Nintendo’s E3 event had a mild tone this year, the company chose to highlight a few choice titles, rather than spreading the attention around. At the center of the event was The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, and it looks like it will be Link’s most open-adventure yet from Nintendo. The game is available for pre-order as well, from participating sites like on Amazon.com.
The game will release in 2017, and Nintendo gave the world its first look at the immense, living and breathing world of the Wii U version of the game at E3 today. Nintendo teased the game stating, “The game challenges and surprises players at every turn, while giving them incredible freedom to explore the massive world found in this open-air adventure.”
“The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild breaks boundaries for the franchise and for games as a whole,” said Nintendo of America President and COO Reggie Fils-Aime. “Where you go, how you get there, the order in which you do it, and the items, weapons and approaches used to solve puzzles and defeat enemies are all up to you.”
During a Nintendo Treehouse: Live demo, Nintendo showed that heroic Link needs to be resourceful as he explores his environment. It’s important for players to become familiar with their surroundings so they can find weapons or collect them from defeated enemies. Food helps Link sustain his hearts and can give him a temporary boost or ability that will sustain him.
The game breaks with some conventions from the series. For example, many of the minor enemies are no longer scattered randomly around the world, as many now live together in colonies. Link can climb towers and massive structures to get a bearing on his surroundings. He can even reach the top of mountains, infact any mountain he can see, he can climb. Link can paraglide to lower areas or even use his shield to slide down a mountain. Link will travel across fields, through forests and to mountain peaks.
The game’s wild world surrounds Link, and he must pay attention to changes in climate, as a shift in weather or temperature can affect the environment and his ability to survive in it. A sudden downpour might douse a roaring campfire or a lightning storm might be attracted to Link’s metallic weapons. Players might need to bundle up with warmer clothes or change into something better suited to the desert heat.
More than 100 Shrines of Trials dot the landscape, waiting for players to discover and explore them in any order they want. As players work their way through the traps and puzzles inside, they’ll earn special items and other rewards that will help them on their adventure. Puzzles in the game often have multiple answers, and secrets can be found everywhere. Exploration and discovery are a huge part of the fun.
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is scheduled to launch simultaneously for both the Wii U console and Nintendo’s next system, code-named NX, in 2017.
The game also includes compatibility with amiibo, which are sold separately. Nintendo announced a new series of amiibo figures specific to the game that includes Link with a bow (“Archer”), Link on horseback (“Rider”), and a “Guardian” that is the first amiibo with flexible parts.
The existing Wolf Link amiibo works with the game as well: When players tap a Wolf Link amiibo to the Wii U GamePad controller, Wolf Link will attack enemies on his own and help players to hunt. He has three hearts, unless players carry over save data from The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD. Wolf Link disappears when his hearts run out.
While The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is clearly the star of Nintendo’s presence at E3, Nintendo Treehouse: Live also gave Pokémon fans something to go wild about this morning: the world premiere of live gameplay from Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon, the seventh, and newest, era of the core Pokémon series. The games, made for the Nintendo 3DS family of systems, include new Pokémon, a new Pokédex, a new region and a new battle format to enhance the Pokémon experience in almost every way.
In the Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon games, players embark on a new adventure as a Pokémon Trainer. They catch, battle and trade new Pokémon characters on the tropical islands of the Alola Region, which is comprised of four islands rich in natural beauty and an artificial island.
Players can choose from one of three new Partner Pokémon (Rowlet, Litten and Popplio) and discover the mystery behind the Legendary Pokémon (Solgaleo and Lunala).
Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon launch November 18, 2016. Some previously announced Wii U and Nintendo 3DS games include Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE (June 24), Monster Hunter Generations from Capcom (July 15), Paper Mario: Color Splash (Oct. 7) and Dragon Quest VII: Fragments of the Forgotten Past (2016).
Additionally, viewers will get their first look at a new Mario Party game for Nintendo 3DS that includes additions and changes to make it much more fast-paced and portable-friendly – players no longer have to wait for their turn, as everyone moves at once. Mario Party Star Rush launches Nov. 4.
Also on Nov. 4, Nintendo will launch new amiibo in the Super Mario series. The collection will feature the debut of amiibo figures for Daisy, Waluigi and Boo – and the Boo amiibo figure glows in the dark! The collection also introduces new poses for Wario, Rosalina, Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong.
As a special treat for fans, Nintendo eShop is offering discounts of up to 40% for some of its most popular games between 11 a.m. PT on June 14 and 8:59 a.m. PT on June 21.
Even better, My Nintendo members who have signed in, linked their Nintendo Network IDs and visited Nintendo eShop at least once before purchase get an extra 10% off the already-discounted price on select titles.
Discounts have been applied to dozens of games, including multiple games in The Legend of Zelda and Pokémon series, as well as a number of Virtual Console games.