When you see two round objects rolling your way, don’t be alarmed: They’re probably just a harmless golf ball and a familiar pink puffball. On May 2, the Mario Golf: World Tour  and Kirby: Triple Deluxe  games are launching in stores and in the Nintendo eShop on the Nintendo 3DS  family of systems. It’s a double dose of Nintendo! Both games are the next installments in their respective franchises and the first of their series on Nintendo 3DS. Both games also feature some of the most loved and iconic characters in the Nintendo universe. And, best of all, both games are ridiculously fun – which I’m sure I’ll discover just as soon as I have time to play them both. My day job has kept me incredibly busy the last couple of weeks, with very little time for gaming of any kind.
“May 2 is going to be an outstanding day for Nintendo 3DS owners,” said Ron Bertram, Nintendo of Canada ’s vice-president and general manager. “Mario Golf: World Tour and Kirby: Triple Deluxe add two exclusive Nintendo experiences to the already-incredible library of software found only on Nintendo 3DS.”
Mario Golf: World Tour: Players can drive, swing and putt using their favourite residents of the Mushroom Kingdom like Mario, Luigi and Princess Peach, or their Mii characters. Exciting courses that are filled with Warp Pipes or even Piranha Plants await players in Mario Golf: World Tour, as well as more traditional golf courses.
It wouldn’t be a golf game set in the Mushroom Kingdom if power-ups inspired by the Super Mario Bros. series weren’t waiting to be activated. Mario Golf: World Tour features plenty of items that can add an extra element of fun to the game when used. The Dash Mushroom, for example, gives the golf ball extra speed when it hits the ground; the Fire Flower burns through leaves and tufts of grass; and the Bullet Bill power-up allows the ball to fly in a straight line and ignore wind.
When not playing one of the numerous courses, players can wander the expansive Castle Club and its luxurious grounds as a Mii character to purchase new gear, visit the trophy room, or take a break in the lounge to hang out with Mario and friends. There are hundreds of pieces of gear to unlock in the game, including shirts, pants, gloves, hats, golf clubs and golf balls. Each piece of gear can enhance Mii characters’ golf attributes and add power or control to their shots, according to their play style.
Mario Golf: World Tour also features extensive online multiplayer matches as well as communities that players can customize with unique tournament rules. During these matches, up to four players from all over the world with a wireless broadband Internet connection can play together on the various courses in the game. Players can choose either to take turns or to engage in simultaneous play, meaning everyone takes shots at the same time. Either way, players can use built-in emoticons to let rivals know how they’re feeling about the game. This unique twist on traditional multiplayer matches adds a level of fast-paced excitement to the proceedings. 
In addition to being able to create their own custom tournaments, players can also participate in online tournaments hosted by Nintendo to get all sorts of new in-game gear. These scheduled events could range from nine-hole tournaments to smaller-scale events such as longest-drive challenges, coin-gathering challenges or even speed golf. Through SpotPass notifications, players will be informed of upcoming tournaments, and all they need to do is play the event and upload their scores before the event deadline. Nintendo is even collaborating with Callaway Golf Company for a series of in-game tournaments that begin on May 22. During these tournaments, players are rewarded with exclusive Callaway in-game items like golf clubs and golf balls just for participating.
Fans of the series can also expand their play options by purchasing up to three packs of downloadable content as they release, which will add a total of 108 new holes and three playable Mushroom Kingdom characters. Through Toad’s Booth in the game, the packs can be purchased individually or all together at a discounted rate with the Season Pass. Players who purchase the Season Pass will receive the packs as they become available and also have instant access to a special Gold Mario playable character. Fans who purchase all three packs separately will be able to get Gold Mario once all packs are available. Players can even participate in Trial Tournaments to sample courses from the downloadable packs available at that time, once they download the Trial Pack from Toad’s Booth in the game.
Mario Golf: World Tour will launch in stores and in the Nintendo eShop on Nintendo 3DS on May 2 at a suggested retail price of $34.99. Fans can also now download the demo version in the Nintendo eShop on Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo 2DS.
Kirby: Triple Deluxe: In Kirby: Triple Deluxe, players must help Kirby save longtime rival King Dedede by traveling through numerous colourful worlds while inhaling enemies, copying their abilities and jumping back and forth between foreground and background in dynamic 3D side-scrolling levels.
Kirby’s legendary ability to copy enemies’ powers returns, allowing him to inhale, spit and transform into new forms like the bow-wielding Archer and the horn-sporting Beetle, as well as returning classics like Parasol, Hammer and Sword. These forms each possess their own abilities and help Kirby make his way through numerous challenges. New to the Kirby series and a highlight of Kirby: Triple Deluxe is Kirby’s new, dramatic Hypernova ability. After collecting Miracle Fruit, Kirby will be imbued with the ability to inhale almost anything that stands in his way, including massive obstacles and entire sections of levels. The Hypernova ability can also come in handy for solving massive puzzles that Kirby might encounter throughout the game.
While taking a break from the action of the single-player adventure, up to four friends can duke it out in the Kirby Fighters multiplayer battle mode via local wireless or Download Play. Kirby Fighters finds players picking their favourite copy abilities and using them in fighting-game style matches against friends or the game’s AI (artificial intelligence). With Download Play support, four friends can play together using only one game card. (Additional Nintendo 3DS systems are required for multiplayer modes.)
Fans of collecting hidden items will love Kirby: Triple Deluxe. The game has more than 250 keychains that are hidden in each stage. Every keychain is inspired by the gorgeous character sprite art from classic Kirby games like Kirby’s Dream Land and Kirby Super Star. Keychains can also be collected by using the StreetPass functionality of the Nintendo 3DS system to tag other players who also have the game.
Kirby: Triple Deluxe will also launch in stores and in the Nintendo eShop on Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo 2DS on May 2 at a suggested retail price of $39.99.