The firestorm of news, announcements and information that whirls out of E3 can be pretty overwhelming. But that's why you have us! We boiled down the most important news of the week from Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft.
-One of the biggest bits of news presented at Nintendo’s E3 press conference was the 3DS, which is just like a DS, but with better graphics that are in mystical 3D. The launch game for the system is set to be Kid Icarus: Uprising, a new title in the dormant since 1991 Kid Icarus series, and remakes of games like The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time and Star Fox 64 also in the works.
-With the mass hysteria induced by the introduction of the 3DS, it would be easy to overlook Nintendo’s other announcements. Several of them were pretty impressive, including the new Legend of Zelda game, Skyward Sword. The game features full motion controls and allows Link to chop down trees, which should give the bushes he’s spent years chopping down a nice feeling of relief.
-2D platforming was also very in vogue with Nintendo this year, as evidenced by the craft themed Kirby’s Epic Yarn and Donkey Kong Country Returns from Retro Studios.
-Of course, Nintendo wasn’t above discussing games that everyone already knew about, taking things to the point of showing games that were set to come out in the next couple of months, including Metroid: Other M and Dragon Quest IX. Though both looked nice and nearly complete, the fact that they’re both due out by the end of the summer probably goes a long way towards explaining why that would be.
-In case Pokemon Channel wasn’t high concept enough for you, Nintendo is bringing out Pokepark Wii Pikachu’s Adventure, in which Pikachu is forced to play cute minigames in a charming theme park to help an adorable Mew. Military FPS fans can expect to set aside their copies of Call of Duty for the title this holiday season.
-Nintendo also had some multiplayer games aimed at casual audiences on display, including WiiParty, which appears to be like Mario Party without the Mario, and Mario Sports Mix, which, surprisingly enough, was about Mario characters playing several sports.
-Much to the shock of at least a few people following the E3 conference, Nintendo’s Vitality Sensor was totally absent from the show. However, Satoru Iwata has said that E3 simply wasn’t the place for the peripheral, allowing gamers to keep dreaming of the day that the Vitality Sensor shall be theirs.
-Move, Sony’s motion-control device, got a release date and pricing.
- Stand-alone Move wand will be $49.99.
- The navigation controller attachment (nunchuk-like device) will be $29.99.
- A bundle with both of these, the Playstation Eye, and Sports Champions game will be $99.99.
- All of the above with a Playstation 3 will cost $399.99.
- You can also purchase a charger (not necessary, but maybe helpful) for the Move wand and navigation controller for $30.
- Spending your life savings on a motion-controlled peripheral: priceless.
siphon hard-earned money from your wallet launch in Europe on September 15, in North America on September and in Japan on October 21.
-A handful of games that will use Move have been confirmed, including SOCOM 4, Killzone 3, Heroes on the Move, Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2011, and Disney Tron Evolution the Videogame. See Kotaku for a full, handy compiled list. Games that debut before Move’s launch, such as Heavy Rain and Toy Story 3, can become motion-control compatible through a soft-ware update.
-The biggest surprises from Sony included announcements of Portal 2 (even after Gabe Newell’s attacks on the system), Twisted Metal (which David Jaffe promised would never happen), and a Gran Turismo 5 release date (which no one ever thought was going to happen). Look for GT5 on November 2 this year.
-The PlayStation Network will always be free, but customers who want to “further enrich their experience” can pay for Playstation Plus, which will debut later this month and offer Playstation Minis, downloadable content, map packs and more. The service will be $49.99 for one year, or $17.99 for three months. Not many gamers are particularly excited about this.
– Sony had a pretty big lack of PSP news, and hardly mentioned the so-far unsuccessful PSP Go. The PSP’s biggest announcements were a new God of War game called Ghost of Sparta (legit news) and a new PSP publicity campaign featuring Marcus, who is essentially Kevin Butler for the PSP (whaaaat?).
-A new partnership with EA garnered plenty of “exclusive” content for the PS3, and by golly Sony let you know at their press conference. The next Medal of Honor and Dead Space 2 are the biggest-name titles that will have exclusive downloads and software bundles in the near future.
-Sony completely neglected to mention anything about Team Ico’s upcoming game, The Last Guardian. Let the nerd rage ensue (and cross your fingers for news at TGS!)
Project Natal was renamed Kinect with a launch date set for November 4th 2010 and 15 launch titles. Along with the hardware, Xbox Live will receive a facelift to allow better motion control through interface and video playback. Kinect will feature a 3D camera and an audio receiver to allow people to video conference using a new feature called VideoKinect. A price for the retail product and launch titles will be announced closer to GamesCom.
Kinect launch titles are: Kinect Adventures, Kinectimals, Kinect Joy Ride, Kinect Sports, Dance Central, Your Shape: Fitness, EA Sports Active 2, Deca Sports Freedom, Dance Masters, Adrenalin Misfits, Zumba Fitness, Sonic Free Riders, The Biggest Loser: Ultimate Workout, Motion Sports, Game Party: In Motion.
Slim Xbox 360, priced at $299, was announced and then shipped to stores Monday. The smaller Xbox 360 features a 250 gigabyte hard drive as well as built in Wifi and a dedicated USB connection to allow customers to connect Kinect without the need for an additional power source.
Fable 3 was given a October 26th release date with no Kinect features announced, but still possible. Story trailer showed two brothers, one is a ruthless king ruling over the land with an iron fist, and the player who must overthrow him to free the people. Sea battles were revealed but not shown in game.
Halo Reach will ship September 14th in the USA. Firefight mode will return with the ability to augment rule sets, spawn points and skull activations. Campaign shown off a darker tone in combat with melee kills being varied over what was shown in the Beta. Space flight will also be available, with dog fights taking place above the planet Reach.
Gears of War 3 is still coming spring 2011. Announced were the return of horde mode as well as the introduction of four player co-op and Beast mode. Beast mode looks to be similar to horde mode but features bigger enemies requiring more strategy to take down.
An exclusive deal with Activision will net Call of Duty exclusive DLC that will appear on Xbox 360 before any other console. This deal will run from 2010 to 2012.
ESPN will be coming to Xbox live with over 3500 on demand events and shows, most in HD. This deal will only work with current ESPN deals with internet service providers, but will not cost extra for Xbox live Gold members.