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Nintendo fans spent all of last night waiting on a Direct announcement

As Nintendo fanned the flames.

Nintendo fans are convinced there will soon be a Direct, the company's semi-regular YouTube bulletin of news and surprises, and many stayed up all of last night waiting for an announcement.

Nintendo itself did little to quell the flames - and posted numerous knowing pictures from official Twitter accounts seemingly acknowledging the fan excitement.

As fans waited for the announcement to drop at the top of each hour, Nintendo broke off from its usual pattern of PR tweets to send out (or simply retweet) the following:

Watching the evening onfold on Twitter and on the Resetera forum's now-closed but extraordinary 600+ page thread, it seemed clear there was a back and forth between company and fans - the latter of which seemed to enjoy themselves while getting increasingly exasperated.

But it wasn't just fans who took notice. Everyone in the industry seemed to be keeping an eye on Nintendo last night, as official Twitter accounts for Mega Man, Sonic, Doom, Assassin's Creed, Pillars of Eternity developer Obsidian, Nintendo's theme park partner Universal Studios and even Chivalry: Medieval Warfare got in on the "here's a character on fire" meme.

But it was the "Chibi-Robo on fire" tweet which gained the most attention - and the one which fans ran with:

Someone began selling the meme on a T-shirt:

And it all ended, predictably, with someone setting a Chibi-Robo amiibo on fire as an offering:

So, that Nintendo Direct. Fingers crossed, eh.

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