Nintendo strikes back at E3 Expo

Nintendo is no longer the video giant it once was. This much is true.

But neither is the game quite over.

At the E3 Expo Tuesday in Los Angeles, Nintendo gave the public its first official look at the already-announced 3DS, a three-dimensional handheld gaming system that will not require special glasses to use.

Executives also unveiled a robust lineup of software that promises to thrill gamers young and old, maybe helping the company gain a little ground against more “hardcore” systems like Microsoft’s Xbox 360 and Sony’s PlayStation 3.

The long-awaited new game in the “Legend of Zelda” series, “Skyward Sword,” will make use of full motion control technology – a key area as both Sony and Microsoft are quickly catching up in the field pioneered by Nintendo’s Wii console. “Skyward Sword” uses the Wii MotionPlus controller add-on introduced last year with “Wii Sports Resort,” and will be out for the Wii in 2011.

Also returning to the delight of longtime Nintendo fans on the Wii: “GoldenEye 007,” “Kid Icarus,” “Donkey Kong Country,” “Kirby,” “Pokemon,” and many more titles that are sure to captivate the so-called “casual gamer” so prized by Wii marketers, including “Mario Sports Mix” and “Wii Party.”

For the DS family of portable systems, new titles in the “Pokemon,” “Golden Sun,” “Dragon Quest,” “Professor Layton” and “Final Fantasy” franchises.

“If the video game industry had an All-Star team, Nintendo’s games would fill the starting lineup,” said Cammie Dunaway, Nintendo of America’s executive vice president of sales and marketing. “The combination of advanced interface and engaging game play broadens our appeal to all audiences.”

Maybe they’re not the cool kids on the block anymore, but Nintendo still knows how to offer immersive experiences while reinventing familiar characters for yet another adventure.

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