(Before reading, know that most of this is going to be "well, no shit" to you, but in order to give my take on the conferences, I had to summarize them. So if it really bothers you, skip to the bottom. i just wanted to try and write my own take on the conferences like sites like gamesradar do. I know its alot of text, but please try to give it a bit of a read atleast and give me some feedback. )
E3 is, essentially, second christmas for me. I love the spectacle, i love the hype, i love the sheer insanity of it, and I love the unexpected. And this is where the Conferences usually come in. Most of the big big stuff is usually announced during press conferences, and really, theres only 3 that we all really care about. SONY, Microsoft, and Nintendo. All due respect to EA and Ubi, but these are where its at.
So... howd they do? Lets begin with MS:
Microsofts E3 was not for me. I realize this now. At first, I was angry with them for their conference. Only about 15 percent of their show appealed to me, and the rest appealed to my uncles kids. I got only 5 games I was remotely interested in, I got some proof that they know how to throw their money around alot (Exclusive COD DLC for 3 years. Smart move though), and i got a new redesigned 360 that I totally want but cant afford or justify buying right now when my 360 seems to work fine *knocks on the biggest piece of wood in the room*
So what, might you ask, did they focus on for 80 percent or so of the show? take a wild freakin guess. Remember that thing they showed you at the end of their Killer E3 09 conference? you know, that thing that Movie director that hasnt directed a good movie in years was hyping as the second coming of christ, and that looked like a weird, buggy science experiment that you didnt know was either real or a bunch of smoke and mirrors spouted at you by a pleasing to listen to english man? yup, im talking about Project Natal, or Kinect as its now called (dont worry, you get used to the name).
this thing was MS main focus on the show, and honestly, it makes sense. If you are trying to sell me on a controller free device, then you should devote as much time as you can selling me on said device. However, I was not entirely sold on it. Im sold on the promises and the potential, but im not sold on the end result. The voice activation stuff seemed real neat, but presented some problems. For Example, what if Im watching a movie, and my little cousin comes in and says "Xbox.. Off" just to fuck with me?
By saying that, he shuts the syestem down because thats what its programmed to respond to. Also, pausing your movie by saying "Xbox pause" seems like it would take more time then pressing a button.
The games they showed for this thing where a Pet Simulator (Basically, if your too irresponsible for a cat, I guess this is you lucky day) which was one of the most sickenly cute things ive ever seen, a Raft kinda game, a dance game by harmonix (actually looked cool), a Yoga/wii fit kinda game, Forza with Kinect functinality, a sports collection, and god knows what else because I cant remember.
So in other words, its all shit Nintendos been doing for years. I saw nothing that made me think I needed a Kinect over a Wii.
We got some ESPN announcement, and kinect party chat. (which was blatantly staged and acted horribly).
And pretty much, that was the Kinect stuff. It was at this point that they announced the new 360, and gave it away to everyone in the theater for free ala oprah. (Kind gesture or devious bribe? You decide. Oh im Jking with you) But what about those hardcore games i mentioned?
Well, we got COD Black ops, which looked like Modern Warefare in the jungle with helecopters, so thats cool I guess. We got Gears 3, which did look very nice and fun. We got Halo Reach which looked good as well, and we got a Fable 3 trailer and a New Crytek 360 Exclusive trailer that looks like 300 the videogame on HD consoles.
Again, I realize that them focusing on Kinect so much was necessary to sell people on it, but thats no reason why I cant bitch about it. If they gave me those Hardcore games, plus 1 or 2 big new hardcore reveals, or maybe even another Bombshell like FF 13, then maybe it would be fine. But as it is, it was boring and made me roll my eyes more then entertain me.
And now we come to Nintendo. That Kid Icarus Trailer said it all "Sorry to keep you guys waiting" (oops, getting ahead)
FINALLY Nintendo has given me the first reasons in three years to give two shits about what they do.
They kept us waiting for a good E3 for so long I almost considering skipping their conference this E3. But they delievered.
The Conference began rather lamely. A buggy Zelda demo (BTW: New zelda announced) and a Wii party game entitled....... Wii Party. (trust me, it gets better)
While a new zelda is usually enough to make a nintendo E3, strangely enough it was one of the least memorable things. Maybe because it didnt demo well because of Tech issues.
What came after that was Epic Mickey footage (Im interested in this game now), and New Goldeneye announcement (because they totally didnt try that before and fail), and a new Mario basketball lookin game. While these were ok, it really started to pick up. a new
Donkey Kong country was announced, and it looked really cool. I might be forgetting stuff right now, but the next thing I remember is their big mama jamama. the Nintendo 3DS.
Ok, this thing is probaly the final nail in PSPs coffin. Its sleek, its got near wii like graphics, and most improtant, glasses free 3d that works! (as said by many sites) Plus, its got a two camera lenses in teh front for 3D Photo taking, and it has a slider to adjust how much 3d you want (full blown to none at all, and everywhere in between) But whats got me most excited is the announced partners and games. Put it this way, we are getting a Street Fighter game, a Resident Evil game and a Metal Gear Solid 3 Snake Eater
Remake on this thing. Thats freakin huge! Im particularly looking forward to MGS.
But, nintendo saved what many argue is the best for last. After years of asking and bitching, we are finally given a new Kid Icarus game...... but its handheld. Still that dosent matter as the 3DS is close to a wii in graphics anyway. People went ape shit for this.
So, not to get ahead of myself, this to me was the most well put together conference and had the most pezzaz.
So how did SONY do? They were last out the gate, and had the oppurtunity to end it with a bang. Did they succeed?
eh, More or Less.
While its hard to top Nintendos conference, SONY atleast made a solid effort. The show started with a few jabs at MS's natal event and a KZ3 3D demo which apprently was amazing (3d dont work that well on internet streams, so i wouldnt know) and after that talked 3D up some more. Its clear there dead serious about this.
We then move (he) to move stuff, where we see Tiger Woods PGA 2011 being demod with the lady pleaser looking device. It seems to be pretty 1:1, although its not 100 percent on the money. but it was a bit impressive. The guy cant golf that well. We tehn get games like Sorcerey, which is basically if you took the upcoming Harry Potter game and slapped Move on it, and we get other games in montage form. Were introduced to the rather high pricing (standalone motion controller *plural* is 50, while the sub controller thing is 30.)
They also announced a PS3 bundle with everything you need for Move for 399, but after maths is done, you are actually paying more this way compared to if you just bought them piece by piece (but its like 1 penny like the Giatnbomb video today said, but still found it funny).
So I guess SONY might outprice themselves if Kinect comes in at 100 or something.
i may be out of order, But I think we then were introduced to Heros on the Move, which at first I thought was Sonys take on Smash brothers. But apprently, its.... well i dont really know what it is. Its like some platformer adventure game with multiple SONY mascots. So, yay I guess?
Then were introduced to the barrage of Exclusive Stuff for multiplatform games on PS3 (ok, exageration, but it was still considerable)
Pretty much Medal of Honor and Dead Space 2 are getting Exclusive Limited editions that include games (dead space comes with dead space extraction, MOH comes with MOH: Frontlines remastered in HD) plus, PS3 gets a Exclusive Assassins creed brotherhood Multiplayer beta and Exclusive missions in mafia 2.
Then Sony announces some Coca Cola advertising partenership no one in the audience cares about,
and then, finally, we get some more Kevin Butler Action.
What we get is, IMO one of the best E3 moments in recent memory, or atleast the funniest.
Kevin Buttler tells us that its not about the technology, but its about the games. Also, he makes more jabs about MS Kinect Event on Sunday with the acrobat people.
He talks about Gaming guys and girls, and how we are all gamers no matter whos console flag we wave. Then, the music swells to epic speech mode, and he delievers one of the best Speeches ive heard at a E3 yet. It was really patriotic and really funny. Go watch it if you havent seen it. After the LOLing ends, we are then presented with a very very strong last half of the show.
However, it started rough with a new Ad push for PSP, staring a black kid named marcus who apparently is "Teh Hardest core PSP gamer everz!" and he knows everything about PSP. He is hired by Kevin Butler in the ad, and basically becomes the PSPs Kevin Butler. But a Kid who was actualyl kinda stereotypical. Anyway, it was rather stupid.
The good news is things go uphill from there. We are introduced to the long rumored PSN Premium service, named Playstation Plus. Basically, its the same price as Live for a year, but you get Exclusive Betas, Demos, Themes, a select free game, select free game trials of full games, Avatar Items and stuff like that.
But my question is, what are they doing about the actual ONLINE? Im talking about my Multiplayer experince. From what I can tell, theres no mention of improving servers, adding all the features live does for Online gaming, Improve stability, and stuff like that. So basically, im paying for Insider access stuff with no impact on my actual Online gaming. thats kinda bullshit if you ask me. Also, what if I dont like the game your offering for free? what if i dont care to try your free game trial? Then this would be a complete waste of money for me. I really need to know more about this before I can really say anythinga bout wether I want it or not, but so far, im not sold.
Then, we come to the only moment in E3 that literally made me say "HOLY SHIT". Jack tretton is interrupted by, youll never guess in a million fucking years without prior knowledge of this, Glados from Portal. She has a surprise for us. We are introduced to the very first Portal 2 Trailer and really the only big announcement of it outside of Game Informer that I know of. And then guess who appears but good old gabe newell. You know gabe right? The guy that years ago called the PS3 "A complete waste of everyones time" The man that thought "SONY should do a do over on their PS3".
Well, here he is, talking about how he had made some rearks about the current Console generation, obviously referencing tehse remarks, and announces he very excited to work with SONY and bring Portal 2 to PS3, not only that, but bringing steam works with it. He said that PS3 was the most open console right now, adn thus so, Portal 2 on PS3 will be the best console version of Portal.
I wonder if he likes his crow barbequed or fried? anyway, I wonder if he died a little inside after saying that?
Well, its hard to top that right? well, SONY tried to, and to many, may have. He says theres one more surprise before we go.
A trailer shows two cab drivers talking about car combat games. One asks name the only car combat series to kick ass on PS1, Kick more ass on PS2, and kick even MORE ass on PS3? Obviously, the other cab driver cant come up with a answer, and the other cab driver says "yeah, thats what I thought, because it dosent exist." (ok, seriously, you know what this is)
The other guy then flips his lit cigar to the floor in front of a ally and drives off. The sound of stomping boots can be heard and you see a man pick it up. As the camera pans up, you see pink polkadot white pants and a big gut and you see the infamous sweet tooth. he uses the cigar to light his head on fire, this is then followed by other lights in the dark allyway of other clowns that share his flaming head and clown look. He then says "Its so good to be back"
Then, if this wasnt surreal enough, you have a ACTUAL demented Ice cream Truck pull onto the E3 stage replicating Sweet tooths truck, and you see a live action version of the big bastard himself driving it, and it looked quit good. He was fat, he was menacing, and he really looked like a serial killer.
Jaffe then follows in tow to demo the new Twisted Metal game (He also forgot to mention HES A FREAKING LIAR! He said he wasnt going to E3 and he wasnt working on twisted metal. But I forgive him)
The game looks pretty cool, but the demo feel kinda flat because they were reading off cue cards, and they werent doing it well.
Its coming out in 2011.
All in All, it was a solid conference. I certainly liked it better then MS's. But, they spent too much time on dumb things I didnt care about and there was no PSP 2 announcement. Or Last Guardian.
So, who won?
Well, although SONY appealed to me personally more, I really think it goes to Nintendo.
Not only were they the most improved compared to the other years, but they had a nice flow and they had the hardcore games you wanted. Plus the new hardware.
Sonys in second and MS third.