Before attempting to compile this week’s news, I was under the impression that not much had happened. It seemed like a slow week in the world of a Nintendo fan, as no large releases had happened. But after some investigation into news articles, I found that I was definitely wrong!
Nintendo itself seemed to have a bit to brag about earlier this week. Quite a few sales numbers have been released in the past week that are nothing to shake a stick at. Over the 2018 holiday sales season, Nintendo Switch hardware sales were estimated to be 20% higher than 2017, while software sales were up a whopping 100%. Despite these numbers, however, Nintendo has moved their target number of hardware sales for the 2018 fiscal year back from 20m to 17m. Having already moved nearly 15m units by the end of December 2018, this projection should be achievable. While this may be seen as a disappointment by Nintendo themselves, we still must applaud them. So far, they have seen some incredible sales numbers, for both the console and games. Nintendo has seen over 32m hardware sales so far, even with the console having not reached its second birthday. As for games, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe has been the top seller at just over 15m, while Super Mario Odyssey (13.76m), Smash Bros. Ultimate (12.08m), Zelda: BOTW (11.68m), and Pokemon Let’s Go Pikachu/Eevee (combined 10m) round out the top five games.
Speaking of Smash, this week saw the introduction of the first paid DLC character, Piranha Plant! If you purchased the game digitally or registered your cartridge by the end of January, Piranha plant is free DLC. But for anyone who has not done the above, or purchases the game at a later date, Piranha Plant will cost you $4.99 USD, as it is not covered under the Fighter’s Pass (which is currently $24.99 USD, which will get you all five upcoming DLC characters as soon as they release). While some fans have stated that they believe the price to be a bit high, it seems to be the going rate Nintendo has chosen for their future DLC character releases. On the specific topic of Piranha Plant, there have been reports of corrupted Smash Bros. save data since the 2.0 update that introduced the new character. Reports state that using Piranha Plant in the “All-Star” mode can corrupt save data. So be careful until a patch has been released.
Staying on the delightful topic of downloadable content, we received some news about upcoming DLC for other Switch titles. Mario Tennis Aces will be receiving a free new playable character, Boom Boom. The update will include both the character and the Boo Hunt co-op challenge, as well as expected balance updates. Taiko no Tatsujin: Drum 'n' Fun is also on the docket to receive more DLC. The enchanting little rhythm game will be receiving three new DLC songs for 400 yen, and the songs are favorites from the Pokemon franchise, including the theme from Pokemon Let's Go, "Aim to be a Pokemon Master - 20th Anniversary" and "Future Connection." This DLC has only been announced for Japan so far, so you’ll need a separate account if you wish to purchase it. Splatoon 2 won’t be forgotten anytime soon, as it is also slated to receive another pack of DLC in the upcoming future. While Nintendo had previously stated that no new content would be coming to the multiplayer game, they seem to have decided that content from the first game does not constitute as “new”. The “Sheldon’s Pick” pack will include ten weapons from the previous entry in the series, though the DLC does not currently have a release date. Staying on Splatoon 2 for a moment, the next Splatfest has been announced, starting on February 8th and running for 24 hours. It will finally answer the all-important question: “Pancakes or Waffles?!” This comes with the news that there will be a free-to-play week for the game, running from March 26th to April 1st, offering anyone who has not yet purchased the game an opportunity to try it out for themselves.
Finally, several rumors have sprung up about possible games and hardware revisions to look out for. In the games avenue, Assassin’s Creed 3 Collection has been listed on a Czech gaming website, indicating that the game may be coming to Switch. Ubisoft begun the Switch’s life with a strong connection to Nintendo, so the idea of an Assassin’s Creed port seems believable. However, the release date from the site reads February 15th, which seems too soon to be real. One I do hope gets a release date, however, is A Hat in Time. Finally, Nintendo themselves announced (well, sorta) that they are currently working on an unannounced title for April or later that "fans would be delighted to know." I really wonder what this could be? Some fans and other sites have speculated that it may be a sequel to BOTW or Mario Odyssey, but I think that those may be out of reach. Both games are under two years old, so I honestly think it may be too soon. However, it may be a possible re-release of some of our favorite classics, such as a Metroid Trilogy or possible Zelda collections. Personally, I think any of these would be great options, but no matter what they are, I think a Nintendo Direct may be needed in order to give fans an understanding of what to be excited about for the upcoming year. Woowoo hype train! (Just kidding!)
Written by Bonnie