February’s Nintendo Direct was jam-packed full of news, announcements and surprise reveals of upcoming titles for the Nintendo Switch. Whilst some high-profile upcoming releases didn’t even get a mention - Animal Crossing and the upcoming Pokémon RPG come to mind - other games completely stole the show.
Some of the biggest announcements include a surprise new entry into the Tetris franchise in the form of Tetris 99 (free-to-play, exclusively for Nintendo Switch Online subscribers), PlatinumGames’ newest action title, Astral Chain, complete with a full-length trailer, as well as the unfortunate delay of the long-awaited Fire Emblem: Three Houses to July 2019.
Super Mario Maker 2 was the first major announcement, with a short trailer serving as the opening to the Direct. Releasing in June 2019, there are all-new features, items and blocks to take advantage of, so it is sure to be a big hit with fans of the original.
More information was also revealed about Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order, which is the first new entry into the series in ten years. It comes complete with new characters, storylines and combat mechanics to explore.
Let’s not forget the closing announcement of the Direct; 1993’s GameBoy classic, The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening, is being remastered for Nintendo Switch
Various updates to existing Switch titles were announced too, with new content coming to Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker, Starlink: Battle for Atlas and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, amongst other games. The free update for Treasure Tracker on March 14th will see co-op play introduced across all levels, while a new series of missions is coming to Starlink in April 2019.
The “Ultimate Spring Update” – i.e. version 3.0 – teased for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate was lacking in substance, but at the very least, Joker was confirmed to be joining the battle before the end of April, and a reminder of the upcoming new Amiibo was given.
The announcement of PlatinumGames’ upcoming action title, Astral Chain, came as a shock to many, and the game is currently slated for an August 2019 release. As part of a police special task force, it’s up to you to fight against mysterious, alien-like creatures who have invaded the world, and you have the choice of either a male or female character to play as on your adventure. And don’t worry, Bayonetta fans; it was confirmed that the developers of the third entry in the series are still hard at work.
PlatinumGames’ newest action title, Astral Chain, complete with a full-length trailer
But let’s not forget the closing announcement of the Direct; 1993’s GameBoy classic, The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening, is being remastered for Nintendo Switch. Although the release date is as mysterious as the art style for the time being, the game has already gained a substantial following - this is certainly not a title to be missed.
A huge number of other titles were also announced for the Switch during the Direct. Here’s just a small list of what’s to come: Deltarune: Chapter 1 (February 2019 - best trailer, so many dogs); Yoshi’s Crafted World (March 2019 – demo available now); Unravel Two (March 2019); Box Boy! + Box Girl! (April 2019); Assassin’s Creed III Remastered (May 2019); Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice (Spring 2019); Dragon Quest Builders II (July 2019); Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night (Summer 2019); Oninaki (Summer 2019); Daemon X Machina (Summer 2019); Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age (Fall 2019); Dead by Daylight (Fall 2019).