Any other year, I would say that Game of Thrones, the next Marvel installment, or perhaps a Warner Bros./DC collab would be the hot-spot of SDCC;. This year, I have to say that the title will be going to Nintendo. This will be the first major public-gathering since Pokemon Go launched in NA on iOS and Android devices, and it being SDCC (the exact demographic that has skyrocketed the app to pop-culture superstardom) makes the perfect storm for Pokemon players and Nintendo alike.

San Diego Comic-Con will kickoff for the public from July 21 through July 24, and Nintendo will be hosting the Play Nintendo Family Lounge. This event is not exactly new to SDCC, but this year it will be celebrating some pf the company’s top franchises and going in Pokemon ready.

Fans that stop by can compete in tournaments for a chance to win prizes (while supplies last) and take photos with iconic characters, checkout new games and gear and of course hunt Pokemon. All of this will take place on the first floor of the Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina, just a few steps away from the San Diego Convention Center.

When visiting, you will be surrounded by all of your favorite characters and franchises, including Splatoon, Mario Kart and Pokémon, as well as new and upcoming games like YO-KAI WATCH 2, Style Savvy: Fashion Forward and more. Additionally, San Diego Comic-Con attendees with a show badge can also visit Nintendo’s Booth in the San Diego Convention Center to get inked through various Splatoon game-play activities and competitions.

The Play Nintendo Tour, which has been traveling the country all summer, will be integrated into the Play Nintendo Family Lounge. The one-of-a-kind tour offers a fun and engaging way for gamers to experience the hottest Nintendo 3DS games. You’ll be able to hop into a Yoshi egg to play Yoshi’s New Island, recline on a giant banana while checking out Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D or relax in a pink beanbag chair to play Kirby: Planet Robobot. Your inner shutterbug will be in heaven as you take photos next to a huge Kirby figure, beside an oversized Yoshi egg, inside a barrel flanked by Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong, under a blue Spiny Shell from Mario Kart 7 or next to a giant Poké Ball from Pokémon Omega Ruby and Pokémon Alpha Sapphire.

“San Diego Comic-Con is the perfect venue for fans of all ages to experience what Nintendo has to offer,” said Cindy Gordon, Nintendo of America’s Vice President of Corporate Affairs. “This year, we have such a wide variety of activities to take part in that there’s truly something for everyone.”

The Play Nintendo Family Lounge will be open to the public July 21-23 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and July 24 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The current schedule of events includes the following:

Super Smash Bros. for Wii U 12 & Under Tournament (July 23): Nintendo fans that are 12 years old or younger and have parental consent can participate in a Super Smash Bros. for Wii U tournament at 2 p.m. on July 23. The tournament will be live-streamed on the Nintendo Twitch channel, so even people that can’t be there have a chance to keep an eye on the action. Tournament slots are limited for the one-day event, and fans will be able to sign up the day of the event on a first-come, first-served basis. The Grand and First Prize winners will each receive a prize pack filled with Nintendo products and merchandise.

The Play Nintendo Challenge (July 21-22, July 24): Play through three elimination rounds composed of three different Wii U games (Splatoon, Mario Kart 8 and Pokkén Tournament) in a group to see if you can emerge victorious! Participation will be on a first-come, first-served basis. The Play Nintendo Challenge runs all day and takes less than 30 minutes to complete. Winners will receive an exclusive champion Nintendo T-shirt. Players who participate may receive other giveaways while supplies last based on how far they make it in the challenge.

YO-KAI WATCH Voice Actor Event (July 22): Actors Alicyn Packard, J.W. Terry and Melissa Hutchison, who provide the voices for Jibanyan, Whisper and Komasan, respectively, in the YO-KAI WATCH video game and animated TV series, will be conducting a Q&A session, doing live voice demos and a table read of a scene from Season 2 of the animated TV series from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. PT. Select attendees will also have an opportunity to receive an autograph or take photos with the actors.

Pokémon Fan Gathering Area (July 21-24): Meet up with fellow Pokémon fans to trade Pokémon, pick up some cool swag (while supplies last) and relax in a Pokémon gaming zone. The gathering area will be open during show hours.

Photo Opportunities (July 21-24): At various times during all four days, popular characters like Mario, Luigi, Pikachu, Kirby and Jibanyan from the YO-KAI WATCH series will make surprise appearances to take photos with fans.

And, of course, there will be playable Nintendo 3DS and Wii U games available during all days of the convention. These include: Monster Hunter Generations from Capcom – Launching July 15, Metroid Prime: Federation Force – Launching Aug. 19, Style Savvy: Fashion Forward – Launching Aug. 19, Sonic Boom: Fire & Ice from SEGA – Launching Sept. 27, YO-KAI WATCH 2 – Launching Sept. 30, YO-KAI WATCH – Now available, Yoshi’s New Island – Now available, Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D – Now available, Kirby: Planet Robobot – Now available, Mario Kart 7 – Now available, Pokémon Omega Ruby / Pokémon Alpha Sapphire – Now available and New Super Mario Bros. 2 – Now available.

If you are a Wii U fan, you will be checkout games and prizes from Splatoon – Now available, Mario Kart 8 – Now available and Pokkén Tournament – Now available.

On the San Diego Comic-Con show floor, attendees with a badge will be able to get inked by playing a variety of modes in the Splatoon game from July 21 to July 24 at the Nintendo booth (BOOTH #235).

Splatoon Multiplayer Battles (July 21-24): Fans of the kid or squid variety can show off their Splatoon skills in 4v4 multiplayer matches throughout the day.

Splatoon Splatfest (July 22-23): On Friday and Saturday, come enjoy the last Splatfest competition by battling for Callie or Marie in Splatoon.
Splatoon amiibo Challenges (July 21-24): Get an up-close view of the latest amiibo lineup for Splatoon and experience the challenges and bonus content that they unlock.

Visitors to the Play Nintendo Family Lounge will be able to experience the YO-KAI WATCH 2 game before it is released. When the game launches on Sept. 30, fans will have multiple purchase options.

In addition to being able to select between YO-KAI WATCH 2: Bony Spirits and YO-KAI WATCH 2: Fleshy Souls – each version featuring a select number of unique Yo-kai to befriend and battle – players will also receive special bonuses depending on whether they buy the physical or digital versions. Picking up a physical version in stores will net you an exclusive Yo-kai Medal from Hasbro that gives Jibanyan a powerful new in-game Soultimate Move when scanned into the game. Meanwhile, downloading the digital version will allow players the opportunity to battle and befriend new Yo-kai: Sailornyan or Robonyan F. The Yo-kai and Medals will also be different based on the version of the game purchased.

Style Savvy: Fashion Forward, the upcoming Nintendo 3DS game that lets you take the fashion world by storm, launches Aug. 19, but you don’t have to wait until then to play. A free demo for the game will be available in Nintendo eShop starting Aug. 4, but visitors to the Play Nintendo Family Lounge get an opportunity to check it out early.

Kicking off on Aug. 5, fans with the demo can participate in the first Style Savvy: Fashion Forward Miiverse contest themed “Black and White,” which asks fashion designers in the making to submit their best look based on the contest theme for bragging rights. Similar Style Savvy: Fashion Forward contests will be hosted through Miiverse after launch. More details about these contests will be announced in the future.

No word yet if Nintendo will be bringing along any Pokemon Go Plus devices, which have been nortoriously hard to acquire over the last week. You can bet that we will be sending a special crew to find any and all that are available on the showroom floor.