It’s a battle between One & 4 at this year’s Expo
Indeed, it’s that time of year where game announcements are confirmed after many leaks, the console wars flame on and we realize how many games we want to buy and how bad at accounting we would be by the time we’re done. Overcooled & my Anivision Podcast co-host steev will be joining me in this E3 post as you scroll further down, so for now I’m gonna set the table for the week’s events to come.
Our coverage this year on Metanorn will be dialed down in that we’re just going to do pre-E3 and post-E3 blogs about the events, so the play-by-play posts will be gone in favor of writing about what news appeals to us and opening discussion in the comments section.
Looking Back @ E3 2012
Click the spoiler for a recap of last year’s events. Show ▼
- Halo 4 – 343 Industries did a fantastic job with this game, and personally was one of my favorite overall games from 2012. The series is officially in good hands with 343, who’s planning to launch a Halo TV series with Steven Spielberg attached to the project.
- Resident Evil 6 – You can buy the game on Amazon for about $20. Boy did this bust badly.
- South Park: The Stick of Truth – THQ’s demise and selling of its assets has put the game in the hands of publisher Ubisoft. There’s still hope that the game will release in 2013.
- Sports – They happened and will continue to whether you like it or not.
- Smart Glass – With availability for iOS and Android phones/tablets, it’s a pretty nifty feature that should be more fully realized when Xbox One releases.
- Beyond: Two Souls – It’s been given an October 9th release date and was revealed a while ago that Willem Dafoe will be in the game.
- PlayStation Plus – Seriously, if you are a PS3 owner, you’ll get so much out of your $50/year subscription. Next week alone, Uncharted 3, Xcom: Enemy Unknown and Little Big Planet Karting will be free for Plus subscribers. Deus Ex: Human Revolution and Saints Row The Third are on the June freebie list, also.
- PlayStation All-Stars – Rumors of studio Superbot’s closure weren’t true. The game itself was fine and I loved the action and game format design choices over previous Smash Bros. games. Online worked, so All-Stars had that in spades over Brawl.
- Black Ops Declassified – Woo, what a clunker this turned out to be. High-profile franchise going to the Vita got bad reviews.
- PS Vita – It has plenty of good games. Trust me.
- Move – I wrote it, but I don’t know what that is???
- Wonderbook – The demonstration may still be going on…
- Pikmin 3 – Will be coming out August 4th. Surely it’s just me, but does that game strike more of a chord than it really should?
- Wonderful 101 – Will be coming out September 15th, by the studio that brought us this crazy ass, spoiler-filled fight sequence from Metal Gear Rising Revengeance.
- Super Mario Bros. U – Another Mario game, meaning it’s fun. I would know because I 100%’d the story mode.
- 3DS – The handheld’s library has grown really well in the past year, as has the handheld itself with the release of the 3DS XL last August.
|MicrosoftJun 10 @ 12:30 PM EST||EAJun 10 @ 4:00 PM EST||UbisoftJun 10 @ 6:00 PM EST||Sony
Jun 10 @ 8:30 PM EST
|NintendoJun 11 @ 10:00 AM EST|
This could get expensive…
Two of the biggies in the gaming business go on an all-out pitch to convince you to buy their new console when it comes out later this year. Something unique from past generations of home consoles is that these systems have already been revealed (especially in Sony’s case) long before E3 has even happened. What I think will be needed most with both press conferences we see is one word: clarity. Microsoft was the more guilty party of the two (“Xbox: On”, “Confusion: On”), but with so much concern about rental & used games, online connectivity requirements, what the console actually looks like among many other pressing issues, both companies are going to need to make sure that we know as many details about their system as possible. There’s also the price issue to consider…
Maybe you’ve already defined your allegiance, maybe you’re on the fence, or you’re every PC gamer that needs to write the same comment that ranks as one of the internet’s most redundant; this is a huge moment for these two companies to really explain their systems and the many reasons why we should buy them. And remember, if you’re backwards-compatible, you’re backwards.
Also, don’t buy an Xbox One on eBay. Trust me, you’re going to end up looking a fool.
The poor Wii U has been abused plenty by a number of developers and publishers, and quite honestly, with good reason. Nintendo is not going to have a big event on E3’s 1st official day as they normally do, instead opting to release a Nintendo Direct video which they have been doing for the past few months. In many ways, I see this as an effective adjustment their E3 approach. Everything us fans get from E3 is from the internet anyways, so having a big stage at the Nokia Theater and having executives go up in front of people and be wooden in their following of the script to a T and not be personable is an unnecessary enough thing that Nintendo can just cut out. I also like that there’ll be a chance to play whatever games we can at a Best Buy; and before you ask about why don’t they just release demos on the eShop, imagine how slow that would be. You’re better off using gasoline to head to a Best Buy even if it’s out of your way.
At this point, Nintendo needs to get its superstars some big time games on the system to garner much attention. That starts with the promise of actual footage of the newest Super Smash Bros. game, which you might remember was announced in 2011, much to the surprise of Smash Bros. leader Masahiro Sakurai who probably spat out whatever he was drinking when he saw that image on the screen.
How’s Gaming Been in 2013 So Far?
It’s been pretty good, wouldn’t you agree?
Save the next-gen console wars, it’s been a rock solid year for gaming. The PS3 and 360 are both in their twilight years as it’s become time to usher in this next generation of consoles, so you’d expect developers to have squeezed as much juice as they possibly could out of these consoles. Grand Theft Auto V may very well end up being the peak for the PS3 and 360 when it comes out in September.
I commented during last year’s E3 event that I thought the true winner of E3 2012 was the year 2013, and the games that have come out so far have been great. If you look back at the March release schedule, you could’ve sworn it was an October or November quality-type month with many great and anticipated games coming out each week for different platforms. Tomb Raider and Bioshock Infinite are strong contenders for Game of the Year, Gears of War: Judgment got a nice breath of fresh air from developer People Can Fly (as did DmC from Ninja Theory) while God of War: Ascension may be a little bit tired, and Injustice: Gods Among Us is a great fighting game where the D.C. heroes and villains didn’t have to deal with Mortal Kombat peeps… well, until this coming Tuesday.
The surprise game for me so far is called Guacamelee, by Drinkbox Studios. They took the popular Metroid action-adventure formula and applied it to Mexican wrestling; it’s a formula that I’m a huge fan of and Guacamelee is one of my overall faves for 2013.
And after E3, the hype of all these new games will be cast aside briefly as The Last of Us will be out and likely establish itself as another GotY contender.
I hope everyone’s prepared to say hello to a new era of gaming. There may be some amazing things to come in the future with these new consoles, but I was still pretty impressed by a lot of recent games in 2013. I’m completely engrossed in Ni no Kuni right now, for example. I sat there leveling up and grinning ear to ear because I was so overwhelmingly pleased to simply exist in this game world. The Ghibli charm translates over perfectly into video game form, allowing you to actually interact with these mystical yet inviting environments.
Other than Ni no Kuni, I’ve unfortunately fallen behind on a lot of current games. I’ve spent more time nursing some retro cravings with older games. It’s not that there aren’t a lot of good games, it’s just that I’ve been terribly distracted. I have DMC, Soul Hackers, and Bioshock Infinite, but they’re still sealed in their wrappers. That’s how many good games there were – I didn’t even get to play them all yet! I felt like the current gen could go on forever, but I suppose the time has come to try something new to push the envelope even further. I will miss you, current gen. I will miss you, and the money I have to spend to keep up with all this new stuff.
This year at E3, what I really want to see are games. I don’t care about Netflix, Kinect, or whacky motion controls. I care about what I want to play on these mechanical boxes, because that’s what I’ll mostly be using it for. This is Nintendo’s last chance to sell me on the Wii U so I hope they actually reveal some info about the new Smash Bros. and something other than another Mario. At the very least, I’ll be happy to see more 3DS games such as Pokemon XY get attention, because that looks amazing. The 3DS has been neglected for quite a while, so it’s about time they announced some new games. I don’t really care about Microsoft since they rarely have any console exclusives that catch my eye. The Xboned doesn’t seem like too good of a deal either. The PS4 is a big question mark since all we really know is what the controller looks like right now. Unless they scare me away, I’m almost certain I’ll end up buying one though. So far Infamous: Second Son looks great and I bet they’ll have a bunch of other new games that make me want to empty my wallet for them too. Let the conferences begin!
|Growing up in an unhealthy environment, filled with nothing but the Sci-Fi/Fantasy genre and computers, lead steev to the man he is today, a slightly disturbed video game loving anime otaku.||Twitter // Google+ // Anivision|
This year has already seen a plethora of good games and there are still plenty more to come. My favorite game so far has to be undoubtedly the reboot of Tomb Raider. Lara Croft was turned into a very likable character that you really feel bad for because she goes through more suffering in one segment of the game than most of us will go through in a lifetime. The story is compelling and offers some great set pieces that will drop your jaw to the floor. Another reboot which caught my eye was DMC, Devil May Cry. The Devil May Cry franchise is known for their devilish style and this game does not disappoint. Ninja Theory did not hold back and they created easily the best DMC game to date. The new Dante has an emotional side that really makes you care about him and what he goes through. I couldn’t finish talking about the games I liked if I didn’t mention BioShock Infinite. I get something called virtual sickness, and even though this game made me dizzy and nauseous, I still had to finished it. It was just that good. The story is so complex that you’re head will hurt and you’ll probably argue with someone about it. Of course with so many great games already out and still to come, there are a few titles which left me underwhelmed. God of War: Ascension and Remember Me are two games that I almost didn’t finish. For both games the story was just not very good and the combat system either left you frustrated or bored. I will admit that because this year has had such great games already that my impression of the two might be slightly colored, but even at best they aren’t games I would recommend to someone.
It has been many years since I have been excited about E3 and this year proves to be not only exciting, but has everyone guessing about what will happen next. I am really looking for two things at E3 this year. First is just a better understanding of what the hell Microsoft and Sony are doing with their new consoles. With Microsoft talking about their not-always-on-just-sometimes-on console DRM and used/loaned game policies I am still very confused at how exactly it will work. I might just be slow witted, but I think someone on stage telling me exactly what it is they are doing will help. Inline with that, I want to know what Sony plans on doing. The reason being, Microsoft really handled their DRM and used/loaned policies well. From what I do understand they aren’t going to be profiting at all, the publishers and developers will be. Sony will either piss off gamers by doing the same or piss of publishers and developers by not doing it. The second thing I want to see is games!!! Kind of an obvious choice, but there are a lot of games I am super excited about and I am in desperate need of seeing more about them. Destiny is the game I am most excited for and Bungie released an E3 teaser trailer that made me moist. I can’t wait to see what else they’ve got for me.
I do have one prediction for E3 this year… E3 will end badly. Most people are going to walk away both happy and yet frustratedly angry, some will walk away confident that their brand one and the other brand tanked, and a select few will walk away trying to see the brighter side of it all, but will know in their heart that the next generation is going to be an ugly bloodbath.
E3 is actually kind of upon us right now since Konami did a pre-E3 event in which they confirmed Kiefer Sutherland as the new Snake. Jack Bauer = Snake. We’ll miss David Hayter, but what a great replacement.
What news are you most looking forward to at E3? Have you decided which new console you’re going to buy and if you’re going to buy it on launch day? You going to Best Buy, kid? We’ll be back later this week with our overall thoughts on the week’s news.