Nintendo has revealed that the long-awaited Pikmin 3, first shown at E3 2012 last June, will be released on 26 July in the UK, more than a week before it hits the US.

During the company's latest Nintendo Direct online broadcast, Satoru Iwata detailed some of the story mode features and gameplay the third in the series will include. It will be playable using the Wii U GamePad and Wii remote and Nunchuk, if that's what you prefer.

One of the reasons cited by Nintendo for its recent poor financial results, and specifically the far less than expected Wii U sales figures, is the lack of game support in its short life so far. There have been few triple-A titles available.

Nintendo hopes to put that right this year, with a number of key home-grown intellectual properties planned.

Shigeru Miyamoto's Pikmin 3 is the main one for the summer, and is sure to excite Nintendo fans with the first high-definition chapter in the franchise. Another is New Super Luigi U, also shown during today's Nintendo Direct live stream.

It will be available as a downloadable extra for New Super Mario Bros U on 20 June or in shops as a standalone title on 26 July.