Ready for something weird? Nintendo sure hopes so.
The Japanese game maker's first software releases of 2015 are certainly "out there." "The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D" and "Kirby and the Rainbow Curse" look more like "Pan's Labyrinth" and "Wallace and Gromit" than "Donkey Kong." The releases follow news that the company's sales decreased 11.3 percent last year, and Nintendo is apparently hoping to capture some new attention (and customers) this year.
First, there's "The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D." It launches Friday alongside the New Nintendo 3DS XL system but also will work on older 3DS models. It's a remake of an older title with updated gameplay and visuals -- which means nightmarish sequences like the one below will be viewable in 3D.
Seen here, "Majora's Mask" antagonist Skull Kid places a hex on a young Link. (Source)
Your goal in this "Zelda" title is to stop an impending disaster: A grimacing moon is poised to crash into the game's setting, Clock Town, and utterly destroy a lovely cast of characters.
The man in the moon isn't looking so hot. (Source)
To save the day, you'll need to time travel -- a lot. Just play a song on your magical ocarina, and you'll find yourself transported.
A small child burdened with saving an entire plane of existence is hurtled through time. (Source)
If this all seems a bit heavy for a company otherwise associated with "Mario Party" and "Wii Sports Resort," well, it kind of is. But something different may be exactly what Nintendo needs as it launches the New Nintendo 3DS XL system. "Majora's Mask 3D" may be a remake of an older title, but it's poised to hit a generation of consumers who hadn't been born when the game's original version debuted back in 2000.
Of course, there's lighter fare on the horizon, too. On Feb. 20, the technicolored, claymation-style "Kirby and the Rainbow Curse" will be released for the Wii U console. That system -- Nintendo's slowest-selling ever -- needs all the help it can get.
Nintendo has already released Wii U games from its Mario Kart and Super Smash Bros. franchises. Though Kirby games have never sold as well as those big hitters, "Rainbow Curse" is more vibrant and weird-looking than older Kirby titles. And that may give it an edge.
The new "Kirby" title for Wii U offers graphics that look like clay. (Source)
We'll see if it makes a difference. At the very least, it's something to, like, totally space out to, maaaaaan.