Nintendo had already mentioned that The Legend Of Zelda would be the only playable game they'd be showing off at E3 (the Electronic Entertainment Expo) this year, but hadn't clarified what non-playable games they might be announcing. Speculation was that new titles would be announced for Nintendo's next console, known as the NX. But according to a report from Polygon, Nintendo has now made it clear that their E3 kickoff show will be focused exclusively on The Legend Of Zelda, with no NX in sight - although it does bear mentioning that The Legend Of Zelda will be released for both Wii U and NX, and it's looking like, much as with the original Wii, Zelda is going to be the flagship title for the new console.
You might recall that when the Nintendo Wii launched in 2006, it was the first Nintendo console since the NES not to carry a Super Mario game as one of the top-billed launch titles (if one is willing to include the Nintendo GameCube's Luigi's Mansion -- which, to be fair, was the fifth-best selling GameCube game in America.) Instead, the Wii's major launch title -- and the console had an unprecedented 21 worldwide -- was The Legend Of Zelda: Twilight Princess, following on the massive success of Zelda 64 (aka The Ocarina Of Time) and Majora's Mask, among other titles.
Nintendo's kickoff to the E3 show happens at 9 a.m. PT Tuesday, June 14, when Nintendo of America President and COO Reggie Fils-Aime introduces Nintendo Treehouse: Live, which will be dedicated to a day of live-streamed gameplay of The Legend of Zelda. This will be the world's first in-depth look at the game, which will also include commentaries by Nintendo developers. The Legend of Zelda gameplay will be streamed from the E3 show floor via Nintendo's channels on YouTube and Twitch, as well as on http://e3.nintendo.com. The stream will include game coverage, behind-the-scenes info and plenty of fun.Nintendo has always held the Tuesday morning slot, which they traditionally dedicated to a pre-recorded presentation they called Nintendo Direct, full of new product reveals. For the first time, they're skipping the Direct presentation and going for a full day of The Legend Of Zelda. Which isn't really a bad thing; most Nintendo fans have been talking about little else since the game was announced; at least, when they're not arguing about Linkle, the "female Link" in the upcoming Hyrule Warriors Legends for the Nintendo 3DS.
Still, when all is said and done, this isn't a bad move on Nintendo's part. It's been a long time since the last Zelda release for home consoles, the two Wii U remakes notwithstanding. Nintendo's big focus over the last few years has been handheld, but home console Zelda releases still manage to top "greatest of all time" lists -- and Nintendo is right to capitalize on that if they hope to win back some of the console market with the NX.
[Image via Nintendo of America]