This week's European downloads - July 9 (Never Alone, Epic Indie Sale and more)

Nintendo eShop (Wii U)

Never Alone (Kisima Ingitchuna) (E-line Media) - €14.99/£12.99

Experience the epic journey of Nuna and fox as they search for the source of an eternal blizzard that threatens the survival of everything they have ever known. Never Alone is an atmospheric puzzle platformer developed in collaboration with the Iñupiat, an Alaska Native people, drawn from a traditional story that has been shared across the generations. Guide both characters in a single-player mode or play cooperatively with a friend as you trek through frozen tundra, leap across treacherous ice floes, swim through underwater caverns and face enemies both strange and familiar. On over 75 "Best of 2014" lists, and winner of "Best Debut Game" at the 2015 BAFTA Games Awards, nearly 40 Alaska Native elders, storytellers and community members contributed to the making of the game. Collect 20+ Wii U-exclusive Cultural Artefacts that feature beautiful hi-res images and compelling background information drawn from the collections of the Smithsonian Institution.

Funk of Titans (EnjoyUp Games) - €8.99/£8.09
Funk of Titans is a thrilling and addictive game, simple and fun to play but hard to master. You will control Perseus, the son of Zeus and protector of the legendary holy music: the Funk. Run across the ancient Greek mythology, collect funk vinyls, beat enemies, wear epic costumes, ride the legendary Pegasus and smash rap, pop and rock of the evil Musical Titans in fierce dance battles.

Mega Man Battle Network 4 Blue Moon (Capcom, GBA VC) - €6.99/£6.29
Lan and his computer counterpart Mega Man face double trouble from an asteroid hurtling towards Earth, and a mysterious NetNavi threatening the network. Meanwhile the pair must prove their skills in a new NetBattle tournament. Part role-playing game, part battle simulation, Mega Man Battle Network 4 comes in two versions: Blue Moon and Red Sun. Each include separate storylines, enemies, Battle Chips and upgrades to discover. Collect Battle Chips to select your strategies, and activate the new Soul Unison system to gain special abilities.

Mega Man Battle Network 4 Red Sun (Capcom, GBA VC) - €6.99/£6.29
Lan and his computer counterpart Mega Man face double trouble from an asteroid hurtling towards Earth, and a mysterious NetNavi threatening the network. Meanwhile the pair must prove their skills in a new NetBattle tournament. Part role-playing game, part battle simulation, Mega Man Battle Network 4 comes in two versions: Blue Moon and Red Sun. Each include separate storylines, enemies, Battle Chips and upgrades to discover. Collect Battle Chips to select your strategies, and activate the new Soul Unison system to gain special abilities.

Special offers
Spot The Differences: Party! (Sanuk Games) - €2.99/£2.69 (Ends July 16, normally €5.00/£4.49)
Bombing Bastards (Sanuk Games) - €4.99/£4.49 (Ends July 16, normally €6.99/£5.99)

Special Offers - Epic Indie Sale
14 Wii U titles presented by 7 studios from 6 countries are on sale on Nintendo eShop in the Epic Indie Sale. If you own one or more of following titles on your Wii U, you can download the others at a discounted rate. This offer ends on July 23.

BIT.TRIP Presents... Runner2: Future Legend of Rhythm Alien (Gaijin Games) - €4.79/£3.99 (Normally €11.99/£9.99)
EDGE (Two Tribes Publishing) - €0.79/£0.71 (Normally €1.99/£1.79)
Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams (Black Forest Games) - €5.99/£5.19 (Normally €14.99/£12.99)
Guacamelee! Super Turbo Championship Edition (Drinkbox Studios) - €5.59/£4.79 (Normally €13.99/£11.99)
Mighty Switch Force! 2 (WayForward) - €2.00/£2.00 (Normally €5.00/£5.00)
Mighty Switch Force! Hyper Drive Edition (WayForward) - €3.99/£3.59 (Normally €9.99/£8.99)
RUSH (Two Tribes Publishing) - €0.79/£0.71 (Normally €1.99/£1.79)
Shantae and the Pirate's Curse (WayForward) - €6.79/£6.39 (Normally €16.99/£15.99)
Spin the Bottle: Bumpie's Party (KnapNok Games) - €3.59/£3.20 (Normally €8.99/£8.00)
Swords & Soldiers (Two Tribes Publishing) - €1.19/£0.99 (Normally €2.99/£2.69)
Toki Tori (Two Tribes Publishing) - €0.79/£0.69 (Normally €1.99/£1.79)
Toki Tori 2 + (Two Tribes Publishing) - €5.99/£5.19 (Normally €14.99/£12.99)
Trine 2: Director's Cut (Frozenbyte) - €6.79/£5.39 (Normally €16.99/£13.99)
Trine Enchanted Edition (Frozenbyte) - €5.19/£4.39 (Normally €12.99/£10.99)



Nintendo eShop (3DS)

BIKE RIDER DX2: GALAXY (Spicysoft) - €2.99/£2.69

BIKE RIDER DX2: GALAXY takes you on a crazy ride to space, travelling 12 different planets based on the zodiac signs in the GALAXY TOUR. A set of power-up items will grant you special abilities, like turning your little rider into a funky frog or letting you freely fly around the stage, while each course is full of dangerous gimmicks such as lasers, spiked blocks or giant whirlwinds. Furthermore, the GRAND PRIX mode lets you challenge players all over the world in an endless random parcour featuring all gimmicks in the whole game. If that's not enough, SPECIAL STAGE will shoot you to the moon!

BIKE RIDER DX2: GALAXY: Append Stage [Moon] (Spicysoft, Add-on Content) - Free
BIKE RIDER DX2: GALAXY: Append Stage [Ex] (Spicysoft, Add-on Content) - €0.99/£0.89
BIKE RIDER DX2: GALAXY: Append Stage [Tatsujin] (Spicysoft, Add-on Content) - €0.99/£0.89

Special offers

Talking Phrasebook - 7 Languages (Sanuk Games) - €2.99/£2.69 (Ends July 16, normally €4.99/£4.49)
Snow Moto Racing 3D (Zordix AB) - €3.99/£3.59 (Ends July 23, normally €7.99/£7.19)

Platinum on the nerve'wracking nature of working on StarFox Zero, walker transformation info

Coming from a Wired interview with Platinum Games’ Yusuke Hashimoto...

“This is the first time I’ve ever done this kind of collaborative design. It’s not just with Mr. Miyamoto, but also with Mr. Hayashi here. The three of us are always working together and it’s very fun, but obviously when Mr. Miyamoto shows you something and is like, what do you think of this, and you have to come up with a good answer, it’s very nerve-wracking. I’m struck by how fast this goes. The turnaround between the exchange of the two parties is very quick. It’s a kind of development speed I haven’t really seen before.

We don’t want to make it a simple game, by any means. The challenge for us is, how to make a game that feels good and challenging to play for lots of different people?”

We also get a deeper understanding of the walker transformation from Nintendo's Yugo Hayashi...

“It is not a chicken, more like a dinosaur. Talking with one of the Star Fox character designers, since all of the characters are animals, he thought it would be better to make this design also more like an animal. That’s how we ended up like this. When you jump, it flutters its arms. That was all Miyamoto’s idea.”

Japan - Splatoon is the highest selling Wii U eShop game of all-time

Looks like Splatoon's success is continuing on. In Japan, more people have bought Splatoon through the eShop than any other game available on the service. The previous king was Dragon Quest X, but we don't have a total for that game. We do know that last week, Splatoon had moved 57k digitally.

Smash Bros. Wii U/3DS cut content - Rock Pikmin, multiple specials and more

Coming from Source Gaming...

- Rock Pikmin were planned but ultimately put on hold
- Rock Pikmin would have been heavy with short reach but high attack power
- Co-op play was planned for Smash Run, but the 3DS processor was unable to display multiple fighters on the same screen
- Co-op power-ups for Smash Run were also scrapped alongside co-op plaY
- Sakurai initially considered including four versions of each Special
- One example includes Mario launching a double fireball
- Special rules for 4-on-4 Team Battles were considered, but not included
- Mii Fighters’ Specials were originally going to be included as in-game rewards, but they ended up as default content

GoNintendo 'End of Day' thought - My Parents Play: Golden Axe

Ah, the weekend is almost upon us. Just about time to relax and enjoy the free time. I hope you all have some fun plans ahead of you! See you in a few, short hours.

If there's one type of game that seems to work out best for my parents, it's the beat'em-up. It also happens to be one of my favorite genres. I thought I'd take this chance to let them hop back into the genre with one of the classics. They've already tried to take down the evil Shredder in TMNT: The Arcade Game. That didn't go so well...but what if they tried being more battle-hardened humans? That's exactly what they do in Golden Axe!

I have to say...if there were ever a 'darkest timeline' episode of Parents Play, this would be it. It's got a really heartbreaking finish. I think I've said too much already! You'll have to take in the entire experience to appreciate just how sad things leave off.

With all that said...please enjoy!

If you like what you see, subscribe here!

Nintendo didn't expect Splatoon to sell as well as it did

Coming from Nintendo's investor meeting with Iwata...

Iwata: As some of you may have seen the TV commercials we have been airing recently, “Splatoon” is a brand-new title and not a title from an established series. It has a very unique and fantasy-like setting. This game, inspired by squid squirting out ink, is played by human-shaped characters with squid-like features shooting, instead of squirting, ink at each other, and the team that paints the widest area in its team color wins. Having received high recognition from our consumers for its novelty, this title’s sell-through sales reached 1 million units in less than a month from its release. We feel very grateful for this, since our view was not so optimistic prior to release, for it being a non-series title.

Nintendo open to movie or TV adaptations for their IPs

Coming from Nintendo's investor meeting with Iwata...

Iwata: This answer overlaps with what I discussed in my answer about IP utilization earlier, but it would be a stretch to say that Nintendo was proactive in making merchandise in the past. We have been discussing internally that we should be more proactive, and it is imperative that we establish a global structure to deploy such business all around the world. As a large proportion of our sales come from outside Japan, we have various ideas in mind for collaboration on the character licensing business across Japan, North America and Europe. And this expansion won’t be limited to merchandise; it may take various forms including, for example, images or even movies or TV programs. Even though I am not sure of the actual forms, it is safe to say that in addition to profitable licensing businesses, Nintendo will take risks we believe are worthwhile. On the other hand, not a small number of businesses have ended up with a pile of leftover stock after a particular product’s short-lived period of popularity. It would surely ruin the value of Nintendo IP and would not enhance corporate value over the long term if we chose this path. Therefore, I would like to recap that our current plan is not to simply increase the number of proposals but to be more proactive than in the past by making appropriate decisions that will enhance our overall corporate value over the long term.

Iwata on not letting other companies know NX secrets, continuing to develop Wii U/3DS software

Coming from Nintendo's investor meeting with Iwata...

Iwata: As I mentioned earlier, I cannot speak about the details of NX today. If I mention every detail of what we are newly thinking, it could be persuasive but it could also give other companies the opportunity to come up with counterplans or implement the ideas that they find interesting. There may also be the possibility that it will spoil the sense of surprise for consumers. Of course these factors are all against the interest of the entire company and they would ultimately harm the interest of our shareholders, so we appreciate your understanding in this respect.

Regarding your concern about what will happen to Wii U or what will happen to Nintendo 3DS, NX is a new platform, so the installed base will have to be built up from zero. When NX is launched, there already will be a certain volume of Nintendo 3DS and Wii U hardware widely existing in the market, so from a software business perspective, it would be highly inefficient to stop releasing titles for Nintendo 3DS or Wii U right after the launch of NX. Therefore, while we are preparing NX for the future, we are discussing within our internal development teams as well as with the second-party developers we co-develop software with and also with third-party software publishers about how to continue creating software for Wii U and Nintendo 3DS. So, I believe that your point of concern should not happen immediately. As for Wii U, we will continue to make efforts, as it is a priority within the company to think about how we can satisfy the consumers who purchased this system to the maximum extent possible.

North America - This week's digital downloads and screens (July 2nd, 2015)

Digital downloads - July 2nd, 2015

Nintendo eShop on Nintendo 3DS

Samurai Warriors Chronicles 3 – Developed to celebrate the franchise’s 10-year anniversary, Samurai Warriors Chronicles 3 incorporates the best features from previous Samurai Warriors games, including the detailed customization mode and battle system of Samurai Warriors 4, as well as the Challenge Mode, which tests players’ speed and efficiency as they fight against the clock and thousands of enemies simultaneously. Play as either a uniquely customized character or one of the much-loved, historically inspired Samurai. Stories and lives unfold in multiple ways, offering numerous resolutions to large-scale battles and multiple endings affected by the players’ choices, actions and affiliations.

Nintendo eShop on Wii U

Roving Rogue – What comes after The End? That’s the question that has dogged humankind’s greatest thinkers for millennia. Where do we go? What happens? Who will be there? The answers are: “a crumbling castle,” “you run and teleport” and “steadfast knights, goblin archers, obsessed ghosts, demented wizards and other dangerous foes.” In Roving Rogue, the multiplayer platforming adventure on the Wii U system, the end is the beginning.​

Virtual Console on Wii U

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time – One of the most critically acclaimed games ever made arrives in the Nintendo eShop on Wii U. Set off on a legendary journey to stop Ganondorf, who has plunged Hyrule into darkness. Travel through time as child and adult Link, and experience Hyrule in peace and war to save the world and protect the Triforce. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is one of Nintendo’s most epic challenges and tells one of its most touching stories – it’s an absolute must-play for Nintendo fans.

Nintendo eShop Sales:

Nintendo eShop on Wii U

Bombing Bastards and Spot the Differences: Party! from Sanuk Games are on sale until 8:59 a.m. PT on July 9.
Ittle Dew is 50 percent off (reduced from $9.99 to $4.99) until 8:59 a.m. PT on July 30.
Plenty of Fishies is 40 percent off (reduced from $4.99 to $2.99) until 8:59 a.m. PT on July 31.
Nintendo eShop on Nintendo 3DS
Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Dual Destinies from Capcom is 44 percent off (reduced from $29.99 to $16.79) until 8:59 a.m. PT on July 16.
Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy from Capcom is on is 25 percent off (reduced from $29.99 to $22.49) until 8:59 a.m. PT on July 16.
Talking Phrasebook – 7 Languages is 40 percent off (reduced from $4.99 to $2.99) until 8:59 a.m. PT on July 9.
European Conqueror 3D, The Legend of Dark Witch and Tappingo from Circle Entertainment on are on sale until 8:59 a.m. PT on July 23.
Toy Stunt Bike is 50 percent off (reduced from $4.99 to $2.49) until 8:59 a.m. PT on July 30.
Mystery Case Files: Dire Grove, 4 Elements and more games from Tulip Games are on sale until 8:59 a.m. PT on Jan. 1.

Activities:

Splatoon: New Game Mode and Splatfest – Tower Control, a new game mode that finds Inklings riding a tower into the enemy’s base, has been added to Ranked Battle. In addition, the theme for the first Splatoon Splatfest is “Cats or Dogs” and starts July 4. Learn more here: http://splatoon.nintendo.com.

Code Name: S.T.E.A.M. “Independence” Tournament – See how your Code Name: S.T.E.A.M. squad stacks up online in Nintendo’s Public Tournaments. Top players earn unique titles that are visible online and earn major bragging rights with their friends and around the world. The new “Independence” tournament runs from July 2 to July 6. Opt in via the SpotPass feature for notifications on future tournaments, and click here for more information about multiplayer tournaments. Good luck, agents!

Theme Shop on Nintendo 3DS:

New themes this week include:

Ace Attorney: Dual Destinies Mood Matrix
Ace Attorney: Dual Destinies Court Record
Ace Attorney Trilogy Pixel Art
Ace Attorney Trilogy Main Characters
Pokémon: Mega Charizard Y & Mega Rayquaza
Pokémon: Eevee Collection: Espeon & Umbreon
Also new this week:
Quadcopter Pilot Challenge (Nintendo eShop on Wii U)
Mercenaries Saga 2 (Nintendo eShop on Nintendo 3DS)

RUMOR: Nintendo to start pilot production on NX in October for 2016 launch

According to an article from DigiTimes, Nintendo is set to launch their next console, currently codenamed Nintendo NX, in July of next year. The article states that the console will be manufactured by Foxconn Electronics, while Pegatron Technology is trying to "snatch" some of the orders.

These orders, according to the article, are set to be complete by February or March of next year, with production starting in May/June for a July release. They look to ship 20 million units in the first year, a stark contrast to the 2 million the Wii U has shipped this year.

Of course, this is meant to be taken as a rumor, but it seems possible at the very least we'll know more about NX in the next year.