June 8, 2012
E3 2012

It is June and another E3 has past and gone so I feel like it is time to give my thoughts on it.

First, let me sum up the conferences in one word. Underwhelming. Yes I know, pretty disappointing considering they are usually the best parts of E3 but god damnit, that one word perfectly summarizes E3. 

It started with Microsoft which was introduced with a Halo 4 demo which looked alright. I mean, it’s Halo. You either love it or you hate it. Me? I haven’t really been a big fan for the series so this demo wasn’t particularly interesting, it looked pretty good though. Will see if 343 Industries (the team working on this Halo) can get me into the Halo franchise but I doubt it. Next, we had the Splinter Cell: Blacklist demo which is a new game from the Ubisoft Toronto (represent!) team. The graphics look great and the gameplay looks awesome as well. It seems to be a prequel as Sam Fisher is looking younger but sadly, Michael Ironside isn’t voicing him anymore. That is really disappointing because it sounds like the new voice actor doesn’t come close to Ironside. Also, I found that the demo shows that the game is taking a more action approach and stepping away from the stealth aspect that Splinter Cell fans know and love. Overall, it was a fun looking demo and I might pick the game up when it comes out in Spring 2013. After these 2 showings, it seemed like the conference took a very boring and alienating turn. We were shown Madden/Fifa with Kinect support, Kinect having Spanish support and some new fitness game from Nike using what? Oh obviously the Kinect. Hey Microsoft, I know the Kinect is selling very well and all but jeez, does EVERYTHING need Kinect and does it truly need this much promotion for it? Also, all of this is for casuals, not hardcore gamers who are the ones that are watching this conference. To be truly honest, the only good things about this conference were the Splinter Cell and Tomb Raider demo, and the showing of the new South Park RPG with Trey Parker and Matt Stone presenting. 

MICROSOFT: D-

Thankfully later that night, Sony came out and luckily had a much better conference though it wasn’t perfect. What I really liked about Sony was they showed off some great games. My 2 favourite trailer/demos had to have been Beyond: Two Souls and The Last of Us. 

When David Cage came on stage, I immediately got excited considering I loved Heavy Rain. He ended up announcing Beyond: Two Souls, which was sadly leaked only a few hours before the conference even started. This fortunately didn’t affect the announcement as the trailer that was shown was truly awesome. It looks to be a super-natural thriller that features the actress, Ellen Page, who you may know from Inception or Juno. It seems to be a trend that games are going to start featuring real life actors and I predicted this around the time when LA Noire came out as that game featured many real life actors from the show Mad Men, overall, I am happy with this new trend. I won’t spoil what happens in the trailer but the graphics look to be much improved over (the already great looking) Heavy Rain. Watch the trailer for yourself.

The Last Of Us is probably the 2nd best demo at the show. I mean, this demo was INSANELY good. Everything from the detailed sound to the beautiful graphics that make you question how the hell they can put these visuals on current gen systems. You can even hear how great the demo is just by the crowd’s reaction in what had to be the best crowd reaction of E3 with the roaring applause they got at the end of the demo. Check it out:

Sony had this and more but like I said, they weren’t perfect as they spent almost FORTY MINUTES on a little thing they like to call Wonderbook. Now, I am not going to waste your time talking all about this thing like Sony did but it is a book that uses the Augmented Reality abilities of the Playstation Eye to make a book “come to life”. I am just going to be straight up. This looked terribly boring and could be fun for about 3 minutes. It could be that I am a 17 year old and I am sort of out of the phase of reading picture books but yeah, this killed the crowd and no one cared. Oh yeah, JK Rowling is making a book for it? Yeah, still no one cares.

Oh and also, what happened to the Vita?

SONY: B-

Now it was time for Nintendo the next morning and coming in, I had very high expectations. I truly thought they would be the ones to take E3 this year as they had a new system to display but what happens? They completely flop.

It started out with Pikmin 3 which I liked. I liked the previous Pikmin games on the Gamecube so seeing an HD/new version is awesome. After that, they said they would show 24 games on stage. Great! Getting excited now! Oh wait…what is this? Arkham City? A game I already beat quite a while ago? Oh no…well this is going to get better right? No. New Super Mario Bros U? Um…alright? I would prefer a 3D Mario. Well 3DS lineup must be better right? Wait…they aren’t announcing ANY new games? What? Wait what is this? NINTENDOLAND?! WHY?! A MINI GAME COLLECTION?! WAIT?! IT’S OVER?! *passes out*

Yeah. This conference was the complete definition of a flop. Way to go Nintendo.

Nintendo: F

Out of the 3 main conferences, Sony won hands down. They had the best demos and it was most focused on games unlike Microsoft which was 30% games and 70% entertainment. Nintendo…I just don’t want to talk about that anymore. *sobs*

If you can only watch 1 conference, watch Ubisoft’s. It was truly the best one of E3. Just ignore Toby Turner, the guy who makes bad jokes and is super annoying throughout the event, and you will love it.

Also, games of the show for me: Watch_Dogs, The Last Of Us, Beyond: Two Souls and Star Wars 1313.

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