View Full Version : E3 has arrived

08-05-2006, 21:17:59
The Sony press conference is today in 1 hour and 45 minutes (4pm PST). I'll watch it live and blog anything interesting here.

08-05-2006, 22:59:54


08-05-2006, 23:19:09
Hasn't started yet. Delays.

08-05-2006, 23:19:32
Final Fantasy XIII was announced though by Square.

08-05-2006, 23:22:40
Supposed to start at 4:45 PST now.

08-05-2006, 23:26:29

I have decided I will quit buying Japanese style RPGs.. I have hardly played them in years, and it has been ovre 4 years since I finished one.


08-05-2006, 23:40:19
They're wearing us down with bad AC/DC, RunDMC, etc. a la Clockwork Orange.

08-05-2006, 23:42:13
Now they're playing Brass Monkey. The music is getting progressively worse...

Jungle Boogie now...

08-05-2006, 23:47:03
Now we're into Disco music. Holiday! Celebrate!

08-05-2006, 23:48:37
Billie Jean is not my lover!

09-05-2006, 00:29:45
You have shit taste in music.

09-05-2006, 00:31:56
They just spent 25 minutes showing GT4 running in 1080p on PS3. It looks like GT4....and they kept going for SO LONG. Christ.

09-05-2006, 00:34:31
Now they're showing some stupid EyeToy game. They place cards in a table and tap them and a monster appears on the screen...

09-05-2006, 00:40:21
Now they're playing PS1 games on the PSP....

They also announced a feature-by-feature ripoff of Xbox Live.

09-05-2006, 00:42:07
Now they're showing the Playstation Store, which looks identical to Xbox Live Marketplace...

09-05-2006, 00:44:31
You can buy songs for your PS3 for $1.25US...

Somebody tell these guys that $0.99 is the standard...

They're spending like 20 minutes per game. When these games are old (GT4) or lame (Singstar), it's painful.

09-05-2006, 00:47:37
Now they're showing "Genji 2"...which looks significantly worse than 99 Nights for the 360, and the same kind of gameplay.

09-05-2006, 00:51:48
They're showing an F1 game, where you can use a PSP was the "wing mirror" (rear view mirror)...so you hold the controller and the PSP? Confusing...

09-05-2006, 00:54:35
Heavenly Sword demo looks pretty good.

09-05-2006, 01:03:41
Eight Days looks amazing.

They showed a game called "Afrika" for a couple minutes...just constant shots of African wildlife. Weird...all CG.

09-05-2006, 01:07:24
Resistence: Fall of Man looks Call of Duty2-esque.

09-05-2006, 01:36:42
Sony's huge mega announcement: The Sony PS3 controller is...the DualShock.

But there's something else!

It has motion sensor with "six degrees of freedom". So you can tilt it.

09-05-2006, 01:41:28
They just demoed it in Warhawk. Was hilarious.

The guy couldn't hit the broadside of a barn with the new controls, he tried to land at the end and crashed...and his left thumb just sat idle.

09-05-2006, 01:43:20
PS3 launch details:

2 SKUs!

20GB PS3 59.800 yen
60GB PS3: OPEN PRICE (Retailers set)

Nov 17th in USA

20GB: $499US
60GB: $599 US

09-05-2006, 01:44:43
4 million consoles shipped by end of 2006 worldwide.

09-05-2006, 02:18:32
That's right about where I figured they'd price it. Still a damn lot. They better have the games to blow the shit out of the 360.

09-05-2006, 02:35:11
More info:

The $499 version lacks HDMI (1080p, copy-protected Bluray movies), it lacks wifi, nor does it come with compact flash/SD/memory stick slots).

The controllers for both $499 and $599 boxes don't come with rumble/vibrate functionality anymore.

09-05-2006, 02:58:46
Interesting choices.

09-05-2006, 03:08:53
More features got the axe:

There won't be dual HDMI or dual/triple gigabit on any versions.

It's also quite a large console:

PS3 (W x H x D)
325mm x 98mm x 274mm
12.8" x 3.9" x 10.8"

12.16" x 3.27"x 10.15"

09-05-2006, 03:10:29
It's also confirmed that it'll be a 2x BD-ROM (8x DVD-ROM), half the transfer speed of the Xbox 360's 16x DVD-ROM.

09-05-2006, 03:11:47
And Black will be the only color it's available in.

09-05-2006, 03:17:50
Ok. Now you're obsessing, fanboy.

09-05-2006, 03:21:59
Another curiosity is how they didn't mention Cell or RSX clockspeeds in the presentation.

I'm betting those get adjusted before release...

09-05-2006, 16:52:21
Nintendo conference now.

Zelda, Mario games shown for Wii. Wii' controller seems cool, actually.

Lurker the Second
09-05-2006, 17:52:27
Here's from another blogger. It's a couple of different entries, starting with the most recent and working backwards:

Lots of Caveats on the PS3

Coming out of Sony’s big pre-E3 press event at the Sony film lot this evening, it’s fairly easy to distill the key points about the PlayStation 3:

1. There will be more playable PS3 games at the show than were expected by many people, myself included.
2. Nintendo clearly spooked Sony when it showed off the “gyroscopic” Wii controller at the Tokyo Game Show last year.
3. The PlayStation 3 is an incredibly powerful and capable machine, enabling fantastic graphics and rich gameplay.
4. Unless you have a fabulous connection with a major retailer, you will almost surely not be able to find a PS3 this coming holiday season.
5. If you somehow do find one for sale, you probably won’t be able to afford it, or won’t want to.

That’s the short version. Let’s amplify in order:

1. I and others had seriously doubted that there would be more than a half-dozen playable PS3 games on the show floor. It seems clear now that there will be. Yes, the live demos shown at the presentation tonight were nice. (The titles shown included the new Gran Turismo racing game; a holographic card combat game eerily similar to the game played by C-3PO and Chewbacca on the Millenium Falcon; SingStar, the karaoke game; Genji 2, based on historical Japanese swordplay; Formula One 06, another racing game; and Heavenly Sword, a high-fantasy combat game.) And yes, the new titles that were unveiled seemed cool (Eight Days, a modern third-person action game, and an apparently untitled jungle combat game from the developers Naughty Dog.)

Gran Turismo for the PlayStation 3, as projected at the Sony press event. (Fred Prouser/Reuters)
But in terms of demonstrating the progress of the PS3 platform, the most impressive element of the evening was the mere fact that Sony had at least eight games available for open hands-on play after the presentation, including all of the previously-mentioned live demo games except the Chewbacca game, a new version of Sonic, the shooter Resistance, and Warhawk, a sci-fi flying game (more about that below). Given that Electronic Arts plans to have PS3 Madden out in public and that there will probably be a few more games out there, it now appears that there could be 10 or more playable PS3 games on the floor.

2. The major surprise news of the night was that the PlayStation 3 controller has an internal “gyroscopic’’ capability similar to that in the Nintendo Wii controller. That means that merely turning and twisting the controller can produce action on the screen, rather than the player having to press buttons or pull triggers. At first blush, that revelation appeared to be a major blow to Nintendo, which had been counting on making the Wii controller one of the stars of E3. But on further consideration it seems like there may be a bit less there than meets the eye, at least for now.

That is because of all the games Sony made playable after the presentation, only one appeared to take advantage of that gyroscopic functionality: Warhawk. In introducing the controller, Phil Harrison, head of Sony’s global game studios, seemed to indicate that they have had workable versions of the system for only a few weeks. If that is the case, then it seems extremely unlikely that the gyroscopic function was part of the original design for the PS3. Rather, it seems much more likely that Sony got nervous after seeing the Nintendo demonstrations at the Tokyo Game Show last year and rushed to add a plausibly similar feature to its own system.

The PlayStation 3’s controller, seen on screen at Sony’s press event. (Fred Prouser/Reuters)

Nintendo has clearly designed the entire Wii around the gyroscopic controller. The big question now is whether Sony can be similarly creative or whether this is just a tacked-on feature that will get little support. One way to judge will be to see whether Warhawk remains the only PS3 game on the show floor to take advantage of the controller. Just as important will be seeing how many of the games available at the PS3’s launch in November take advantage of it.

3. It almost goes without saying that the PS3’s graphics are fantastic. Are they a huge step beyond the graphics of the Xbox 360? Not at first glance, but side-by-side comparisons should be interesting.

4. Of course, conducting side-by-side comparisons will require actually getting your hands on a PS3. If you don’t have connections, that could prove to be even more difficult than finding an Xbox 360 was during last year’s holiday crush. The company announced tonight that the PS3 will debut in Japan on Nov. 11 and in North America and Europe on Nov. 17. But there’s a catch: there will be only 2 million machines available worldwide at launch, 4 million by year-end and 6 million total by the end of March 2007. That is actually a bit faster than Microsoft’s production schedule over the initial months of the Xbox 360, but not as much faster as one could expect from a global consumer electronics giant. (Remember that Microsoft is primarily a software company and has to rely on third-party contract manufacturers for hardware production.) The bottom line is that given those numbers, supplies will sell out worldwide instantly and it probably won’t be possible for an everyday consumer to just walk into a Circuit City and pick up a PS3 until around this time next year, if then.

Peter Moore, head of Microsoft’s games business, has to be dancing a jig right about now because it seems increasingly possible that he will move 10 million Xbox 360s by the time the PS3 even comes out. If he is ambitious, he can now dare to dream that by the end of next March, the Xbox 360 will have a 3-to-1 lead in global installed base (18 million to 6 million).

So does this mean that the Blu-ray optical drives used in the PS3 are in short supply? Does it mean that the powerful, complex Cell processors used in the PS3 are difficult to manufacture? I’ll be asking Sony executives exactly those questions later this week.

5. Then again, maybe it’s just fine that the PS3 will be all but unavailable until next summer, because most normal people won’t want to pay for it anyway. Yes, it is very smart for Sony to bundle a big hard drive into every PlayStation 3. (By contrast, Microsoft was afraid to bite the bullet with the Xbox 360 and made a hard drive “optional,’’ when in fact it is all but required in practice.) But hard drives are cheap these days. That cannot possibly be the reason that the “base’’ version of the PS3 with a 20-gigabyte hard drive will cost $499 and that the top version with a 60-gigabyte drive will cost an outlandish $599.

On the quarterly income statement, such premium pricing is probably smart for Sony, given that the promised quantities of the PS3 would probably sell out worldwide even if the list price were $1,000 (which will probably end up looking like a bargain on eBay). But the marketing and public relations risks of such high prices are enormous, especially if Nintendo’s Wii comes in under $300, as expected. It’s going to be an even bigger problem for Sony if the aforementioned Mr. Moore and his boss, a certain Mr. Gates, decide to put the hammer down and cut prices on the Xbox 360 this coming holiday season.

All in all, the PlayStation 3 looked great and the games were more plentiful than expected. But with Microsoft, one of the world’s most frightening competitors, breathing down its neck, the long-term prognosis for Sony’s game business still appears cloudy at best right now.


1:09 pm
An E3 Video Preview

Seth Schiesel reports from Los Angeles before the start of E3. Watch the video.

Lurker the Second
09-05-2006, 17:53:00
And the rest of it:


4:12 pm
Things to Do, Games to Play

Welcome to The Gamer at E3! All week long I’ll do my best to share the scuttlebutt from the show floor and as much as I can about the games I’m seeing and playing, the industry execs I’m talking to and, of course, the parties. (I’ll just need to find someone to do my sleeping for me.)

The show itself doesn’t open until Wednesday but things kick off Monday afternoon with the big Sony presentation at the Sony film lot. Then on Tuesday, Nintendo and Microsoft have their big press events before the madness begins on the show floor Wednesday morning. It is physically impossible for one person (or probably any four people) to see everything at E3, but I’ll be hitting as many of the major publishers as I can and will also be trying to get as much quality play time as possible with Sony’s new PlayStation 3 and the Nintendo Wii.

Ultimately though, E3 is all about the games. And as much as I enjoy writing about video games, I like playing them even more. (Sounds like that old ad: “I’m not just the Hair Club president, I’m also a client.”) So here, in no particular order, is my entirely subjective list of the games that I’m most looking forward to seeing and hopefully playing (though of course the biggest and most pleasant surprises at E3 are the games you didn’t see coming):

– Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. I’m not a huge Nintendo fanboy, but games like Advance Wars, Animal Crossing and yes, Nintendogs on the DS have really made me appreciate the empathy for gamers that Nintendo can bring to the table. I remember the freakout at last year’s E3 when all they did was announce the name of this game. Now, I and millions of others are ready for some actual game play.

– Call of Duty 3. In a market full of World War II shooters, C.O.D. is clearly the best. But can Activision keep it up?

– Gears of War. I first saw this first-person shooter at Microsoft’s press event in Amsterdam last fall and thought that the hype around it was not yet justified. Now is the time for Cliffy B (Cliff Bleszinski) and the rest of the Epic Games folks to really blow the world away.

- Vanguard. With World of Warcraft sucking all of the oxygen out of the massively multiplayer online genre, Vanguard, the coming game from Sigil, has been flying a bit under the radar. Might W.O.W. finally have some real competition?

– Prey. It’s hard to stand out in the crowded field of first-person shooters, but Prey will give it a good shot. The game’s funky gravitational model (running on ceilings and walls and so on) should open up new kinds of game play, but it’s tough to know how it will feel before there’s some hands-on time.

– Gran Turismo. Have to have a sports game on this list, and since driving games are my favorite sports game genre, I’ll go out on a limb and hope that Sony has something to say (and show!) about G.T. on PS3.

– Spore. I think The Sims is sheer digital genius, but it just never made me want to stay up all night playing it. Spore, the next game from the famed Will Wright, looks like it will do just that. Sure, guiding a new species of intelligent life all the way from plankton to interstellar colonization might not sound sexy, but it smells like fun to me.

– Hellgate: London. O.K., how many magazine covers is this game going to be featured on before it actually ships? Yes, I think it’s been a little overexposed for a first game from a new PC studio, but then again we are talking about some of the original Diablo developers, so that buys a lot of credibility.

– God of War 2. The first God of War was one of the best action games ever. Enough said.

– Killzone. Sony had very little PS3 material to show at last year’s E3, but the short canned video they played from Killzone was almost enough to satisfy the crowd. Now it is time to get past the video and see if the real game can live up to last year’s presentation.

– Guitar Hero II. Like most red-blooded American men, I’ve had my share of fantasies about rocking out in front of a throbbing crowd of screaming fans. To my roommate’s dismay, the first Guitar Hero let me indulge them. With Guitar Hero II I’m looking forward to some more arena-rock goodness. (She’s getting her own place at the end of the summer anyway.)

– Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Vegas. The Rainbow Six franchise has taken a back seat for a while to Ubisoft’s other Clancy franchises, Splinter Cell and Ghost Recon. I’m not a tactical-shooter expert, but I’m curious to see what’s next for Rainbow Six.

– Metal Gear Solid 4. I’ve never really “gotten it’’ with the Metal Gear series (call me crazy), but the new Metal Gear Acid 2 for PSP is starting to draw me in. Now I want to see the next big console installment.

– Final Fantasy XII. A bit like the new Zelda, FF12 has been kicking around for what seems like forever. But if Square Enix finally gets it right, it will certainly be the top Japanese role-playing game of the year, at least for Sony platforms.

– World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade. As a confirmed W.O.W. addict (level 60 warlock, level 59 warrior), this is a no-brainer for me. The Burning Crusade expansion pack is out later this year and I can’t wait to find out about the new Alliance race, as long as it isn’t pandas (seriously). And if I see some Burning Crusade, maybe my guild will forgive me for skipping our raids this week.

LINK (http://e3.blogs.nytimes.com/)

09-05-2006, 18:09:42
The comparisons of the Wii controller to the new DualShock 3 are a bit stupid. Wii is a lot more advanced, and dare I say usable.

What the DualShock 3 added is identical to the MS Sidewinder from 1999 with gryroscopic capability. It bombed hard because it's not very usable.