The second day of E3 came and went in the blink of an eye, and with it, a huge push for 3D from both Sony and Nintendo.
Out of the three major companies, I have to (surprisingly) give the crown to Nintendo this year for having the best press conference. For the first time in what feels like years, Nintendo worked the crowd as only Nintendo can- by pulling out the big guns. Right out the gate, we get a new Zelda title. To be honest though, I feared for the rest of the show in this moment. Skyward Sword, purely based on first impressions, is a mixed bag of a title. Nintendo seem to have kept the Twilight Princess character models, but reverted back to a Wind Waker-era cell shaded look and design. It feels very bland and uninspired. Add to that an increased motion control system (that wasn’t exactly cooperating during the live demo), and for a moment I was convinced this would indeed be the worst presentation of the show.
Cue Warren Spector.
If there’s one person who can ease my worries, and remind me that this is all supposed to be fun, it’s Warren. He came out, and showed off Epic Micky- a title that’s been in the works for some time now. When I first heard his name in conjunction with Micky’s… I was confused. These were two puzzle pieces that didn’t fit together. After hearing him talk about the project, and seeing it in action however, I get it. Epic Micky is a natural, fitting work. One that’s making me consider buying a Wii. It looks great!
From there, Nintendo threw us into the deep end with the 3DS. Now, I’ve gone on record as not being a fan of 3D. I think it’s a cliche at best, and a roadblock to technological progress at worst. That being said, I have to admit to being carefully optimistic about the 3ds, and here’s why: no glasses, and it’s contained to a portable system. If you pay close attention, Nintendo made no mention of 3D/Wii implementation. They figured out a cheap and easy way to recreate the look of 3D on a handheld screen, and they’re running with it. That’s 3D I can live with. It’s not technology that’s spreading into their main home system- it’s completely contained… a gimmick. Fine.
Next up was Sony, who’s big push was MOVE. While it’s an impressive piece of tech, Move is still motion controls, and that’s really not what I’m looking for in my home gaming experience. It seems to run circles around the Wii controls, and Kinect, so I wish them the best. Sorcery seemed… cute, for what that’s worth. Much of this was overshadowed by something I don’t think anyone saw coming. Out walks Gabe from Valve, and announces…
Steam. On PS3.
Wow. This may be Sony tossing Valve more money than God knows what to do with, or this may have been Valve and Sony finally kissing and making up. Whatever the case, this was the biggest out of left field moment of the show for me so far, and I’m very interested to see how it plays out in the coming month. Also? Portal 2 makes Mike happy.
Briefly, the other two events that caught my interest was the announcement of Heroes On The Move- a crossover between all of the Sony-exclusive platformer characters (Sly, Jax, Ratchet, etc), and Sony making one last ditch effort to save the PSP with what looks to be an aggressive advertising campaign. Too little too late?
So that was day 2. What else you got up your sleeve, E3?