Star Fox Zero
Ever since last year’s kinda-sorta reveal of a Star Fox game, fans have been clamoring for more details. The series hasn’t had a great entry in quite some time, and with the unique two-screen design of the Wii U, the hopes for this game were high. After playing the game at E3, we can assure you of one thing — if you’re looking for a true sequel to Star Fox 64, you got it.
The demo plops you down in Corneria where you learn how to control the Arwing. On first glance, duh, you know how to control the Arwing. That is, until you try to aim. You see, the second analog stick isn’t what you use to aim, that’s reserved for acrobatics and movement (boost, brake, banking, etc.). Your reticule is instead controlled by a combination of your movement and the Wii U Gamepad’s gyro. Like Splatoon, more precise aiming can be achieved by moving the gamepad about, but unlike Splatoon, the movement also shows you more depending on the mode you’re in. With All Range mode and the new Targeting mode, the gamepad gives you a cockpit view of your Arwing and allows you to shoot in any direction regardless of your current heading. Having a cockpit mode in which you can aim independent of your movement and see more than what’s on the top screen is useful for flyovers on ground enemies and dogfights. That being said, it does take getting used to and requires you to move about while sitting on your couch, something we’re not sure anyone is a fan of.
The only transformation we got to experience in the demo was into the ChickenWing (our name, not theirs), and while it wasn’t the most useful thing, it gives you new perspectives on the level by showing you areas you can’t access with the Arwing. The Corneria level culminates in a battle where you must destroy a ship from the inside and have to use the ChickenWing to do so. When you breach the structure, you’re met with a really simple boss that consists of a few whirling weak points that grant you the opportunity to really test the maneuverability of the land vehicle, and it actually feels pretty good!
All in all, if you were hoping for another game like Star Fox 64, then this game is for you. It’s a beautiful game that adds to the classic Star Fox 64 gameplay arsenal with transforming vehicles while also adding in the fresh element of the cockpit view.
Legend of Zelda: Triforce Heroes
Legend of Zelda: Four Swords was an add-on for the Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past port for Gameboy Advance. The multiplayer Zelda title was so well received that it was then expanded on to make Four Swords Adventure, a full game in which you and your friends teamed up to take down puzzles and bosses. Now, Nintendo is releasing an all new multiplayer Zelda title called Triforce Heroes for your and your friends to hate each other in.
Though the rupee grabbing elements of the game seem to be gone, everything else is in tact, from picking up your fellow players to using your items in conjunction to solve puzzles. One interesting new element added to the game is costumes. Though they don’t seem to affect gameplay, they affect auxiliary things about the game, such as luck or damage modifiers. They also affect how super kawaii uguu~ you are.
The demo had three players work through a dungeon together. In our particular level, we were using the gust bellows and bombs to navigate across gaps, hit enemies from afar, and totem up to hit switches. All in all, this really seems like another Four Swords game, just running on the Legend of Zelda: Link Between Worlds engine. If you’re in to that sort of thing, and we definitely are, then you need not wait long, as it’ll be out later this year.
Yoshi’s Woolly World
Some games, you just know are going to be too cute for their own good. Kirby’s Epic Yarn was one such game, and now the fabric-texture cuteness sinks it claws into Yoshi in Woolly World.
As is with the previous two games, it seems Nintendo is taking a note from their past selves and bringing back the gameplay elements and feel from the Yoshi’s Island games to this new, saccharine title. One notable difference, and in our opinion improvement, is that you can do two player with a gamepad and a Wiimote, meaning more adorable Yoshi, more cute adventures, and new, slightly difficult puzzles to solve with your friends. The game feels very fluid, adds in some interesting fabric-based puzzles like platforms existing only when behind a piece of fabric that has a light behind it.
We’re sure there’s some amount of story here, but it doesn’t really matter. I mean, look at that guy. He’s slurping up yarn and pooping out yarn balls. How cute is that? Speaking of cute, while we were in line to play this, we spied the three Woolly World Amiibos, and they are just as cute and soft looking in person.