Love it or hate it (I’m kind of in the middle), amiibo are doing pretty well for Nintendo so far. The expected Smash Bros. amiibo are still selling out and generating demand, but that could be due to Nintendo of America’s handling of the supply.
However, I was curious what could be in store for the amiibo lineup besides Smash-Trophy figures and what other series would get the amiibo treatment. We got a taste with the Super Mario line, but now we’re starting to get into a more creative territory.
First off, the next few waves of Smash amiibo have been given their release windows. The first wave of Charizard, Pac-Man, Wario, Jigglypuff, Greninja, Robin, Lucina, and Ness amiibo will be released May 29th. The next few are in the coming months. The Dark Pit and Palutena amiibo are set for July, and the Olimar, Bowser Jr., Dr. Mario, Zero Suit Samus, and Ganondorf amiibo will arrive in September. It was also confirmed that Mewtwo and Lucas will have their amiibo incarnations made, but no dates as of yet.
Although it isn’t surprising for representing a new IP, it was also announced that Splatoon will get amiibo. These will unlock special missions in-game that net you exclusive costumes for your Inkling. The Squid Girl and Squid Boy amiibo will be available separately, but a 3-piece bundle that includes both with an exclusive green Inkling is also coming.
It looks like amiibo will also be taking on forms other than figures. A new series of cards will be used with the upcoming game Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer. This game will be all about decorating and designing homes for a variety of animals. The amiibo cards come into play with selecting whose home to decorate and for inviting their animal friends to visit. While the cards are a cool addition to the amiibo library, the game is pretty barebones, even for an Animal Crossing game.
Animal Crossing: Happy Home Designer will launch this fall, but it’s not certain whether it’s a free download or a full release. The previously revealed NFC Adapter will launch at the same time and will bring the New 3DS’ NFC functionality to the rest of the 3DS family.
One of the best reveals of amiibo support was with Yoshi’s Wooly World. The in-game functionality is nice, spawning a second Yarn Yoshi that tags along. Both Yoshis control simultaneously, and you can even swallow and throw your clone to reach new areas.
However, the physical amiibo that are launching alongside the game are the real gem. Instead of being made of plastic, these amiibo are stuffed dolls made of yarn. They are also available in Green, Pink, and Light Blue Yoshi, and they look absolutely adorable. Even if I don’t play the game, I really want a Yarn Yoshi of my own.
One of the more disappointing announcements was the reveal of the first amiibo software, amiibo Tap: Nintendo’s Greatest Bits. With this free download, you can tap your amiibo to the sensor to play samples of classic Nintendo games. Games aren’t predetermined, so using you Mario amiibo won’t necessarily unlock a Mario game, for example.
The problem I have with this system is the fact that you can only play each scene for up to 3 minutes. After that, you can use the amiibo to switch scenes, but that appears to be it. I think it really would have been better to allow the ammibo to unlock the Virtual Console game, even restricting it to one use per amiibo or just a 24-hour download. Considering the amiibos’ cost compared to the prices of most Virtual Console titles, it would have been a better value than a gimicky sample of the experience.
Other than that, though, I’m rather intrigued by what the future of amiibo has in store. Granted, I haven’t gone through the turmoil of preordering, let alone trying to find amiibo, and that’s something I don’t think I want to experience. Maybe if the process wasn’t so aggravating to get into, I may have more than just my Samus amiibo, but I honestly don’t want to touch this until the situation calms down. Still, those that can’t get enough have a lot to look forward to.