E3 – What will this bring…

Well the press conferences are over and the final analysis will begin about the major three players in the console market while the PC will continue getting the best in breed of any game shown, but that isn’t to say that there is some nice stuff coming for your favourite console.

First off the bat, Nintendo, I know they weren’t the first ones at the conference but they were the first ones that I want to talk about. Yep, 3DS, some more software coming, most of it we knew about one or two we didn’t. Nothing ground breaking there, perhaps they thought that we all of the focus on the Wii 2, well sorry the Wii U it will mean that they don’t need to talk about the poor line-up of games on the market.

But I will get onto the Wii U. Well the name possibly says it all. It was light on detail other than the controller, which looks about the size of an iPad. But it has physical controller items that are on either side of the touch screen. Now, I have no real problems with the route that Nintendo are heading and the Controller has some interesting takes on how it can be incorporated into a game, but my problems with it are this.

  • HD Wii, we are seeing people using the controllers from the Wii with the Wii U, but there is also this controller hanging around.
  • The size, I can’t imagine playing any long gaming sessions or even trying to do competitive multi-player games where speed is everything with that controller. There might be 3rd party controllers that might remove the screen, but I haven’t seen a 3rd party Wii Mote yet. So time will tell on that one.
  • Battery. My Windows Phone has 2-3 days standby time, standby. This isn’t without anything other than the 3G connection working. This is using another wireless technology that is running the screen is HUGE, so how long will this controller take before it is dead and needs a recharge.
  • The details, no specs, no anything other than that controller and the fact that there is a confirmed smash brothers game and certainly some ports of PS3/Xbox360 games, though Batman Akrham City has been confirmed as a launch title, but it will be 6 months maybe more before it comes out, what makes me want to wait for this new console to play it.
    • Hardware, I only really heard about Reggie mention value, to me which means it will be more expensive than the current crop of PS3 and Xbox360. Not a good sign.
    • Networking, he mentioned it will come with the online that you come to expect, from Nintendo, or from the others, this is vague, though he did say that more details will come later. But I am not going to be holding my breath for this since Nintendo have not had a glorious history of having this in their repertoire.
    • Disc Capacity, no mention, proprietary, well this is a tough one. It isn’t Blu-Ray, so there isn’t much left other than DVD or perhaps resurgence in HD DVD.
    • It was only mentioned it would support 1080p, “tick that box” it would be using technology 1 or 2 years old, but I am not expecting much, only due to the history Nintendo consoles being a step behind the pace, but when they are out they seem to show parity or slightly better but this will be blown out of the water with the Xbox3 or PS4.

I am sorry but merely saying they will have support for the big 3rd party games isn’t enough for me to plonk down my hard earned cash to get this new console. So, I haven’t seen anything that is exciting me from Nintendo this year, though last year I didn’t feel they won (despite everyone claiming they did).

Microsoft, the word was Kinect, Kinect, Kinect, Kinect, should I go on. Oh and Halo 4. Kinect is a device I really want to work, I am wanting someone to come up with a way for me to play the games I play, using this controllerless device. Adding Kinect support to Mass Effect through speech recognition though was cool, to me has been done before. The Gun Smith in the new Ghost Recon, well they was very cool, and they mention that you can aim (though I haven’t seen it) with Kinect, you still need to use the controller to move I doubt it is going to on the rails.

Fable, The Journey. Mmm, not sure that I can say about this cool tech, laggy on stage but cool enough. I love the fable games, but a on the rails horse and carriage simulator which has me getting of the horse not when I want to, to fight bad guys on the rails as well. Then Gears of War, it looked good, but I need to finish the first one, though I know I am up to the last boss, but it is just a matter of finishing it. Halo HD remake, not done by Bungie. Well, this was going to be assumed that it would make a comeback. Halo will continue to be one of the Microsoft mainstays so a Halo 4 wasn’t a real surprise considering it has gotten so much money from the sale of Halo games.

Ryse from Crytek, though I am not sure what it is, it looks great and from Crytek it should be, but it is a Kinect title and they showed someone playing it but it was something that I have to see how it might work but it looks good. Star Wars Kinect, Microsoft copped a lot of flak for showing a scene that wasn’t exactly on the level, yes someone miming the actions as the game showed. Not a good look, but this time it looked like a proper demo. Though there is still more I need to see, lag seems to be prominent and I can understand why. But I need more information for it. But it is just another on the rails game, it looks like fun but still, early days.

What is left from Microsoft, not much, Live TV, though not sure how that works with me in Australia, since it seems like it might be pushed as part of the current crop of subscriber benefits like Foxtel for Xbox, but this has to be paid for outside the Xbox subscription fees.

Now Sony, well the Network outage was always going to be front and centre and it was the first thing they talked about. It seemed genuine and from the heart, but I think this was always going to be one of their major points. But I can say the games that they showed, it was a good showing, a new Sly Cooper, Uncharted 3 looks amazing Dust 541 looks interesting but need to know some more information on this one. Persistent shooters have not done well in recent times but we will see this, it looks great.

Then the Playstation Vita (formerly known as NGP), this seemed to be front and centre for Sony, and rightly so. It is a great piece of hardware and I think, with a US price of 250 bucks (though I am betting Australia will be about AU$350), will make it very competitive with the 3DS, and the software at launch seems solid, much better than I think the 3DS will have before the release of the Vita.

The other thing that I am interesting in knowing more about is the Playstation Suite. Basically if this means I can develop games for the Playstation like I can for the Xbox360 using XNA then that will be a very good thing, and if it opens up the PS Phone and Vita as well, then there will be some serious competition of a new handheld leader and will help offset the growth of the smart phones for games, having independent developers will drive innovation and the possibilities are wide open due to the technology.

So how did they fair overall, Well

Sony B+ to A- this is only due to the Vita and the strength of the game line up.
Microsoft B- pushing Kinect great, Halo and Gears, what else other than Kinect titles do you have? Especially this year.
Nintendo, B- new hardware no details, no games, 3DS it has been out for some time and no mention of those big games other than 1st party, which means more Mario than you can poke a stick at.


Posted on June 8, 2011, in Article. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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