By Paul Hunter
Nintendo has put dates to their upcoming holiday Wii line-up, including Kirby's Epic Yarn, Donkey Kong Country Returns, and PokéPark Wii: Pikachu's Adventure. Dates were also given for anticipated Nintendo DS games such as Professor Layton and the Unwound Future, Pokémon Ranger: Guardian Signs, and Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem!
Furthermore, company provided dates for notable third party Wii and Nintendo DS titles including NBA Jam, GoldenEye 007, Disney Epic Mickey and Super Scribblenauts.
Here's the complete list:
* Metroid: Other M (Aug. 31)
* Samurai Warriors 3 (Sept. 27)
* Wii Party (Oct. 3)
* Kirby's Epic Yarn (Oct. 17)
* PokéPark Wii: Pikachu's Adventure (Nov. 1)
* FlingSmash (Nov. 7)
* Donkey Kong Country Returns (Nov. 21)
Wii (third party games)
* New Carnival Games (Sept. 21), 2K Play
* NBA JAM (Oct. 5), EA Sports
* Just Dance 2 (Oct. 12), Ubisoft
* GoldenEye 007 (November), Activision Publishing
* Sonic Colors (Nov. 16), SEGA
* Disney Epic Mickey (this holiday season), Disney Interactive Studios
* And Yet It Moves (Aug. 23), Broken Rules
* BIT.TRIP FATE (this fall), Gaijin Games
* Super Meat Boy (this holiday season), Team Meat
Nintendo DS (Nintendo)
* Professor Layton and the Unwound Future (Sept. 12)
* Pokémon Ranger: Guardian Signs (Oct. 4)
* Art Academy (Oct. 25)
* Mario vs. Donkey Kong: Mini-Land Mayhem! (Nov. 14)
Nintendo DS (third party games)
* Super Scribblenauts (October), Warner Bros.
* Final Fantasy The 3 Heroes of Light (Oct. 5), Square Enix
* Rock Band 3 (Oct. 29), Electronic Arts/MTV
* Need For Speed Nitro-X (Sept. 20), Electronic Arts
* Shantae: Risky's Revenge (this holiday season), WayForward
Nintendo has unquestionably revealed a killer holiday line-up of games, one that seems to be pleasing younger and older gamers alike -- something the publisher has contended with the last couple of holiday seasons. Even the more casual fare, such as Kirby's Epic Yarn, Poképark Wii and Wii Party, impressed me during my hands-on time at Nintendo of Canada's recent Eh!3 event in Toronto.
Digging deep into their roster of iconic characters, including Metroid, Kirby and Donkey Kong, Nintendo is relying on a well established catalogue of popular franchises to drive momentum during the crucial fall season. This trend will continue in 2011 and beyond with Nintendo already announcing new entries for The Legend of Zelda, Kid Icarus, Nintendogs, Star Fox, Pilotwings, Paper Mario, Mario Kart, and a new Wii sports collection (Mario Sports Mix).
Curiously, Golden Sun: Dark Dawn, a role-playing game sequel to a couple of Game Boy Advance games, was the only game at Nintendo's Eh!3 preview event not given a holiday 2010 release date. The dates given go to November, meaning there is a chance Golden Sun could still be announced for December, or it could mean the game is slipping into 2011. At this point we're really not sure.