Arms does for fighting games what Mario Kart did for driving games, and the results are absolutely splendid.

Key events

Nintendo puts a firmer date on its paid online service, but still remains coy on details

Nintendo is still being infuriatingly coy about its paid online service with just over a month to go until its release - though it's just reaffirmed what few details are out there while sharing the tiniest bit more.

A new detail has just emerged via the company's official Twitter accounts - first from the US, and then replicated by the European account this morning - with the service now confirmed to launch in the last half of September.

There's the ability to upload save data to the cloud - if the software supports the feature - the ability to play some NES games with added online features - what those games will be are anyone's guess, though given Nintendo's apparent eagerness to disappoint I'm fully expecting a re-release of Urban Champion with online co-op - and the dedicated app for your phone, which is already out there and in its current form remains woefully inadequate.

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Arms keeps swinging with another new update

Arms - 2017's best game, Nintendo's best game, quite possibly the peak of human culture and at the very least an achievement on par with the moon landings - has just got a surprise new update that adds new features and an all-new mode.

It's not as substantial an update as the Switch fighting game has received in the recent past - as the game's director Kosuke Yabuki confirmed to Eurogamer last week, there are no major content updates now planned for the game - but it's more substantial than you might have expected given the assumption that support had stopped for the game. More badges - Arms' in-game achievements - have been added, as well as a new gallery complete with art for players to unlock and an all-new Tournament mode that unlocks all players' Arms for those that want to get directly into the action (it's worth noting that in this mode you won't earn any of the in-game currency or badges).

The artwork you can unlock is a splendid selection, going beyond the character art unlocked when you complete Arms' Grand Prix mode at difficulty level four or higher and giving us a new look at concepts for the game. Here, for example, is the stellar Min-Min in a piece of art that's completely new to me.

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Nintendo's Arms director confirms "no plans" for more content updates

Arms has concluded its generous schedule of free content updates, Nintendo has confirmed to Eurogamer.

The Switch-exclusive fighter has had a healthy helping of extra characters, stages, modes and fighting Arms since its release last summer - but the future of this content schedule has been up in the air since a mysterious statement posted to Nintendo's Japanese help website back in December.

When translated, this statement suggested no more free content was on the way. We asked Nintendo for more information, and now, Nintendo's Kosuke Yabuki - Arms' director and the godfather of the project - has confirmed to Eurogamer this is the case.

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If you had asked me at the start of this year what I thought a year spent playing multiplayer games would look like, I probably would have talked about muting people and about the frustration of being shot from halfway across the map by someone I couldn't even see. Crucially, I wouldn't have thought of Hearthstone or Diablo or any of the other multiplayer games I have always loved, because multiplayer - online multiplayer - for me still meant the unexamined cliches I had carried with me for years. Multiplayer was something I did not do, so the multiplayer games I already played all the time must be something subtly different.

Are you a scrub or are you a saint? That is, in essence, the question being posed by Arms' next Party Crash, it's time-limited event that sees players fight for two characters as they partake in a quick succession of themed fights over a couple of days.

I rarely play fighting games, and, man, I did not expect them to be this soothing. Arms is violent for sure - enemies are pummelled, the ground judders with impacts, and a last-minute defeat can still throw me into an internal rage. But rages, internal or otherwise, are actually fairly rare here - far rarer than last-minute defeats for sure. Most of the time, when I think of Arms - and I am in that honeymoon phase where I think of it constantly - I think of a game that presents itself as a series of nested delights. There's the music at launch, and its theme of wordless bellowing joy. There's the way the UI slides in and out in vibrant bursts, like the screen furniture for the best sporting show ever. There are the badges that you collect instead of Achievements, all neatly laid out in their treasure box screen, and there's the Get ARMS mode in which you cash in in-game money for the chance to earn new and surprising fists to hit people with, by means of a pacey shooting gallery that is rewarding you with stuff while secretly teaching you how to curve punches.

Arms just got another new playable character

Put a Springtron in your step.

Arms - the best game of 2017, quite possibly of all time, a point which isn't really even up for debate so don't even try - just got another update which introduces a new playable character.

Well, isn't this quite the problem to be having. It really doesn't seem that long ago there were righteous complaints about the dearth of decent Nintendo titles, understandable given a fairly miserable 2016 which saw the Wii U shuffle off this mortal coil with little in the way of love or support. The assumption was, of course, that Nintendo was busying itself for what was set to be an important 2017 - but even then, I doubt anyone could have predicted what was to come.

Arms' latest update brings replays and a badge-based achievements system

Nintendo's superb fist-banger Arms has received another sizeable update, this time adding a Replay feature, and a mysterious new challenger in solo mode.

Arguably the most significant addition in Arms' 3.2 update, however, is the new achievements system, which unlocks new badges once you've performed certain feats in-game.

Arms doesn't reveal its unlock criteria upfront, so you'll need to figure out feats for yourself - which seems like a slightly missed opportunity to add a bit more guided structure to the single-player experience - but unlocked badges can be displayed alongside your avatar in online matches for a welcome touch of personalisation.

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Arms is getting another big update, and another new fighter

Arms is getting another big update, and another new fighter

Achievements! Robots! A hot new tune!

Arms, Nintendo's wonderful brawler which I'll keep mentioning until everyone's given it a fair shot, is getting another big new update, with a trailer that dropped during the weekend's Nintendo World Championships giving us a look at some fresh new features.

The headline, no doubt, is the addition of achievement-like 'badges' for milestones such as earning 1000 in-game coins, winning your first Grand Prix match and fighting 50 times with a set character. Will they take into account all you've done in Arms so far and retroactively unlock? Here's hoping so.

Version 3.2 - as it's called - looks like it'll also introduce a new character in the form of a Mecha Spring Man, whose appearance is teased briefly at the end of the trailer.

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Arms' new character is revealed, and she looks outrageous

And you can play for free this coming weekend.

After a week or more of teases, Nintendo's finally revealed Arms' new character - and she's a pantaloon-wearing, nunchuck-touting French clown who can expand her trousers in order to block incoming punches, and has the ability to block mid-air.

Arms gets a proper training mode and more in latest update

Arms' training mode, previously a slight thing tucked away in a sub-menu, has been buffed up and placed front and centre of Nintendo's Switch exclusive fighting game.

The training mode provides a light but informative education in the intricacies of Arms, allowing you to practice anti-air, rush combos and guard breaking among other things. Arms isn't a complex game, but it is a unique one, so a basic grounding for new players is very much welcome.

Elsewhere there have been balance updates for certain arms and characters, with Master Mummy, Byte & Barq and Mechanica all enjoying slight buffs. You can find the full patch notes here.

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Arms update adds plenty while removing the most controversial stage from ranked play

Arms version 2.0, the biggest update to Nintendo's Switch exclusive, is now live, bringing with it a suite of big changes and addition.

New character Max Brass - who previously served as one of the bosses in the single-player Grand Prix mode - is the headline, but he's joined by an all-new mode, as revealed by Eurogamer yesterday. It's based around Hedlok, Arms' other boss character, and sees players fighting to take possession of the character before turning on their opponents.

Max Brass also introduces three new Arms into the game, with the Nade, Roaster and Kablammer all now added. Most importantly, though, Arms has an all-new title screen.

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Arms' first patch adds LAN support and Spectator Mode

Arms' first patch adds LAN support and Spectator Mode

Nintendo is doing its best to give Arms legs.

Nintendo's delightful boxing game Arms has a new trick up its spiraled sleeves with the addition of LAN support.

Added as part of its version 1.1 update, this will allow players to hook up two nearby Switches using a wired LAN adapter, which will cut down on any lag - a necessity for the more serious competitive scene where every millisecond matters.

Another noticeable addition in this patch is a Spectator Mode. Entitled Arena Mode, this will allow two people to watch a match between another two players. That's a pretty small audience size, but will work for groups of three or four friends who want to take turns sitting a match out while watching how their pals perform.

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This E3 Nintendo has been making a concerted push towards competitive play that's going hand-in-hand with its Switch system - one of the most multiplayer friendly consoles yet devised. It started off with Splatoon 2's World Inkling Invitational, carried on with the Pokken Tournament DX Invitational and got really interesting with the Arms invitational that took place last night.

Arms review

Let's start with the music, because it's the first thing you'll come across when booting up Arms, Nintendo's all-new Switch exclusive. Caixa and surdo drums burst into a rhythm met by a bright chorus being sung through the widest of smiles. It's a tune I haven't been able to stop humming ever since first hearing it, an infectious little samba that sets up the cartoonish capoeira that is Arms' combat - a heady dance of swirling limbs and dazzling colour as players duke it out. Not since Mario Kart 8's joyous cover version of the series' original theme tune has a title screen done such a wonderful job of starting you off in the best possible way. Let's do this, it sings. Let's play!


Publisher: Nintendo

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Arms is getting an open beta at the end of the month

Arms, the forthcoming motion control-fuelled fighting game, is getting an open beta at the end of the month, with players able to participate on the weekend of 27th and 28th May and the weekend of 3rd and 4th June.

The beta - dubbed the Global Testpunch - will take place over limited time windows, like the Splatoon 2 open beta before it.

Nintendo also used today's Direct event to detail more of Arms, with the number of revealed characters now up to 10. A suite of new modes were also unveiled (including four-player splitscreen) and we've got the lowdown on all of them in our recently published preview piece. Nintendo also announced that Arms will be getting free DLC support, with new fighters and stages due to come post-release.

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It's been more than a decade since motion control took the world by storm on Wii and it often feels like a distant memory we're more than happy to forget. Building a fighting game, a genre that's all about precision inputs, might seem overly optimistic, but that's exactly what Nintendo has set out to do with Arms. And you know what? After spending a few hours playing an updated build of the game this week, I can say that it works.

Arms release date confirmed for June

Arms release date confirmed for June

Joy-Con battery charging peripheral launches same day.

Switch-exclusive cartoonish boxing game Arms is slated for release on 16th June.

Nintendo made the announcement during a Nintendo Direct tonight where it showed off some of the intricacies of the game's combat system. As it turns out Arms may also have legs.

It has kicks, anyway. Nintendo revealed a new character named Min Min, who attacks with her feet as well as her fists. Her main methods of striking are still her hands though, and she can select a unique prosthetic that transforms her arm into a dragon.

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Nintendo Direct announced for this week

Nintendo Direct announced for this week

Focused on Arms and Splatoon 2.

Set your alarms, pop on your Pikmin onesie and gather round your electronic devices! A new Nintendo Direct will be broadcast on Wednesday, 12th April at 11pm UK time.

Fresh details on Splatoon 2and Arms have been promised - two of Nintendo Switch's biggest upcoming exclusives.

We don't yet know the release date of either game, although both are expected in the first half of this year. It's a safe bet we'll find out when each of them will launch.

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Friday's Switch reveal might have been dominated by unpleasant surprises - the Switch's slim launch line-up for one, and heaven knows what Nintendo's thinking when it comes to the extortionate pricing of the games - but there were some more savoury ones, too. Chief among them was Arms, an all-new Nintendo IP that shows that, after the 14 year wait between Pikmin and Splatoon, the company now has a healthy appetite for creating something from scratch. And, just like Splatoon before it, Arms is looking like an absolute treat.