E3 Nintendo Direct: Breath of the Wild sequel, Banjo-Kazooie, Animal Crossing, Link's Awakening, and more

What the hell? A new Zelda is en route? And Banjo-Kazooie on Super Smash Bros. Surprise!

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That's it! Nintendo's E3 direct is over, and it was actually pretty good. Especially at the end! Despite no new Metroid Prime 4 footage, no new Bayonetta. The long-rumored Nintendo Switch update was nowhere to be seen.

But new Zelda folks! A brand new sequel to Breath of the Wild is in development.

So what did we get? We got Banjo-Kazooie in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, more footage of upcoming games like Luigi's Mansion 3 and Link's Awakening. And also a whole heap of existing games like The Witcher 3 and Alien Isolation coming to the Nintendo Switch. Oh and Animal Crossing gets a name and release date!

Let's break it down.

A new Zelda!

Oh lord! We absolutely did not see this one coming. Nintendo is making a new Zelda game -- but it looks as though it's a direct sequel to Breath of the Wild (probably the greatest game ever made). I am extremely excited.

The fact Nintendo has announced a new Zelda so quickly suggests it could be a Majora's Mask-style sequel in the same universe. To be clear: This is not DLC, this is a new fully fledged sequel.

Also Link was riding a gigantic elephant/rhino type animal.

Very exciting.

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Animal Crossing has been delayed

Nintendo had previously said Animal Crossing would be available this year, in 2019. Sadly that is no longer the case.

Today Nintendo announced that Animal Crossing: New Horizons will be released on March 20, 2020.

Not a massive delay, but significant nonetheless. The game is being delayed to ensure that the game hits the quality levels Nintendo requires. 

We got an additional look at the game today at Nintendo's  E3  Nintendo Direct and it does look like the game is en route to hitting those quality levels. In new footage released today we got to see the game in all its glory: fishing, gardening, crafting.

Banjo-Kazooie in Smash!

It's been a long time coming, but finally it has happened: Banjo-Kazooie is coming to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate on the Nintendo Switch, as revealed by Nintendo's E3 Nintendo Direct

It's long been one of those character additions that made complete sense, but there's always been one obstacle: Since Microsoft owned Rare, the company that made the games originally, Nintendo didn't have the rights to reproduce the character on a game solely designed for Nintendo consoles.

But they're not alone. In conjunction with the western release of Dragon Quest XI, Nintendo is also bringing across characters from that game to Smash.

Banjo-Kazooie is coming to Smash in Fall 2019.


Luigi's Mansion 3

Luigi's Mansion is low-key, one of the most underrated Nintendo franchises. We got a fresh look at Luigi's Mansion 3, the latest in the series, and it looks fantastic.

In addition to the usual gameplay we've come to expect, Luigi's Mansion 3 has found new ways for Luigi to interact with the world: a cool new plunger thing that lets you rip stuff from the game's environment and -- perhaps most importantly -- GOOIGI! A green, ghostly version of Luigi that allows you to solve puzzles in the game world.

After the Nintendo Direct I got the chance to play a bunch of Luigi's Mansion 3. It's tactile, beautiful and just fun to engage with. I can't wait for this one.

Nintendo also revealed a four-player co-op mode.

The game is set for release in late 2019.

No More Heroes 3

Fans of Travis Touchdown were rewarded with a new No More Heroes game for the Nintendo Switch. It's being developed by Grasshopper and while we didn't get a glimpse of gameplay, it looked pretty good!

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Link's Awakening

LInk's Awakening looks amazing. Absolutely amazing.

As someone who played and adored the original Link's Awakening on the original Nintendo Game Boy, this looks like a faithful rework on every possible level. It retains the charm of the original but the new art style looks to elevate it into something truly special in its own right.

Perhaps the most newsworthy part: Link's Awakening has some sort of new "dungeon creator" that looks like it allows players to design their own dungeons seamlessly. Looks like it could provide a lot of replay value to those who blast through the main quest quickly.

Post the Nintendo Direct I spent a decent amount of time with Link's Awakening. It looks glorious, feels super familiar, but is evolved enough to feel like a brand new game in the best possible way.


A lot of old games are coming to Switch

Since the console is portable, it always feels significant when Nintendo brings classics to the Nintendo Switch. At the Nintendo Direct it was announced that The Witcher 3 and Alien Isolation were en route.

Personally I cannot wait to play The Witcher 3 on the bus and Alien Isolation completely curled up in bed.

Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3

Finally a Marvel game that looks decent? I jest I jest!

Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3 is a far more stylized Marvel game. It's also far more of a known quantity given it's the third in a series that stretches back literally years. We sort of know what to expect with this one: a multiplayer, top down beat em up style game. Could be worse!

All of E3 2019's press conferences

Saturday, June 8

Sunday, June 9

Monday, June 10

  • PC Gaming Show -- This annual PC Gaming Show is held at a theater a short walk from the Los Angeles Convention Center, but still draws a large crowd, filling the 1,700-person capacity downtown Mayan Theater. Inside, the usual suspects, from Halo to Doom, were nowhere to be found. Instead, the crowd cheered for PC-centric games including Zombie Army 4Baldur's Gate 3 and Terraria: Journey's End. (No, the game sequel problem isn't any better on PCs.) The highlight was a brief onstage appearance by legendary game designer Yu Suzuki, responsible for classics such as Hang-On and Virtua Fighter. His long-awaited Shenmue 3 is expected in November, 18 years after Shenmue 2. 
  • Ubisoft -- The French gaming giant announced its next big dystopian hacking adventure game, Watch Dogs: Legion, launching March 2020. The new game is set in near-future post-Brexit London, where the economy is failing and government is breaking down. The company also announced a new television show, called Mythic Quest, that will launch on Apple TV Plus. And it celebrated the 10th anniversary of its Just Dance party games. 
  • Square Enix -- Aside from the Final Fantasy 7 remake release date announcement, Square Enix also showed off its new comic book tie-in, Marvel's Avengers: A Day. Though the new game is different from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, some fans criticized the character's looks. It's coming in 2020.

Tuesday, June 11

We're there

CNET is on the ground, covering covering E3 2019 alongside our sister site, Gamespot. We'll update this page throughout the show as more games are announced.