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Nintendo unveils 'new' 3DS, 3DS XL

Nintendo announced 'new' models of the 3DS and 3DS XL during this morning's Direct stream for Japan. The new versions feature a small "C-stick" analog pad on the right hand side above SNES-like colored face buttons. During the presentation, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata compared the pad to the GameCube controller's own yellow analog C-stick.

The new devices also have revised dimensions, as shown below the break. They also appear to have NFC-tech built in, meaning they can communicate with Amiibo figurines without the need for an extra device.

The new models will be available in Japan starting October 11, with the new 3DS priced 16,000 yen (around $154) and the new 3DS XL 18,800 yen ($181).

Developing...

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Xenoblade's Shulk confirmed for Super Smash Bros.

Xenoblade Chronicles hero Shulk was confirmed for Super Smash Bros. this morning in Japan's Nintendo Direct, giving more credence to the alleged leaked images and videos showing Bowser Jr and the Duck Hunt dog as part of the fighter's roster. Check out Shulk's reveal trailer below the break

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Watch Japan's 3DS-focused Nintendo Direct right here

Today's Nintendo Direct on 3DS games may be only for Japan, but it will probably feature games that will make their way abroad. Last time Nintendo of Japan had a 3DS-focused Direct we saw plenty of Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate and Final Fantasy Explorers, the former confirmed for the West and the other looking likely to follow it. As for what will trickle down today's stream... who knows. Hopefully more imagery of Nintendo executives dressed up like game characters. Who we are kidding? Of course that will happen.

To watch today's stream right here on Joystiq, get your fine self below the break at 4AM PT (7AM ET/midday UK). If you miss it don't fret, because we'll have the replay up ASAP, as well as the relevant news on the site.

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New Nintendo eShop releases: Layton vs Phoenix Wright, Mega Man X3

There's a good helping of eShop eStuff to tuck into this week, both on Wii U and 3DS. On the portable side, Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright features two characters who were born to point together - check out our review for a more nuanced analysis. Also, Azure Striker Gunvolt pumps Mega Man-inspired side-scrolling action onto the 3DS, complete with Mighty No. 9 crossover mini-game.

Talking of the (original) blue bomber, Mega Man X3 coming to Wii U completes the Nintendo set of X games on the system. If you prefer your platforming a bit more vertical and underground, Steamworld Dig may be the Wii U game for you.

As ever, the full list of new releases is below the break. On the sales side, Capcom has a decent-sized one this week across Wii U and 3DS, and Splinter Cell Blacklist will be permanently reduced from $40 to $20 starting September 1.

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Gone Home going to Wii U, says Nintendo manager

For more on Gone Home, check out our review. (The Unite 2014 video is below the break as well as the text from the image for anyone who has difficulty reading it.)

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3DS Nintendo Direct for Japan announced for tomorrow

Image Nintendo of Japan is streaming a new Direct broadcast tomorrow, August 29, focused on upcoming 3DS games. There are no announcements yet from the company's American or Euro branches. In any case, it's taking place at 8PM Japan time (4AM PT/7AM ET/12PM UK) and you'll be able to watch it right here... Continue Reading

Glameow it up with Pokemon Alpha & Omega steelbooks in EU

Pokemon Alpha Sapphire and Omega Ruby are getting their own steelbook bundles in Europe, complete with Kyogre and Groudon figurines respectively. Bundles including the game are coming to GAME and Nintendo's online store in the UK, and will be available for pre-order. The House of Mario Marowak lists the steelbook and figurine separately at £40; we've reached out to confirm if that also includes the game at that price.

The Poke-remakes are also scoring some other pre-order goodies in the UK. Pre-orders of the standalone version at GAME get the respective figure chucked in, while early birds at Shopto will get their own early bird, namely a 2D keyring of Torchic. As for the small matter of the game itself, it hits 3DS in North America on November 21, then a week across the pond on November 28.
[Image: Nintendo]

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Theatrhythm Curtain Call trailer shows off Type-0 scenarios

Image Nintendo 3DS rhythm game Theatrhythm Final Fantasy Curtain Call will feature content culled from the lost (to the western world) PSP Final Fantasy spinoff Final Fantasy Type-0, Square Enix revealed this week. Curtain Call includes playable characters and tracks from Type-0 ahead of its upgraded... Continue Reading

Mario Kart 8 DLC packs priced $8 each, $12 2-in-1 bundle

Nintendo of America confirmed the crossover Mario Kart 8 DLC packs spotted yesterday on the company's UK site, with the Zelda pack due to launch stateside in November and the Animal Crossing one in May 2015. Both packs will be available for pre-order starting today, each priced at $8. However, if you know you're going to get both, you can save 25 percent by ordering the $12 two-in-one bundle.

The saving doesn't apply if you buy both packs separately, unfortunately. On the flip side, anyone who buys both packs unlocks eight new colors of Yoshi and Shy Guy "immediately," in case you're in immediate need of some technicolor racing.

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Lego Batman 3 goes Beyond Gotham on November 11

No longer content with striking fear into the hearts of superstitious criminals in the back alleys of his hometown, Batman is branching out to more exotic climes in Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham.

According to publisher Warner Bros. Interactive, the Dark Knight's latest blocky adventure sees our hero battling Superman villain Brainiac to prevent the destruction of Earth. It seems the hyper-intelligent alien has swiped a handful of Lantern rings and is using their power to shrink worlds for his creepy collection of tiny civilizations. Batman must join forces with the "greatest super heroes and the most cunning villains" to travel through the cosmos, collecting Lantern rings and eventually using their Oan might to topple Brainiac's plot.

Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham will debut on November 11. As with all DC Comics/Lego mashups, the game will appear on myriad platforms, including the Xbox One, Xbox 360, PlayStation 4, PS3, Vita, Wii U, 3DS and PC.

Link revs up in Mario Kart 8 this November

Link is a playable character in Mario Kart 8 with the "Legend of Zelda X Mario Kart 8" DLC pack, due out in the UK in November for £7. We're contacting Nintendo of America for more information about a stateside release [Update: The packs are now confirmed for North America].

The pack includes Tanooki Mario, Cat Peach and Link as new playable characters, plus four vehicles and eight courses (that's two new cups with four courses each).

A second DLC pack for Mario Kart 8 is due out in May 2015, called "Animal Crossing X Mario Kart 8." It includes new playable characters in Isabelle, Villager and Dry Bowser, plus four vehicles and eight courses. Purchase both packs in a bundle or separately and snag eight different-colored Shy Guys and eight different-colored Yoshis. Score.
[Image: Nintendo]

Zen Studios latest pinball table summons the Walking Dead

The silver ball maestros at Zen Studios have unleashed another meticulously designed table, this time within the horrific universe of Telltale's The Walking Dead adventure game.

Despite its non-linear nature - pinball rarely adheres to a structured narrative - the table does a solid job of using skill shots and careful ball management to retell key story moments from the first season of Telltale's beloved The Walking Dead. Zen Studios was even able to get the original voice cast from the game to record new lines for the Walking Dead pinball table. Most crucially, the table is periodically littered with ambulatory corpses that, in proper Walking Dead spirit, must be avoided or, if you've got no other options, destroyed.

Like all Zen Studios tables, The Walking Dead is DLC content available on a number of platforms. Today marks the table's debut on the PlayStation 3, PS4 and Vita, while PC, Mac, Xbox 360 and Xbox One owners will have to wait until tomorrow. Those playing Zen Studios' pinball games on Android and iOS will have a chance to relive the adventures of Lee and Clementine on August 28. While you wait, take a look at the trailer past the break.

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Diablo 3: Ultimate Evil Edition trailblazes the UK charts

Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls - Ultimate Evil Edition is the new UK No.1, displacing The Last of Us: Remastered after three weeks running at the top. Data compilers Chart Track offer a few interesting infobits on the new chart leader, including that the top platform for sales was PS4 with 47 percent of the share. The PS4 version sold more than last year's original Xbox 360 release, but only around 500 units more. Xbox One took 32 percent of the share, Xbox 360 13 percent this time around, and PS3 8 percent.

Also rising out of the undergrowth into this week's top ten is Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare, thanks to the brand new PS4 and PS3 versions. It takes third place behind The Last of Us: Remastered, while JRPG Tales of Xillia 2 debuts in an impressive tenth place.

Finally, and quite incredibly, FIFA 14 is out of the UK top ten for the first time since its release. If only EA had another upcoming edition of its soccer sim to replace it...

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Voice of Mario meets Instagram in funny clips

Charles Martinet, best known as the voice of Mario, has joined Instagram. Of course, there are lots of people on Instagram, possibly even your dear ol' Granny. Of course, Granny probably isn't walking around with a bunch of Mario figurines and making silly videos (more power to her if she is, though).

After starting his account in mid-August, Martinet has already filled it with plenty of amusing clips, including Mario educating Luigi on the art of puns, Wario not understanding said puns and the two brothers being juggled by a Chilean street performer. We'd suggest you start with that one and work your way forward.
[Image: Charles Martinet]

Rumor: Super Smash Bros videos show Bowser Jr, Shulk, Duck Hunt Dog [Update: Videos pulled]

Update: The videos have been removed from YouTube, though you can still see snippets of them in GIF format on the NeoGAF post linked below.

If rumors are to be believed, we're not even close to seeing the final roster of Super Smash Bros. Several images and videos of Nintendo's upcoming mascot brawler have surfaced (handily collected on NeoGAF), showcasing lots of new characters. Among these are King Koopa's bandana'd progeny, Bowser Jr, Xenoblade protagonist Shulk and ... the dog from Duck Hunt.

In the videos, Bowser Jr is seen piloting a tiny version of his father's iconic flying machine, while Shulk seems to have a few things in common with fellow sword-swingers Roy and Marth. There's no video of the Duck Hunt dog, sadly, but if his appearance turns out to be true: best ... taunt ... ever.

Of course, we have to point out that talented modders have been squeezing new characters into Smash Bros Brawl for years – everything from Master Chief to Cloud Strife – so we suggest a smashing serving of salt to go along with all of this.

See the videos after the break.

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