Bring ’em on; Infendo’s most anticipated Nintendo games for E3 2008

Dressed head-to-toe in glittering red, white and blue attire and rich with the overpowering scent of freedom and grilled hot dogs, July refuses to arrive quietly.

Forget flipping the calendar page. July kicks down the door, blares Lynyrd Skynyrd records and sets off dangerous fireworks in crowded residential neighborhoods.

July is so champ, even E3 wanted to be a part of it this year. The games industry’s annual media spectacle is two weeks away, and with their plates emptied, hungry Nintendo fans are awaiting sustenance.

Rumors are abound, and because roughly 73 Wii owners seem to care about third parties anymore, the focus will be on Nintendo at E3. We have gathered five of the most highly anticipated and most likely game announcements Nintendo may have in store for E3.

05. Donkey Kong Wii
Video game characters cannot get more star power than Donkey Kong; he is an iconic mascot synonymous with the medium itself.

His efforts have faltered over the last decade, proving even the best characters cannot prosper without the proper environment. But if recent rumors and mumblings are true, Nintendo is ready to provide its banana-loving ape with exactly that.

A new, full-scale 2D Donkey Kong platformer would be the right move for the franchise, and it would also demand relatively little development effort from Nintendo.

After all, the blueprint already exists. Donkey Kong Jungle Beat was one of Nintendo’s best and prettiest GameCube titles, but thanks to the console’s unpopularity and the game’s reliance on a gimmicky peripheral, it went virtually unnoticed. The Wii, however, solves both problems entirely; the standard controller is the gimmicky peripheral, and the console happens to be the industry’s hottest.

By building from the Jungle Beat engine, adding more familiar Donkey Kong Country elements, polishing it with the typical Miyamoto shine and engaging in smart promotion, a new Donkey Kong game could be a very strong performer for Nintendo this holiday and would revitalize one of the company’s most historic franchises.

04. New Super Mario Bros. 2
As with Donkey Kong, file a sequel to New Super Mario Bros. under the “look how little you’d have to do to make us happy” category.

Only Nintendogs and Pokémon Diamond and Pearl have sold more copies worldwide on the Nintendo DS than New Super Mario Bros. In fact, it has outsold the worldwide sales totals of Super Mario Galaxy and Super Mario Sunshine combined.

Alright, Nintendo, let’s assess the situation, shall we? Barring any arguments from the assembly, the evidence seems to suggest people enjoy Mario’s 2D adventures, and given the nature of these games, a sequel wouldn’t necessarily need to be very different from the first. Honestly, I would prefer it didn’t stray from the formula.

Just give us a new Mario game with new levels. That’s all we want. Seriously. Don’t think too deeply about this one. Bowser kidnaps the Princess? Terrific. Mario collects coins and fire flowers? Awesome. He runs from left to right and stomps on Goombas and Koopa Troopas for eight worlds of pure platforming goodness? You’ve taken my breath away, not to mention the $34.99 tucked in my wallet.

Miyamoto could create a New Super Mario Bros. sequel in his sleep, I’d wager, and it would be a guaranteed multimillion seller.

03. Pikmin 3
Motion control and pointer functionality are great, but perhaps the Wii’s most endearing quality is the ease with which it can inspire.

The minute a person picks up the Wii Remote for the first time, s/he suddenly becomes an enthusiastic video game designer. “Imagine this,” they might say, or “Nintendo should totally do this,” they proclaim. Think about Nintendo’s first Wii trailer; it caused the Internet to spill over with ideas and enthusiasm from even the most hardened gamers.

Few Nintendo characters could capitalize on that magic and excitement better than Captain Olimar and his tiny Pikmin.

The established Pikmin gameplay formula seems to lend itself seamlessly to motion control and, most importantly, IR functionality. Moving through lush, garden-like “distant planets” would be silky smooth, and controlling hordes of Pikmin with the Wii Remote would be easier than ever before. Nintendo seems to be aware of the potential, too; in a July 2007 interview with IGN, series creator Shigeru Miyamoto hinted at his intentions for the series:

“I certainly don’t think we’ve seen the last of Pikmin. I definitely would like to do something with them, and I think the Wii interface in particular is very well suited to that franchise.”

Pikmin 3 has every chance to not only be one of the Wii’s most magical games, but also one of its most popular. Nintendo is sitting on an absolute blockbuster. It only needs to make it happen.

02. The Legend of Zelda Wii
We can’t say a whole lot on the matter, but as Blake mentioned in the last episode of Infendo Radio, sources close to Infendo suggest Nintendo may reveal a new Legend of Zelda title for Wii at E3.

But what about the details? Is Nintendo working on another Zelda epic using the Twilight Princess engine, or will they deliver on their promise of changing the series? During a 2005 interview on a Japanese radio show, Shigeru Miyamoto claimed Twilight Princess would be “the last Zelda game as (we) know it in its present form.”

Unfortunately, we just don’t know.

But one thing is for sure. That cadre of fools calling Twilight Princess a “let down” has at least two weeks to play through the entire game and discover how incorrect that assessment is before getting hyped for Link’s next quest, whatever — and whenever — it may be.

01. Kid Icarus Wii
Remember this January post about Kid Icarus coming to Wii? I found it while digging through old articles at Infendo HQ this afternoon.

Buried beneath some dusty game manuals in the closet, I also found an ancient crystal ball, of all things, and…wait, what’s this?

I see a large, intimidating man named Reggie Fils-Aime. He seems to possess a great deal of prominence and brawn. Mounted on a large, empty stage, he is speaking to a massive audience filled with geeks and otaku. They seem to be complaining about something called “storage space.” Reggie threatens them with pain.

Suddenly, he stops. His menacing eyes peer stage left, and with a swift wave of his powerful arm, he introduces a much smaller man. This person calls himself Julian Eggebrecht, and though his accent is difficult to decipher, he seems quite enthusiastic about something.

A screen suddenly illuminates behind him, showcasing a young angel triumphantly soaring through beautifully detailed heavens. Armed with a powerful sacred bow, he fires at enemies and skips across the clouds…with nary a drop in frame rate.

The crowd erupts, and Reggie cackles a spine-tingling, blood-curdling cackle. The ball has grown dim. That is all I can see.

I would recommend taking note of what just transpired. I may not be psychic, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night.


  1. I wouldn’t call Pikmin a blockbuster. The first one sold around two million on hype and launch status, but the second one only sold a little more than a million.

  2. Last Zelda as we know it?! Please don’t make a casual Zelda, please don’t make a casual Zelda…

  3. Great list, I probably would’ve swapped out DK for StarFox or Animal Crossing, but that’s just me.

    Hopefully they show some more Disaster Day of Crisis at e3 this year, complete with Reggie Spandex Flexing action.

  4. I think you’ve nailed every desired franchise I can think of.
    Although I haven’t played Pikmin, I can see a great franchise when I hear of one.

    But it would be cool to have another FPA Metroid…IMO.

  5. Ooh – I just forgot about Animal Crossing – thanks for bringing that up!
    That one could be a replacement for Pikmin – but it’s a tough call IMO.

    StarFox’s time has come; the interest has left the building.
    Fox has gone to Retro-Land now.

  6. Quiet Joltman, StarFox still has alot of fans, and if nintendo was to stop farming the franchise out and self-develop a full blown space opera that built on what Starfox 64 was, it could be an epic title.

  7. @ Derek

    Include me in that cadre of fools, then. Twilight Princess had brilliant gameplay, but the gameplay and enviroments were too similar to OOT (but larger).

    On top of that, the game just lacked a soul. I suggest you replay Wind Waker and Majora’s Mask if you still can’t see that.

  8. Please make a slightly shorter Zelda game!It took me a couple months to beat TP.With a walkthrough too.I would be ecstatic if they made another Star Fox game.

    Has anyone else noticed that the red and yellow frog thing from Pikmin is on the counter in the southeast discount store on Nintendogs Best Friends?Strange.

  9. Wow, I’m so simple to please. All I wanted was Metroid Prime Hunters Wii. (with online multiplayer)

    I have to agree with you about New Super Mario Brothers 2, espcially if it’s also on the Wii. Who am I kidding? I’d buy it on the DS also!

  10. Does anyone think that Nintnendo will devote any time to new WiiWare game announcements? I am really hopeful that we will see some classic franchises announced as WiiWare games at E3. I definitely expect there to be a Wii Zelda at some point in the future, but I would love a four swords-esque WiiWare title with online co-op play in the meantime. And it would be fantastic if they announced a WiiWare Starfox title that focused heavily on online dogfights. Does anyone else have any suggestions for classic games that would make great WiiWare titles; and have you guys at Infendo heard any rumblings of WiiWare announcements at E3?

  11. @Reynard:
    Oh, I definitely know StarFox has a ton of fans, me included as well, but with the Action Replay incident of StarFox: Command, it lost a ton of players (what fun is it playing online when everyone’s got an unbreakable shield?).
    I’d like it too, just prevent an Action Replay from being made for the Wii, and then I’d be fine.

  12. hehe- TP = blahhhhhhh. gotta get back to my village now…. where’s my dunce cap???

  13. @Dfox
    They already made a casual Zelda. It was called The Phantom Hourglass.

  14. On topic (comments):
    I’ve never encountered any problems with Star Fox’s online. and I agree with Poochy.

    On topic (post):

    Nice list. If even 1 of the 5 you listed were announced, I’d be a happy camper.

  15. A futuristic Zelda might be a nice twist. You never know what they’re cooking up though. I honestly don’t think a Zelda game will be there though.

  16. There is no such thing as a casual game. There are only good games and bad games. The Phantom Hourglass happened to be a good game, and the gameplay was very similar to previous Zeldas.

  17. I would probably enjoy all of these games, but Pikmin 3 is a MUST. The other two were amazing games, and the Wii is the PERFECT console for the game.

    I’d like to see Animal Crossing come out soon, too, since Nintendo has been using it as an example of Wii connectivity since forever ago. Another Starfox would be sweet, too, since I can see the Wii remote and nunchuck being perfect for the series. As long as it’s better than Assault and Adventures… yuck.

  18. Thanks for reading, everyone.

    I expected to see comments about Animal Crossing. It almost made the list, but then I realized I couldn’t possibly care less about that franchise. But yes, I would fully expect to see it at E3 in some form.

    Star Fox oozes with potential on Wii. I hope Nintendo stops outsourcing that series and gives it the proper treatment it deserves.

  19. Seriously factor 5 could be doing the star fox franchise with the rebel strike engine real easy or at least nintendo could buy it from them so who ever that is making the game gets all the juice out.

    I miss what the first star fox was. It had a cool edge to it and the music made it even better! Also I’m a little tired of orchestra music in games can we get some great electronic music in there? I mean ahpix isn’t doing any thing and he is old school!

    Pilot wings , wave race and F-zero! Would make an even crazier line up. Also too I hope they make the music game a mix of the old mario music game with all the same mini games that would be so sweet and hardcore. No that was mario paint and man if you could use the photo channel that would be sweet also!

    Also too what if you could buy a new mario game thur the Wiiware channel 8 bit maybe? I want my mario 3 which was the reason why new super mario sold so well it seems. Could you imagine a mario game that would need the full space of a DVD LOL. WOW!

    For DK to be good they need to mix the *gasp realism card with DK jungle game play and they will have an instant winner.

    I’m sure we will get more casual games also which is also good. What is sad is nintendo is the only company that does casual right on the Wii. It’s not just a problem with core games it’s casual games also.

  20. this kid icarus ( i know im going to get killed for this) sounds like a bad idea as a full disc wii game ( i just have the feeling, dont ask me why cuz i dont even know). I mean, think about it. How would you translate what it was back then, to a 3D game that is as hardcore as you guys say it was back in the day? Without it looking all colorfull and whatnot. Id say that maybe if factor 5 is indeed developing i could see something in the likes of Twilight Princess meets Kid icarus.

    Just a feeling dont get me wrong. I’d love to see something like that, but sounds too hardcore to come from Nintendo (i picture it with blazing fast gameplay, flying, and whacking). Anyway, at the end im sure ill like it. But i dont know if we’ll end up with a hollow feeling knowing what it could’ve been.

    Maybe if would work better as a wiiware title?
    Old school gameplay, 3d-ish 2d.

  21. @droop4 have you played and beat kid icarus? It had some fast game play and there is even a flying shoot em up at the near end. Most game play was timing shots. It would be more hardcore if it stayed that way or at least included that. I would say 2.5D like einhander with Wii level graphics. Yet who knows? It would be easy for it to rock though. It’s almost a new type of game when compared to what is out now.

  22. I guess a storage system isn’t considered a game, but that should be in the top 3 for most anticipated things we want to see from Nintendo.

  23. Ya know, Pikmin 2 is selling for upwards of $100.00 on That alone should guarantee a sequel someday.

    Pikmin 3 and Starfox Wii would be all i need to be happy.

  24. Exactly “Cadre of fools” who thought that Twilight Princess was a let down. I agree whole heartedly with that statement and agree with Poochy as far as Majora’s Mask and Wind Waker both being great Zelda games, but it doesn’t make TP soulless. I am suprised no one called you a douche though for making that statement. There’s a bunch of cry babies here…

Leave a Reply