Snackbar Speculator: Nintentions

February 28, 2010

Nintendo’s Media Summit this week gave us ample rumor fodder for this week’s Speculator. Since that’s what we’re all talking about this week, here is an all-Nintendo edition.

Current scores:

Andrew Passafiume: 5 

Graham Russell: 5

Shawn Vermette: 40

New Legend of Zelda to come out in U.S. in 2010

According to remarks from Satoru Iwata and Cammie Dunaway, there’s a chance that the next Zelda will hit shelves this fall. Combine those off-the-cuff remarks with the fact that Nintendo just cleared out their entire inventory of big upcoming games, and this becomes a much more interesting rumor. Right now, Nintendo has no big projects announced for release after June. Could Zelda be the big one that props up their holiday lineup?

Andrew: This is a definite possibility, especially considering Nintendo’s biggest titles are all coming out before the second half of the year. Mario Galaxy 2 and Metroid: Other M both coming out in Q2? That is the biggest surprise of all. I think Nintendo needs a big title to launch for the Holidays, and Zelda seems like the best candidate. 90%

Graham: With clearing the fall of Galaxy 2 and Other M, they’ll have to announce some big stuff at E3. Zelda’s the only big title they’ve announced. My hesitation: they say it’s not ready, and they can be patient with Zelda. There’s always a chance of a New Super Mario Bros.-like announcement of a quick, surprising release.  80%

Shawn: I fully expect to see a new Zelda this year, probably during the holidays. It’s been 4 years since Twilight Princess came out, and most Zelda games have come out in roughly 4 year increments. That and the complete lack of anything resembling a holiday blockbuster on their current slate of games tells me they were clearing the way for a big announcement at E3. 85%

Nintendo to announce U.S. release of The Last Story at E3

Nintendo and Mistwalker, the studio behind Blue Dragon and Lost Odyssey, are at work on a new RPG project . Unfortunately, little is known about it beyond the fact that it is scheduled to come out in 2010 in Japan and is the only project being worked on by Hironobu Sakaguchi, the famed creator of Final Fantasy. Dunaway was evasive when asked about localization of the game.

Andrew: I think this has a higher chance of happening than one may think. The game is apparently almost finished, despite us seeing next to nothing on it. It probably would not take terribly long to localize it for Western audiences, so I would definitely expect to hear about it at E3. Whether or not we’ll actually get it this year is an entirely different story, but still a possibility. 80%

Graham: With the deck-clearing of the Summit, I think there will be some announcing of games that won’t be out by the end of the year. This seems to be one of those announcements, as the localization may take a while. This one is higher-profile, but also not as far along in the development process, so it’s a toss-up. 75%

Shawn: I don’t know how likely this is, but I really, really hope it happens. I loved Blue Dragon and Lost Odyssey, and am really looking forward to this next RPG from them. However, their last game was never localized, so I’m left with hope versus history on this rumor. 60%

Nintendo to announce U.S. release of Xenoblade at E3

Similar to the above rumor, Xenoblade is the newest project from Monolith Soft, creators of Xenosaga. It was shown last year at E3 as Monado, but currently is only set for release in Japan. However, Cammie Dunaway also referred to it during the Nintendo Media Summit this week. Dunaway also tried to sidestep questioning about this one, but they’ve shown it before, so is it more likely?

Andrew: That’s the point, why mention it if it isn’t going to be localized? I feel the same exact way about this as I do about The Last Story. It’s fairly obvious we’ll hear about a U.S. release this E3, but once again, who knows when we’ll actually get it. 80% 

Graham: Since there was an announcement last year (albeit a small one with no demo space), this one’s a bit more likely. Still not convinced the release will be quick, but if we get one of these in 2010, we won’t get the other, as they both hit the same demographic. 80%

Shawn: RPGs are always something I’m interested in, so yet again I’m hoping for something to happen that I’m not sure will happen. I can’t think of any reason to mention a game in the US if you don’t plan on localizing it…but Nintendo has done it before (Mother 3 is one example). 65%