Since launching in October 2012, the Nintendo Wii U's gaming catalog has only seen a handful of new games and even fewer big name titles. Nintendo President Satoru Iwata aimed to change that earlier today as he unveiled a series of new titles in the works featuring some of the company's biggest franchises.

Iwata's remarks came during one of the company's regular Nintendo Direct Webcasts. In it, the executive promised two new Mario titles in addition to the 2D side-scrolling New Super Mario Bros Wii U that's already available.

One will be a new 3D Mario game in the style of Super Mario Bros. 3D while the second will be a Mario Kart racing title. We expect to see both games on display at the Electronic Entertainment Expo in mid-June. Another Mario spinoff featuring Yoshi is also being planned, we're told.

If Mario isn't your cup of tea, perhaps a couple of new titles under the Zelda franchise will give you something to look forward to.  Iwata pointed out that Nintendo was in the process of remaking the 2003 GameCube game The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker for the Wii U. The game will feature updated HD graphics and should be ready for a fall 2013 release. A second Legend of Zelda game is also in the pipeline but details on it were lacking.

We also learned that a software update coming this spring will add the Nintendo Virtual Console to the Wii U. This service allows gamers to access classic games from consoles past like the NES and the Super NES. Expect to pay between $5 to $9 for each retro title.