Nintendo Direct January 2018 Recap: All the News You Need to See

The wait is finally over and we can all rest easy knowing what all the upcoming Nintendo Switch games for this year are. That’s thanks to the Nintendo Direct Mini that dropped this morning. The Direct promised Nintendo fans a bonanza of Switch ports as well as some new games here and there.

The biggest news to come from the Direct was the announcement of Dark Souls Remastered. After being rumored for some time, the game is releasing on Switch as well as PS4, Xbox One, and PC on May 25. While the PS4, Xbox One, and PC versions have 60 frames per second at 1080p (or 4K for PS4 Pro, Xbox One X, and PC), the Nintendo Switch version runs at 30 fps at 1080p in TV mode and 30 fps at 720p in handheld mode. All versions will include the Atorias of the Abyss DLC. The game is also getting some collector’s editions exclusively in Japan.

A brand new Mario Tennis game is heading to the Switch with Mario Tennis Aces. Garbed in traditional tennis outfits, Mario and friends battle it out in matches analyzing movements and responding with the appropriate swing. A story mode with an overworld map and everything is coming as well, taking Mario on a tour through different matches, minigames, and even bosses. The last Mario Tennis game with a story mode was Mario Tennis: Power Tour on the Game Boy Advance in 2005. The game is coming sometime this spring.

Super Mario Odyssey is getting a free update called Luigi’s Balloon World. After beating the main story, you can talk to Luigi in any world to play a balloon-themed take on hide-and-seek. In “Hide It” mode, you have 30 seconds to hide a balloon anywhere in a world. In “Find It” mode, you have 30 seconds to find a balloon hidden by other players around the world. If you hide balloons and people don’t find them, you can move up in the rankings. It’s too bad we don’t get to play as Luigi, however. New outfits are also coming to the game: a musician outfit based on Mayor Pauline’s band members, a knight outfit perfect for the Ruined Kingdom, and an outfit based on the one Mario wears after beating Super Mario Sunshine. You also get two new Snapshot Mode filters with one turning all the outlines neon colored and one where you create the design of a gold coin. The update is available this February.

Kirby Star Allies is getting new copy abilities. The Artist ability uses swishes of paint and allies summoned from paintings (anybody remember Adeleine?) to attack foes. The Spider ability lets you ensnare opponents in webs and kick them around. You can mix and match abilities to create combined Friend Abilities, such as the Zap Yo-Yo from Yo-Yo and Spark or Icicle Lance from Water and Ice. Four player co-op is coming as well with one player playing as Kirby and the others playing as allied foes. Prepare to face off against “deep space threats” when the game releases March 16.

The beloved Nintendo DS classic The World Ends With You is getting a port on the switch known as The World Ends With You Final Remix. The adventures of Neku and his friends in a strange purgatory version of Shibuya, Tokyo takes place with both touch controls reminiscent of the original game as well as Joy-Con controls. The dual screen setup of the original has been replaced with what appears to be the setup from the mobile port with both partners on the same screen, complete with HD graphics of course. This version will include brand new story epilogue. The game will be available this year.

Hyrule Warriors is coming to the Nintendo Switch in a big way with Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition. The port includes all of the content and paid DLC including all 29 characters, maps, and missions from the previous Wii U and 3DS versions as well as new outfits for Link and Zelda from their appearance in Breath of the Wild. The game also supports full 1080p graphics in TV mode and two player splitscreen co-op on a single system by sharing the Joy-Cons. Dive into the world of Zelda again when the game launches in Spring 2018.

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze swings from the Wii U to the Switch. This time you’ll be able to play as Funky Kong in a unique take on assist mode, granting you double jumps, hovering, infinite rolls, infinite underwater corkscrews, and immunity to spikes. It’s kind of like playing as Super Sonic. The port also has a two player co-op mode with players sharing a single system and two Joy-Cons. The game is surfing up on May 4 (May the fourth be with you).

Payday 2 is getting a Switch port as well along with a new character exclusively premiering on the system. Joy, a Japanese computer hacker, comes with a changing LED mask, unique weapons, and hacker perks. You can also navigate menus with the touchscreen and feel weapon recoil with HD rumble. Pay up on February 27.

The story DLC for Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle has finally been announced. While we didn’t get any actual gameplay footage, we can see that the DLC takes place in a brand new word based on Donkey Kong Country with DK himself as a playable character with a new banana boomerang weapon and an ability that can launch allies high into the air. The DLC is available sometime this spring.

Pokken Tournament DX, the switch port of the Wii U fighting game, is getting some brand new DLC. New fighter Aegislash comes with a defensive and offensive form just like he does in the main Pokemon games. Aegislash comes in Battle Pack Wave One on January 31 along with Support Pokemon Mega Rayquaza and Mimikyu as well as extra avatar customization options. Wave 2 will include new fighter Blastoise along with Support Pokemon Mew and Celebi and is available on March 23.

EA Originals program graduate Fe was announced for the Switch and hasn’t been seen since its debut during EA Play 2016. The exploration platformer from Zoink Games has you interacting with different animals through song. You can sing in tune with other animals by moving around the Joy-Cons. The game is coming out on February 16.

Celeste from Matt Makes Games is an old-school-styled platformer where you wall jump and air dash your way through tough-as-nails environments. Don’t worry about it being too rough as the optional assist mode lets you tweak things from slowing down the game to giving you full invincibility. The game releases on January 25.

Popular ladies from SNK’s fighting games including Mai Shiranui are coming together for two on two tag matches in SNK Heroines Tag Team Frenzy. It appears to be a spiritual successor to SNK Gals’ Fighters for the Neo Geo Pocket Color released in 2000. You activate move with a push of a single button and can get an advantage with different items. You have to finish off opponents with a Dream Finish. You can also customize fighters with cute accessories. The game is throwing down sometime this summer.

Ys VIII is coming to the Nintendo Switch. The Ys series has been going strong since 1987 with it’s latest entry, Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of DANA, appearing on the PS Vita in 2016 and the PS4 in May 2017. The game’s tale of a shipwrecked adventurer wandering a monster-infested land while building a base and engaging in action RPG combat should be appealing to fans of Xenoblade Chronicles 2. The game is coming in the summer as well.

Here’s a brief rundown of all the games announced during the direct and all of their release dates:

  • Celeste – January 25
  • Pokken Tournament DX Battle Pack Wave One – January 31
  • Fe – February 16
  • PayDay 2 – February 27
  • Super Mario Odyssey Luigi’s Balloon World – February 2018
  • Kirby Star Allies – March 16
  • Pokken Tournament DX Battle Pack Wave One – March 23
  • Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze – May 4
  • Dark Souls Remastered – May 25
  • Mario Tennis Aces – Spring 2018
  • Hyrule Warriors Definitive Edition – Spring 2018
  • Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle Story DLC – Spring 2018
  • Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of DANA – Summer 2018
  • SNK Heroines Tag Team Frenzy – Summer 2018
  • The World Ends With You Final Remix – 2018

     

    There wasn’t any word on a new Chibi Robo game, despite Nintendo tweeting the image below yesterday.

    What games are you most excited for? Let us know in the comment section below.

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