First of all, I would like to say I’m sorry for the lack of posting, I was grinding through my last semester at the fine Stony Brook University and now that I am finally a college graduate, let the writing begin. I’m so ready to be back, like Duke Nukem Fore…wait a minute, not a good comparison. Anyway, I’ve been on a writing hiatus for pretty much the last three weeks, soaking up the I-don’t-have-to-do-anything-life, but now I’m ready to get back into it.
I’d like to take care of a few housekeeping things first.
-New website, again, is coming. Assuming you guys want that. Leave a comment below letting us know what you’d like to see on a new site, or if you even want a new site.
–Potential podcast tonight! All five listeners are pumped right now. I know Matt, Joe and myself all want to have one and hopefully it will be the first of many to come. I know Tom is out doing “real-world”journalism, so he isn’t available tonight, but in the future, fingers crossed, he will be.
Now that the boring stuff has been taken care of, onto what we do best here at the Warp Zone, talk about games. And what a week it has been so far for hard-core and casual gamers alike. The easiest way is to break down E3 is to discus it by conference, so first up will be Microsoft, followed by Sony and then Nintendo. So off we go.
While I don’t think of myself as a fan boy of any company, I come pretty close when Microsoft is involved. What can I say, I love my FPS. And Xbox has most of the them. So when I say that Microsoft had the worst conference of all three, it certainly means something. While they were at a disadvantage since they weren’t announcing any new hardware ala the Vita or the Wii U, the fine folks at Xbox decided to make it an hour or so of Kinect talk. Which was terrible. I’m a hardcore gamer, I don’t care about not having to use a controller for games, because I WANT to use a controller for games. While overall I was not a fan of the conference, there were some bright spots.
-Modern Warfare 3 demo to start the conference was certainly pretty entertaining, but since it’s available on other platforms, I think leading with it was not the best idea, even if they have exclusive rights to early DLC.
-Gears of War 3 is probably one of my most anticipated games coming this Fall, so seeing a live demo made me quite happy. Ice-T on stage was kinda cool, but not nearly as cool as his sunglasses. Who knew you needed them indoors? Following up with GoW3, which wasn’t announced at the conference itself but afterwards was the exclusive Gears console with a crazy red paint job and the crimson omen everywhere. I must say that I’m secretly hoping for my Elite to RROD so I justify the purchase.
-The new dashboard looked slick and the introduction of TV to Xbox is intriguing but I have to wait to see how it’s implemented first.
-The ending of the conference made me burst out in nerd joy with the announcement of a new trilogy of Halo games starting with Halo 4. The trailer with Cortana and the Chief gave me chills but wasn’t enough to save the conference from the Kinect overload. Also Halo:CE remake, sweet. Still unsure if it’s going to be Halo: Reach add on or completely new game.
That wraps up the good. Onto the bad.
-Kinect, and everything involved with it. Seriously, announcing a new Fable game and then making it a on-rails Kinect shooter was supremely disappointing. I’d rather just move on then discuss all the other Kinect installments that make me sick to my stomach.
-Apologizing again for the PSN screw-up was nice and justified. I accept your apology, just don’t do it again, Sony.
-While I admit I missed the first half of the conference due to an extremely awesome nap, I’ll pick up with the Vita since that’s the part I saw and arguably the best part.
-Well in a battle for the worst name for a console, Sony won. That was until Nintendo announced Wii U, but I’ll get into that later. The Vita was certainly impressive. The graphics were not something you would expect to see on a handheld and Sony definitely raised the bar. Two analog sticks is a major thumbs up and it makes you think if that had been on the original PSP who would have actually won the handheld war. At a very reasonable price of $249 for Wi-fi only and $299 for 3G, the Vita is poised to make a serious run at the portable market. However, announcing a partnership with one of the “best 3G providers out there” and revealing it to be AT&T leaves a lot to be desired. While the system itself seems solid, the games is what will take it to the next level. Overall, very solid conference, from what I saw.
-No Kevin Butler, super upsetting.
-Opening with an orchestra playing Zelda songs was instantly my favorite part of E3. Bringing back the memories of 8-bit Zelda makes me nerd-gasm. Following up that music rendition was the announcement of several Zelda games being produced in honor of the 25th anniversary. Links Awakening for DSI, not free (Thanks, Evan). Ocarina of Time 3D for the 3DS, not free, Four Swords, free and finally Skyword Sword for the Wii, which will be shipping this holiday season. The trailer for SS looked fantastic and is easily one of my most anticipated games in a fall line-up that is very good for gaming.
-Following the Zelda news, Nintendo went with the backing of its’ 3DS line announcing five games that will make me consider buying a 3DS. Super Mario, Kid Icarus, Star Fox, Luigi’s Mansion 2 and Mario Kart, all new games will make their debut on the 3DS with everyone of them excluding Kid Icarus coming this fall. Now after the show Paper Mario 3D was shown and it went back to it’s roots with turn based combat, making me one happy person.
-Then the big time came, announcing the Wii U, Nintendo’s new home console. While a lot is still unknown about the console, such as price, release date and launch titles, one thing is known, the controller and graphics look sweet. It’s six inch screen allow the player to switch between the console and the controller depending on the game or if the user simply wants to lay in bed and play. While Nintendo says it does not intend the controller to be it’s own portable, and the controller itself simply takes the information over wi-fi from the console, making on-the-go gaming with it impossible. Without saying much more, here’s the video of the announcement and what it can do. It’s too much awesome for me to describe.
-Finally, Iwata announced that there will be a new Super Smash Bros game that will be both on the 3DS and Wii U that could offer some sort of cross platform type stuff, but knowing SSB games it’s probably two years away from release.
-Not showing Zelda: SS game play.
-Not letting me buy the Wii U now.
Now you probably noticed that I didn’t discuss some games such as Assassins Creed: Revelations and Bioshock Infinite. That’s because as multi-platform games they aren’t tied to one particular companies console. But, I will say both games’ trailers looked fantastic and I can’t wait for AC:R this fall and Bioshock as soon as Ken Levine lets me play it.
Overall, I would have to say that Nintendo certainly wowed me the most and took the show with the Wii U and strong 3DS line-up, with Sony finishing second and Microsoft lagging behind due to their obsessive Kinect talk.
Stay tuned for more information on all three companies and let us know what you guys though in the comments below.