A few months ago, back during E3, I wrote a series of “Cliff’s Notes” articles, summing up the key happenings for each of the big three game companies without even using a paragraph (bulleted sentences can convey a point, too). I did this in three articles, one for Sony, one for Nintendo and one for Microsoft. There was so little that happened at the TGS, though, that I can stick everything into just one article. While E3 was relentlessly bringing the huge, industry-shaking developments, this wasn’t the case with the TGS, which was, basically, just a bunch of demo booths. But there was still plenty there, and here’s everything worth knowing:
<!— The biggest event of the show was the announcement of Halo 3: Recon, an expansion pack of sorts to the almost-Game-of-the-Year-2007, Halo 3 (it lost out here to The Orange Box…sorry Halo, fans, but it’s just a better game), which will bring a new campaign mode, new characters, and new multiplayer goodies. While I label it an expansion pack, that’s selling it short (but there’s no real term for whatever the hell it is).
<!— No More Heroes, the hamburger among the pile of dog food that is the Wii’s game library, is getting a sequel sure to astound people who don’t own a PS3 or Xbox 360.
<!— The Nintendo DS is the new place to get your RPG fix. Suikoden: Tierkreis, a new Valkyrie Profile, Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days (slated for February 2009), Chrono Trigger DS, Tales of Hearts, Phantasy Star Zero and a new Chocobo Dungeon were all on the floor in one form or another. Now the question is whether or not they’ll bother to bring these games stateside (I’m still aching from a lack of Xenosaga 1&2 which was shown off back in 2006).
<!— Yeah, the DS had some slick stuff, but the PSP isn’t hurting for content. Dissidia: Final Fantasy, Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep, Loco Roco 2, Secret Agent Clank, Tales of the World: Radiant Mythology 2 and Patapon 2 are all looking good.
<!— Sony lost another previously-exclusive title with Tekken 6 making the move to the 360. All things considered, this isn’t a particularly big deal, as Sony’s strong E3 showing put them into a much stronger position on the video game front, and gave them a whole lot of margin for error.
<!— That said, 2008 is the Year of the Fighting Game. Soul Calibur 4 came out, and is quite fun. Street Fighter 4 looks absolutely incredible, Sengoku Basara: Battle Heroes (for the PSP) was announced (no word on the series coming to America yet, though), King of Fighters XII is easily the best-looking 2d video game ever, Tatsunoko vs. Capcom is still looking like it could be a dark horse for game of the year, Tekken 6 was represented…and that’s just the games that were at the show! We still have Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo: HD Remix, Guilty Gear Accent Core Plus (on the PSP), various SNK-Playmore compilations and ports and the aforementioned Dissidia: Final Fantasy all coming out within a year. Truly a great time to be a fighting game fan.
<!— Resident Evil 5 will be awesome.
<!— White Knight Chronicles will be good, whenever it comes out. Shaping up to be a great game, which truly embodies just how far Sony’s first party development ability has come.
<!–[if !supportLists]–>– <!–[endif]–>Japan still really, really loves cell phone games.
<!— The Wii really isn’t looking good for 2009. Reggie Fils-Aime insisted at E3 that the Wii wasn’t a fad or a fashion statement. 2009 will determine how true that is. The only games that look potentially good are No More Heroes, Tatsunoko vs. Capcom (if it comes out in America) and the sequel to Tales of Symphonia.
<!— Microsoft said that they were going to increase their efforts on penetrating the Japanese market. Shortly after, there was a roundtable discussion addressing how Japanese companies could potentially retake the dominant position in the gaming industry from those vile Americans. I said it before, and I’ll say it again. The 360 isn’t popular in Japan because it is made by an American company.
And there you have it. Yeah…there really wasn’t that much news. Lots of hands-on stuff. But you’ll only get this sort of analysis from somebody like me. Make sure to check out some more TGS perspective from Meghan “Meggo” Ventura, who was on the show floor, trying out games, listening to keynotes and all that good stuff.