Oh wow, it’s been over a week since I last posted. Whoops – yeah E3 was as hectic as I thought it would be, although overall I was kind of disappointed by this year. There was no ‘Wada’ moment, as I like to call it, no “out of left field” surprise, which I personally think is the whole point of E3. Game demos are all well and good, but there’s so many public events that do them (and then there’s press tours for us lot), that those in itself don’t really make E3 all that special. The conferences however, with all their showmanship and grandstanding, is not something you really find anywhere else.
Of course, this is the opinion of one who’s never been – I suspect my view might change when I finally get out there.
Microsoft’s was hard to judge because it was all pretty much leaked before hand – although Halo 4 was pleasantly unexpected, and I’m glad to see official confirmation of the Halo CE Anniversary Edition. Assuming I don’t get it for free, that’s probably going to be a day-one purchase for me. More Kinect stuff as well, although it wasn’t all that impressive. Apart from side-features like the Ghost Recon customisation interface, or Minecraft, the sleuth of kid games or on-the-rails action games was kind of disappointing.
Sony’s was perhaps the strongest, opening up with an apology of the PSN fiasco (although, cheekily, Tretton didn’t address the security breach, just the fact that PSN was down), and then launching straight in with the likes of Uncharted 3 and Resistance 3. A lot of their presentation was given over to the PS Vita, which I didn’t pay that much attention to because one, we don’t cover handhelds, and two, I’m not much of a handheld gamer myself. From what I could gather though this seems to be getting a much stronger launch than the PSP, and better games as well and not simple ports. Their 3D package as well was also a surprise, perhaps confirming that 3D really isn’t taking off as well as they and others hoped.
Nintendo I guess had the biggest surprise in the form of the Wii U. Despite the console’s existence all but confirmed for months now, the real show came in them revealing what that entailed, and the kind of games they were going to produce. IT was nice to see them getting a strong third-party backing in terms of core games once again, and the new controller seems kind of nifty, I guess. The most frustrating thing though was that not only did they not talk about the console itself at all, but for a while there it wasn’t clear if there even was a console. Not to mention that there wasn’t any actual Wii U footage present… and from a personal stand-point I’m not sure if it’s going to be in HD or not at the moment.
Apart from the big 3, there were of course the publisher press conferences too. There’s not many of these, usually – EA and Ubi always seem to do one, Konami too. Activision seems to have stopped bothering altogether, for obvious reasons. EA’s was ok, although their The Old Republic demonstration was really disappointing, and pointless. Ubisoft’s again was ok, but their presenter was diabolical and some of the more boring presentations ran on a bit. Good line up coming up though, and they win the ‘Best Trailer’ award for Assassin’s Creed: Revelations:
The backing song is called Iron, by someone called Woodkid, and I have listened to it over 300 times now. I think I have a problem. A problem with AWESOME.