Welcome to Beyond Co-Op E3 Edition where I link up all I can from sister site Colony of Gamers about single-player games that have little to nothing in relation to co-op gaming.
The stories for Day One of E3:
- Nintendo Press Conference
- Sony Press Conference
- Show Floor Previews
- Overall Thoughts
Nintendo Press Conference
No doubt that Nintendo brought out the big guns this year. They really didn’t go off on some oddball peripheral (hello, Wii Vitality Sensor last year) and pretty much stuck to the games coming to the Wii, DS and showing off the 3DS hardware and the big unveiling of the forever in rumor new Kid Icarus game, conceivably coming out at release of the handheld…whenever that is.
Touching on games that don’t include co-op may be hard. I believe Donkey Kong Country Returns has co-op since Diddy was seen many times along with Donkey Kong in the video. This game is supposedly by Retro Studios, or at least that is the rumors that have been swirling. Outside of this game I believe most of these were single-player or multiplayer.
It opened up with Miyamoto playing The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword which features an adult link and the Wii remote is your sword and the nunchuck is your shield. He showed off some gameplay, but kept complaining about wireless problems for the general janky play seen. Later on we would find out that they had multiple Wii stations in front of the stage that rose up where people could play the game right there at the theater. I can only guess that was the problem, I really don’t know. I have to believe the controls are tighter than what they were seeing. The game is coming sometime next year, which was a little disappointing.
Mario Sports Mix was next up showing volleyball, hockey, dodgeball and basketball and will also be available next year. Arguably co-op available here and the game looks fun. Wii Party was up next and it seems like a Mario Party-like game without Mario. Golden Sun: Dark Dawn on DS was up next. This is a fantastic RPG and no doubt this will be just as good, due out this holiday.
The long rumored new Goldeneye game is indeed coming to Wii. It will feature the new Bond, Daniel Craig, and include a multitude of multiplayer options. The game is coming from Activision and I am not sure which developer is working on it (Neversoft?). This game is coming in November exclusively on Wii. Next up was Epic Mickey from Disney and Warren Spector’s group. I’ve been hot on this game since Game Informer first showed it off. The game is due this holiday season and is looking really good.
Nintendo then reached out to the past. A new Kirby game called Kirby’s Epic Yarn is coming to Wii. Yes, Kirby is coming to consoles after a 7 year absence. He is made up of yarn and no longer sucks in things to gain powers it seems. Not much about the game was talked about, but man did it look good. That game is coming this fall. Next up was Dragon Quest IX on DS and the announcement that it will be out on July 11 over here and will include the online stuff.
Metroid: Other M was up next, coming out August 31. There was a mix of third person, side scrolling and first person shooting seen. The game is looking really good and I hope the delay only makes this Team Ninja game better. They then showed off the aforementioned Donkey Kong Country Returns coming this holiday season.
Then the 3DS was shown off and it does seem to be the final name. There will be a slider for the widescreen on top to go from no 3D through levels of 3D-ness for lack of a better word. There will be a touchscreen on the bottom just like the various DS versions out there. There are twin cameras on the back that can do 3D pictures as well. There is an analog stick as well called the “slide pad” and also includes a motion and gyro sensor. You can also watch 3D Hollywood movies on the system and it will be “always on” with wireless, downloading stuff at any time for no fee (I think I heard that).
Finally Iwata talked about Project Sora set up in January 2009. He revealed what Project Sora actually was for: making a launch game with an established character for the 3DS. That property? Kid Icarus: Uprising. Yes, it’s been almost 30 years since we’ve seen Kid Icarus and the videos were really good. The voices weren’t the best, but getting a new Kid Icarus game is awesome.
To end the press conference, Nintendo brought out a lot of models with 3DS’s attached to them by a tether. Reggie offered to let people in the audience see the 3D in person and the aforementioned Wii units rose up for Zelda play as well. Later on we found out the attendees were just looking at 3D images and using the slider to change how deep it looked in 3D. Maybe there will be games on the floor to see? Who knows. No date or price was given for the system itself.
Full notes can be found over at this thread at Colony of Gamers.
Sony Press Conference
Sony also attempted to bring out the big guns. For the most part they did, but there were a few lulls in as well, but they certainly presented better than Microsoft simply because they showed more games and didn’t spend as much time on Move as Microsoft did on Kinect.
First up was Killzone 3 which will release in February with the options of playing with the Move system and a full 3D treatment all on one disc (they made a point to say both the regular and Move edition of games would fit on one Blu-Ray disc constantly). The game looked excellent with a white text of “Pre-Alpha Build” at the top. Didn’t look very pre-alpha to me. Some jetpack footage was shown and it looked awesome. Guerilla has certainly stepped up their game since the first release, but this one is so quick on the heels of Killzone 2.
Jack Tretton, CEO and President of Sony America, then rattled off a bunch of games that would be given the 3D treatment. There are already some available on the Playstation Nework like Wipeout HD, Motorstorm: Pacific Rift and others. He wanted to point out upcoming games that will include it like Mortal Kombat, Shaun White Skateboarding, NBA 2K11, Ghost Recon: Future Soldier and Sly Cooper Collection.
Then the Playstation Move part of the presentation began. The price and date was announced. It is coming to Europe first on September 15, here on September 19 and in Japan on September 21. The orb controller, the main component of the Move system in my estimation will cost $49.99 each. The navigation controller will cost $29.99 (evidently needed in FPS games as shown in the SOCOM 4 video teaser to simulate a gun). A bundle with the Orb controller, the Eyetoy (a needed component) and the Sports Champion game with a bunch of sports games will clock in at $99.99. There will be another bundle same as above, but with a PS3 system for $399.99. Most people will probably go for the $99.99 version because I don’t think there are that many without the Eyetoy. I’ll talk more about the money issues when related to Kinect’s rumored price in the Overall Thoughts section below.
They then showed off the Move game Sorcery where you play a sorcerer’s apprentice. You shoot spells using the Orb controller and you choose a spell and the orb changes colors to the spell you are using. Although the timing from movement to screen looked a little off, that could be easily explained by possible lag between the guy playing and getting that to the big screen. The game looked interesting and now that I think of it I forget if the navigation controller is needed or not for this game. It is due out in Spring 2011. Heroes on the Move (working title) was also shown, a game revolving around six of Sony’s characters (Ratchet, Clank, Jax, Sly, Daxter and someone else I forget) using the Move system. Not sure what type of game it is, but it sounded like the six battle each other. They also announced that all first party Move games would be priced at $39.99.
Then there was the announcement of a campaign with Coke where you can win lots of PS3 related things including the Move system. You buy Coke, Diet Coke, Coke Zero or Sprite to attempt to win the prizes. Sony says this is the largest giveaway campaign they have ever done. Sounds interesting.
Then EA came out and showed off Tiger Woods 11 with the Move, something already included in the PS3 version of the game. It looks a lot like how the Wii version is played since last year.
Next up Kevin Butler interrupted and gave a stirring “Gamer Speech” to the amassed crowd. The cool thing was that twice the G4 camera zoomed in on Scott Benton (Psykoboy2) and Drew Hodder (TrackZero) from Colony of Gamers. I can only guess that Nick and Jason from here at Co-Optimus weren’t too far away, but I didn’t see them on screen.
Next up was the PSP. God of War: Ghost of Sparta was shown and I may have missed a release date if they gave it. Then a montage of upcoming PSP games was shown, but I missed that because our liveblog was seizing up, so sorry if I missed anything special there.
Next up was Little Big Planet. I won’t dwell too much on it since there is already a story on it here since it is a co-op game, but it sounds rather cool that you can create your own types of games on there and not just side scrolling ones. The subscription model for Playstation Plus was then explained. I kind of zoned out because I probably won’t jump in on it, but here is a thread with the details.
EA comes out again to show off Medal of Honor a bit. Then the second part of the Dead Space 2 gameplay was shown where we saw a huge necromorph basically beat the crap out of Isaac. We would then find out that there were two exclusives coming to the PS3 on these games. Medal of Honor will have revamped Medal of Honor: Frontline game in a limited edition only on PS3. Dead Space 2 will also get limited edition treatment only on the PS3 with a Move version of Dead Space: Extraction, the former Wii-only game.
GlaDOS then came on the screen and Gabe Newell of Valve came out on stage, shocking everyone. He said something along the lines of, “remember when I talked about my hate for a certain console?” and everyone laughed. He then announced that Portal 2 would come to PS3 and would be the best version available (hyperbole?). Also Steam would be included, although a PR later said it would include Steamworks, so as of yet no other Valve game is coming to PS3…as of yet. Then a small bit of Portal 2 was shown with GlaDOS being rebuilt and doing her sarcastic happy/backstab lines to close out the roll. Wow, this was HUGE news. Game is still due out in 2011, but now on all platforms at the same time.
Final Fantasy XIV was then shown off and then Jack came on to talk about exclusives to the PS3. Mafia II will have free DLC Day 1 download only on PS3 when it releases in August. Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood will have extra missions only available to the PS3 and a multiplayer beta only on PSN. Here is where I get on my high horse and go back to when Tretton said, “we don’t pay for exclusives”. Yes, that was years ago and was directed at Microsoft for, I believe, the BioShock exclusivity, but you can’t tell me some money isn’t changing hands for this stuff. Love my PS3, but that phrase still bothers me. Anyway, onto the rest.
Next they showed up upcoming PS3 games, a lot of them that I can’t sit and name here. If you check out our liveblog I do type out everyone one later on in the Cover it Live event on that page.
Next up was Gran Turismo 5 with an actual release date of November 2. It was also announced earlier that the game would be available in 3D and I believe with Move controls available as well. Up next was a short video of inFAMOUS 2 saying it would be out in 2011.
Finally they wrapped up with the unveiling of Twisted Metal, a return to the series beginnings. Talk of faction fighting and 16 player online play along with 2 and 4 player split screen play. The game looked interesting and there should be more info on the show floor.
Overall it was a good press conference, but the cost of Move could be cost prohibitive if you really think about it when talking about wanting to have multiple people play a game at the same time, but I’ll get to that below. The rest of the notes from this is on this page over at Colony of Gamers.
Show Floor Previews
Since we may not see any roundup by the CoG crew until tomorrow or so, I’m going to rely on Joystiq for some hands-on links. There is a CoG Day Zero podcast available. Haven’t listened to it yet I’ve been so busy, but you can listen if you like.
I like the Joystiq gang, so here are some of their hands-on reports:
Day One certainly brought some surprises, the biggest of which has to be Portal 2 on the PS3. I don’t think anyone saw that one coming. Now with Move’s pricing announced, I see Microsoft working to undercut that price, especially the $100 bundle deal. If you are going to play by yourself, one orb and navigation controller along with the Eyetoy (needed equipment) you’re good to go for $130 basically (w/the Sport Champion game and the added navigation controller). If you are interested in more people playing, then things start adding up. Each orb controller is $49.99 and each navigation controller is $29.99. If you wanted to deck out just two people with everything it would be $210, four people would be $370. The Kinect is rumored to be $149.99, but Microsoft hasn’t announced a price. The system doesn’t need any extras to work with however many people it supports in games, so whatever the price is that is it. Neither option will probably be as value priced as the Wii though, but we’ll see how Microsoft prices the Kinect and its games (Sony has set $39.99 as their first party price for Move games).
Outside of that Nintendo certainly pulled at our heartstrings with a number of games on established franchises. I like a lot of the games, but Nintendo also realizes they could make new games in these franchises and it will sell like hotcakes no matter what. The 3DS is interesting and it was good to see Kid Icarus back, but no price or date was announced. There certainly are a ton of games already announced for it though, so who knows.