Nintendo Direct recap: Metroid Prime Remastered gets surprise release…right now

Nintendo Directs always deliver plenty of highlights, and today’s was no exception.

The highlight, of course, was the surprise release of Metroid Prime Remastered, which is available in the eShop right now. The game has been rumoured for months, and will feature HD visuals and enhanced sound. It’s also coming to stores February 22nd, if you prefer physical releases.

But there was plenty more. We got gameplay from the next Legend of Zelda adventure, Tears of the Kingdom, which is due out in May, and there were release dates galore: Pikmin 4 is out July 21st, Disney Illusion Island is coming July 28th, Master Detective Archives: RAIN CODE arrives June 30th, and the long-delayed Advance Wars 1+2: Re-Boot Camp finally hits the eShop April 21st.

We also got some new announcements. Rhythm game fans will be pleased to hear that Samba de Amigo is returning this summer in Samba de Amigo: Party Central, while if puzzles are more your thing, you’ll be pleased to learn that Professor Layton is finally coming back in PROFESSOR LAYTON and The New World of steam.

And if all that wasn’t enough, Nintendo Switch Online became even more enticing with the announcement that Game Boy games will soon be arriving on the service. The initial batch will include Tetris, Super Mario Land 2 ? 6 Golden Coins, and Kirby?s Dream Land, among others, and if you subscribe to Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack you’ll have access to Game Boy Advance games that include the likes of Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros. 3, Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga, and The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap.

You can watch the full video below (which features even more games than those mentioned above), and keep reading for the full list!
Eds. Note: Gaming Age editor Brendan also livestreamed his impressions of the Direct event on Twitch, also embedded below.

Nintendo Direct 2.8.2023 – Nintendo Switch:

Nintendo Direct 2.8.2023 - Nintendo Switch

In a new Nintendo Direct video presentation transmitted to terminals across the planet today, Metroid Prime Remastered, an HD remaster of the first Metroid Prime game, which originally debuted on the Nintendo GameCube system, was announced for the Nintendo Switch system. A digital version of Metroid Prime Remastered launches on Nintendo Switch later today and a physical version will be available in stores Feb. 22! Nintendo also announced that a growing library of select Game Boy games will join the Nintendo Switch Online service later today ? beginning with nine classic titles ? while the Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack service will receive a growing library of select Game Boy Advance games as well, starting with six classic titles today.

The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, the upcoming sequel to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, also featured prominently in today?s Nintendo Direct. Gameplay footage of Link?s massive adventure included the islands floating above Hyrule, never-before-seen weapons and mysterious vehicles. Plus, the first full gameplay trailer for Pikmin 4 ? the newest entry in the series which asks you to overcome obstacles by guiding pint-sized creatures on a strange planet ? was revealed. The latest installment features a Space Dog, Ice Pikmin and a range of new discoveries, and will land on Nintendo Switch on July 21.

Other highlights of the video presentation include reveals from Nintendo?s development and publishing partners showcasing the return of several beloved characters and franchises headed to Nintendo Switch. These include PROFESSOR LAYTON and The New World of steam, a new game in the Layton series; Disney Illusion Island, featuring Mickey and Friends in a 2D platformer-adventure; Samba de Amigo: Party Central, the classic rhythm game that has been reborn groovier than ever; Baten Kaitos I & II HD Remaster, a revival of the Nintendo GameCube RPG classics; Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective, the mystery thriller; and the King of All Cosmos? return in We Love Katamari REROLL+ Royal Reverie.

?With a robust lineup of Nintendo Switch games for all types of players, and with Metroid Prime Remastered launching today, Nintendo is still finding ways to surprise and delight fans,? said Devon Pritchard, Nintendo of America?s Executive Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Communications. ?2023 is shaping up to be yet another stellar year for Nintendo Switch players and anyone who?s eager to join the fun.?

To view the Nintendo Direct video in its entirety, visit Some of the highlights revealed in the video include:

  • Metroid Prime Remastered: The first Metroid Prime game has been remastered for Nintendo Switch with HD visuals and enhanced sound! Explore Tallon IV from the perspective of Samus Aran. But beware: There?s more to this alien planet than meets the eye. When hostile creatures attack, fight back with Beams, Missiles, Bombs and more. In addition to remastered visuals, this version adds modern dual-stick controls, allowing you to move around while separately changing your point of view. It?s also the first time this classic game can be played on the go! The digital version of Metroid Prime Remastered launches in Nintendo eShop and in the My Nintendo Store on ? later today! The physical version of the game will be available in stores Feb. 22.
  • The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom: An epic adventure across the land and skies of Hyrule awaits. In this sequel to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, you?ll decide your own path through the sprawling landscapes of Hyrule and the mysterious islands floating in the vast skies above. Can you harness the power of Link?s new abilities to fight back against the malevolent forces that threaten the kingdom? In addition to the standard version, which will be available at a suggested retail price of $69.99, The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom Collector?s Edition will release on launch day at a suggested retail price of $129.99, and includes a physical version of the game, an artbook with concept art, a Steelbook case, an Iconart steel poster and a set of four pin badges. A new amiibo figure of Link from the game will also be available separately that grants access to materials and weapons, as well as a special fabric for Link?s paraglider. The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom launches for Nintendo Switch on May 12. Pre-orders for The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom are available now in Nintendo eShop, at retail and in the My Nintendo Store on
  • Pikmin 4: Meet Pikmin ? the small, plant-like creatures you can grow, pluck, command and also overpower your enemies with during your grand mission on a strange planet! These curious helpers come in different types ? fire is no sweat for Red Pikmin, and the new Ice Pikmin can freeze enemies and the environment. Use your Pikmin?s miniature might (and some strategic thinking) as you explore. You get a Space Dog, too: Oatchi can help with things like smashing obstacles and carrying Pikmin throughout your adventure. With the miniscule Pikmin and a capable canine in tow, no challenge is too big or small! Please look four-ward to the Pikmin 4 game when it traverses to Nintendo Switch July 21! Pre-orders are available now in Nintendo eShop, at retail and in the My Nintendo Store on
  • Disney Illusion Island: Join Mickey and Friends as they explore the mysterious island of Monoth on a quest to recover three magical books and save its little furry inhabitants, the Hokuns. In this new cooperative 2D platformer-adventure for one to four players, you?ll navigate as Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck and Goofy through a beautifully hand-crafted world. Featuring fully voiced, animated cutscenes and an orchestrated, original score, Disney Illusion Island swings exclusively onto Nintendo Switch July 28. Pre-orders for Disney Illusion Island are available in Nintendo eShop, at retail and on, beginning today.
  • OCTOPATH TRAVELER II: The new entry in the OCTOPATH TRAVELER series is just around the corner! Eight new stories await, following eight new travelers, each with their own origins, motivations and unique skills. Which path will you take first? Who will your allies be? And where will your journey lead you? Venture through a new world in OCTOPATH TRAVELER II, launching on Nintendo Switch Feb. 24. A demo containing the game?s opening hours will be available in Nintendo eShop ? later today!
  • Samba de Amigo: Party Central: Move to the beat and shake your Joy-Con controllers in a new Samba de Amigo game! Compete online*** in World Party mode or enjoy local multiplayer** with a friend to see who has the best moves! Forty songs are included, spanning a multitude of genres from around the world. So, grab those controllers and get shakin? when Samba de Amigo: Party Central shimmies onto Nintendo Switch this summer.
  • Game Boy and Game Boy Advance Games: Select Game Boy games are being added to Nintendo Switch Online! On Nintendo Switch, you can play these games anytime, anywhere ? just like you could back in the day. You can use Game Boy, Game Boy Pocket or Game Boy Color screen filters to help customize your play style. And, up to two players can play compatible games together locally or online for the first time. Here?s the full list of classic games that will be available at launch, with more games being added in the future:

Launch Lineup of Game Boy ? Nintendo Switch Online

  • Tetris?
  • Super Mario Land 2 ? 6 Golden Coins
  • The Legend of Zelda: Link?s Awakening DX
  • Game & Watch Gallery 3
  • Alone in the Dark: The New Nightmare
  • Metroid II ? Return of Samus
  • Wario Land 3
  • Kirby?s Dream Land

Plus, Game Boy Advance games are being added to Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack! Local and online play is supported for compatible games, and up to four players can play together online for the first time. Here are the games that you can play at launch:

Launch Lineup of Game Boy Advance ? Nintendo Switch Online

  • Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros. 3
  • WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgame$
  • Kuru Kuru Kururin
  • Mario Kart: Super Circuit
  • Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga
  • The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap

Select games will be added to this library in the future, too. You can play Game Boy games with an active Nintendo Switch Online membership, or play both Game Boy and Game Boy Advance games with an active Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack membership ? later today!

  • Advance Wars 1+2: Re-Boot Camp: Calling all strategy fans ? join Andy, Max, Sami and more in two full story campaigns, each one filled with colorful turn-based tactical action. Flex your strategic muscles across a multitude of modes. Design your own maps and share them with friends! You can also challenge friends to head-to-head battles online***, or up to four players locally.** Advance Wars 1+2: Re-Boot Camp comes to Nintendo Switch on April 21. Pre-orders begin today in Nintendo eShop, at retail and in the My Nintendo Store on
  • Bayonetta Origins: Cereza and the Lost Demon: Experience a new take on the Bayonetta series starring Cereza, a young apprentice witch before she would come to be called Bayonetta. Harness Cereza?s magic and her infernal demon partner Cheshire?s ferocity to travel through a mysterious and dangerous Avalon Forest filled with puzzles and enemies. You?ll control both Cereza and Cheshire at the same time. By obtaining the elemental power of wood, rock, water and fire from the forest, new paths will open and battles can be swayed in your favor. Can Cereza gain the power to save her mother and will Cheshire ever find a way back home? Approachability options, such as reducing damage or automating some controls, can help newcomers and Bayonetta fans alike enjoy Bayonetta Origins: Cereza and the Lost Demon when it prowls onto Nintendo Switch March 17. Pre-orders are available now in Nintendo eShop, at retail and in the My Nintendo Store on
  • Omega Strikers: Duke it out in this free-to-play online multiplayer showdown! Smash opponents off the arena and score goals in this lightning-fast 3-v-3 footbrawler. As one of more than 15 Strikers, you?ll sling slime, toss tofu and rocket boost to victory, air hockey style. Omega Strikers slides onto Nintendo Switch April 27. Pre-orders for this free-to-play game begin today in Nintendo eShop.
  • Etrian Odyssey Origins Collection: A collection of the first three Etrian Odyssey games is coming to Nintendo Switch, remastered in HD. Dive back into the sprawling labyrinth, with a blank map as your only guide. By drawing the map as you explore, you can progress even further, where vicious monsters and treasures await. Twenty-four newly drawn character illustrations are included. Etrian Odyssey Origins Collection launches for Nintendo Switch on June 1. Each game in the collection will also be available separately in Nintendo eShop. Pre-orders begin today.
  • Sea of Stars: Combine the powers of the sun and moon to fend off evil in this retro-inspired, turn-based RPG. Freely traverse a breathtaking world, meet characters from all walks of life and devastate foes with well-timed attacks in battle. Sea of Stars sails onto Nintendo Switch Aug. 29. A free demo will be available in Nintendo eShop ? later today!
  • Kirby?s Return to Dream Land Deluxe: A new story will unfold in the Kirby?s Return to Dream Land Deluxe game when Magolor, the interdimensional traveler from the main adventure, loses his powers and must escape the realm between dimensions. You can access this new epilogue after clearing Story Mode. Up to four players on the same system can venture through this mysterious realm together, where there are over 20 stages to explore. Can Magolor restore his powers and safely return to his world? There will also be a Kirby?s Return to Dream Land Deluxe demo available in Nintendo eShop later today! Up to four players can play a specially arranged demo with select stages and subgames. Kirby?s Return to Dream Land Deluxe launches on Nintendo Switch Feb. 24. Pre-orders are available now in Nintendo eShop and in the My Nintendo Store on
  • Xenoblade Chronicles 3 Expansion Pass* Vol. 3 and 4: Enrich your adventures through Aionios with new content! In Vol. 3, join forces with Masha, the newest Hero and a refined Lapidarist. Challenge Battles with roguelike elements are also being added. Add multiple Heroes and unlock special abilities for your party as you play through this challenge battle mode and earn newly added in-game outfits for your main characters. Vol. 3 of the Xenoblade Chronicles 3 Expansion Pass launches on Feb. 15. And coming in Vol. 4 later this year, look forward to an exciting final volume featuring an original story scenario. The Xenoblade Chronicles 3 Expansion Pass, which includes four total volumes that will be released through the end of 2023, is available for purchase now in Nintendo eShop and in the My Nintendo Store on
  • Splatoon 3: Expansion Pass ? Inkopolis & Side Order: ThINK you?re ready for something fun? This paid DLC for the Splatoon 3 game features two waves of content. The first wave includes Inkopolis. You can make this splat-tastic place from the original Splatoon game your stomping ground. Wave 1 also includes Inkopolis Plaza, which has changed over the past several years with some new shopkeepers. The Squid Sisters will perform here during Splatfests, too! In the second wave of this DLC, a new single-player campaign called Side Order super jumps to the Splatoon 3 game. See what?s become of Inkopolis Square, the central area featured in the Splatoon 2 game. The Splatoon 3: Expansion Pass will be available for purchase later today in Nintendo eShop, with Wave 1 launching this spring. Wave 2, Side Order, will launch in the future. Players will be able to download a content pack that contains bonus in-game items after purchasing the Expansion Pass.
  • Fire Emblem Engage Expansion Pass* Wave 2-4: New Emblems are coming to future waves of the Fire Emblem Engage Expansion Pass DLC. Wave 2 features newly added Emblems, including Hector, Emblem of Strength; Soren, Emblem of Acumen; and Camilla, Emblem of Revelation, to help the Divine Dragon and their allies in battle. Wave 3 will include its own group of valiant Emblems ? Chrom and Robin, Emblem of Bonds, and Veronica, Emblem of Heroes. You?ll be able to tackle additional missions to recruit these Emblems. And in Wave 4, a new story, Fell Xenologue, will be unlocked. The Fire Emblem Engage Expansion Pass, which includes four waves releasing through the end of 2023, is available for purchase now in Nintendo eShop and in the My Nintendo Store on Wave 2 launches ? later today!
  • Mario Kart 8 Deluxe ? Booster Course Pass Wave 4: Yoshi?s Island, a new course, is zooming to Mario Kart 8 Deluxe with Wave 4 of the Mario Kart 8 Deluxe ? Booster Course Pass DLC. Birdo, who originally hit the track in Mario Kart: Double Dash!!, is also being added. Returning characters from the Mario Kart series will be added in future waves. Wave 4 of the Mario Kart 8 Deluxe ? Booster Course Pass DLC races onto the Nintendo Switch system this spring. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe ? Booster Course Pass includes six separate waves, with eight courses each, which will all be released by the end of 2023. Buy the Mario Kart 8 Deluxe ? Booster Course Pass separately in Nintendo eShop or enjoy it for no additional cost as part of a paid Nintendo Switch Online + Expansion Pack*** membership.
  • Dead Cells: Return to Castlevania: Dracula?s Castle beckons in this new paid DLC for the roguelite action-platformer Dead Cells. Venture through the castle?s hellish halls and outskirts alongside Richter Belmont and Alucard, leading up to a showdown with Death and Dracula himself. Dead Cells: Return to Castlevania sinks its teeth into Nintendo Switch March 6. Pre-orders begin today in Nintendo eShop and in the My Nintendo Store on
  • We Love Katamari REROLL+ Royal Reverie: Run around and collect oodles of objects in this remaster of We Love Katamari. Roll in a classroom, a zoo and space as the pint-sized princely son with orders to restore the twinkle back in the heavens. New features include playing as the young King of All Cosmos in five new challenges and taking photos with the Selfie Camera. We Love Katamari REROLL+ Royal Reverie rolls onto Nintendo Switch June 2. Any active Nintendo Switch Online member can play a free Game Trial of Katamari Damacy REROLL beginning Feb. 20.
  • Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective: The time-bending murder mystery Ghost Trick returns in HD. After kicking the bucket and becoming a ghost, you acquire the ability to possess and control objects. Uncover Sissel?s unknown past and help unravel mysteries that occurred that fateful night. Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective spirits onto Nintendo Switch this summer.
  • Baten Kaitos I & II HD Remaster: Wings of the Heart take flight once more. A remastered collection of both Baten Kaitos games, originally released on the Nintendo GameCube system, is coming to Nintendo Switch! These emotional journeys feature a distinct card-based RPG system where split-second decisions edge you closer to victory. What revelations will come to light in the skies above and the lands below? Baten Kaitos I & II HD Remaster soars onto Nintendo Switch this summer.
  • Fashion Dreamer: Welcome to Fashion Dreamer, a fashion game where you glam it up and share your creations on your quest to become a stylish influencer. Choose from over 1,400 design options and connect online*** to expand your friend circle and grow your brand. Got an eye for fashion? Then get styling when Fashion Dreamer debuts exclusively on Nintendo Switch this year.
  • DECAPOLICE: Play the role of a futuristic police detective and solve difficult crimes! In this mysterious detective story from Level-5, the developers of the Layton series, you?ll explore a vast open world and experience the fun of deductive reasoning. DECAPOLICE launches for Nintendo Switch this year.
  • FANTASY LIFE i: The Girl Who Steals Time: After drifting onto a mysterious island where a bygone civilization once prospered, you embark on a new life full of adventures. As you develop your island with crafting, quests and combat, you?ll also time travel to the past to uncover secrets and alter history! FANTASY LIFE i: The Girl Who Steals Time launches for Nintendo Switch this year.
  • PROFESSOR LAYTON and The New World of steam: In the newest entry in the beloved series, Professor Layton will face new puzzles in a fresh setting. Solve epic riddles as you progress through the story of this puzzle-fantasy adventure. Stay tuned for more details in the future.
  • TRON: Identity: Enter a new Grid in this narrative puzzle-adventure set within the TRON universe. Uncover dangerous truths and retrieve what was lost as you navigate through a perilous world. Your decisions and the alliances you forge will actively influence the story, with a multitude of possible outcomes shaped by your actions. The future of the Grid hangs in the balance. TRON: Identity launches first for consoles on Nintendo Switch this April.
  • Minecraft Legends: In this new action-strategy game, explore a beautiful land full of diverse life and rich resources. But this paradise is on the brink of destruction ? the piglins have arrived, threatening to corrupt the Overworld. Inspire unexpected friends to form valuable alliances and lead them in strategic battles to protect their home. Take the fight to the piglins before their Nether corruption devours the Overworld when Minecraft Legends arrives on Nintendo Switch April 18. Pre-order today in Nintendo eShop.
  • Have a Nice Death: Sharpen your skills (and scythe) for fast-paced hack-?n?-slash combat! Have a Nice Death is a hand-drawn 2D action-roguelike where you assume the role of Death, Founder and CEO of Death Incorporated, the underworld organization responsible for processing souls in the afterlife. Explore the darkly charming, procedurally generated departments of the corporation?s headquarters to rehabilitate rogue employees who have been snatching up too many souls on Earth. Show them who?s boss with your arsenal of weapons, spells and special skills when Have a Nice Death launches for Nintendo Switch on March 22.
  • Master Detective Archives: RAIN CODE: Enter the Mystery Labyrinth in this offbeat puzzle-solving experience. A city of rain is gripped by innumerable unsolved mysteries, under the complete control of a megacorporation. Master Detectives from around the world, each possessing unique powers, must rise to the challenge of uncovering the truth. Play as Yuma, an amnesiac detective-in-training, accompanied by Shinigami, the spirit haunting him, as you delve into the ever-changing realm and get to the heart of the case. Master Detective Archives: RAIN CODE launches for Nintendo Switch on June 30.
  • Harmony: The Fall of Reverie: In this new narrative experience from DON?T NOD, you?ll play as Polly, an upbeat young woman who can travel between our world and Reverie, a realm where the deities live. When a megacorporation threatens the balance of these two worlds, an apocalypse looms. Using her gift of clairvoyance, Polly must choose which path to take to defend her world and save Reverie. Many branching story paths, along with a riveting soundtrack by Celeste composer Lena Raine, set the stage for your journey. Harmony: The Fall of Reverie launches first for consoles on Nintendo Switch this June.

The Nintendo Direct presentation also featured a montage of upcoming Nintendo Switch games, including Blanc, the poetic tale of a wolf cub and a fawn, which launches Feb. 14; Disney Dreamlight Valley ? the hybrid life-sim and adventure game featuring Disney and Pixar friends ? which is available now in Early Access; plus, enjoy a bundle of 10 classic action-packed games with Mega Man Battle Network Legacy Collection, launching April 14; the acclaimed action-RPG Tales of Symphonia Remastered returns graphically enhanced on Feb. 17; and Japan?s most-played baseball game series has a new entry that will captivate you from the first pitch, WBSC eBASEBALL: POWER PROS, launching on Nintendo Switch ? later today!