This week Nintendo had several announcements with president Shuntaro Furukawa saying the Switch was in the middle of its lifecycle. With the Switch selling more units than all previous generations of Nintendo’s home consoles, with over 100 million units sold so far, the Switch, Switch Lite, and the new OLED version that released last year, it seems the Switch is closing in on Game Boy’s near 120 million console total. Despite this, year-to-year sales in 2021 dropped by 6% and profits were down 9.3% compared to 2020, after Animal Crossing: New Horizons’ exceptional release. Shuntaro Furukawa also announced they would not be participating in the consolidation wars of Microsoft and Sony, and are instead focussing on strengthening their own company. In better news for Nintendo, Pokémon Legends: Arceus has sold 6.5 million copies in its first week, outselling Sword and Shield which sold 6 million collectively in its release week.
The announcements of today’s Nintendo Direct was packed with sports and ports. In Sports, Mario Strikers Battle League, a Mario soccer game utilising items, skills, and strategy is coming June 10. Nintendo Switch Sport, a new Wii-like sports game including Bowling (with survival mode), Tennis, Chambara, Badminton, Volleyball, and Soccer complete with leg strap, as well as a future Golf game to come. This comes to Switch April 29 with a playtest for Switch Online members February 18 through 20. Baseball game The Show 22 announced cross play to take your game on the go. Disney Speedstorm, a free-to-play cross platform Disney and Pixar action racer to come midyear.
Taiko no Tatsujin: Rhythm Festival, a rhythm drum game with 76 songs and a future in-game subscription that will give access to over 500 songs is coming this year.
In DLC announcements, Mario Kart 8 is getting a paid DLC with 48 remastered courses to be released over time named Booster Course Pack. This will be included in the Online Expansion Pack or may be purchased separately. And Cuphead – The Delicious Last Course DLC will be available June 30.
In Ports, Star Wars: Force Unleashed is available from today in the online store, also EarthBound and Earthbound Beginnings have been added to Nintendo Switch Online. Assassin’s Creed Enzio Collection is coming Feb 17, Triangle Strategy March 4, Chrono Cross: The Radican Dreamers Addition, a remake with enhanced soundtrack, is coming April 7, Advance Wars 1 + 2: Re-Boot Camp April 8, Klonoa Phantasy Reverie Series July 8, and Live A Live July 22. No Man’s Sky and Front Mission 1st: Remake are coming to the Switch midyear, and SD Gundam Battle Alliance, and Portal: Companion Collection have been announced for 2022.
Surprising Grand Theft Auto News
On February 4th Rockstar surprised fans by announcing in a blog post that they are “actively developing[sic] the next entry in the Grand Theft Auto series [and] is well underway.” This same post also confirmed the release date for GTA V and GTA Online coming to PS5 and Xbox series S & X on March 15.
In other surprising news, CEO Strauss Zelnick claimed GTA Trilogy, with a user score of 0.6 on metacritic, “significantly exceeded” expectations. In an investor presentation Take Two-claimed they have sold up to an estimated 10 million copies of the game.
Now in some Gaming Bytes:
In 2021’s financial report Activision Blizzard shared that they are planning the release of a Warcraft franchised mobile “content” to be released this year. There is no indication as to what form this may take.
With the popularity of Wordle and its sale to the New York Times last week, several spinoffs have started to pop-up online. There are both word based options for the Wordle connoisseur with Semantle – a word meaning match, Dordle – a double word match puzzle, Lewdle a humorous addition where only lewd words are allowed, and Gameboy Rom and Wordle Archive for those wanting to take it on the go or check it out historically. For those sick of the word based wordles, Globle has you guessing countries, Squirdle is all Pokémon, and Nerdle is for those math fans.
But for those OG Wordle fans… it seems everything is right there on the webpage. So, before the New York Times takes over, don’t forget to right click and save your way to years of offline Wordle.
If you have another Wordle spinoff we need to know about, leave a comment on our Facebook news post.
Now for some upcoming games:
Friday the 11th free-to-play MMORPG Lost Ark is coming to PC
Pixelated action RPG where your choices matter Infernax is coming to PC, Xbox, PS4 and Switch just in time for Valentine’s Day. On Thursday 17th, King of Fighters 15 comes to PC, Xbox Series S/X and PlayStation 4 & 5, and Total War: Warhammer 3 comes to PC and Game Pass.
And that’s all this week in gaming news.