Awesome video games are usually preceded by awesome announcements, and Nintendo Directs are pretty good at delivering awesome announcements. To keep overlap with the Moment of Awesome pages of the various games mentioned throughout this list to a minimum, this page focuses solely on general Directs.
- As stated on the main page, the "Wii U Direct of January 2013" was a full-on Wham Episode meant to turn the tide of the Wii U, which was failing out of the gate. Enter the return of Virtual Console, new information about The Wonderful 101 and Bayonetta 2, confirmation on the development of what would become Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U, Super Mario 3D World and Mario Kart 8, and the reveals of what would become Yoshi's Woolly World, Tokyo Mirage Sessions ♯FE, and Xenoblade Chronicles X, in addition to a HD remake of The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker.
- "Nintendo Digital Event @ E3 2014" was yet another Wham Episode. Nintendo hoped to still garner interest in their failing home console, or at the very least, needed to satisfy the audience that had purchased the system and were wondering where all the games were. With a Direct bookended with brand-new Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U news and character reveals, they certainly tried their hardest. Yoshi's Woolly World made its reappearance after being missing-in-action for eighteen months. The beloved "Captain Toad" levels got the Spin-Off treatment in Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker. We our first look at then-untitled The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and a new trailer for Hyrule Warriors, with news that Bayonetta 1 would ship in a two-pack with the upcoming sequel squeezed in-between. We had a return to stylus gameplay in the form of Kirby and the Rainbow Curse alongside footage of Xenoblade Chronicles X. We witnessed the birth of future Sleeper Hit Splatoon and got a stealth reveal of Star Fox Zero via blurry cam. All this interspersed with various Robot Chicken skits mocking game journalists, Nintendo fans, and Nintendo themselves, as well as short "developer story" segments. Oh, and Iwata and Reggie fought each other to the death.
- During the "Nintendo Spotlight: E3 2017" segment, they showed several well-received trailers for many Nintendo Switch games, including Super Mario Odyssey, Splatoon 2, Fire Emblem Warriors, what would become Kirby Star Allies and Yoshi's Crafted World, Xenoblade Chronicles 2, and third-party favorite Rocket League, in addition to the announcement that a core Pokémon RPG was coming to the Switch after fans worried where the future of the series was in context of the Switch's hybrid nature. That all pales to the real firestarter, though, which was a 43 second teaser showing only two words and the number "4". The announcement tripled as a Tearjerker and a Crowning Moment of Heartwarming, with many people overjoyed to see Samus Aran returning to a Nintendo console for the first time in years, especially considering the low note she left on last time.
- The Nintendo Direct of September 2017 was a mostly low-key affair, reiterating Nintendo's Fall lineup and introduced a few more minor titles. But a bombshell was dropped in the middle of it all — ports of DOOM (2016) and Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus for the Nintendo Switch, which (up until that point) many people had believed were too powerful to ever be adapted for the system."Whoa... Holy SHIT!"
- The March 2018 Nintendo Direct served as this for both the Splatoon 2 and Super Smash Bros. communities. Splatoon fans got two things that they've been craving for since the original game launched back in 2015: a new single-player campaign starring the rival Octoling species and the ability to play as an Octoling online, which is unlocked after beating this new story campaign, called the Octo Expansion. Shortly afterwards, Smash Bros. fans got a shock when what seemed to be just additional news concerning Splatoon ending up being a character announcement trailer. The Inklings coming to Smash and that a new installment is on the horizon, coming out later that year.
- The "September 2018 Direct" had one for Final Fantasy fans, with the announcements that the previously Sony console-exclusive Final Fantasies VII, IX,X/X-2, and XII would be coming to the Nintendo Switch early the following year, marking the first time that a Nintendo platform has seen a new mainline Final Fantasy game in any form since 1994.note Extra fan attention was given to VII in particular, as that was the game which led to Square famously breaking off a long-standing relationship with Nintendo to release the game on the PlayStation instead, due to that console using CD-ROMs while the Nintendo 64 stuck with cartridges.
- Two words: Animal Crossing. While Isabelle getting into Super Smash Bros. Ultimate was a nice surprise, Animal Crossing fans once again felt a bit mislead by her reveal trailer, as they've spent the past few years hoping for a brand new console entry, especially since they felt similarly fooled by the trailer for a Spin-Off title in the franchise years prior. A spin-off that ended up being... poorly-received upon release. So you can only imagine the joy when the Smash Bros. announcement was causally followed by Tom Nook telling the audience that a new Animal Crossing was coming to the Nintendo Switch in 2019.
- February 2019's Direct bookended itself with two major announcements, in addition to giving us a nice dose of Fire Emblem: Three Houses news. The show opened with Super Mario Maker 2, a game that Mario fans have wondering about since the launch of the Nintendo Switch, considering how the first game was one of the few that made heavy use of the Wii U's Gamepad. Some fans wondered if Nintendo would attempt to port it over or make a sequel, and lo and behold, not only is this sequel happening and adding tons of new features such as the much wanted slopes, but it's releasing in just four months. Then there was the unexpected announcement of PlatinumGames' brand-new science-fiction action game Astral Chain, coming exclusively for the Switch in just six months. And then the show ended with the long-awaited announcement of the next 2D The Legend of Zelda game, which turned out to be the equally long-awaited announcement of a remake of the critically-acclaimed Link's Awakening, introduced by a beautifully-animated recreation of the opening cutscene.
- The Spring 2019 Nindie Showcase also bookended itself quite nicely. The direct opened up by announcing that Cuphead would be coming to the Nintendo Switch, something that had been rumored for a while thanks to many game journalists talking about how Microsoft and Nintendo had been talking a lot recently. But it's the end of the direct that arguably delivered the bigger news: Nintendo was letting an indie developer use one of their IPs, and not just as DLC either. Nope, Cadence of Hyrule, the sequel to Crypt of the NecroDancer, doubles as a full-fledged Spin-Off entry in the The Legend of Zelda franchise. The fact that they urged a small Canadian team of less than a dozen people with only a single released game to their name to take their turn with one of their most popular franchises shocked absolutely everyone. Yes, urged. Brace Yourself Games just wanted to have Zelda characters as DLC for the original game, but Nintendo was so interested by the idea that they pushed for a full-on title.
- Compared to other recent Directs, the Nintendo E3 2019 Direct was relatively tame, though there were still a few standout moments. A Switch version of The Witcher 3 was shown, setting a new high water mark for how capable the hybrid console could perform, while a remake of Panzer Dragoon and the announcement of No More Heroes 3 thrilled fans of those series. But the biggest screams of excitement came from the one-two punch at the end — the debut of nostalgic characters Banjo and Kazooie in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, followed by confirmation that a sequel to The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild was on the way.
- By most accounts, the September 2019 Nintendo Direct was a boon for die-hard fans of obscure and offbeat games. Western players were ambushed by the announcement of Deadly Premonition 2, a sequel to the quirky Twin Peaks-style Deadly Premonition adventure game, as well as Overwatch finally coming to the Switch. Meanwhile, Japanese gamers were greeted with news of remakes of the first two Famicom Detective Club games. But the biggest news was arguably the Switch release of the cult classic "anti-RPG" Moon: Remix RPG Adventure, along with news that it would — after 22 years — finally be officially localized and released worldwide.