posted Wednesday Jun 8, 2011 by
Coming into E3 this year I knew that Nintendo couldn't afford to wait another year to do something with their next console and it seems they did as well. Before we get into what Wii U is all about I want to mention Nintendo's stage this year. It was actually a 3 tier stage which had a nice 3D effect that wasn't over done. The icing on the cake, though, was how they tailored all the video specifically to conform with the stage. I didn't think I would be awarding Nintendo my 'Best Setup' award this year but they earned it. Sony had some improvements in their design as did Microsoft but Nintendo's made a statement. Congratulations Nintendo.
Getting back on track, I was really impressed with the theoretical implementation of the Wii U controller. Wait, controller? Yes. How can they release a controller before the console? I'm glad you asked. They didn't actually release anything, instead they showed us a cool video and talked about it. We did see a lot more of the controller than we did the Wii U console which was hiding out on a shelf under the TV. A live demo would have made a much more profound statement but Reggie even mentioned the footage about the Wii U games were in 'prototype' form, so they didn't have anything real to show us.
The device itself boasts a hefty 6.2 inch touch screen, there are built in motion controls like a gyroscope that have some interesting gaming applications as well as an accelerometer. I also can't forget about the mic and inward facing camera as well as WiFi. This controller actually includes the inner workings of a full fledged handheld gaming system but it's not intended to be. This is why Nintendo is using WiFi to essentially tether the device to your console and TV.
Check out Nintendo's goal for the Wii U system and its E3 debut by hitting the break.
Sony came back with vengeance after debuting the PlayStation Move at E3 2009 and
showing it off last year and dealing with the bad press from the recent PSN outage problems. They actually did a lot of things better this year and ended up with the coveted PLuGHiTz Live! Best of the Big 3 at E3' award... almost by unanimous decision. No, we didn't see it coming either but they deserve it and if you want to hear me swallow my pride on air and say lots of good things about Sony then give Episode 207 - E3 2011 Day 3 a listen and download it for your historical records. Of course you want to know about all the awesome stuff Sony did and between all the hosts here we're keeping you plugged in, so kick off your shoes and stay a while. As for the 'Vita' fans out there I have something here that your going to like.
I actually started paying attention to the Vita
about 6 months ago when it was still the NGP. Back then I was a little skeptical that Sony had actually addressed the past problems with their handheld gaming devices and only beefed up the hardware. I was glad to find out that wasn't the case after getting to see it in action. For example, the range of controls has extended from 'stick control,' the two mushroom sticks, to 'touch controls' that include the front screen and the back touch pad. We saw a little bit of the new control implementation in the Uncharted: Golden Abyss demo that is attached at the bottom of this article. The old XCrossMediaBar operating system was always a bit of a pain and although we didn't get to see the functionality of the new OS as much as we wanted to, it seems pretty clear that it has gone away in favor of a more smartphone-ish OS like Android. The game demos also highlighted other hardware elements like the 6 axis gyro and the Quad-core ARM Cortex A9 processor that ran everything like a champ. Wait, there's more, check out the hardware specs after the break.
Assassin's Creed: Revelations is the latest installment in the acclaimed Assassin's Creed series by Ubisoft. I must start off by saying that I love the song playing in the trailer, available after the break. Anyway, we see our dear protagonist, Ezio, in his later years. He seeks the end to the war between the Assassins and the Templar for good.
The trailer shows that though Ezio has seemed to grow older, his skills are still just as sharp as ever, until he has a cognitive vision of his ancestor Altair. As the soldiers triumph over Ezio and escort him to his death by lynch off the edge of a high point of the castle, Ezio sees Altair once again taking almost the same footsteps to his death. The hood comes off, and the rope is placed around Ezio's neck as you see his trusty eagle flying in the distance (fitting because Ezio means "flying eagle in Arabic), and he turns around to attack, ending the trailer.
This game brings together all the Assassin heroes from past to modern day. There will be parts where you will play as Desmond Miles, Ezio, of course, and even Altair! Now Ubisoft has made it clear that this will be the last game featuring Ezio and Altair, which hints that future games could possibly continue with the modern day assassin Desmond. November 15th is the date and I can't wait!
If you can't wait, either, hit the break to see the full trailer in all of its glory.
Last year, Sony showed off a little of what PlayStation Move was and what it could do, but all I really took away from it was
Sorcery (yeah!). It was clear they had other ideas but no one had had the time or interest to create the things that were in their head. This year was a totally different story. After a full year of thinking Sony was going to waste away on the technology of Move they surprised us with a huge showing of games and concepts surrounding Move.
Some of the games used it in an original Wii-style waggley way but others used it in a way that enhanced the gameplay instead of shoving Move controls in to be part of the cool crowd. Let's start off by saying, while we have talked a lot about the success that Microsoft has had with Kinect, Sony is having a pretty impressive time with Move. Over 8 million units have sold, which is not too far behind Microsoft's 10 million Kinects. By the end of 201, they expect to have over 200 titles available that take advantage of Move.
Of course, some will be good, many will not. Hit the break to find out which are which.
With a lack of slideshow presentations (and Kevin Butler) and an organizational approach to the event, Sony showed off some interesting new products and games at this year's E3. Of course, along with those games came the hardware to support it and a strong, ongoing push for 3D, as Sony is pretty much the creator of the technology.
This year, Sony was proud to announce a new set of 3D games to add to more than 100 3D titles already on the PlayStation Network. That says a lot for a device that just recently got the upgrade for 3D. Also, 3D comes with a price, and that price exists with the hardware that you need to make 3D work. You need a pair of 3D glasses, which usually run at a price of $200 a pair, so to fix that sting, Sony will be releasing a pair of PlayStation branded 3D glasses for only $69.
However, that's not the only thing that is preventing more users to get down with the triple D. Customers are demanding a more affordable solution to fight the $1,000 3DTVs out there. Sony hears you on this, so they are offering a pretty sweet bundle. You can pick up a PlayStation branded 24" 3DTV that is capable of displaying two simultaneous images in 3D to individual pairs of 3D glasses. This is perfect for co-op or competitive multiplayer gameplay with two people in the same room. We can't figure out how this technology works, though, and would love to get our hands on it! Along with the TV you will be getting a pair of the $69 3D glasses, a six-foot HDMI cable, a Move controller and
Resistance 3. All of that will only run you $499, and we hope to see the package pieced out so we can buy the TV!
Ubisoft proved that they have what it takes to develop games across all major genres. From
to TinTin plus the addition of rhythm games, these guys are covering the bases. This year, they gave us a lot more rhythm than we were prepared for.
Of course we had the sequel to their incredibly popular
Just Dance series with the aptly named Just Dance 3. Having started its life on the Wii, the game is now available on all three major consoles supporting Wii Motion Plus, PlayStation Move and, of course, Microsoft Kinect. The game has been enhanced with new music and game, while maintaining all of the greatness that has made the series one of the best dance simulators ever. You can play with new multiplayer features as well as importing music from previous versions of the game.
To see the promo video and read about their NEW rhythm game, hit the break.