So E3 is in a couple of weeks and I for one am pretty stoked for this year’s show. Last year’s E3 felt pretty bland, but a fierce competition between Microsoft and Sony, coupled with a struggling Nintendo who hopefully has some awesome games to show off should make for a great, and memorable, E3. This is basically a list of the stuff I’m most excited to see at the show.
Oh, the Xbox One.... If you missed the big reveal, here's a quick recap. Microsoft’s display of The Price is Right, frivolous multi-tasking capabilities, sports, and non-gameplay trailers for a very small amount of games could not have been any less targeted to those of us who enjoy video games. The main problem with this presentation is that Microsoft failed to know their audience in a big way. The people sitting in the front row at this presentation, the people (myself included) watching this presentation online with two separate windows open in case one stream glitched out, weren’t families looking for a more efficient way to watch TV, weren’t people looking for new ways to watch sports, they were people who were there for a new video game console. They were journalists, fans, industry insiders, all people who love and have made video games a huge part of their life.
All I’m really looking forward to from Microsoft this E3 is seeing how they’ll follow up this reveal and respond to the overwhelming negative response that it received (and also answers to all the questions going around regarding used games, always online, etc.). I have nothing against Microsoft or the Xbox. I’ve personally never owned an Xbox console as the exclusives available on Sony’s PlayStation platforms have always appealed to me more, and owning a PlayStation has usually meant that I’ll have access to, what feels to me, a wider variety of games. That doesn’t mean that I still wasn’t looking forward to seeing how the new Xbox was going to contribute to the ever-evolving world of video games. Instead, Microsoft seemed more interested in evolving the world of TV.
Of course, it would have been foolish for Microsoft to have shown off all the games (though some would have been nice) at the initial reveal conference and the company is promising that the games will come at E3. I’m looking forward to finding out what all those exclusives and new IPs that they promised are.
And I’m also just looking forward to seeing how much time they’ll spend talking about the Call of Duty dog. Or if they're be more of this.
Although it was a bit too long-winded, I was mainly impressed by Sony’s PS4 reveal. I would have liked to have seen more gameplay footage (or at least have been more confident that what I was seeing was actual gameplay running on a PS4), but the demos they showed and the technology they displayed was impressive. Basically, gameplay footage is what I’m hoping to see at E3. Real gameplay running on a real PS4 (I want to see the actual console too, just to confirm that it actually exists).
I probably won’t be getting a PS4 for a while as I’m still content with my PS3 and there are still dozens of great games I haven’t played for it yet, so I’m hoping to see the PS3 get some attention as well. There aren’t many specific games I can say I’m hoping to see or looking forward to (Beyond: Two Souls and Metal Gear Solid V come to mind though). Although, I am curious to see what the next main Final Fantasy installment is going to look like, as Square has promised that it’ll be there.
But above all else: Please, Sony, PLEASE…The Last Guardian. Please.
But above all else: Please, Sony, PLEASE…The Last Guardian. Please.
I’m disappointed that Nintendo won’t be having a big press conference this year, as for better or for worse, their conferences are usually a mystery and full of surprises and therefore something I always look forward to (and yes, if it wasn’t clear enough already, I am also just a big fan of their games). Although, speaking of mystery, it ironically seems that Nintendo has already uncharacteristically revealed a number of the games that they’ll be showing off beforehand. We’ll be seeing something of the new Super Smash Bros. game. I’m hoping for at least a trailer; I think expecting anything more is pushing it given the stage of that game’s development. There’ll be a new 3D Mario for the Wii U in playable form, and although I’m terribly sick of Mario, this new 3D game from the creators of the Galaxy titles is an exception as Mario’s main 3D outings have never disappointed and contrary to his stale “New” 2D side-scrolling titles, his 3D ones have always brought something fresh, unique, and exciting to the table. They’ve also promised that the Wind Waker remake will be there, so I’m excited to see what their HD makeover of one of my favorite, and one of the most visually beautiful, video games I've played will look like in action. After seeing the initial conceptual "screenshots" of the remake, I have mixed feelings, but I’m reserving judgment until I see the game in motion. While on the topic of my beloved Zelda series, I’m also excited to see more of the A Link to the Past 3DS sequel. There’s also the new Nintendo exclusive Sonic game, Sonic: Lost World, which they just released a trailer for and it looks pretty freakin’ great! I’m hoping to see some game demos of that one. After the mostly fantastic Sonic Colors and Sonic Generations, I have high hopes that Sega won’t screw this one up. Nintendo has also promised a new Mario Kart for Wii U…which I care less about than the new Call of Duty’s dynamic fish AI, but I’m sure it’ll be a fun game that helps to sell some Wii Us.
Anyway, I hope Nintendo also still has a surprise or two in store for us. The mysterious project Retro Studios (Metroid Prime and Donkey Country Returns developer, i.e. they make good games) has been working on? More gameplay footage of that gorgeous new Monolith Soft (Xenoblade Chronicles developer) RPG? A new Metroid maybe? Something that can erase Other M from our collective unconscious hopefully? Dare I say it, a new IP?
So there’s no major press conference from Nintendo, but they’re still having a Nintendo Direct around the same time as they’d usually have the press event, so as long as it has the exciting trailers, surprises, and hype level of their normal conference, I’ll be happy.
The Other Guys
I can’t say there’s much I’m anticipating outside of what I mentioned. I always love scoring the pages upon pages of trailers and previews of my local game sites to find those hidden indie games and lesser-hyped new game reveals though.
I also can’t wait to see what awkward host and forced humor Ubisoft has for us this year. Maybe we’ll see the return of Mr. Caffeine? Really, I’m looking forward to seeing what new memes pop up from the bungles of all the big press events. They’re always a ton of fun. I can’t wait to see what “giant enemy crabs” and "Riddddgggge Racers” E3 has in store for us this year.
Also, speaking of Ubisoft, Beyond Good and Evil 2 please?
Finally, what I really hope most to see at this year’s E3 is something besides a bunch of third-person action games and first-person shooters with advanced neck-stabbing mechanics.