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February Nintendo Direct 2021: When is it, how to watch, and what to expect

Nintendo Direct 2.17.2021

After over 500 days without a proper stream, there’s finally a Nintendo Direct on the horizon. Suddenly announced, as per usual, and set to premiere this afternoon, the first Nintendo Direct of the year is a big deal for fans.

With such a long and dramatic radio silence due to development woes caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, Nintendo is set to spend just shy of an hour discussing not only updates to existing games, but also news on a bunch of new ones set to launch in the first half of the year. Here’s what to expect, what not to expect, and how to watch it with the world.

How to watch the February Nintendo Direct

In case you don’t want rife speculation to sour your experience, let’s just jump straight into how you can watch the February Nintendo Direct. It’s set to air today, February 17 at 2 p.m. PT/5 pm. ET.

As for where you can watch it, the YouTube video embed above. If you’re in a hurry when the time comes, you should be able to find the stream embedded in Nintendo’s own social media posts and their official website, so don’t worry if you’re struggling to find it on YouTube.

How long is the February Nintendo Direct?

The upcoming February Nintendo Direct is confirmed to be roughly 50 minutes long. This information is sometimes not clear, with content tailored to each region sometimes bloating or thinning the length considerably. This time, however, it’s confirmed to be close to a full hour long. That’s a lot of content.

What to expect from the February Nintendo Direct

Rune Factory 5 Announcement Trailer | Coming to Nintendo Switch in Spring 2021

The February Nintendo Direct is set to be a big one. With so many announcements and game delays caused by the ongoing worldwide pandemic, there’s a lot to catch up on.

As per the announcement tweet, Nintendo Direct will feature updates to currently available games like Super Smash Bros. Ultimate and titles set to launch within the first half of the year. For Smash fans, it’s no doubt time for another new character.

Azur Lane: Crosswave, Persona 5 Strikers, Cris Tales, and maybe even Rune Factory 5 and the long-awaited Shin Megami Tensei V are some big-name titles to look out for. With just how big Xenoblade Chronicles studio Monolith Soft has grown over the years, there’s reason to believe another port or full-fledged entry in the series is being developed alongside their involvement in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild 2, so listen out for their signature orchestral notes fading as a last-minute surprise.

There’s rumor of Resident Evil Revelations 3 being announced as a Nintendo Switch exclusive, too. Given the first game was a Nintendo 3DS exclusive for a time, it’s a leak that holds some water, if you’ll pardon the pun.

What not to expect from the February Nintendo Direct

Pokemon Snap
Image used with permission by copyright holder

So what shouldn’t you expect to see? With events like Pokemon Day and the Legend of Zelda 35th Anniversary all just around the corner, there’s a good chance announcements pertaining to these legendary franchises will be held for series-specific events.

Similarly, Blizzcon is scheduled for this February 19 and 20, so news of any potential Blizzard ports might be held back as well. If Capcom has any major Monster Hunter Rise and Monster Hunter Stories news to share, they might just put out a separate, game-specific Direct stream like they did to announce those games last year.

If we were to put money on it, we’d say not to expect any Metroid news. It’s been a few years since Metroid Prime 4 was announced, but with the project being rebooted relatively recently, we’re probably still a ways off hearing anything of value on that particular title.

All in all, with a pandemic causing a ruckus and this Nintendo Direct being potentially the longest one yet, it’s harder than ever to reasonably predict what’s to come. For once, we’re going into without any major spoilers.

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Josh Brown
Josh Brown is a UK-based freelancer with devoted interests in video games, tech, film, and anime/manga. Just don't talk to…
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