Well, I have gotten my marks back. I passed, somehow. I did lose my honours status but I am more than ready for school in September… outside of financial preparation. I somehow need to scrape together $2,800 for school this coming semester. Hopefully, I can get a decent amount from OSAP ($1000-1500 please?). I’d really appreciate that considering the following paragraph and a predicted $1000 cost for textbooks.
On top of that, I want to get a Blackberry Tour. With a cost around $230 on a 3-year plan with Bell or Telus, that’s $230 or so for just the phone. Since I work for Wal-Mart, I’d get 50% off the core aspect of my contract (promo until Sept 30). For $65 (after tax), I’d get: 400 local anytime minutes, unlimited data/texting, call display, and a warranty that covers virtually everything (This is how it works… if my Blackberry gets stolen or destroyed, I can walk into a Bell store and get a new Tour for $230). That also includes any and all fees (system access fee and 911 fee). Unfortunately, a $35 activation fee is also required and is billed on the first month (which, for me, would probably end up being paid in September or the end of August). I need to start selling video games, badly.
I just had six days off before today (worked 12-8 today and worked 10 of the 12 beforehand). Most of which was spent in London visiting Finkle, Crazy Dave, Rogers and the crew. I met some really cool people down there at Finkle’s birthday party (a shitload of alcohol was consumed, to say the least). I have a bunch of new friends now. I’m excited.
Law and Order SVU is now on Season 9 in terms of released seasons. I am caught up and bought Season 9 for my sister (watched all but the last episode and I know what happens, hence why I don’t want to watch it as one of my favourite characters gets kicked out). House, M.D. Season 5 hits shelves August 25th. I will be there debit or credit card in hand and ready. I’m considering booking off the 25th and 26th.
Most of the video games from E3 that were tentatively dated for this holiday have been pushed back which is great for my wallet for the 2009 calendar year. However, they all got moved to March 2010. Ouch. I’m still stuck with Halo 3 ODST, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, and Left 4 Dead 2. I’m sure that’ll keep me busy. ;)
Speaking of spending money, I recently bought the new Daughtry CD entitled “Leave This Town”. It’s freaking awesome if you are a fan of light rock. I definitely recommend trying out “Ghost Of Me”. I think it’s one of my favourite songs of all time now. Daughtry rocks. On the gaming front, Microsoft Points I purchased over a month ago have now been spent on the Gears of War 2 All Fronts Pack which gave me over 10 multiplayer maps which I will horde (this is not a typo, pun intended) away on along with a deleted part of the campaign. For only 1600 M$P (or just over $20 for common folk), I got a deal and a half. The content is great and the bang for my buck value is incredible from a personal point of view.
More updates to come soon, hopefully. As I leave you, I will part with just one gift... a Murphy’s Law statement: “If it's stupid but it works, it isn't stupid”.Enigma out.
E3 Introduction and Day One: Microsoft and Electronic Arts
Well, if you know me well enough, you are well aware that E3 (Electronic Entertainment Expo (from now on, E3)) was this week as this is a HUGE event for me. Being an avid video game player, I pay attention to E3 more than anyone I know. First off, I followed IGN (www.ign.com) and G4’s coverage (www.g4tv.com).
In E3, Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft all have their shot at making their “presentation” of what games are going to come out for the rest of the annual year as well as start building on the next year’s release schedule. Throughout the event, one can run around the LACC (Los Angeles Convention Center) and play “E3 Demos” produced by publishers and made by the development teams. Most journalists (including online… or rather, especially online) cover most of the games available to play with interviews. Anyway, if you didn’t know what E3 is all about, you do know. Let’s begin…
First up on the list was Microsoft’s press conference… For this particular conference, I was at my buddy Matt’s house watching it on his Samsung 56” HDTV. It was sweet.
Anyway, Microsoft started out by showing off The Beatles Rock Band. They showed the opening video for the actual game, had the two remaining Beatles (Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr) on stage discussing the game, and showed some gameplay in a trailer which ended up stating 10 of the 45 songs in the game. It’s looking up to be just another Rock Band game to me and any other viewer. However, my friend Matt stated the progression in the opening video (how they started in a lower life style and proceeded into an army of fans, etc) which was reemphasized later in the presentation. Although I like this particular touch, I’m still not buying it. I’m sure many others will. The main concept behind opening up with the Beatles RB that I liked was they got me into it. They didn’t start with figures about how many millions upon millions upon billions of dollars they made. They started off with some gameplay, a trailer, and some upbeat music; a truly unique opening which was eye-catching and made me WANT to watch.
Next up, professional skater Tony Hawk came on-stage to talk about Tony Hawk Ride. He discussed what he thought of the game, how it plays, and showed off the skateboard-looking accessory for the game. On top of that, they showed a trailer of many pro skaters playing the game (for, allegedly, the first time). Overall, the game looks impressive but the trailer lacked any physical showing of the gamer’s feet which makes me a tad concerned. Also, with a rumoured price of $160 for just the accessory, I’m out. Even if that included the game, I’m still out. I do not even plan on buying the game for $60… unless it impresses the living daylights out of me.
From there, they truly took a step-up, moving up to Infinity Ward’s Modern Warfare 2. Immediately following Tony Hawk’s final words on stage, Infinity Ward’s reveal trailer for MW2 was shown; an already seen trailer from the Eastern Conference Finals which still looked AWESOME. Anyway, two reps from Infinity Ward came on stage. One discussed the game and demo while the other played it. Although the trailer showed a decent amount of footage on this particular level, I’ll take what I can get. They demoed a level called Cliffhanger which takes place in a snow-covered mountain landscape. An extremely cool part was your character having to climb up the side of the icy mountain with ice picks using the triggers… amazing idea. Another part involves the two characters (the partner and his partner) sliding down the side of the mountain… Just the little things matter. Even the release date is cool… 11 10 09. I can’t wait. Just a quick note here… Modern Warfare 2, regardless of showing strong at Microsoft’s E3 press conference or not, is not a console exclusive and will also be available for the Playstation 3. Tango down.
Following Infinity Ward demoing their masterpiece, SquEnix (Square Enix) came on and demoed Final Fantasy 13 really quick and commented endlessly on how it would be coming to the 360. Although I never cared for most RPGs nor the Final Fantasy series, the demo looks cool… for their fans.
Next up, Epic Games’ Cliffy B came on stage. I was hoping… kinda… for a Gears of War 3 announcement. However, in replacement of a Gears 3 announcement, Shadow Complex (a xbox live arcade game) was announced. The game was stated to be a mix of Metroid and Castlevania which sounded awesome. The gameplay looks decent and the foam gun building a staircase is hilarious. Some smaller gameplay effects look pimp. However, I’m still unsure. I’m going to wait for more pictures and gameplay… Either way, it was a big surprise.
Following Shadow Complex’s announcement, JoyRide was announced. It looks like a bad racer which you can play for free and whatnot. However, you have to pay for additional tracks and whatnot. This definitely does not look a game I’ll be playing, even for free. Free does not always mean good, ladies and germs. Immediately following JoyRide’s trailer and short talk, a trailer for Crackdown 2 was shown. Nothing past the trailer was shown and therefore, I don’t have much to go off of. The main/only reason I bought [the original] Crackdown was because it came with the Halo 3 mulitplayer beta… just like 99% of the world. I’m unsure about this one as well but it was a pleasant surprise.
Arguably, the most exciting news of the conference [for me] came in a trailer-only form. There was a bunch of zombies all over the place… I thought it was Dead Rising 2. However, before Shadow Complex’s reveal, it was stated the remainder of the conference was Microsoft exclusive product… so I thought: Left 4 Dead 2. Was it too early? Could it be? I saw a Tank… one of the notorious Special Infected from Left 4 Dead. I also saw chainsaw action… a frying pan… and I was quite happy. Left 4 Dead 2, Nov 17… coming to Xbox 360 and PC. November is going to be freakin’ awesome. More on the L4D front later…
After that, an Ubisoft trailer graced the presence of millions everywhere, including yours truly. Knowing that it had to be an exclusive, an easy guess of Splinter Cell Conviction was proven right. Sam Fischer is back and he looks dominating… then, my dreams came true… two representatives from Ubisoft came on stage with one holding an Xbox 360 controller. I was happy. They demoed and talked about Conviction and how the game shows objectives in the environment and how they made the game a mini sandbox everywhere so the player had more control (to play it as an action game or a stealth game). The gameplay looks amazing and the sheer amount of detail from the developer looks retardedly (is that even a word?) amazing. A must have for any shooter, action, or stealth fan who happens to own a 360.
From Splinter Cell, Microsoft chose to present Forza Motorsport 3. The game looked awesome, had some custom content, and a TON of features. The game blew me away in a sense… until I saw a later racing game which I will discuss later in the blog… which shot Forza out of the water.
Joseph Staten (Bungie’s main representative at E3) hit the stage after Forza 3’s three stage presentation. Being a huge Halo fan, I’m always excited when Bungie has news. However, Bungie had HUGE news for this E3. Staten showed the world Halo ODST’s opening video as well as demoed part of the first and second (presumeably) missions in the game. On top of that, he announced a Horde-esque mode entitled Firefight which will come to ODST. Also, Staten revealed Bungie’s secret project in a trailer for Halo Reach, probably a prequel to Halo: CE. Halo ODST’s disc will contain an Extras menu containing a multiplayer beta for Halo Reach. I’m pumped already; yet another amazing piece of news from Microsoft. I cannot put into words how excited I am for the possibilities of ODST and Reach. Bungie has never really made a bad game so I’m super pumped, to say the least.
Staten left the stage, almost bringing a tear to my eye that I would not hear much extra from Bungie for the rest of the week, atleast that is big big new until a few moments later when a writer and a colleague from Remedy Games hit the stage. I knew the name of the dev but could not recall the reason for the life of me. A trailer showing a white male whose character is called Alan Wake started rolling and I knew immediately I was in for a treat; not only was a trailer shown but a demo followed it. The demo had narration, as if it were a story. Considering Alan Wake is based on Alan Wake’s character writing a book and the events of the book happening to his character, the narration makes sense. In addition to the narration making sense, it fits so perfectly and is a truly unique characteristic for a game to have. AWESOME. The gameplay looks terrific and crisp. The level of immersion was off the charts. I didn’t even hear any sounds during a large chunk of the demo and I wasn’t even playing the game. The game shares a feature with Splinter Cell Conviction too… the objective being shown within the environment… or rather, hinted at in the environment. Again, totally awesome. Although they ended the demo on a cliffhanger, which I usually am frustrated with, I will still extremely excited and was very content with the small glimpse of what is shaping up to be a phenomenal game.
Streaming of “full” HD movies [without waiting times], last.fm, Twitter, and Facebook all being integrated into the Xbox Dashboard was the next set of announcements. To be honest, I have a computer for Facebook. I do not use Twitter and I do not listen to the radio. It’s nice they are trying to expand on a great thing to make it [potentially] greater but after seeing two of the best demos I may see in my life, this news was less than exciting. I’d have to actually consider more of a mood ruiner than anything else.
Back into the actual gaming world, Kojima, infamously known for his Metal Gear series graced an Xbox stage for the first time in his life (to my knowledge). He announced that Metal Gear Rising (or… Metal Gear 5, if you will) was indeed under production for the Xbox 360. The news failed to make me quite happy as I already own a PS3 and Metal Gear Solid 4. I am more of a Microsoft fan at this time (due to their game selection) than a Sony fan so Microsoft “stealing” a Sony exclusive is bitter sweet as I still support Sony to an extent. The trailer that followed the announcement was nothing short of amazing, as everyone expects from Kojima and crew.
The final component of the Microsoft conference was nicknamed “Project Natal”, for lack of better words. Basically, it is a motion sensor device that the Xbox uses (a camera) which has facial and voice recognition as well as allows one to use their entire body as the controller. The first “demo” (for lack of a better word) involved someone showing off how the camera reacted to his body, merely navigating the Dashboard. A mini game called Ricochet was followed suit. Ricochet can best be described as the Xbox Natal equivalent of Curve Ball. Next, they demoed the camera using a game which involved painting. The inspiration image was an elephant in a desert. I cannot begin to explain how creative this made Project Natal look. The demo person ended up using another person to make the “elephant”. Before you ask, no, it did not look dirty. Well, as dirty as you’d think. On top of that, Peter Molyneux, lead of Lionhead Studios (among other things) was involved in something called “Project Milo”. Project Milo used Project Natal to create a virtual being that recognized your voice, emotions, etc. named Milo. A small demo was shown of Milo to the world and I cannot really describe it other than the person within the demo drawing something on a paper, holding it in front of the camera, and Milo reaching up and “grabbing” a piece of paper from the top of the TV (camera was on top of the TV). Assuming it is not scripted, this feat is almost beyond human comprehension. If it is scripted, the result is understandable but very easily explained.
With that, Microsoft’s conference concluded but not without making what seems to be ground shattering news and a set of thrilling announcements about games being released within the next annual year before E3 2010 or shortly after that one.
Between Microsoft’s conference and EA’s conference, Matt and I hung out, discussed our nerdgasms (yes, I went there) and just generally chilled. The wait was not too long and was quite uneventful outside of heated discussions about what we just saw in front of our eyes mere minutes before. EA’s conference had so much potential and I was as excited as I could ever be about video games. I was expecting HUGE things out of EA. Let’s see how they did.
EA began their show with a trailer for their upcoming game Dante’s Inferno. Being raised a Roman Catholic and quite frankly not caring for any story involving the Devil or anything of that nature, Dante’s Inferno was quite unimpressive from my point of view. From there, EA went from a bunch of girl games that I quite frankly did not care about (no offense to any girl gamers out there), Need for Speed: Shift (another unimpressive racer considering what followed but it did look like NFS devs are listening to their older fans), Dragon Age Origins and Mass Effect 2 (don’t care for either), Fight Night Round 4, their new NCAA 10 game and the customization which will be involved with the title (looked awesome but needs to exist for all their games that are sports based), EA Active, and Grand Slam Tennis (complete with Pete Sampras showing up). From there, EA showed up… it only took them half an hour or so.
Next on their hit list was The Saboteur… only a trailer and a brief demo was shown for the game but it looks quite interesting. Nothing I’d immediately invest money into but it’s on my radar, to say the least… especially since it’s based in Paris and I’m French. It looks… different.
Immediately following The Saboteur was a game called Brutal Legends which has voice acting done by a slew of celebrities including Ozzy Osbourne and Jack Black. Even as a metal fan, I gotta ask the question: “Are you kidding me?”. I’m staying as far away as possible from the game, to be honest. I’m sure hardcore metal fans and not so educated gamers will be quick to throw their money after it.
EA got right back on top of things by showing off Crysis 2 using the Crytek 3 engine which was built for consoles. Graphically, Crysis is probably the best ever; getting a graphically beautiful game on a console that plays decently or better would be awesome.
Back to mediocrity, EA talked about their partnership with specific devs which included Valve. After being hopeful for Left 4 Dead 2, I was shocked to hear about All Points Bulletin (APB) which is made by a dev EA has recently made partners with and is a MMO… putting me to sleep (almost literally).
The final tidbit of EA’s conference was a trailer for Star Wars: The Old Republic, a MMO which will apparently have complete voice acting. The trailer made the game looking like an action game and had me pumped for a while… but the villain ended up “winning” and it was revealed to be an MMO which made me finish EA’s conference with a tad of a letdown. However, considering the entire conference was a letdown for me, outside of The Saboteur and Crysis 2, I was used to the disappointment.
With that and a tad more of E3 footage from G4, Day 1 of E3 ended for me. I saw two conferences from either spectrum: one which impressed the hell out of me (Microsoft, obviously) and one that bored the shit out of me (EA, obviously). With Sony and Nintendo coming up the next day, I was quite excited yet nervous, hoping that they would both live up to my expectations.
E3 Day Two: Nintendo, Sony, and Ubisoft
For all of Day Two, I was at my own house watching E3 on satellite. Thanks, G4TV.
Nintendo was first up for Day 2 of E3. Unlike Microsoft and Sony, Nintendo only had an hour to strut their stuff. Microsoft had over an hour and a half and Sony would have two hours later that day. Nintendo didn’t waste any time whatsoever unveiling their next Mario game: New Super Mario Bros. Wii. Immediately after its announcement, three players and the host began playing through a demo level of the game in a 4 player co-operative setting, an unheard of feature in Mario games. Other than that, it looks like nothing has really changed which is not exactly that exciting, outside of a scoring and ranking system of how the level went for each individual player. However, it marks the return of a more traditional Mario experience which is what I have been after since the Wii launched over a year ago.
Once that demo was complete, Wii Fit Plus was the next major Nintendo announcement. I am a 20 year old male. I probably do not need to speak more on this matter. Wii Sports Resort followed Wii Fit Plus and was demoed in multiple ways including archery and a 3 point contest (which I totally dig). Seeing as it was announced at last E3, this was relatively boring since it is “old” news. The game looks cool but I’m not going to give this game more than it deserves. Ubisoft’s Red Steel 2 got an honourable mention next. My guess for such a short main stage mention is because Ubisoft showed it later that night. However, neither of the two (as you will find out later) impressed me.
One of the higher ups of Nintendo came on stage to announce 3 DS games: Kingdom Hearts, a Mario & Luigi RPG, and Golden Sun DS. After each having their own trailer, Nintendo began to follow in EA’s trend and appeal to the females among us. Both sets of mentions were obviously not amazingly applicable for me and was quite boring considering the first announcement of the presentation. Between the woman appeal and a Vitality sensor that took 20 minutes to announce (in a 60 minute conference, mind you) which seems to not really matter, another honourable mention was given. This time, Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks for DS… not demoed at any E3 conference but in the booths. I wanted more news about this game but… a 20 second “we have this game” was all I got. Following the 20 minutes of blabbing and Vitality announcement, I really did not have much hope for Nintendo.
To end the show, Nintendo finished with five consecutive trailers: Super Mario Galaxy 2, The Conduit, Resident Evil, and Dead Space: Extraction, and Metroid: Other M. The middle three were known games from third party publishers and were to prove Nintendo had non-first party material. Nothing special for me, folks. However, Super Mario Galaxy 2 (SMG2) and Metroid: Other M were definitely bright spots in a dim conference. Both looked spectacular and SMG2 marks the return of Yoshi. Nintendo has announced Team Ninja (makers of games such as Dead or Alive 4 and the Ninja Gaiden series) will be helping out with the new Metroid. With that, Nintendo left the stage and preparations began for Sony whom would begin an hour later.
Nintendo never did anything to wow me in the hour they had to speak. They had four major announcements that I even cared for with one being an emphasis based out of last year’s E3 (in order of appearance: New Super Mario Bros. Wii, Wii Sports Resort, Super Mario Galaxy 2, and Metroid: Other M). With recent news of Pokemon Heart Gold and Soul Silver being announced for a Fall 09 release date in Japan, I figured Nintendo would, if nothing else, mention their English versions existing (atm, heavily speculated rumors, especially since some technical requests have been made (copyrights, if I’m not mistake) for the English games). Nope, Nintendo did not drop the ball. I can almost guarantee this would have made Nintendo’s conference much better… for sure, for me and millions others. Nintendo has never been about the hardcore gamers which one would probably consider me fitting the stereotype to a near tee. Although I love me some good old Mario, Zelda, and Duck Hunt, E3 has never been Nintendo’s bag and they seem to always have subpar showings, if nothing else, compared to Microsoft and Sony. This year was no exception to that trend with both Sony (as you’ll find out) and Microsoft having MUCH stronger E3 presentations, even with three blockbuster announcements. They did better than I thought, I must admit. Not good enough, though.
Sony hit the floor not an hour after Nintendo left and had double the time to cover whatever they wanted to cover. Sony followed what I call an E3 tradition, bragging. With Microsoft and Nintendo not really talking about sales as much as past E3s, I’d imagine Sony would follow suit. They did but they still mentioned it as much as they could (same with Nintendo, mind you… Microsoft went out of their way to announce that sales were for smaller events and that they would ignore them for their on-stage time). After some minor bragging and a seemingly neverending montage, Sony’s host got started and began announcing the “bigger” games to hit the PS3 platform within a year (or so) with none other than Naughty Dog (yes, I had to say the publishers name here)’s Uncharted 2: Among Thieves being the first demoed game. Both the trailer and demo were spectacular and Drake has never looked better. The demo involves a lot of vertical action and even involved vertical cover (very neat!). Drake dominated all of his enemies in true Drake manner: cover, pop out, shoot, repeat. Uncharted 2 shall ROCK.
Immediately after Naughty Dog’s departure, the host came out to announce the representative from Zipper Entertainment who would be demoing a game named MAG (short for Massive Action Game) which is reportedly hosting 256 players at once with no “apparent” lag. For a game that is so large scale considering today’s standards, the game was totally unimpressive to me. It’s probably because I expected large scale, entertaining battles when in reality, it appears to be a VERY slow paced shooter which… is not what I want… and I’d imagine MOST gamers that would pick up MAG want as well. The screen just never looked busy… I can name more than one 4v4 player game that looks busier at slow points.
With the next “secret” confirmed the day before, Sony’s “PSP Go!” announcement was definitely not as interesting as it could have and should have been. Outside of a new price tag of $250, Bluetooth capability, and a lack of UMD drive, the PSP did not really cause any real reaction from me (for better or worse). Sony did announce Media Go (software which helps control the PSP’s many specifications) as well as some partnerships with the likes of UFC, E, G4, and Showtime. Not bad considering but, again, with the secret revealed pre-E3 conference, the lack of “wow factor” was immense.
The next two reveals were Gran Turismo PSP and Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker (PSP game as well). Again, for the same reason as the PSP, neither of the two were shocking either. However, at the end of the Peace Walker trailer, there are some amazingly hilarious events. I recommend watching it to the bitter end.
Sony decided to show 3 montages following the set of PSP announcements with each Sony platform (PSP and PS3) getting their own as well as Playstation Home (a crucial aspect of PSN) getting one. All of them were fairly lengthy and quite boring (especially Home’s montage). The real amusement of them was finding games I noticed, sadly. Time fillers, I’m guessing.
The demo which followed the three boring montages was Ubisoft’s sequel to money juggernaut: Assassin’s Creed 2. The demo was constructed specifically for E3 and is not part of the final game. Although this is somewhat disappointing as I enjoy early looks at great games, the demo was amazing. The game looks as if it removes repetitive mission structure as much as possible and seeks new and interesting adventures. Set in beautiful Italy, Assassin’s Creed 2 looks gorgeous and the area is amazing given the nature of AC games. With the ability to fly using a device and swim now, the development team has now increased the ways one can play the game and the potential for gameplay in general. AC was repetitive, every 30 minutes was the previous. However, with even slight changes, AC2 is shaping up to be quite amazing. A slight note here though… Sony’s best (debateable) showing at E3 was… a non-exclusive. Well, in a conference… since I have not yet talked about Heavy Rain (an exclusive that hardly gets any mention, if any, at the actual conference).
Sony continued its multiplatform onslaught with a SquEnix trailer of Final Fantasy 13. Nothing special seeing as there was no tremendous difference from the trailer they showed from what one has already seen about the game. However, SquEnix was not done making news at Sony’s conference. They announced Final Fantasy XIV (14 for those of us that cannot speak in Roman tongue… or rather, numeral) Online, a computer massive multiplayer online game. SquEnix has not stated whether or not it will be and/or remain a Sony “exclusive” (note: extremely loose wording here) but the announcement did come at Sony’s E3 press event and as far as everyone knows, thus far, it is indeed a Sony and computer title.
Next up on Sony’s agenda was their own version of “interactive” control. Two people came on stage, one holding a set of… awkward looking “remotes”. The two showed some interactivity between the remotes and an in-game action. It looked kind of neat but nothing amazing. I personally thought Microsoft’s was much more impressive due to the full body control and recognitions but Sony did show some really neat stuff here too.
With only four major announcements left and about 20 minutes, Sony was down to only exclusive titles. First up, ModNation Racers. When they introduced the game, they talked about the concept behind LittleBigPlanet: “Play. Create. Share.”. With a similar idea behind their now revealed racer, ModNation Racers looks to be incredible. At first, I thought the racing was kinda cheesy and the character customization was not worth the pickup. Shortly after, the map editor/creator was shown and I was suddenly thoroughly impressed in seconds. Much like Far Cry 2’s map editor, it looked so simple to use yet so effective. On top of this, you could test your race track without switching menus. Clearly, a lot of thought was put into this game and this game has single-handedly made Forza 3 look bad. I’m not even sure I want Gran Turismo 5 anymore…
Team ICO, the makers of Shadows of Colossus, was the next dev team to show off their latest masterpiece with the trailer of the third and final part of the series entitled “The Last Guardian”. This trailer was leaked some time ago as I recognized most of it but I never knew what it was about and what game is was for. It looks pretty cool but I’m not exactly a fan. Most will love this but I shall pass.
As mentioned two paragraphs up, Gran Turismo 5 did not seem too hot after ModNation Racers’ fantastic demo… until I saw the new Gran Turismo 5 trailer. It looked stunning. Every single detail was fantastic, just as expected. The only thing missing from the trailer was a cockpit view during a race. Other than that, perfection… looks like I will be buying more than one racing game.
With the confirmed presence of a Sony Santa Monica rep and no God of War mention whatsoever, I knew the last game would be God of War III. With no release date information, I expected a trailer and/or demo along with a release date attached. Sony Santa Monica delivered: they showed a demo and gave us a March 2010 tentative release period. The demo was fantastic. God of War III fails at disappointing. Every trailer, gameplay, or announcement involving the game just makes me that much more excited. Bring on March 2010.
After 2 hours, Sony is finally done. They did not waste much of their two hours but… I felt meh after their presentation. Sure, they showed off like… 5 must buys but for two hours worth of content, I feel that the montages and similar other nacks were quite undesirable. Why? Sony totally ignored demoing or having a trailer for Ratchet and Clank or Heavy Rain. In fact, Insomniac Games did not even grace Sony’s E3 stage when last year, Resistance 2 was considered one of the “bigger” showings of E3 for Sony. Neither did the dev team for Heavy Rain. Two massive exclusives that didn’t even make the cut for a two hour presentation with time filling montages? Not impressed. Overall, Sony did put on a decent show.
Hours later, Ubisoft took the stage and blabbered for what seemed to be hours upon hours (realistically, 20 minutes) about their sales, their company, and more on shit gamers quite frankly don’t care about. Yes, I did not like the opening… if it isn’t obvious. Out of their entire conference, they showed off UPlay, an Avatar game/movie (didn’t pay attention, I was bored and don’t care about Avatar), some soccer game with some random celebrity I don’t know, a Red Steel 2 mention which was less than satisifying, the same demo for Splinter Cell Conviction as shown at Microsoft’s conference, more girly stuff, another Rabbid game, a trailer for a new TMNT game, and an Assassin’s Creed 2 trailer. Outside of the AC2 trailer, I didn’t care for the conference since I either didn’t care about the material or already seen it. I expected better, much better.
E3 Days Three and Four: Missed Conferences
No coverage I found was showing Konami OR Square Enix’s conferences… not that I cared. After reading the blogs IGN had for each of their conferences, I didn’t miss anything I personally would have liked. The best news made at either conference was Kojima, the maker of the MGS series, is advising in the production of the new Castlevania game. Outside of that, notta.
E3 Miscellaneous and Housekeeping
A Twitter (still don’t get the point of it) update from a higher up, Major Nelson, reports that Perfect Dark (a renowned first person shooter from the Nintendo 64) is making its way onto the Arcade portion of Xbox Live. I’m so pumped. Perfect Dark is quite possibly the main reason I enjoy FPSs to date. I still play it every now and then… I be one happy boy.
The president of Nintendo, Mr. Miyamoto, was obviously absent from the Nintendo press conference. Many believe it is because he was preparing for his roundtable for later that day where he revealed that a new Zelda game for the Wii is underway with Link being an adult. I am eagerly awaiting more details…
Heavy Rain. I really do not know where to start. Everything about this game points in the direction of me buying it. It’s unique, its story is focused on a serial killer known as the Origami Killer following 4 different characters to ultimately solve the case, and the gameplay seems to be… not revolutionary but… so DIFFERENT. Anyone that owns a Playstation 3 needs to go to IGN.com and look at their 14 or so minute interview discussing and watching Heavy Rain gameplay. Words cannot describe this masterpiece.
As mentioned within the Sony conference summary and thoughts, a non-existent Insomniac Games didn’t hit E3’s main stage but that doesn’t mean they didn’t show to E3 in general. Again, thanks to IGN.com for bringing me coverage the conference did not. Ratchet and Clank: A Crack in Time looks AWESOME, especially the weapon that has a sonic boom-like effect with the little creature’s mouth. Release date please.
Unmentioned/unexpanded games that were at E3 (shown by IGN.com) but not shown at the main conferences that are non-exclusives include: Crysis 2, Battlefield: Bad Company 2, Tekken 6, Batman: Arkum Asylum, Singularity, DJ Hero, Bioshock 2, and Army of Two: The 40th Day (or as “The Dead Pixel” (Machinima’s Inside Gaming host) delicately put it: Army of Two Two (shaddup, I thought it was hilarious)). Singularity looks like Bioshock with time replacing plasmids which I have to admit looks AWESOME; going to be on my list to watch until I buy it. DJ Hero looks like a non-Guitar Hero spinoff (ie. looks like it is its own game) and looks surprisingly super fun yet challenging. Arkum Asylum looks like the first Batman game in a while that is purchasable but I’ll still wait for a price drop before I buy it. Same applies to Crysis 2 and Tekken 6. Battlefield: Bad Company 2 looks awesome. Fully destructible environment? More classes? More Battlefield? I’m down. In fact, I’m still trying to learn how to play Battlefield games properly. Bioshock 2 looks straight badass especially considering it is going to have multiplayer. I’m PUMPED.
Right after E3, MLG Columbus began the day after. I’m a huge fan of Halo and MLG Columbus was the next stop on the Pro Circuit for games like Gears of War 2, World of Warcrack… err… Warcraft, and Halo 3. Long story short, MLG Columbus was a great finish to nerd week. Lots and lots of fun.
Not too long ago (between my last blog and this one), my 20th birthday happened (I feel older by the minute). Finkle and Crazy Dave showed up from London for 3 nights and 2 days. We played video games, hung out, ate pizza, and did more manly activities. Joker, my sister, and Franny all showed up some Mandarin goodness and the new X-Man movie about Wolverine. The Mandarin was amazing as per usual. I can almost taste the lemon chicken still. I had some TCBY at the theatre and it was also amazing. The Wolverine movie was solid. However, Sabertooth being his brother? Uh, no. Gambit and Deadpool were straight badass. Other than that, life has been fairly uneventful. More sleep, work, and sleep again. Some video games mixed up for extra goodness.
Regardless of what happens, I am going to make her proud. I am going to dominate everything I face in life, work as hard as I can, and make something of myself. I have so many heroes in my life... and I have my grandma to thank for many of them. I will not be disappointing any of them.
Completed (awaiting marks for confirmation)