Six Nintendo Franchises the NX Could Revive
The recently discovered patents for controllers suspected to be for the upcoming Nintendo NX console add further weight to the speculation it will be a hybrid handheld/home console with gesture-tracking technology.
Some of the Big N’s most popular and critically-acclaimed franchises have gone largely unsighted as of late, and the arrival of a new console would be the perfect time to bring them back into the spotlight.
Here are six franchises Nintendo could bring back to really get fans excited about the NX.
The popular high-speed sci-fi racing series starring the beloved Captain Falcon was last seen on the GameCube in 2003 with F-Zero GX. Australians only got the chance to play the GBA F-Zero GP Legend recently in 2014 through a Wii U Virtual Console release, and its follow-up F-Zero Climax (not a smutty erotic fan-fiction as the title suggests) was never released outside of Japan.
Compound this with the heart-breaking knowledge that the Wii U nearly had an F-Zero game developed by Burnout and Need for Speed studio Criterion Games, it is clear the series has not been a priority for Nintendo. This being said, F-Zero has made minor appearances in Nintendo Land and Mario Kart 8 on the Wii U, as well as being a mainstay of the Super Smash Bros. series, so it has not been entirely neglected.
A new F-Zero would have been fantastic using the gyroscopic controls and second screen of the Wii U, and it could have the chance to flourish on the NX if portable and home play eventuate. Steering with the gesture controls could add to the gameplay as it did for Star Fox Zero, as long as the option to play with a conventional control scheme is included.
Also, who wouldn’t want to soak in that iconic soundtrack again?
#2 Advance Wars
Nintendo has a strong record of turn-based strategy games, including the recent Fire Emblem Fates, but it has been a while since they have strayed from the fantasy setting into the more realistic modern war setting of the Advance Wars series.
Last seen on the Nintendo DS in the form of Advance Wars: Dark Conflict in 2008, the series has been dormant for a while now. An NX iteration could bring it back as a retrospective nod to its 15th anniversary, but as Metroid shows us, we all know Nintendo is not one to always publicly acknowledge significant milestones.
Developers Intelligent Systems has focused primarily on Fire Emblem and the last couple of Paper Mario games, including the upcoming Colour Splash, but a return to Advance Wars could potentially take full advantage of the NX’s capabilities. One possibility could be a merge of gameplay features from Advance Wars with the GameCube and Wii Battalion Wars series. The potential crossover could feature a mix of turn-based strategy missions interspersed with missions controlling individual units in real-time, with the Advance half perfectly suited for portable play, bundled with the TV-suited play of Battalion.
The upcoming spinoff Metroid Prime: Federation Force has copped a lot of flak ever since its announcement, and initial reviews yield a mixed reception.
Irrespective of the reviews, Metroid fans lament the lack of a “true” Metroid game in the vein of the Prime trilogy or the 2D classics – the comments section on many news sites make for ugly reading. This, and the divisive nature of the 2010 Wii title Metroid: Other M leaves many fans waiting desperately for the likes of a Metroid title not seen since Prime 3: Corruption back in 2007.
Nintendo struck swiftly with the Metroid II fan-remake, so it would be fantastic if a 2D title were to blast its way onto the NX and show the many “Metroidvania” games on the market how it’s done.
The original Mother was released worldwide on the Wii U Virtual Console mid-last year under the title EarthBound Beginnings. It was the first time it saw the light of day outside of Japan – fans had only been waiting since 1989. Previously, EarthBound, known as Mother 2 in Japan, was the only game in the series to be playable in the west.
There has been no news of bringing Mother 3 to the west, despite hitting the Japanese Wii U Virtual Console in November last year. Imagine if Mother 3 came to the NX and a new game was announced? While we’re at it, we may as well hope for Half Life 3 as an NX-exclusive. We can dream.
In all seriousness, the success of last year’s Undertale on Steam proves the market for Mother-styled RPGs exists. To see Mother 3 on the NX would be a great boost for the console.
#5: Pokémon Snap
Rejoice, for Pokémon Snap is now on the Wii U Virtual Console!
Considering there have been six generations of Pokémon (including Sun & Moon) since Snap was released on the Nintendo 64, it makes sense for a new game to feature the PC box-loads of creatures that have been introduced since.
Now this is the best representation of what that NX patent might mean. pic.twitter.com/CrgY2gUqK6
— Stealth (@Stealth___) August 14, 2016
Twitter user @Stealth___ posted an artist’s impression of what the attachable controller aspect could mean for the NX. Looking at the camera attachment for Pokémon Snap, this could make for a great add-on to enhance the game experience. This would only work if two criteria were met: one, it came bundled with the game, and two, it serves a functional purpose as opposed to a purely cosmetic one. This being said, if it were purely cosmetic, the younger players would no doubt love pretending to take photos of Pokémon in the game.
#6: Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door successor
Benjamin Franklin once said there were only two certainties in life: death and taxes. He obviously forgot the third certainty, the one where for every article about any Paper Mario game since Super Paper Mario, there will be someone begging for a successor to The Thousand Year Door instead of the platformer with RPG-lite elements we get today.
Although Nintendo have clearly stated they are taking the Paper Mario series in a different direction to the Mario & Luigi RPG series, a common argument is that the heights of The Thousand Year Door have remained unmatched by any of the Mario & Luigi games.
If an RPG-based Paper Mario game were to grace the NX, the gesture technology could be used as a novel way of solving puzzles and potentially inventory and menu navigation – Minority Report-style.
A revival of the Super Nintendo’s Super Mario RPG would be an awesome compromise if Paper Mario remains destined to steer clear of being an RPG again.
If developers Camelot could drag themselves away from the Mario tennis and golf games for a while to put a new Golden Sun on the NX, you already have a top-shelf exclusive JRPG ready to go for the daily commute and the TV at home.
Donkey Kong 64
The 3D platformer is back in vogue. Yooka-Laylee is looking the goods so far and maybe the crew at Playtonic Games could be enticed to develop a Donkey Kong 3D platformer for the NX? It is not a stretch to consider the possibility, considering many of the staff were a part of the Rare team that worked on the Donkey Kong Country, Banjo Kazooie, and Donkey Kong 64 games.
Yes, screaming at me will definitely help to precisely perform delicate surgery
The medical-drama series on the DS and Wii combined visual novel aspects and surgeon simulation to create a surprisingly-good and stressful game which could make use of the NX’s capabilities. It is unlikely Nintendo will allow a scalpel controller attachment, but a less dangerous-looking peripheral could add just another level of immersion to the operating theatre. Although the GameCube did have a bloody chainsaw controller for Resident Evil 4…
Just for fun
Donkey Konga and Dance Dance Revolution Mario Mix
Two of the most criminally underrated Nintendo series of all time, Donkey Konga and Dance Dance Revolution Mario Mix were two rhythm-based games on the GameCube, where one used bongo controllers, and the other a dance mat similar to the ones you see at arcades. Who wouldn’t want to fully utilise the NX’s processing power to dance along to Mario or slap the bongos to Louie Louie? Just me?
What do you think of the games mentioned here? If there are any games you would love to see on the NX, or if you disagree with any of the above suggestions, let us know.