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Iwata Shows 3DS Mario, Details Additional Virtual Console Plans

Full reveal for major 3DS first party title to come at E3.


Nintendo CEO Satoru Iwata made some early teases about a new 3DS Mario game in recent interviews with the Japanese business press. The wait for a glimpse at that new game wasn't long as Iwata provided a first look during his keynote address at today's Game Developers Conference.

Tthe 3DS version of Mario is being made by Nintendo's Tokyo studio, who previously worked on the Super Mario Galaxy series for Wii. The game will solve the problem of jumping in 3D, which Iwata said has been a major design challenge since the time of Mario's 3D conversion on the Nintendo 64.

A press release issued by Nintendo following the event read, "the game will feature traditional Mario game play and will fulfill the dream of Shigeru Miyamoto to bring true depth and distance into the game’s mechanics."

In his comments with the Asahi Shimbun newspaper earlier this week, Iwata said that Nintendo was experimenting with gameplay that will have Mario run into the screen and strike blocks that are floating in the air. In pre-release comments about the 3DS, Miyamoto indicated that the system's 3D capabilities could be used to give players a better means of judging depth, which would presumably make the classic running and jumping mechanics of past Mario games more feasible.

Actual details on 3DS Mario will come at June's E3 gaming expo.

Separate from the Mario showing, the keynote session touched upon some of the future plans for the 3DS. The system's Virtual Console retro download service will support Game Gear and TurboGrafx-16 (PC Engine) games in addition to the previously announced Game Boy and Game Boy Color games, he revealed. Virtual Console functionality will come with the system's previously promised May update which will open up the Nintendo eShop. As previously reported, the update will also include a solution for current DSi and DSi LL owners to transfer their DSi Ware games to the 3DS.

Nintendo America president Reggie Fils-Aime also spoke during the keynote and announced some US-specific 3DS plans, including a partnership with AT&T for Wi-Fi hot spots, and access to the Netflix movie download service. You can read full details in Nintendo's press statement.

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