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Nintendo Unveils New Mario, Zelda Games in Bid to Boost Switch

Pavel Alpeyev and Yuji Nakamura
Nintendo Unveils New Mario, Zelda Games in Bid to Boost Switch

(Bloomberg) -- Nintendo Co. has unveiled 18 previously unannounced games as the company doubles down on software titles to revive slumping sales of the Switch console.

Among the most promising new games are Super Mario Maker 2, which will go on sale in June, and Zelda: Link’s Awakening slated for some time this year. The release of Fire Emblem: Three Houses was delayed from spring to July 26.

The company made the announcement in a regularly scheduled Nintendo Direct webcast. The event, which typically lasts about 15 minutes, ran more than double the usual time due to the number of new releases.

Nintendo last month cut its forecast for Switch shipments to 17 million units, from 20 million units for the fiscal year through March. The Kyoto-based company desperately needs hit games that appeal to more consumers beyond its most loyal customers after its shares fell 29 percent last year. The game library for the Switch across all regions already totals over 1,200 titles, compared with 438 for its predecessor Wii U, which has been on the market four years longer. The hit Wii console amassed almost 3,000 titles over about a decade.

Here are some of the upcoming titles to watch for:

Super Mario Maker 2 — the do-it-yourself construction kit that allows users to create and upload their own levels of the game for others to play. The original, which was released in 2015, sold 4 million units. Zelda: Link’s Awakening — a remake of the 1993 Game Boy title that is sure to find a warm reception among Nintendo’s long-term fans. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is the fourth best-selling game on the Switch, having shifted 11.7 million units. Fire Emblem: Three Houses — the latest installment in the role-playing franchise that harks back to Nintendo’s Family Computer era. Dragon Quest XI — the Switch version of Square Enix’s storied RPG is coming in the fall, but fans of the franchise will get Dragon Quest Builder 2 on July 12 to tide them over.

(Updates with shares. A previous version of this story corrected the forecast date in fourth paragraph.)

To contact the authors of this story: Pavel Alpeyev in Tokyo at palpeyev@bloomberg.netYuji Nakamura in Tokyo at ynakamura56@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reed Stevenson at rstevenson15@bloomberg.net

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