Nintendo’s E3 2018 showing was brimming with amazing games like Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, Fire Emblem: Three Houses, and Pokemon Let’s Go. However, there were a handful of notable franchises that were nowhere to be found during the show. Everything from Metroid Prime 4 to Yoshi, and even Animal Crossing to Mother 3 — many of us have been left wondering where some of Nintendo’s most iconic titles have been.
With that being said, we did a little digging ourselves and reached out to Nintendo to find out the fate of some of our favorite franchises.
Metroid Prime 4 and Pokemon 2019
Speaking with IGN, Nintendo’s Senior Product Marketing Manager, Bill Trinen, revealed that Nintendo wanted to focus on a shorter window this year rather than showing off some of last year’s big surprises like Metroid Prime 4 and the upcoming core Pokemon RPG.
“There was other stuff that we probably could have included in E3, but is probably a bit further out, and so we decided to really kind of keep the focus a little bit more on between now and early 2019, which I think you saw some hints of there with a couple of games,” Trinen told IGN.
“We want to show stuff when we think it’s ready to show. Obviously, it’s not like we’ve stopped working on any of the things we talked about last year, that stuff’s all being worked on,” Trinen added. “We’ll just show stuff when we’re ready to show it and really, right now, the focus is on two big games in the form of Smash and Pokemon [Let’s Go Eevee and Let’s Go Pikachu].”
When we have something to announce, we will.
“When we have something to announce, we will,” Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime told IGN at E3.
“Fill in the blank of your favorite franchise. Our mentality will be we’ll announce information close to its launch date versus teasing people for years on end.”
Fils-Aime responded similarly to a potential Western release for Mother 3, a game we’ve been asking him about for the last several years.
“Again, we know, I know there’s a fan base for that title. All I could say is we’re aware,” he explained. “It’s something that we always think about in terms of where there are opportunities to reintroduce IP to fans, to do it in a way that builds new fans, we’re certainly aware. No promises, no commitments one way or the other, but we’re aware.”
Fils-Aime said that the success of Animal Crossing Pocket Camp bodes well for the success of the eventual next installment in that franchise.
“We see tremendous opportunity in using the mobile platform to introduce IP to consumers who may not be as familiar. Animal Crossing is a great example. Tremendous interaction with Pocket Camp,” he said. “Fans are really enjoying that experience. We’re introducing it to new consumers. That bodes well for whenever the next Animal Crossing might come.”
It’s actually been making really good progress.
Nintendo confirmed that Yoshi for Switch is still in development, though has been delayed to next year. Nintendo’s website now lists Yoshi as a 2019 release.
“It’s actually been making really good progress. They decided they wanted to make some improvements, so they’re going to take just a little bit more time on it and that’s why we’re not showing it this year at the show,” Trinen told IGN, “But I think you can look forward to some updates on it later in 2018.”
Initially announced at E3 2017, Nintendo showed off an extensive demo featuring a brand new cardboard aesthetic. At the time, Yoshi was planned for a 2018 release, though now we know that we’ll most likely see it sometime next year. Preorders for Yoshi are still open on Amazon.
Despite no announcement of an official reprisal for the franchise — be it the rumored Star Fox Grand Prix or something entirely new — Ubisoft revealed during their E3 conference that Star Fox will be a playable character in the Switch version of their new open-world space adventure game, Starlink: Battle for Atlas.
The Switch version will come included with an exclusive version of an Arwing fighter and will feature story missions exclusive to Star Fox, which Ubisoft claims will fit nicely within the lore of Starlink.
For much more from our conversation with Fils-Aime at E3, read about how Nintendo feels about all the leaks before this year’s E3 and why Nintendo feels Switch Online is the successor to Virtual Console.