TomoCon: Comic-Con ’13: The Nintendo Gaming Lounge

One of the highlights of San Diego Comic Con is that the adjacent Marriott Hotel is taken over by plumbers, heroes, and pokemon. With upcoming titles, big screens, bean bag chairs and even a charging station for your DS the Nintendo gaming lounge never fails to exceed expectations.

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First up is the next title in the Just Dance series Just Dance 2014. Game play is similar to previous titles with it’s “Classic” free dance mode but there are a lot of new features to look forward to. First is the new “On-Stage” Mode where one player is the featured dancers and up to two players can act as backup dancers. Another new feature will allow players to play against “ghosts” of previous players. The game will also feature a karaoke mode for consoles that have microphone attachments (sorry Wii).

Exclusively for the Wii U version is “Party Master” Mode (similar to the previous title’s “Puppet Master” Mode”) where one player can use the Wii U GamePad  to change songs, moves or rules for up to four other players with the Wii-motes.

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Just Dance 2014 is set to be released in early October this year for Wii U, Wii, Playstation 3, and Xbox360. It will also be released for Playstation 4 and Xbox One this holiday season.

If you’ve been wanting a fun, high-definition, side-scrolling platform adventure then you are in luck because everyone’s favorite gorilla is coming back this November in Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze.

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Donkey Kong’s goal is to reclaim his home after a group of viking animals invade; along with his companions Diddy Kong and Dixie Kong, he will have to fight various enemies across five islands to restore order to chaos.

Like previous titles each character has their own special skills and can be played individually in co-op mode or serve as power-ups for Donkey Kong in single player mode. New  features include Donkey Kong’s new ability to pluck things from the ground in addition to his new ability to pick up and throw enemies.

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Swimming returns in this game but has been updated so that players can now use a spin attack underwater. Also a breathing bar will appear next to each player’s health bar as soon as they enter the water but players will be able to regain air by touching bubbles or surfacing.

I was able to play the demo version of the game and over all it was enjoyable. There is a bit of nostalgia as the game is reminiscent of the 1995 title Donkey Kong Country 2. It’s your childhood with better graphics; the 3D perspective is utilized in certain situations, for example, when Donkey Kong is riding through the barrels at the end of the level.

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze will be released for the Wii U this November.

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Comic Con attendees were also able to demo of the High-Definition version of the Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker. When I first heard that Nintendo was re-releasing the beloved title I was surprised that at the high-definition claim, that was until I saw it. The graphics are beautiful but retain their cartoonish charm. The Wii U Gamepad touchscreen will serve as an inventory and can also be used to control certain items such as the Wind Baton. The game will also support off-tv play on the gamepad.

The Wind Waker will be released for the Wii U this October which should hold Zelda fans over until the release of the next title.

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The next title in the beloved series is The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds which will be released for the 3DS this holiday season.

The game is set in the same Hyrule of A Link to the Past but is set a generation after that title. The map is the same but the dungeons are updated; furthermore, players will be able to go back to the Dark world featured in A Link to the Past. The ability to shoot projectiles when at full health also returns.

As for new features your magic meter now refills itself rather than needing to purchase or find potions (and thus freeing up those oh so very important bottles). The most talk about new feature is Link’s new ability (which also depletes the magic meter) to enter walls as a drawing, when using this ability the camera shifts to a profile view and the player is able to move along the walls.

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But that is not all the gaming lounge featured. Nintendo really out did themselves by bringing so many new titles:

  • Bayonetta 2:  Will be released exclusively for the Wii U in 2014. The game will offer a multiplayer mode that will support off-TV gameplay.
  • Pikmin 3: A real time strategy game will be released exclusively for the Wii U early August 2013. The game will feature a split-screen, competitive, two-player multiplayer in a mode.
  • Super Mario 3D World: Will be exclusive for the Wii U the follow up to Super Mario 3D Land will be released December 2013. The new item that will be feautred is the cat suit, which allows Mario and his friend to climb up walls, run faster, perform unique attacks. The game will also feature gameplay with the Wii U gamepad by allowing players to use the touchscreen to reveal hidden items.
  • Sonic The Lost World: Will be released for the Nintendo Wii U and the Nintendo DS this October. The levels will range from side-scrolling 2D levels to fast-moving 3D linear levels to levels taking place on spherical worlds that are reminiscent of Super Mario Galaxy.
  • Disney Infinity: Set to be released for Wii U, Wii, Nintendo 3DS, Xbox 360, and Playstation 3 on August 18, 2013.  This game uses figurines of various Disney and Pixar characters that are then synthesized into the game for player to use. There are currently five play sets announced and players can only use characters that are in each set with each other. Sets currently announced are Monsters University, Pirates of the Caribbean, The Incredibles, Toy Story and the Lone Ranger.
  • Arkham Origins: Blackgate: The spin-off game for Arkham Origins is scheduled for release October 25, 2013.

Once again Nintendo gave fans plenty to see and do with many upcoming titles to look forward to. Can’t wait until next year Nintendo.

 

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