Wii’re here for anything relating to Nintendo and its platforms. Look to the tags for anything more specific.
Everyone’s already posted about the ‘LeSportsac x Nintendo’ goods coming to Japan in July (and the Western world this Fall); basically, it’s another cross promotional deal for Nintendo to rake in cash and good will. But the one thing nobody seems to have posted are big pics of the designs. There’s a lot of little details and I wanted a closer look.
Fortunately, LeSportsac put out some gigantic images which you can check out, in full, in the gallery at the bottom of the page. If that’s too much bandwidth for you, here are a few smaller sized closeups and some of the original press release with the details.
PRESS RELEASE COPY: REDMOND, Wash., June 21, 2017 – Holding a treasured place in the hearts of millions, Mario’s adventures have brought him to many strange places, including the far corners of the Mushroom Kingdom and galaxies beyond. Working with Nintendo, LeSportsac took Mario’s passion for exploration and translated it into the brand’s best-selling, on-the-go styles. These include crossbodies, totes, backpacks and weekenders, as well as small cosmetics and accessories that even the Mushroom Kingdom’s most celebrated hero can run away with on his many adventures.
Power-Up Burst is a colorful homage to Mario’s iconic power-up items and classic foes, including Fire Flowers, Super Mushrooms, 1-Up Mushrooms, Super Stars, coins, Goombas and Koopas.
Mario Travel print portrays playful Mushroom Kingdom-inspired travel memorabilia, such as luggage tags, passport stamps and postcards on a bright red background.
Complementing the collection are five additional items, including an authentic pouch shaped like the Game Boy system, a round Piranha Plant pouch, and a Super Mario Bros. cosmetic. All styles will showcase a custom Super Mario coin zipper pull. The LeSportsac X Nintendo collection launches in Japan on July 19 and will be available in other countries, including the United States, this fall.
The Giant Gallery Awaits (click the ‘View Full Size’ links too) !
Everything in Super Mario Odyssey seems designed to rattle even the most absurd head-canon that fans have crafted for themselves over the decades of loosely connected Mario games. It started with the debut trailer back in January with Mario running around in the human-sized New Donk City and it’s only gotten stranger with this week’s E3 reveal.
Pauline, Mario’s original heroine from Donkey Kong, is the mayor of New Donk City and its streets are named after members of the DK clan. We’d seen Bowser in a white tuxedo before with Peach at his side in a matching wedding dress but now we see that Mario is also dressed for “the big day”. So who is crashing whose wedding and does Peach have any say in this nuptial knockout? Finally, just who is singing the vocal track heard in the new trailer with lines like “I’ll be your 1UP girl”? The camera sure lingers on that saucy singer at the New Donk City Festival, doesn’t it? Could this be the end for Mario and Peach?
Things are just as extraordinary on the gameplay end of things. Mario’s traditional powerups are nowhere to be seen and he instead utilizes the sentient, mind-controlling tophat we now know as Cappy. With Cappy, Mario can do typical video game things like boomerang his hat around to hit enemies or grab coins. What was revealed at E3, though, is a completely surprising mechanic that lets Cappy possess most enemies and suck Mario into them, slapping the red cap on their heads and a mustache on their face.
Goombas, Hammer Bros. and Bullet Bills are all commandeered by Mario as well as totally unexpected objects like taxi cabs, tanks, frogs, Rapa Nui statues and rocket ships that look straight out of Super Mario Bros. 2. Then there are the scenes where Mario is squashed flat a la Link Between Worlds and things get decidedly old school.
Between this and Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle I’ve never been more excited for new Mario games and there’s surely more bizarre stuff to be seen from both; at E3 and in the months leading up to their releases. Bring it on Nintendo, the weirder the better!
Am I trying to justify not buying a Switch or do I just like making spreadsheets? With the news of “This Week’s Switch Releases” going around I decided to copy all the listings from Nintendo.com into Excel and do some quick tabulating. Of the 53 current Switch titles on Nintendo’s official site:
26 games have been released
There are 14 Switch exclusives, half from Nintendo
38 of them are (or will be) available on other platforms
29 titles are old, from 2016 or earlier
Run all those numbers through the Shawn filter and it distills down to five. I’ll even throw in the unlisted Spelunker World and Vroom in the Night Sky to make seven games I’m interested in playing on the Switch. Between the lacking library, JoyCon-gate and docksocks I’m having a really hard time overriding my rational, adult brain. I’d love to be enraptured with Zelda like everyone else and posting my own musings about the hardware but until there’s a deal I’ll keep busy with NieR and all my other personal projects.
The only game in the entire Switch presentation that sent my fists pumping triumphantly into the air was Minna de Waiwai! Spelunker. It’s not a system seller for me like it was on PlayStation 4 but beyond Breath of the Wild it’s the only thing they showed that I was eager to play.
The gameplay (and stages) look to be the same as in Spelunker World but the trappings around them have been refreshed. There’s a new art style to the menus, a new world map and base camp screen, and the multiplayer lobby looks to be more informative about what gear everyone is bringing. Speaking of multiplayer, the game is reduced from a max of 6 players to 4, all of which can play together locally via splitscreen in TV Mode. It even supports 4 players in Tabletop Mode, though I can’t imagine staring intently at 1/4th of a 6-inch screen would be any fun. I was worried that the game would be local play only but word has it that online multiplayer is supported as well.
Visually the graphics feel pared down to me, lacking the reflections and sharp detail that frequently surprised me on PS4. Forgive me, but on the Switch it looks more like a Wii game in HD. It’s not a knock on the hardware, I think the flatter, more cartoony style just doesn’t play so well in screenshots. I’m still waiting to see it in motion beyond the 1.5 second snippet from the sizzle reel. See if you can spot it!
Possibly the biggest change is that the game isn’t free to play anymore! For roughly $45 you’ll be able to download the game or pick it up at retail. I am especially tempted to import the game just to have a physical Spelunker to hold and love and hate and love again… and smash against a wall for all the times it killed me. The price tag also means there’s no concept of buying Retries, at least there aren’t any Moon Stones in the screenshots released so far. New players will never know the real agony of death unless they come up with a new system to take its place. Maybe you lose coins or experience and it just takes longer to level up your gear.
But maybe my favorite thing about Minna de Waiwai! Spelunker is that Google translates the title to “Everyone is crazy! Speller car” which is the follow up to one of my favorite games, “Everyone with Sprank Car Z”. If I do somehow end up with a Switch you can expect much reporting on Speller Car after its Japanese release on April 20th (and then again whenever it hits the U.S.).