2021 Nintendo Direct: Five Fantastic Features



SWITCH AND PLAY: The Nintendo Switch has been the focus of Nintendo Directs since 2017, when the console was released.

Rachel Yokota, Managing Editor

New games, remasters, Smash challengers and more; the quarterly Nintendo Direct is finally here with tons to reveal. Similar to past Directs, the first Direct of the year was a livestream  dedicated to bringing fans information about the latest games and updates coming to the Switch. While the majority of the presentation was trailers for new games, there were several standout features that captured the attention of Nintendo fans worldwide.

New Smash Challengers: Pyra and Mythra 

As a part of the second Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Fighters Pass, Pyra and Mythra from “Xenoblade Chronicles 2” will be joining Smash’s collection of fighters. Revealed in a cheeky trailer, players will use both in one match, swapping between the two as desired. In past games, other two-in-one fighters such as Zelda and Sheik featured a character that completely eclipsed its partner, causing players to ignore the weaker fighter entirely. Fans hope that when Pyra and Mythra are released in March, players will be free to use both characters to their full potential without a clear choice to favor.

Splatoon 3

At long last, patient “Splatoon” fans will no longer have to wait in the dark. “Splatoon 3” has been confirmed for release in 2022. From what we’ve seen so far, the game will take place in the “Splatlands,” a vast and rocky desert, as confirmed by Nintendo. The new lobby and arenas are reminiscent of a post-apocalyptic society, but still utilize the previous games’ neon color palette. The three-minute trailer gave a sneak peek for what’s to come—new special weapons, abilities and even two new base movement techniques. 

Skyward Sword HD Remaster

Unfortunately, the Direct did not offer us any news on the greatly anticipated sequel to “Breath of the Wild.” However, Nintendo did announce a high-definition remaster of “The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword.” Originally released on the Wii in 2011, the remaster will be headed to the Switch on July 16th. With it, a new joy-con controller design inspired by the Master Sword and Hylian Shield will be hitting shelves on the same date. The game offers both immersive motion controls that mirror Link’s actions during battles and the traditional button-only controls.

Mario Golf Super Rush

Mario is teeing off again in the seventh installment in the Mario Golf series, available on June 25th. The trailer teased multiple gameplay modes, including a story mode, a speed golf mode and a traditional golf mode. You will be able to play as your own customizable Mii or play as popular characters from the Mario franchise. Motion controls will be available and allow you to mimic your character’s movements on screen.

Monster Hunter Rise

To be released on March 26th, “Monster Hunter Rise” will be continuing its franchise on the Switch. Similar to previous installments, the game is centered around killing and capturing intriguing monsters to fulfill quests. Each monster features an unique design and attacks that has its own place in the game’s open world environment. Along with the game, a special-edition “Monster Hunter Rise” Switch system design will be available to purchase soon.