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Everything announced at the Nintendo Partner Direct

Xbox games, Endless Ocean, some more remakes and more from today's Nintendo Direct

Grounded
(Image: © Obsidian)

The Nintendo Partner Direct was a fast and furious celebration of tons of games from Nintendo partners across the globe. Nintendo confirmed 2 of the 4 Xbox games going multiplatform: Grounded and Pentiment are coming to Switch, and soon, and the event rounded out with the reveal of a new Endless Dungeon game.

Scroll down for everything announced at the Nintendo Direct today with a blow-by-blow of how it all played out. 


What time is the Nintendo Direct?

The Nintendo Partner Direct Showcase starts at:

- 6AM PT
- 9AM ET
- 2PM GMT
- 3PM CET


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So with that all in mind, let's take a look at what we could expect to see in that swift 25 minutes.

Let's start by recapping what Xbox said about bringing games to other platforms last week. 

As part of the Xbox Podcast last week, Phil Spencer said the following:

"We've made the decision that we're gonna take four games to the other consoles. Just four games, not a change to our fundamental exclusive strategy. We're making this decision for some specific reasons." 

"We make every decision with the long-term health of Xbox in mind. Long-term health of Xbox means a growing platform, our games performing, building the best platform for creators, reaching as many players as we can." 

"We're always looking to learn as a leadership team and to grow, and we think this is an interesting time to use what some of the other platforms have right now to grow our franchises." 

Interestingly, he said that he could imagine that over the next decade, exclusives generally will be less of a thing - although also stressed that Starfield and Indiana Jones and the Great Circle will both remain exclusives (at least for now).

"I do have a fundamental belief that over the next 5 or 10 years, exclusive games, games that are exclusive to one piece of hardware, are going to be a smaller and smaller part of the game industry. And that's not some great insight, because if you look at the last 10 years and what the biggest games are today, it's a natural place - whether it's one console in PC, multiple consoles, mobile, console, and PC - you see big games landing on multiple platforms. And we want to be a great platform for creators that are trying to realize that potential."

What he did say was that there are criteria that Microsoft is considering as to which games make the move from the Xbox ecosystem over to other platforms. 

He said that:

  • Games that have been out for over a year
  • Couple are community-driven, new games that are a 'first iteration of a franchise' where bringing them to other platforms will allow further investment
  • Couple are smaller games that weren't really ever designed to be big exclusives

So with all that in mind, we imagine that there are some likely candidates for what those four games could me. 

The community-driven ones are most likely to be Grounded and Sea of Thieves - and neither really make huge sense to be Switch releases due to their always-on multiplayer focus.

As for the other two, those referenced as smaller games, it feels more likely to be Hi-Fi Rush and Pentiment. 

Pentiment launched right at the end of 2022 so makes sense, and Hi-Fi Rush in January 2023, so both just make the year-old criteria too. 

If you want to catch up on the Xbox Podcast, here's the YouTube link:

Of course, that's us being totally focused on Xbox, it could also include other Nintendo partners. 

We've not actually had a specific Partner Direct since June 2022, which was another 25-minute long affair.

It included Capcom's Monster Hunter Rise Sunbreak, Neir Automata: The End of Yoha Edition from Square Enix, Annapurna's Lorelei and the Laser Eyes, Konami's Super Bomberman 2, Return to Monkey Island from Devolver, Ubisoft's Mario and Rabbids: Sparks of Hope, a series of Persona games from Sega Atlus, and more.

The community seems very focused on wanting Pokemon Gen 1 and 2 on virtual console, but if anything that seems better placed in the Pokemon Presents stream confirmed for Pokemon Day next week.

Maybe I'll just leave this here to manifest some new Kirby 

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Of course, what we're really all hoping for is an update on Hollow Knight: Silksong, but that feels... optimistic.

One of the wildest theories out there is that we're getting an Ecco the Dolphin remake...

As a reminder, this one is a complete video drop so you won't see anything on Nintendo YouTube until 2pm GMT / 9AM ET.

So we're around 15 minutes away now.

Time to start refreshing the Nintendo YouTube channel soon folks.

5 minutes and counting. I'm doing finger exercises.

it's here, let's go 

Oh, hello, first up we've got Grounded. Everyone act surprised! 

This is Obsidian's Honey I Shrunk the Kids multiplayer game and it's launching on Switch on April 16.

Next up we've got the Ender Lilies sequel, Ender Magnolia: Bloom in the Mist.

Dropping sometime this year but no firm date.

Arranger: A Role-Puzzling Adventure is a grid-based game that moves the who world when you move. Liking the art style on this one. 

Coming to Switch this summer.

Sega's Unicorn Overlord gets a new trailer too, ahead of its March 8 release date.

Monster Hunter Stories originally released on the 3DS is coming to Switch too. Fully voiced and in HD too. 

Disney Epic Mickey: Rebrushed is another remake coming to Switch and also looking adorable. Coming this year but again no firm date.

Oh and there's a Unicorn Overlord demo out right now.

Shin Megami Tensei Vengeance out on Switch June 21, 2024.

Star Wars: Battlefront Classic Collection announced, includes additional playable characters and maps. 

Launching March 14 , pre-orders live now.

South Park: Snow Day is the latest South Park game, but this one has co-op. 

Sword Art Online Fractured Daydream launches 'this year' with 20-player online multiplayer.

Gundam Breaker 4 launches on Switch this year.

Super Monkey Ball Banana Rumble is the next Super Monkey Ball game and has four-player local co-op, and up to 16-player online multiplayer. Coming to Switch June 25.

World of Goo 2 - one of the best mobile games of all time in my opinion - is coming to Switch on May 23.

Fantasy Life i: The Girl Who Steals Time continues to look adorable as you work to rebuild the island. Is this my new Animal Crossing?

Launching October 10.

Another Crab's Treasure, the surprise Soulslike, is coming on April 25! Adorable.

Penny's Big Breakaway - the game coming from the people who made Sonic Mania - gets a lovely trailer too, and a release date.

Surprise! It's today!

Suika Game is getting a multiplayer mode expansion today!

Pepper Grinder from Devolver Digital is coming March 28, but there's a demo available later today.

Pocket Card Jockey: Ride On is making its way to Switch from mobile with the cutest chubbiest horses. 

Also another one coming right now to Switch. 

Snufkin: Melody of Moominvalley gets a super swift surprise release date announcement of March 7!

Tales of Kenzera: Zau coming to Switch on April 23.

Demon Slayer - Kimetsu no Yaiba - Sweep the Board (wow that's quite the title) is coming April 26.

Kingdom Come Deliverance: Royal Edition coming March 15, with pre-orders starting today. 

Contra: Operation Galuga coming March 12, with pre-orders and a demo available today. 

Pentiment gets a very low-key reveal for that big Xbox partnership, and it's coming to Switch tomorrow!

Is this a Rare Collection??

Okay let's make a list:

  • Snake Rattle 'n' Roll
  • R.C. Pro-Am
  • Battletoads in Battlemaniacs
  • Killer Instinct
  • Blast Corps

Available today via Nintendo Switch Online / Online + Expansion Pack.

Endless Ocean: Luminous is the big reveal to close out the Nintendo Partner Direct.

Here was me thinking it was an actual Ecco the Dolphin reboot.

It's an all new Endless Ocean game, set in the Veiled Sea. The undersea area changes with each dive, with online multiplayer support for up to 30 players.

Over 500 species to find and encounter. Some of them are extinct creatures and maybe some will be mythical (lol). 

Launches May 2, with pre-orders going live today on the eShop. 

And that's a wrap folks!