E3 2014 ended last week, and it's safe to say that Nintendo surprised many of us with their Digital Event and Treehouse Livestream. Unlike so many of the Nintendo Direct videos, which often feature the presenter speaking to the camera in front of a white seamless like an Apple ad from the early 2000's, the E3 Digital Event video was creative, had high production value, good pacing, and plenty of new game reveals.
If that wasn't enough, the Treehouse Livestream featured presenters from the Nintendo Treehouse, the division tasked with interfacing with developers, broadcasting live from the show floor in and around Nintendo's booth. The stream went live shortly after the digital event ended, and showed off new games and actual gameplay with commentary from the developers. We were tantalized with gameplay from Miyamoto, who showed off two works in progress, Project Giant Robot and Project Guard. Bayonetta 2 was shown, featuring a demo of how the Gamepad touchscreen could be used to play the game, as well as just kickass gameplay in general. Monolith Soft's Project X, now properly titled Xenoblade Chronicles X, was shown in all its JRPG glory.
The biggest surprise was the new IP Splatoon. It was shown off on the live stream with two four-man teams facing off in Nintendo's fresh take on the multiplayer shooter. From what was shown it looked like a lot a mayhem and crazy fun.
And here's what I think Nintendo should have done: on the last day of E3, announce that the single arena of Splatoon that they'd been showing us for three days, was now available on the eShop, for free. Drop the mic, boom.
Why not? It looked ready on the show floor, right? Just let us play with it at home. Make it free for the next 30 days, or whatever, limit it somehow. But give us a taste, so that people will be stoked for the game next year, and also to add to the WiiU desire factor, which is already building up since Mario Kart 8. Don't lose momentum between now and the next big thing, which looks to be Smash Bros. in the holiday season.
If Nintendo had announced a free demo of Splatoon I think for sure they would have 'won' E3 2014. There's still time for them to bring it out, and I wouldn't be surprised if we did see a Splatoon demo hit the eShop before September.
Come on, Nintendo, keep surprising us!
Tell me this doesn't look awesome: