Wednesday, July 16, 2008

2008 E3 Press Conference Impressions

Microsoft's E3 Press Conference
After watching Microsoft's E3 Press Conference, I have to say that I was quite impressed. They seem to have covered quite a bit. They had plenty of games for their hardcore audience as well as several things for their casual fans.I thought the Xbox Live announcements were very strong. Sure, avatars are a direct rip-off of Nintendo's Miis, but they seem to have improved upon them. They are cartoonish but have a more realistic style about them. And it appears that Microsoft will actually be adding content to their avatars unlike NIntendo with their Miis.The new dashboard seems very clean and easy to use. Teaming up with Netflix is a stroke of genius. I think that will be a huge coup for Microsoft.Microsoft also scored big with Square Enix. Besides the shocker of the Final Fantasy XIII announcement, three additional RPGs were also revealed. Four Square Enix RPGs for a Microsoft console is quite a change from the past. I almost felt like I was watching a Sony press conference.

Nintendo E3 Press Conference
I have to say that Nintendo's press conference was a bit on the boring side this year. They really focused on the casual gamer while leaving everyone else out in the cold. Satoru Iwata did say that new Mario and Zelda games were being worked on for the Wii, but with no video and no other information, it's is hard to get excited about that announcement. Nintendo's biggest news seemed to be: Wii Music Wii Music looked fun, but it truly looked like something geared towards kids. I can imagine my kids banging out some noise, but I don't see myself playing an imaginary saxophone anytime soon. Wii Sports Resort This actually looks like it might be more fun than the original Wii Sports. The addition of the Wii MotionPlus should be a huge boost to a game like this. Animal Crossing While it looks fun, it also looks like more of the same. Same graphics, same characters, same tasks. The new online portion looks promising, but nothing earth shattering. Wii Speak This microphone for the whole family looks to be the perfect solution for Nintendo. Since everyone in the room can hear what is being said, it makes it a much safer choice for kids. My only question is how well will it work. Can Wii Speak pick up everyone's voice in a big room when it is sitting on top of your TV? Wii MotionPlus This looks to be the most promising item Nintendo showed off. Too bad this wasn't available from day one. I doubt it will work with older games, but for new games it will offer a never before seen experience. True 1:1 motion between the player and his character. I think this will be huge once developers get a chance to incorporate it into their new games. The big news for the DS was Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars. This will certainly be a nice addition to an already great library of games. If only Nintendo had announced a game of that magnitude for the Wii.

Sony's E3 Press Conference
I thought Sony's press conference was a solid effort. They revealed interesting information for both casual gamers and hardcore gamers. Sony's movie and TV download system is interesting. While Microsoft's deal with Netflix might prove to be cheaper for consumers, Sony adds the benefit of taking video on the go by transferring to your PSP. For PSP owners, this is great news. Home still seems a few months away. I tend to be on the optimistic side on this. Everything Sony has shown about Home looks very nice. I think this is too important an area for Sony to fall down on. That's why I'm betting Sony pulls through on Home. LittleBigPlanet was shown again and still looks incredible. This game alone looks like a reason to buy a PS3. God of War III and MAG were also shown. It's safe to assume the GOWIII will be a special game. MAG looks promising, but we will have to wait and see on this one. Overall, I think Sony had a nice show. Definitely better than Nintendo and on par with Microsoft.

1 comment:

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