Nintendo, like many others, have been impacted in various ways by the COVID-19 pandemic, throwing wrenches in several of their plans (though at least Switch production now seems to be recovering). For instance, 2020 has been an off year that hasn’t seen a single proper Nintendo Direct so far (other than a Mini Direct a couple months ago, and one focused entirely on Animal Crossing), and reports have suggested that that has been a result of Nintendo struggling to adapt to work from home requirements.
Speaking recently during a Q&A session with investors (via VGC), Nintendo president Shuntaro Furukawa discussed Direct presentations and future plans. After remarking that Directs are an “incredibly effective” way to make new announcements, he noted that Nintendo always remain open to new and better ways to relay information to plans.
“We feel Nintendo Directs are an incredibly effective way to present information directly to our customers in a very straight-forward way,” Furukawa said. “Inversely, times change and so does the most effective way to promote products, so there is a chance that a new, better way to present this information comes about. So we always like to examine all of the possible ways to communicate this information to customers.”
He added that under ordinary circumstances, Nintendo would be talking about announcements made at E3 right now, but due to the pandemic, the company currently has no plans for a Direct anytime soon. Instead, they are thinking of “new ways” to make announcements, referring to recent Super Smash Bros. Ultimate and Pokemon reveals.
“In normal years, we would show off the games presented at E3 to our shareholders,” he said. “However, due to the Coronavirus, E3, as well as other large game events, have been cancelled for the time being and we have no plans to hold any events of that nature as well.
“Instead we are trying to be flexible in thinking of new ways to present information about our products, so please stay tuned. Recently we have announced a new fighter for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate as well as announcing a new Pokémon-related game from The Pokémon Company.”
Paper Mario: The Origami King was simply announced with a trailer dropping out of nowhere, so it’s possible that Nintendo has plans to do the same with other upcoming releases. Reports have suggested that multiple Super Mario remasters (thanks to Mario’s 35th anniversary) and Pikmin 3 Deluxe are due out on the Switch this year.