What Nintendo Did Right At Nintendo Direct [OPINION]

By Mike Andronico , Updated May 19, 2013 07:58 AM EDT
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Now that the dust has settled on Friday's Nintendo Direct broadcast, it's time to dig in to what the future holds for Nintendo fans.

While the publisher didn't break any new ground when discussing the likes of Luigi and Pikmin, there were enough pleasant surprises and fun showcases to make this non-Nintendo gamer raise an eyebrow. A few days ago we pointed out what Nintendo needed to do to make the broadcast a success, and for the most part they achieved their goal.

By announcing that Sonic: Lost World would be a Wii U and 3DS exclusive, Nintendo did something they rarely do: Gain leverage. Sure, only the most hardcore of Sonic devotees might finally decide to buy a Nintendo console, but gaining exclusive access to an IP as big as Sonic is still worth mention. Iwata noted that Nintendo and Sega are entering a new partnership, so we'll have to see what else comes of it aside from more Olympic-themed games and Sega classics on the 3DS eShop.

I previously mentioned that Nintendo had to focus on what makes their exclusives special, and their Nintendo Direct showing certainly did that for me. While a small innovation, Super Luigi U looks like it could bring a fresh breath of air into the already-evolving Mario Bros. formula, and Pikmin 3 looks like a joy to play for old and new fans alike. The fact that Zelda fans can enjoy a rush of nostalgia from Oracle of Ages and Oracle of Seasons for only a few dollars on the 3DS doesn't hurt, either. 

At the very end of the broadcast, Reggie Fils-Aime announced what could possibly the smartest move Nintendo has made in a while. By offering freely playable demos of their future E3 games at Best Buy, Nintendo could ramp up excitement towards their titles during a week that was supposed to have none. Instead of pushing for the grandiose, Nintendo seems to be playing a honest game this year by only showing off the things they do well.

Ever since the launch of the Wii, it's been made very clear that Nintendo has no plans with competing with Sony and Microsoft's console offerings. They've always opted to offer something different, and hopefully for Nintendo, that "different" could finally end up being a great thing.

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