Tuesday, June 11, 2013

E3 Thoughts

A lot happened.  Take a seat.
  • Xbox Live Gold is gonna be offering some free games for the time being.  Sounds like they want some of that PS+ pie, but with Assassin's Creed 2 and Halo 3, they're not off to a particularly great start.  But it's something.
  • MS whispered some poison into Insomniac's ears, and now Insomniac's working the other side.  Oh well.
  • Quantum Break could be really cool or really dumb.  Knowing Remedy, I'm prepared for the latter.
  • MS is getting rid of Microsoft Points for Xbox One.  Thank god.
  • Titanfall sounds really awesome.  I'm glad it's coming to PC, or I'd be pissed.
    • I'm guessing it's a timed exclusive.  When will MS learn?
  • They didn't seem to have much to say about the Vita, which is saddening.
  • Square Enix couldn't even be bothered to send a damn intern out to LA announce two of their biggest franchises?  A fucking video message, yeah I'm kind of annoyed.
  • Final Fantasy 15 will be excellent.  Given that SE couldn't even promise it would be out by the end of 2014 (remember this game was announced about 5 years ago), we also probably won't see it any time soon.
  • Kingdom Hearts 3 was a tease if I've ever seen one.  SE says it's coming.  I say it's coming in about 10 years.  Nice that they know what we want, at least.
  • Watchdogs looks alright.
  • The inFamous Second Son trailer was remarkably good.  It also looks like more inFamous, which is fine I guess.  I'm hoping it's a bit more evolved than it looked in the few bits of gameplay I saw.
  • Destiny looks really cool, though I guess I was expecting something a bit more revolutionary.
  • Sony kind of unloaded on MS when they got to the price and policies.  It was like watching a whole bunch of nuclear ICBMs leave their silos.  You knew whoever they were targeting was fucked.
    • Let's get this straight.  Sony made a superior machine (technically speaking) and is selling it for $100 less.
    • DRM?  No used games?  Online checks?  Pfft.  Only silly people do that, says Andrew House.
    • That's $400 with the Playstation Eye bundled in, just so you know.  No $450 "Pro" bundle.
  • Sony trotted a bunch of indies out on stage.  Some of their games, like Galak-Z and Secret Poncho looked really fun.
  • SuperGiant games announced Transistor is coming to Playstation platform(s).  Not a big deal in the grand scheme of things, but it is a turn of events, given Bastion's appearance on seemingly every platform available EXCEPT for Playstation (and Nintendo...).
  • Driveclub sounds neato.  Apparently you get it for free on launch day with PS+, but they emphasized that it was the "PS+ Edition," which leads me to believe it will be at least somewhat gimped.
  • The Order looked interesting.
  • Maybe the Gaikai streaming thing isn't a pipe dream after all.  Sony's announcing it for 2014.
  • The Last Guardian never coming out is a legitimate possibility.  I think if I were Sony I would trash the project.  There's no way a game like that will recoup the costs it has no doubt accumulated over the years.
  • Looks like PS+ will be required for online play on PS4.  Sony's finally taken that step.  All things considered, it's a minor negative, but a negative all the same.  Sony's only doing it because they know that it's one con in a sea of pros, and it won't make them look bad against MS, who's been doing it forever.  Won't effect me personally for the time being, as I have PS+ through 2015 or so, but it is unfortunate.
  • They started backtracking a little bit the day afterwards on the policies thing.  Tretton says publishers can do whatever they like where DRM is concerned.  Yoshida assured the Podcast Beyond boys that DRM wouldn't be a thing on PS4.  Sony is dangerously close to making the same PR mistakes Microsoft did just a couple weeks ago.
  • The system itself looks pretty nice.  The back is all pretty much all ventilation, except for where the ports are.
  • HDD is user-replaceable, which I appreciate very much.
  • So it seems like the $400 price point DOESN'T include the Playstation Eye.  Unfortunate, but probably a necessary sacrifice to keep the price down.  If I were Sony, I might have considered offering a $500 SKU with 1TB of storage and the Eye included, but after the SKU mess they had last generation with the PS3, I can respect them wanting to just have one version for now.
  • Though it didn't seem to get a lot of attention on stage, the Vita does have more than its fair share of games to show at the event.  Unfortunately, most of them are either ports, indie games or sequels/expansions.  No big new IPs, like Gravity Rush or Soul Sacrifice.  I don't think anybody can truly say the Vita doesn't have any games, but without a few big, unique titles to tether the other games, I think it will continue to have perception issues.
  • Wii U still doesn't look like much of a proposition at the moment.  Wind Waker HD alone won't sell me.
  • 3DS, on the other hand, is looking like just the ticket.
  • Fairy type in Pokemon sounds incredibly dumb.  But I won't knock it until I see it in action.

  • Mirror's Edge 2; another tease.  EA knows we want it, which is nice.
  • Garden Warfare....you know what?  Might be cool.
  • I almost forgot they announced a new Battlefront game.  I should be overjoyed...but for some reason I'm not.  Maybe I need some gameplay.
  • I guess I'm kind of a sucker for racing games, because The Crew got my interest.
  • For all its new trappings, Assassin's Creed IV looks like more Assassin's Creed.  For better or worse.
  • Ubisoft didn't say anything about Beyond Good and Evil 2.  Very tragic.
  • Metal Gear Solid 5 looks awesome.  I can only hope it can live up to all that potential.
So in short.  Microsoft made a turn for the worse, Sony made a turn for the better, and Nintendo and most publishers played it safe.

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