Welcome back to The Game Informer Show podcast! On this week’s episode (recorded before the Nintendo Direct… sorry), Ben Hanson, Ben Reeves, Kyle Hilliard, and Andrew Reiner talk about the natural comparison between Deep Rock Galactic and Red Faction, what it’s like to actually play with Nintendo Labo on Switch, and have a Mario Party-off between Frantics on PlayLink and Scribblenauts Showdown. Javy Gwaltney joins the podcast to talk about The Behemoth’s Pit People and the new throwback FPS from 3D Realms called Ion Maiden. After some great community emails about Batman and Super Smash Bros., we’re joined by Funomena’s Robin Hunicke to talk about The Sims, Wattam, and Steven Spielberg’s Boom Blox.

You can watch the video below, subscribe and listen to the audio on iTunes or Google Play, or listen to episode 389 on SoundCloud. Also, be sure to send your questions to podcast@gameinformer.com for a chance to have them answered on the show and win a prize by becoming Email of the Week!

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Our thanks to the talented Super Marcato Bros. for The Game Informer Show’s intro song. You can hear more of their original tunes and awesome video game music podcast at their website.

To jump to a particular point in the discussion, check out the time stamps below…

3:10 – Deep Rock Galactic
10:00 – Game Informer’s 300th Issue Celebration
12:50 – Nintendo Labo hands-on impressions
27:20 – Frantics
29:15 – Scribblenauts Showdown
33:15 – Fear Effect Sedna
38:15 – Pit People
45:30 – Ion Maiden
51:49 – Community emails
53:20 – The #GIShowChallenge’s winner reveal
1:47:06 – Robin Hunicke interview

Nintendo livestreamed a Direct today, their first since January, showcasing 3DS and Switch titles for the first half of 2018. While a lot of the announcements were detailing things they have previously announced, a few big and small announcements also came through. Didn’t have time to watch it? We got you covered.

3DS

WarioWare Gold Announced – The 3DS compilation brings together all a number of microgames from the series’ history in all different styles.
Dillon’s Dead-Heat Breakers Comes West May 24 – The newest 3DS Dillon game is more action-and-speed focused.
Luigi’s Mansion Coming To 3DS This Year – A 3DS remake of Luigi’s Mansion arrives later this year.
Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story Coming To 3DS – The third Mario & Luigi title is being remade with new content for 2019.

Switch

Okami Coming To Switch – Hideki Kamiya’s Zelda-like adventure is wielding its paintbrush on Switch with multiple control options.
Sushi Striker: Way of the Sushido Coming to Switch – The puzzle game announced for 3DS is also coming to Switch.
Octopath Traveler Releasing July 13 – The classic-looking JRPG will have a special edition, as well.
More Details For Travis Strikes Again – The 2018 title goes through different action levels with new bosses.
Dark Souls Getting Amiibo – Praise the sun with Solaire’s Amiibo on Switch.
Mario Tennis Aces Arrives in June – The tennis game also has optional Wii Sports-like motion controls.
Captain Toad Coming To 3DS And Switch – The Switch version will have new content from Mario Odyssey.
Undertale Announced For Switch – The much-loved RPG is coming to Switch in the future.
South Park: The Fractured But Whole Coming to Switch – You can buy it on April 24.
Little Nightmares Getting A Complete Edition – It includes all the DLC and a Pac-Man mask with the Amiibo.
Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy On Switch – The first three Crash games arrive on a Nintendo console for the first time.
Hyrule Warriors: Definitive Edition Releases May 18 – The game includes all the DLC from other versions.
Splatoon 2 Gets Free And Paid Expansions – Play as an Octoling in a new story mode.
ARMS Online Tournament – Show the world you rock at ARMS.
Kirby Updates Add Characters – Star Allies adds some oldschool Kirby characters.
Super Smash Bros. For Switch Announce – Inklings join the fight.

You can also watch the Nintendo Direct right here.

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What did you think of Nintendo’s show today?

Today, President Donald Trump met up with several politicians and video game industry leaders to discuss the impact of violent games on children and whether it is connected to gun violence. This roundtable discussion included company representatives from Bethesda, Take-Two, Rockstar, and the Entertainment Software Association (ESA), as well as vocal critics of violent media like founder of the Parents Television Council Brent Bozell, and Representative Vicky Hartzler, a Republican Congresswoman from Missouri.

According to Rolling Stone, the hour-long meeting began with Trump demonstrating a video reel to the group. These clips depicted violent scenes from games that no one in the room could name. The videos were “so violent it shocked some in the group to silence,” writes Rolling Stone. Following these clips, Trump asked all in attendance for their thoughts. Attendees say the meeting was more of a listening session than anything else. Future meetings are a possibility.

“They started by showing some violent video games and [Trump] was pointing out how violent those scenes were. I think for many of us there, there was a shocked silence,” says Parents Television Council spokesperson Melissa Henson, in a press call after the session. “Those from the video game industry were quick to defend [the video games] saying they were meant for a mature audience and that they weren’t intended for kids to see.”

Rolling Stone reports that The Parents Television Council was quick to say early in the meeting that there is in fact a correlation between real-life violence and violent video games. That claim comes despite numerous studies that expressly defy that conclusion, along with clear statements from the ESA stating that there is no proven connection.

It’s unclear if Trump has further plans to discuss or address the issue.

[Source: Rolling Stone]

 

Our Take
For many game players, the concept of a real-world connection between gun violence and video games is a tired and well-trod argument with very little evidence to back it up, and no relation to our own experience of socializing and enjoying the hobby. It’s easy to feel exasperated and frustrated by the attempts to politicize an entertainment medium that feels like it has no place in the broader conversation about violence in society. 

During today’s Nintendo Direct, Nintendo announced a tournament for their fighting game ARMS, as well as another Global Test Punch coming later.

To participate in the preliminaries, players go through the game’s online Ranked Match mode March 8 – March 18. The top players then move on to the online finals on March 31, which will be streamed live from Nintendo of America headquarters. All finalists get official art from the game sent to them, as well.

Starting on the same day as the finals, Nintendo will also be hosting a three-day Global Test Punch for the game. The Test Punch acts as an online demo for players without the game to test it out and see if they like the game.

One of Nintendo’s announcements during the Direct today was that the upcoming Kirby Star Allies won’t be limited to just normal enemies for your multiplayer buddies.

Throughout the base game, you can add King DeDeDe, Metaknight, and Bandana Waddle Dee to your team. Future updates will add more characters, with the first update adding the animal pals from Kirby’s Dreamland, Ricky, Kine, and Coo; Marx from Kirby Super Star; and Gooey from Dream Land 2 and 3.

Future updates will add more characters to the mix.

Kirby Star Allies releases next week on March 16.

Following on the heels of Fire Emblem Warriors, a port of the popular Zelda X Dynasty Warriors crossover Hyrule Warriors will be arriving on Switch sooner than expected. You’ll be able to rumble with Linkle, Ganandorf, and the rest of the gang on the go (but probably better than the 3DS version) on March 25.

You can check out our review of the original version of Hyrule Warriors here.

At the end of today’s Nintendo Direct, the company revealed a short teaser video announcing a new Super Smash Bros. game for the Nintendo Switch.

The video featured Inklings shooting and swimming through ink in a white void-like area mirroring the original Splatoon announcement trailer, though this eventually grows dark. The female inkling takes notice of the burning Super Smash Bros. logo – a circle with two intersecting lines – as a large crowd gathers in front. Quick flashes seem to show Breath of the Wild’s Link and a quick cut to text.

In an email, Nintendo said “The Super Smash Bros.
series comes to Nintendo Switch in 2018. The teaser trailer featured
recognizable faces like Mario, Link and the Inklings from the Splatoon
series.” 

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What characters do you want to see in a new Smash Bros. game? Let us know in the comments!

The first paid DLC for Splatoon 2 has been announced. The single-player Octo Expansion puts you in the shoes of the mysterious Agent 8 as you work to regain your memories.

The expansion features 80 test facilities connected by a subway. If you complete the expansion’s content, you can join the base game’s multiplayer matches as an Octoling. In addition, Nintendo promises that the expansion will dive deeper into the lore of Splatoon’s world. Those who preordered Splatoon 2: Expansion Octo on the Switch eShop will receive Octo Headgear and clothes to use immediately in multiplayer.

In addition to the paid expansion, Splatoon 2 is getting version 3.0 update. The update adds 100 new, as well as three new stages: Piranha Pit, Camp Triggerfish, and Wahoo World. Competitive players will also be able to earn a new rank: Rank X.

Splatoon 2: Octo Expansion launches this summer for $19.99. while the free 3.0 update is hitting late April.

From picking noses to dodging hotdogs, a collection of WarioWare games is coming to 3DS.

WarioWare Gold contains 300 micro games, making it the biggest collection of games in the series. The micro games are both familiar to fans and brand new. They utilize the 3DS functions from the touchscreen to the microphone.

WarioWare Gold launches August 3.