyway. Wait and make a proper job of the launch, don’t do the usual lame launch and have it even worse than usual because there’s no stock and people aren’t buying them.

Inbox also-rans
There is a demo of Disaster Report 4: Summer Memories Demo on the PlayStation store if you want to try it out before you buy it. I really enjoyed SOS: The Final Escape on PlayStation 2, so hoping this will be good too.
Andrew J.

With all the terrible real world news and its knock on effect on gaming I can’t help but think back to the Reader’s Feature last month that was predicting this would be the worst year for gaming ever. Now it looks like he was underplaying it!

This week’s Hot Topic
The question for this weekend’s Inbox was suggested by reader Grackle, who asks if how you play video games has, or is likely to, change during the coronavirus outbreak?

Have you been playing more or less games in the last few weeks and if you’re planning to self-isolate, or just spend more time at home in general, do you have any specific plans in terms of what games you’re going to play? Are you going to be working through your backlog, for example, or playing something specifically to cheer yourself up?

Will you be playing more online games in order to keep in touch with and speak to friend and family, and will you be encouraging them to play games where normally they wouldn’t?

E-mail your comments to: [email protected]

The small print
New Inbox updates appear every weekday morning, with special Hot Topic Inboxes at the weekend. Readers’ letters are used on merit and may be edited for length.

You can also submit your own 500 to 600-word Reader’s Feature at any time, which if used will be shown in the next available weekend slot.

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