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Breath of the Wild sequel launches in 2022, explores the skies of Hyrule
by Pulasthi Ariyasinghe
The highly anticipated sequel to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild was announced by Nintendo in 2019, and today during its Direct presentation, the company finally ended its two-year information drought with new gameplay footage and a release window. The company is planning to launch the entry sometime in 2022 for the Nintendo Switch.
While the launch window is broad, fans got to see a good chunk of gameplay today to make the wait a little bit easier, see the trailer below.
Hyrule returns in the sequel, but instead of just roaming its lands, Link will be now taking to the skies as well for expanded vertical gameplay. We get to see a vast number of floating islands with vegetation and some sort of structures on them.
A couple of brand-new enemies and upgraded variants of classics can also be seen, and to compensate, Link is also getting some upgrades to his arsenal. The trailer shows off what looks to be a new arm for our protagonist made of Sheikah technology, a time-reversing power, and a flame thrower shield. Plus, his hair is down this time. There is also a shot of Link melting through a solid floor, but this may be an environmental mechanic instead of a built-in power.
The Legend of Zelda series producer Eiji Aonuma appeared on the show to talk about the highly anticipated game, which still doesn't have an official name yet, saying development has been steadily progressing in the two years since the game's announcement, and that the launch is currently planned for next year.
by Razvan Serea
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Nintendo is opening a gallery to show off its history of products
by João Carrasqueira
In a few years, you may be able to visit a gallery dedicated entirely to Nintendo's portfolio of products released throughout history. The Japanese company has announced that it's reusing an old manufacturing plant, the Uji Ogura plant, as a gallery for its products after its previous function was transferred to a different facility.
Despite being known mostly for its videogame products, which it started making in the 1970s, Nintendo was originally founded in 1889 as a manufacturer of playing cards known as Hanafuda cards, which it still makes to this day. The company has had its hand in numerous businesses, most notably classic toys prior to its shift to electronic games, but it also ran a taxi service and a chain of "love hotels" at one point. The announcement didn't specifically say whether these businesses would be represented in some way at the gallery, however.
The Uji Ogura plant was used for manufacturing of playing cards and Hanafuda cards, as well as a customer service center for product repairs, but those functions were transferred to the new Uji plant in late 2016, and since then the company has been thinking about what to do with it. The idea to turn it into a gallery will also tie into the Uji city's plans to re-develop the area around the Ogura Station area nearby.
As to when it will actually be done, Nintendo says it plans to finish the work to repurpose the space by the end of its fiscal year 2023, which ends on March 31, 2024. Hopefully, international travel will be much less of a challenge by then.
More Switch Pro rumors emerge, pointing to a new kickstand and dock
by João Carrasqueira
Earlier this week, the rumor mill started ramping up in regards to the purported Nintendo Switch revision, claiming that an announcement is imminent and is very likely to happen ahead of this year's E3, which is about two weeks away.
Hot on the heels of those reports, a Spanish website called Vandal (via Nintendo Everything) has shared potential details of the design of the upcoming Switch model, citing sources at an Asian accessory maker. The report starts off by confirming some of what we've already heard such as 4K support when the console is docked, and a 7-inch OLED screen. It also reaffirms that the design will be very similar to the existing model, and the bigger screen will come mostly from reduced bezels. The new console is also said to support the existing Joy-Con controllers and other types of peripherals.
Some new details in the report include a new kickstand, which will seemingly be inspired by Microsoft's Surface line of products, spanning across the entirety of the back panel. The microSD card slot is also moving to the side of the back panel, rather than on the bottom.
The dock is also apparently going to be different, but if you're hoping for a more compact design, you may have something else coming. The report indicates that the rear portion of the dock will be thicker, but it comes with some benefits. The USB 2.0 ports on the side will be replaced by USB 3.0 ports, and there will also be an Ethernet port to allow for wired internet connections.
Lastly, the report mentions the release date, which is apparently not set in stone yet. While the reports we've seen indicate a possible launch as soon as September or October, Vandal says that supply constraints could push the console back as far as late November, and stock shortages are likely to be a problem.
We shouldn't have long to wait for Nintendo to confirm or deny these reports, with E3 inching ever closer.
Nintendo Switch revision announcement is "imminent", could happen today
by João Carrasqueira
It seems that the purported Nintendo Switch revision - often referred to as the Switch Pro - could be closer than expected. A new report from Bloomberg says that Nintendo is planning to launch the console as early as September and that an announcement of said hardware could take place before this year's E3, which is set to begin on June 12.
The reason for the early announcement is apparently to make way for games to be shown off during E3 targeting the new hardware. The Nintendo Switch revision is said to pack more powerful components with support for Nvidia's Deep Learning Super Sampling (DLSS), which developers would likely want or need to take advantage of.
The report corroborates earlier bits of information from Emily Rogers, a well-known industry insider, who said that an announcement is "imminent", but gave it a timeframe of up to a few weeks after E3 for it to happen:
In subsequent tweets, Rogers also hinted at an announcement potentially happening as early as today, but later appeared to dispel that idea.
The Bloomberg report goes on to add that the new Switch model will likely be more expensive than the current one, but it will be more of a replacement, not something to be sold alongside the existing model going forward. The current variant will be phased out gradually, while the Switch Lite will remain on the market as an entry-level option.
With less than two weeks until E3, we shouldn't have long to wait to know more about the purported revision.