Nintendo had two playable 3DS games at E3. Umm... what?
At E3 2012, the most worrisome trend for me was the relative absence of the 3DS on the show floor. Nintendo's own booth only had a few wandering girls with a pair of 3DS systems attached to them. For two days of the show, those girls only had one Nintendo game (Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon) and two third-party titles (Castlevania, Kingdom Hearts 3D). It wasn't until the last day of the show that New Super Mario Bros. 2 was playable on the show floor.
So Nintendo, in the second E3 after the 3DS came out, had two 3DS games playable. Hell, they only mentioned one other 3DS game! It was one of the most pathetic showings for a live Nintendo system I had ever seen. The DS last year, in its sixth E3 after release, had as many playable Nintendo games as the 3DS did this year.
Outside of that, the third party support only seems partially there. Square Enix had three games featured. Konami had one. Atlus had one. D3Publisher had a few. Disney had one (behind closed doors).
We saw just as many playable eShop games from indie developers as we did real live 3DS games on the show floor. By the way, Bomb Monkey (Renegade Kid), NightSky (Nicalis), Cave Story+ (Nicalis), escapeVektor (Nnooo) all look good according to our staffers who saw them.
It seems that Nintendo's focus was on Wii U, but it seems silly to give the 3DS a little more than a cursory glance. The hour-long presentation focused on the 3DS was nice, but outside of Reggie Fils-Aime's accidental Fire Emblem North American release confirmation, it featured little more than a gloss-over of all the games we have already heard about. Though, to be fair, we heard interesting information about Paper Mario: Sticker Star and New Super Mario Bros. 2.
Of course, there's the possibility that Nintendo will still have a few more 3DS releases this year. We could see Animal Crossing, Fire Emblem, Professor Layton and the Miracle Mask, and more pop up over the next few months in press releases and Nintendo Directs. We could be playing surprising new eShop games and great old classics on Virtual Console. But the issue is that we don't know if we should expect that.
Let's hope that E3 2012 was just an aberration, and Nintendo has a few more tricks up their sleeve this year. But at face value: man, the 3DS game output is looking pitiful.