A Zelda trailer and Game Boy arrives on Nintendo Switch: Unpacking February’s Nintendo Direct

By Mason Berlinka

Published Feb 9, 2023 at 01:26 PM

Reading time: 2 minutes

Gamers reeling from a messy 2022 and hungry to feast on new announcements will be pleased to hear that Japanese gaming legend Nintendo has delivered with its latest live streamed Nintendo Direct. The stream is a way for the company to share everything it’s working on, as well as showcase all the titles expected to release on the console in 2023.

The biggest and best news from the February 2023 Nintendo Direct

I’ll get the big dog out of the way first. Right as the stream was ending, in classic Nintendo fashion, fans were treated to a glorious, shiny new trailer for the 12 May release of The Legend of Zelda: Tears for the Kingdom. The sequel to the 2017 mega-hit that redefined the Zelda franchise, Breath of the Wild, was met with delays during development but it looks like the open world adventure game is finally on its way.

I can’t wait to see what Hyrule has in store for Link and Zelda, but is Nintendo bringing enough to the table to make this new iteration fresh enough? I feel like I saw one too many Bokoblins in the trailer. Either way, we’ll just have to wait and see. Nintendo may just be playing its cards close to its chest on this one.

The Game Boy and Game Boy Advance are now available on the Nintendo Switch

Among a strong trailer for Pikmin 4, a colourful Bayonetta prequel reveal, and the announcement of more downloadable content (DLC) for Nintendo’s squid-themed battler Splatoon 3, was the not so surprising news that more throwback titles were on the way for Nintendo Switch Online members.

The Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack subscription already includes a huge back catalogue of Nintendo 64 games, and now the monthly add-on service is getting classic Game Boy and Game Boy Advance titles. Before the Nintendo DS took over gen Zers’ lifes, we started on a Game Boy Advance—my poison was the Game Boy Micro, which was so small I could sneak it into school.

Available from today, Thursday 9 February, subscribers to the service can play retro staples like Tetris and Warioland 3, as well as Game Boy Advance titles like The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap and Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga.

A surprise remaster, ‘Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective’ is coming to consoles

The last reveal from the Nintendo Direct that I have been dying to gush about is the remaster of one of the Nintendo DS most hidden gems. The Capcom murder mystery puzzler Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective, initially released in 2010, is finally making a comeback in the form of a remaster that will see the title released on all consoles, including PC gaming marketplace Steam.

Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective has the player—a recently deceased ghost—affect the threads of fate as you save lives by using your poltergeist abilities to manipulate your surroundings at the moment of a character’s untimely death. A marvel of animation, soundtrack and art direction, I can’t wait for the aforementioned title to receive the recognition it deserves when the game is re-released in the summer 2023.

The cards have been dealt and Nintendo has taken the first crack at defining the gaming landscape in 2023. I’m excited to see what other studios and developers have in store, as well as how they plan to challenge the Japanese giant, who is aiming to revitalise the classics, while also bringing forward the latest and greatest for its flagship franchises.

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