Unmoved By 3DS Mario Sequels? Nintendo Has New Downloadable Alternatives

Nintendo has been so busy announcing sequels to every Mario sub-franchise that you can think of — new sidescrollers, new 3D platformers, new Golf and Mario & Luigi — that you’d think they don’t have anything else. Well, other than Zeldas.

Not quite. As they’ve been quietly been doing, Nintendo is continuing to create and add to new franchises through its download-only games.

During a Nintendo Direct video press conference today, the company reiterated plans to put out HarmoKNight, the rhythm-action game from the people who make Pokemon (and who were finally allowed to make a non-Pokemon game. It’s coming out March 28, download-only for Nintendo 3DS.

Nintendo is also putting out a sequel to its action-tower-defence game Dillon’s Rolling Western on April 11, adding more playable characters and a train that you have to defend. The first game was very fun and distinct — as long as you were right-handed. I’m a lefty and couldn’t quite get comfortable rolling and attacking with a stylus in my right hand. Still, Nintendo’s western feels and plays differently from anything else. Quietly, it’s creating a Smash Bros.-worthy new mascot. The new game is called Dillon’s Rolling Western: The Last Ranger.

Then there’s Kersploosh which looks like a cousin of Ketzal’s Corridors, a fine 3DS game from last year that sort of played like first-person Tetris, though maybe a more apt comparison would be Descent without brakes. In this new game, which is also a 3DS spring download, you’re controlling a water drop as if falls down a long well, trying to avoid obstacles.

Ah, but Nintendo couldn’t resist Mario completely, right? They got a download-only Mario and Donkey Kong: Minis on the Move. It’s another puzzle game, a la some of the older Mario Vs. Donkey Kong games, but this time running on a timer, playing in 3D and with some sort of new level editor.

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