A Warp Pipe Dream Come True at Nintendo Live 2023

Recounting my magical experience at Nintendo Live 2023!

By MChipmunks, Posted 07 Sep 2023

Ah, Seattle. Home of the Space Needle, grunge music, and Nintendo of America headquarters. Nintendo put on their annual Nintendo Live event at the Seattle Convention Center, right in the heart of the city, across from the famous Paramount Theatre! This was my first time ever traveling by plane, which was an absolutely mind-blowing experience. Leaving the East Coast for the first time, traveling by myself to the other side of the country for a video game event, will be something I will remember for years to come. Not only was my first time flying a fun and memorable experience, but Nintendo put on an extravagant display of gaming goodness. Nintendo Live is an invitation-only event and serves as a celebration of all things Nintendo.

Nintendo Live 2023|Super Mario Bros. Wonder|Photo Op|Switch|Mario|Luigi|Princess Peach|Nintendo

I won a Friday pass and almost passed out from the excitement! If you had told me when I was younger that I’d get to go to an official Nintendo convention one day, I would have thought you were pulling my leg. I went in with tempered expectations and was pleasantly surprised by Nintendo’s presentation. From one side of the convention center to the other, there was something for every kind of Nintendo gamer. The photo-op locations were breathtaking! I made sure to take as many pictures with all the different set pieces from The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom to Super Mario Bros. Wonder and many more! They even had a giant Lego Bowser that looked quite menacing as it made all sorts of expressions.

Let me back it up to Super Mario Bros. Wonder real quick. Nintendo had just dropped an incredible Nintendo Direct about the upcoming holiday release, which set my hype levels skyrocketing. To hold this presentation until a day before Nintendo Live seemed awfully suspicious, as if the game was going to be playable. As I waited in line to take my photo at the Pikmin 4 set piece, what did I spy with my little eye? Off in the distance of the convention center was a Super Mario Bros. Wonder set piece. Well, surely that means the game was playable, right? To everyone’s surprise, including my own, it was! Mario’s latest 2D adventure, due out this October, was indeed playable. You can read all about it in our preview for the game.

There were famous Nintendo tunes playing in every direction, people dressed up as their favorite characters, and plenty of free goodies to go around. My face hurt from how much I smiled during my time at Nintendo Live 2023. Nintendo had announced ahead of the event that there would be two live musical performances, both for Super Mario Bros. and The Legend of Zelda. While I was too busy playing Super Mario Bros. Wonder to catch the entirety of the Zelda performance, I did catch a glimpse, and it was nothing short of epic. A little over an hour later, the Super Mario Bros. Big Band performance commenced. I was moved to tears.

Nintendo Live 2023

Growing up, playing all these wonderful titles such as Super Mario World, Super Mario Sunshine, and Super Mario Galaxy to name a few, and getting to hear the music in a live performance was surreal. Both groups put on quite the show, filled with many memorable classic tunes. Super Mario World is the first video game I can remember playing as a five-year-old. The band would play the credits' song to Super Mario World, and I could not hold back the floodgates. Nintendo knows how to hit a grown man right in the heart. It is crazy to think how these pieces of plastic hold so much sentimentality, wonder, and expression, all wrapped in a neat casing.

I briefly mentioned the goodies at the event, and boy, were there plenty to go around! I received an exclusive Nintendo Live tote bag that included some gorgeous Mario pins from his various past adventures. Featured in the set were Mario as he appears in Super Mario Sunshine, Super Mario Galaxy, and Super Mario World on Yoshi. The gold coin was a standout for me on account of how premium it looked and felt. It featured the various franchises on it that were part of the event. There was also an extensive catalog of paid merchandise exclusive to the event. It was well worth waiting in the blistering sun for almost three hours just to get my stash. I picked up a beautiful The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom t-shirt, an embroidered corduroy Pikmin hat, and, of course, for this coffee enthusiast, I had to get a Nintendo Live 2023 coffee mug!

Nintendo Live 2023|Kirby|Photo Op|Sword Kirby|Kirby and the Forgotten Land|Switch|Nintendo

I met a lot of amazing people at the event, including fellow game press and passionate fans. The President of Nintendo of America himself, Doug Bowser, was also walking the show floor, but I did not run into him, unfortunately. It is very cool for someone in his position to come down and have fun with the fans for the weekend. Did you think the 3DS was dead? You would be dead wrong! Many fans came out to Nintendo Live with their 3DS in hand to get some StreetPass hits for their Mii Plaza. The entire day had me wrapped up in a blanket of cozy nostalgia. My 3DS was overflowing with StreetPass hits while I waited in the various long lines throughout the day.

The energy was infectious all around the convention center as gamers came to celebrate the love of Nintendo and video games as a whole. PAX West was happening next door, people all dressed up as famous Nintendo characters, and smiles as far as the eye could see. In fact, I smiled so much that my face hurt! There was a set designed like a living room in the 1980s, adorned with retro video game posters, such as ones for the Nintendo Entertainment System and Donkey Kong. Can’t forget the lava lamp and wooden entertainment center. The retro aesthetic was so inviting.

All in all, Nintendo Live 2023 exceeded my expectations. I went in not knowing what to expect, really. This was a grand event, packed to the Cheep Cheep gills with activities. The orchestrated Zelda/Mario performances were nothing short of beautiful. All the set pieces, each inviting with their larger-than-life depictions of the famous characters and items we have grown up with throughout the years. For the little ones who got to attend, it was a chance to familiarize themselves with Nintendo’s storied legacy. Nintendo was very generous with the amount of swag they gave attendees, and I will be making sure to cherish them forever.

Nintendo Live 2023|Super Mario Bros.|Mario|Luigi|Van|Photo Op|Nintendo

I would implore any and all Nintendo fans to at least enter for a chance to win tickets next year. I will definitely be going all four days next year if possible. Nintendo certainly knows how to bring the thunder when it comes to their presentation. Hopefully, by next year, we will be testing out Nintendo’s latest and greatest hardware as the Switch seems to be closing in on its incredible legacy. Only time will tell for now. Nintendo Live 2023 will be a time in my gaming journey I will never forget. I look forward to my next outing at Nintendo Live 2024!

Michael Nicolosi (@ChipmunksMikey)
Editor, NoobFeed

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General Information

Platform(s): Switch
Publisher(s): Nintendo
Developer(s): Nintendo EPD
Genres: 2D Platformer
Themes: Adventure, 2D Side-Scrolling, Multiplayer, Family
Release Date: 2023-10-20

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