June 2024 Nintendo Direct Hopes & Predictions

Nintendo, Illumination Entertainment, and Universal Pictures presents THE SUPER MARIO BROS. MOVIE
Nintendo, Illumination Entertainment, and Universal Pictures presents THE SUPER MARIO BROS. MOVIE / Noam Galai/GettyImages

June has become a month that is synonymous with excitement and speculation within the gaming community. Since the first E3 in 1995 developers and publishers have used the event as a platform to highlight upcoming software and hardware, generating publicity among shareholders and consumers. Some of the most iconic moments in video game history have come from these annual events, one of the earliest examples being Sony undercutting the SEGA Saturn’s price by having Stave Race walk out onstage and simply say, “$299,” and then walking away.

While E3 may have started as a showcase for video game companies to entice stockholders to invest more heavily in new products, it quickly gained traction as an annual celebration of all things video game-related for the general public to enjoy as well. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, however, E3 has been canceled, leaving video game companies to their own devices to announce what is currently in development. 

Nintendo has been ahead of the curve on this front since the WiiU/3DS era with their pre-recorded Nintendo Directs. These videos, which are released nearly every fiscal quarter, do a phenomenal job of showcasing upcoming titles while expressing the Nintendo charm that keeps fans coming back for more. Historically Nintendo Directs have been announced within two weeks of their airing.

This time around, however, Nintendo’s President Shuntaro Furukawa took to X (Formerly Twitter) to tell the community that a Nintendo Direct is coming next month in June. We may not have a specific date and time for the presentation, but this is more time than we have ever been given to speculate and theorize what the company may have up its sleeve. 

It is no secret that the Nintendo Switch is rapidly approaching the end of its life. Rumors surrounding the Switch Successor are all over the internet right now, making 2024 feel like “2016 Part Two” to an extent, the main difference being that the current Nintendo Switch is the exact opposite of the WiiU in terms of commercial success. With how successful this console has been during its seven years on the market and the wide variety of games that Nintendo has already released on the platform, there is no telling what could be down the pipeline for the second half of this year. 

As it stands, we do not know anything about Nintendo’s first-party plans after July with the release of Nintendo World Championships: NES Edition. That leaves a significant window of time for Nintendo to fill with games, but what could possibly be left to come to the Switch?

The end of a console’s life is typically filled with ports, remakes, and remasters of older titles, and I expect the Switch to follow this trend for the most part. With that said, let us dive into my top five hopes and predictions for the Nintendo Direct slated for next month:

Metroid Prime 4

I wrote about the current state of Metroid Prime 4 in length last month, so I will not spend too much time delving into the troubled development cycle that the game has endured so far. If you want to read that article you can check it out here. Nintendo assured the public that Metroid Prime 4 will come to the Switch, and after being stuck in development for seven years I fully expect this game to finally receive a release date at the upcoming Nintendo Direct. In looking at a potential timeline for the release, I still believe that this game will either be a Holiday 2024 release or a dual-system launch release with the Switch Successor. 

Metroid Prime 2: Echoes and Metroid Prime 3: Corruption Port/Remasters

Keeping with the Metroid franchise, it feels all but confirmed that we will see a port/remaster for Metroid Prime 2: Echoes and Metroid Prime 3: Corruption. I share the same sentiment that many others online have said when it comes to these games; they will most likely be released as a double pack. If Metroid Prime 4 is slated for a Holiday 2024 release, then I could see the Prime 2 & 3 following the trail of Metroid Prime Remastered and being shadowdropped right after or closely following the Nintendo Direct.

Conversely, if Metroid Prime 4 is announced to be released alongside the next console then I could see the Prime 2 & 3 port fill one of the Holiday 2024 slots. Fans have proven that they want more Metroid, with Metroid Prime Remastered selling over one million copies within three months of launch and Metroid Dread having passed three million copies sold.

New Mario & Luigi game or Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story Port

With the release of Super Mario RPG and the upcoming Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, many fans, myself included, have been questioning why we have not seen a Mario & Luigi game on the Switch. There are an almost overwhelming number of RPGs on the system currently, but that is because they consistently perform well sales-wise and offer players hours upon hours of intriguing gameplay and narratives.

I do not think that we will see a brand new entry for the franchise, but at the very least I would love to see a port of Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story as that seems to be the most popular game in the franchise to date. A Mario & Luigi title would make for a strong Fall 2024 release to help bridge the gap between other first-party releases that may be announced.

Xenoblade Chronicles X Port

Seeing how we have all but one entry from the Xenoblade franchise available on the Switch, I am hoping that we will see a port of Xenoblade Chronicles X come to the console this year. Nintendo has made a commendable effort to bring a wide array of WiiU exclusives to the Switch over the past seven years. Between the Bayonetta games, New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe, and Super Mario 3D World + Bowser’s Fury, among others, there are very few games from the WiiU era that have yet to make their debut on the Switch. My hopes are not incredibly high for this one, however, due to how busy Monolith Soft, the developer of the Xenoblade series, has been during the Switch’s lifetime. 

Amiibo Land

To round out my predictions, I think that a possible yet out-of-left-field game that could be announced at the June Direct could be what I have dubbed, “Amiibo Land.” Imagine a game where MiiVerse meets Nintendo Land meets Miitopia, but add in Amiibo functionality.

In this social application meets RPG game, players would be able to scan in Amiibo to be used as playable characters. There would be a “social mode” where your Amiibo can interact with the Amiibo that nearby Switch users have scanned into their Amiibo Land game as well as a “story mode” in which you use your Amiibo as party members to battle your way through the now desolate world towards the final battle against Ultra Hand, who has been stealing Amiibo from across the world to build its own army. This idea has the potential to expand the lore of the Smash Bros. universe as well, playing into the idea that the fighters in Smash Bros. are toys themselves.

All of this, while incredibly fun to discuss, is completely hypothetical. Nintendo has made a name for itself in its ability to introduce hardware and software that no other company would even dream of, so there is no way to know for sure what Nintendo has up its sleeve for next month’s Nintendo Direct.

The ports or remasters that I have proposed make sense because of the historic trend of consoles having to heavily rely on those types of games when they reach the end of their life cycle. This trend makes sense from all perspectives. Porting over an older title takes less time, money, and resources than building an entirely new game from the ground up, making it an easier way to maintain hardware and software sales until the release of the next console. If the remake of Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door and the remaster of Luigi’s Mansion 2 HD are any indication, it is safe to say that Nintendo will push even more of these types of games out the door before the year is over. 

What games do you think Nintendo will announce at their Direct next month? Let me know, and, as always, game on friends!