Tomorrow at 8am PT/11am ET, Nintendo will be hosting an hour-long Nintendo Direct to talk about 3DS games. It'll likely show a trailer for The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds and Mario Party 3DS, both of which come out this month. There's some speculation that we might hear more about Yoshi's New Island or Kirby 3DS; we might even get a new character reveal for Super Smash Bros.
What the livestream won't do, however, is acknowledge that Nintendo is about to have some very real opposition on the next-gen console front. The Wii U has enjoyed (well, enjoyed might not be the word) an unopposed fight in the 8th console generation, but that ends this week with the release of the PlayStation 4. Somewhat beautifully, the Nintendo Direct will actually take place a mere two hours after reviews start to hit for the PS4.
While you're reading about Killzone: Shadow Fall, Satoru Iwata will be trying to explain why you should care about another 3DS XL bundle.
And you know what? That's actually how things should be. Things are right in the world when Nintendo plays aloof; things are at their best when Nintendo totally ignores Microsoft and Sony.
When the Wii released in 2005, it became clear that Nintendo was playing its own game. By opting out of high-definition and letting itself be surpassed on the hardware front, Nintendo was free to step back and develop some of the best games it has ever made. The result? Some of the highest sales than it had ever seen. Worldwide sell-outs. Your grandmother playing video games. Your grandmother beating you at video games.
One generation earlier, Nintendo was struggling to keep up with the PlayStation 2 and the Xbox, but by taking itself out of the conversation it became more successful than ever. The release of the Wii U, which looks much more like the PlayStation 4 than the Wii did the PlayStation 3, might be confused as Nintendo's re-entry into the console wars, but the company evidently wants nothing to do with that front. Focusing on handhelds when its competition are at their proudest moments is an almost poetic display of chutzpah.
Tomorrow's Nintendo Direct might not have any huge reveals or announcements, but what it does do is send a message: Nintendo doesn't care about its competition. It's not afraid of shooters or $400 consoles. Nintendo thinks you'll be just as happy spending $120 on a handheld that plays Pokemon as you would be playing Knack, and we have a feeling they're right.