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Nintendo Partner Preview Highlights Indie Games & Also That Nintendo Has Nothing Coming for Wii U

Hey, Nintendo posted a video recently highlighting upcoming releases for the Wii U and 3DS! That’s a smart move, considering that today is also the release of the last big Wii U game on the calendar, Star Fox Zero. It’s also kind of a telling move, as the video is actually a “Spring Partner Preview,” meaning it highlights games that aren’t coming from Nintendo and does nothing to dispel the sense that the company is pretty much done with the Wii U.

That’s probably because that sense is accurate, to be fair. That’s not to say this video isn’t a nice way to support some smaller developers that doesn’t necessarily carry any greater meaning, but it’s hard not to let it underscore the fact that the company isn’t pumping up their own future offerings. There’s supposedlyZelda game still on the way, and we’ll no doubt hear more about that at E3 in about a month and half, whether it really does make it to the Wii U, the NX, or both, but other than that, Nintendo’s upcoming home console software calendar is one big question mark. Their portable calendar doesn’t look that thrilling, either, with Metroid Prime: Federation Force being the biggest first-party title to speak of (though Monster Hunter Generations and LEGO Star Wars: The Force Awakens from third parties are nothing to sneeze at).

Of course, with E3 looming just on the horizon in mid-June, it’s not surprising that they’d want to save any big software announcements for that event, but it’s strange that we don’t have any idea what we’ll be playing on the Wii U this holiday season—unless the NX releases in that timeframe as we (and everyone else) have speculated repeatedly, in which case it makes total sense. It also means that this year stands a very low chance of being a boring E3 presentation from Nintendo, as they’re fresh out of known products to fall back on. We hope they’ve got something big up their sleeves, because Star Fox Zero isn’t exactly shaping up to be the swan song the Wii U deserves. Stay tuned as we spiral further into conspiracy theory territory in the weeks ahead.

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Dan is many things, including a game developer, animator, martial artist, and at least semi-professional pancake chef. He lives in North Carolina with Lisa Brown (his wife) and Liz Lemon (his dog), both of whom are the best, and he will never stop reminding The Last Jedi's detractors that Luke Skywalker's pivotal moment in Return of the Jedi was literally throwing his lightsaber away and refusing to fight.