Since it’s January, a topic of discussion that tends to come up around this time is when the next Nintendo Direct will be. That’s not a huge surprise, especially since fans are always curious about what Nintendo has in store. It’s not out of the question that a re-unveiling will take place when we start the new year so we can get a better idea of what’s planned from a first and third party perspective.
What is a Nintendo Direct?
If you somehow stumble upon this post without knowing what a Nintendo Direct actually is, we thought we’d give you a quick introduction. Simply put, a Nintendo Direct is a presentation in which he shares new information directly with fans.
Nintendo Directs have been around for over a decade with the first presentation airing on October 21, 2011. They have evolved over time in terms of content, style, and presentation.
With major events during the Switch era, we typically see a host at various points to open and close the show, and they often introduce some of the biggest segments. The late Nintendo president Satoru Iwata was the host for many years, but these days it tends to be either Yoshiaki Koizumi or Shinya Takahashi. Also for GMs, a different narrator covers multiple games in a quick fashion.
Something worth noting for large streamers is that content can differ by region. There have been many cases where a certain title, including a new announcement, is covered in the Japanese broadcast but not in the North American/European versions.
What types of presentations are there?
Even when a new Nintendo Direct is announced, it doesn’t always go the way you might expect. However, the “general” submissions are always the largest of the bunch. These tend to be announced a day or two in advance, are streamed live, and show off a ton of games from both Nintendo and other companies.
Here’s a brief summary:
- “General” Nintendo Direct: it usually lasts approximately 40 minutes, with own and third-party news; the biggest of the group
- Nintendo Direct Mini: a shorter presentation, often not announced in advance, which has its own and third-party news
- Nintendo Direct Mini: Partner Showcase – Just for third party news, it was used mostly in 2020 due to coronavirus, but one appeared in 2022
- Thematically specific Nintendo Direct – Usually focuses on a game, movie, franchise, etc. specific.
Pokémon Presents and Indie World Showcases are often labeled by some fans as Nintendo Directs, but they are not actually associated with the official brand; This is a common mistake. Although they have the style of Directs, they are their own thing. There has never really been a “Pokemon Direct” or “Indie Direct”.
If we look strictly at the main performances, the longest Direct happened on February 17, 2021 and clocked in at 50 minutes and 45 seconds. Something to keep in mind that longer presentations don’t always translate to more announcements. Some fans would even argue that some of the best reveals happened during the shortest ones.
When is the next Nintendo Direct?
Looking at the history of Nintendo Directs since the mid-Switch era, there are usually three major presentations throughout the year. The first takes place in the first quarter, often in February, but January and March are also possibilities.
The second Nintendo Direct we’re likely to find ourselves in tends to happen in June to coincide with E3. However, we’ve seen clear breaks in that, especially in 2020 and 2022. There was nothing in 2020 likely due to the coronavirus pandemic, and 2022 only saw a partner showcase, which was likely due to the cancellation of E3.
As for the last of the year, it always happens in September. The announcements are usually made right before the Tokyo Game Show. Over the years, Nintendo has never broken the September presentation cycle.
We should note that it is ultimately useless to predict when a new presentation will air. Although fans will often look to patterns from years past, Nintendo always operates to the beat of its own drum. Even if a live is expected at a certain time, there is no guarantee that it will air.
When the next presentation is announced, we’ll be sure to let you know. You can find the official website here.
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