Nintendo’s lack of E3 plans bodes well for the NX

Nintendo today confirmed that their presence at E3 will be vastly different from their normal routine.  Zelda will be the only game in attendance on the show floor, the NX will not be shown in any capacity, and the recent ‘Direct’ videos will be replaced with a Zelda only livestream.

After ditching the E3 stage shows that Sony, Microsoft and other developers have stuck to in recent years, Nintendo have recently tended to focus on concise 60 to 90 minute videos, delivering news and trailers in one handy package.  But this year will be different.

Nintendo’s E3 show floor space – usually filled with a myriad of upcoming software titles – will be filled with just The Legend of Zelda for Wii U.  Whether that means Nintendo’s large E3 space will be filled with 500 Zelda kiosks and not much else remains to be seen, but Nintendo have been adamant that Zelda will be the only title on the show floor.  Meaning no Wii U games, no 3DS games, and well, not much of anything else.

In place of the usual Nintendo Direct, Nintendo will hold a live stream dedicated entirely to the new Legend of Zelda game.  The stream will take place on June 14th at 5pm GMT, hosted by Nintendo of America boss Reggie Fils-Aime on Nintendo’s Twitch channel.

It should be no surprise that Nintendo have dropped everything in favour of Zelda.  Wii U and 3DS game production has stopped, and focus at Nintendo is now solely on the NX.

Kotaku’s Keza McDonald set the record straight on Nintendo’s finances with a wonderful piece explaining that Nintendo are not in any immediate financial danger, and won’t be for some time.  With that in mind, take into account that Nintendo are barely appearing at this year’s E3 and have no future Wii U plans.  And it’s clear that Nintendo are looking at playing a long-term game with the NX.

All their eggs, baskets, kitchen sinks, and other warn out phrases will be thrown towards making the NX a financial success.  Which includes giving E3 a swerve and not acknowledging that they still have a console on store shelves.

A lack of an E3 presence is also reportedly down to Nintendo’s resistance to share a stage with Sony and Microsoft, wishing to avoid being embroiled in the age old ‘who won E3?’ debate that usually follows.  Nintendo wants the NX to receive its full and official unveiling without any competition from its rivals, wanting the media focus to be dedicated to the NX upon its reveal.

Ignoring the 10million plus Wii U owners in favour of NX’s launch next March is a horrendous thing to do.  But Nintendo can’t risk going to market with its new console featuring a dry line-up like its predecessor.  If Nintendo can put themselves into a position where the NX launches with Zelda on day one, followed up by key titles immediately after, no one will worry about why Nintendo failed to appear at E3 2016, and instead focus on what they’ve got to come.