Only one week until E3.

I plan on giving up sleep to watch Nintendo’s press conference live on Tuesday. I’m mildly interested in what Microsoft and Sony and all the others have to say, but I’m content to read all that stuff after the fact. As a lifelong Nintendo fanboy, though, Nintendo’s the only company that I need to know about real soon now.

We’ve moved into the speculation phase, where people are making predictions and counterpredicitions. The buzz this year seems to be about Nintendo’s next home console, Project Cafe, but aside from the broad strokes I’m not immediately interested in it. I know I’ll be getting one eventually, whatever it ends up being, if only for Mario and Zelda, et al. However, the system won’t be out for at least a year, and I don’t expect it to be actually worth buying until at least six months after that, so I’m just going to keep my eyes open. I’ll be hyped, of course, but knowing that, say Pikmin 3 and a new Mario game will be available by September 2012 doesn’t light any fires for me at the moment.

I also expect them to make one last software push for the Wii before it’s replaced — Skyward Sword for sure, but also The Last Story, Xenoblade Chronicles, new Kirby, Dragon Quest X, hopefully other stuff. That’s not particularly important to me either, though. I’ve got my Wii, and it’s not going anywhere — I need a Mario Galaxy machine if nothing else, and I consider the money I’ve spent on it so far well-placed. If good software continues to come out for it, well and good, I’ll buy it. If not… well, that’s a few hundred dollars saved, and it doesn’t detract from the entertainment I’ve drawn from the system already.

No, the real focus for me this year is the 3DS. Like Cafe, I’ll be getting one eventually, no doubt… but E3 could make the difference as to whether that’s more or less immediately or down the line some — maybe at the holidays or even into next year. I’ve talked so much about my disappointment with the 3DS’s current and immediate future library of ports and remakes that calling it “belaboring the point” sounds almost like a euphemism, but that doesn’t make it any less true.

The key games here are threefold.

  1. Super Mario 3D
  2. Paper Mario 3D
  3. …Something.

I have no idea what “Something” might be. (Fire Emblem? Kirby? Some manner of new IP?) However, that’s my price for getting into the 3DS right now: Three original games by the end of the year. I’ll content myself with remakes of Ocarina of Time and Star Fox 64 and ports of Metal Gear Solid 3 and Tales of the Abyss (oh, and Risky’s Revenge) if I know that I’ve got three killer apps coming down the pike for October or November. If I don’t, though, I’m willing to wait — but I’ll be waiting with War of the Lions and Dissidia 012 and some manner of Ys game instead of that other stuff. Nintendo, I love you, but business is business, and $250 plus $40/per for games is pretty pricy when those games are stuff I already own.

I’m willing to be persuaded. All you have to do is go on stage, announce something pants-crappingly amazing, and say “Holidays 2011”. I’m not hard to please.

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