Previously, Nintendo announced it would air its September Direct on September 6th, at 3pm PT/6pm ET. Today, the company announced on Twitter that it would be postponing the Direct due to the earthquake that struck Hokkaido, Japan.
Due to the powerful earthquake in Hokkaido, Japan, we have decided to delay this week’s planned Nintendo Direct. We will provide a new time and date in the near future. Thank you for your understanding. pic.twitter.com/IITgJFtzub— Nintendo of America (@NintendoAmerica) September 6, 2018
At first glance, one might think the two things have little in common. Nintendo Directs are not typically done with live gameplay footage; they are usually pre-recorded videos. However, it is important to remember that while Nintendo is huge in America, the parent company is in Japan. Thus, it is out of respect for the Japanese residents whom have lost power, perhaps homes, and even family members. It's a tragedy, and Nintendo airing a cheerful Direct in the midst of it would probably have been an insensitive move.
Nintendo did not provide an exact reschedule date. However, it is highly likely it will be much sooner than later - perhaps in under a week. With Nintendo Switch Online launching this month, Nintendo probably wants to get more specific details on the subscription service to the general public as soon as possible. Of course, the only thing officially announced for the Direct was a focus on upcoming Switch and 3DS titles.
For Switch titles releasing this year, the most notable 1st party ones are Pokemon: Let's Go, Super Mario Party, and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Smash Bros. already got a Direct to itself recently, so if the game does appear, it's quite possible it won't get a large focus. (Maybe there will be one character reveal, or maybe the mysterious mode will be unveiled.) If the Direct ends up talking about games releasing beyond 2018, it's possible we'll hear information on the Yoshi title for Switch, Fire Emblem: Three Houses, or maybe even Metroid Prime 4. For 3DS games, there aren't many notable ones releasing in the near future. The Luigi's Mansion port will launch in October, and Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story + Bowser Jr.'s Journey releases next year. Of course, it's always possible that Nintendo will announce new titles that will release in the near future.
Whatever the Direct contains, we'll know soon enough. In the meantime, it's important to remember our friends in Japan, and consider the long road to recovery for them.