There's a lot of criticism directed towards Nintendo when it comes to the company's online presence – or lack thereof. The Japanese gaming giant hasn't been as prominent with featuring online components in many of its games (i.e. Super Smash Bros. for Wii U won't support 8 player battles online), but the hardware manufacturer will be enhancing its eShop with a modern addition to the digital storefront.
During the Big N's latest investor briefing, Satoru Iwata revealed that the company will be bringing pre-downloads to the Wii U and 3DS eShop. This will allow fans to buy a game in advance of its release, download it onto their console and then play it as soon as midnight rolls around. This is something that Microsoft has only just begun doing with the Xbox One, much to the delight of homebodies everywhere, and it's a major step for Nintendo.
The first game that will kick off this newfound approach to buying games is none other than Super Smash Bros. for Wii U – the biggest exclusive that the house of Mario has arriving this Holiday season. The hotly anticipated title is expected to launch on November 21, 2014 in North America, which is great news for gamers anxiously awaiting the franchise's Wii U debut.
That said, the feature won't be rolling out on the Nintendo 3DS until some point in 2015, meaning that portable aficionados will be stuck waiting to download Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire later this November. Still, the feature is a necessity in this generation of gaming and it's good to see that Nintendo will be rolling pre-downloads out on both of its current platforms.
Since Nintendo has done things in the past that hint at the company's forthcoming online presence (i.e. making The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD available on the eShop weeks before its arrival at retail) it'll be interesting to see what the company gets up to next. Keeping that example in mind, it'd be hard to imagine that fans would be distraught over the premise of getting their hands on hotly anticipated titles before their scheduled release.
What do you think of Nintendo bringing pre-downloading to gamers? Will you be pre-purchasing and then downloading Super Smash Bros. for Wii U? Get at us in the comments!
Super Smash Bros. for Wii U is set to arrive on November 21, 2014.
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