Nintendo’s E3 2012 press conference will be held on June 5th at 9AM PDT, with the company’s cast of lovable executives on-hand to reintroduce the world to Wii U and hype 3DS. That’s just a week away, making now the perfect time to lay out my totally-believable and not-at-all fantastical predictions of what will happen.

This will be one of Nintendo’s most important E3s ever. The company needs to convince casual gamers that the Wii U will live up to the Wii, and everyone else that it won’t be anything like it. Simultaneously, Nintendo must keep building 3DS momentum. And if my predictions hold true, Iwata and team will actually achieve all of that.

Read my predictions for Sony and Microsoft’s E3 2012 conferences here.

Although the following are ranked by plausibility, the full list represents my “expectations.”

On Lockdown

  1. We’re stuck with the name Wii U.
  2. Wii U will come bundled with Mii-themed mini games, mostly the ones demoed at E3 2011.
  3. New Super Mario Bros. Mii is promised for Wii U launch.
  4. Pikmin 3 is promised for “launch window.”
  5. Wii U’s online service would have been decent 10 years ago. Now it’s barely passable. At least Friend Codes are gone.

Very Likely

  1. Now you can re-buy your favourite GameCube and Wii games digitally for your Wii U. Hooray.
  2. Wii U’s NFC is demoed with Pokémon toys.
  3. Some form of Nintendo-themed achievements will be introduced on Wii U and 3DS.
  4. Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS are teased in video form. The video is not at all representative.
  5. Ubisoft trash will rain down upon Wii U mightily.


  1. Wii will get the saddest of token mentions. Remember, that Kirby collection is coming!
  2. Rare’s next game is announced. It’s a Wii U FPS based on an original IP.
  3. 3DS’s software line-up is hefty, but reveals will be minor. We’ll get reintroduced to Fire Emblem, Paper Mario, Animal Crossing, and everything else we’ve known to be in development for a year+.
  4. Except Luigi’s Mansion 2. That will be a mysterious no-show. I will take its absence personally.
  5. Nintendo Network miraculously frees Wii’s downloads. Your collection of Virtual Console games will endure on Wii U.


  1. The Wii U’s price is announced! It’s $299!
  2. The Wii U’s release date is announced! It’s November 18th, 2012! Hey, that’s the 11th anniversary of the GameCube!
  3. Advance Wars will be announced for 3DS. This will take advantage of Words With Friends style “chess by mail” competitive multiplayer.
  4. Nintendo really has “Dreamcasted” itself, and the Wii U is a half-generation graphical leap from PS3/360.
  5. The fanboy rage over Wii U’s graphical prowess will spill out onto the streets.


  1. Not only is the rumoured Metroid/StarFox cross-over game real, it also includes F-Zero.
  2. The Vitality Sensor is build into the Wii U tablet.
  3. Nintendo announces the production of redesigned N64 controllers. Just for me.
  4. Reggie pulls a 3DS-Lite out of his suit pocket.
  5. It’s coming this summer!

Megaton-caliber fantasies

  1. Silicon Knights is making Eternal Darkness 2 for Wii U!
  2. Iwata has rolled up to western devs with the same money truck that bought the Wii Dragon Quest and the 3DS Monster Hunter. Not only is Wii U getting GTA V, it’s getting it first!
  3. And Final Fantasies XIV, Versus XIII, and XV are all coming to Wii U!
  4. Iwata confirms his allegiance to the dark lord and opens a gate to hell, from which he unleashes an army of gigantic flaming bears to devour the hearts of his enemies!
  5. Epic is actually making a Wii U game.

E3 2012: Nintendo Conference Predictions