Gut Reactions: Sony E3 Press Conference
Find out what the GameSpot editors think of Sony's push into the third dimension and motion controls.
Just moments before the doors opened at the Los Angeles Convention Center, Sony closed the E3 press conference season with a look at some of its biggest games, which included the return of a beloved franchise in Twisted Metal as well as glimpses of upcoming games like Killzone 3, Little Big Planet 2, and the surprise announcement of Portal 2. But of course, a major part of Sony's strategy revolves around new technology, and the company wasted little time in emphasizing its support of 3D gaming as well as motion controls with the PlayStation Move.
Sophia Tong, Associate EditorSony's press conference was still impressive, but Nintendo's performance was kind of hard to beat--at least for me. I wanted almost every game that they showed at Nintendo, and with Sony, the one game that stood out was LittleBigPlanet 2. I wanted to see The Last Guardian--what happened?! I know Sony is more about big HD TVs and 3D, but I'm not sure how I could handle playing a game in 3D for any length of time, because even without the glasses I still get motion sickness. I still haven't had a chance to try out any games that involve the PlayStation Move, but I'm having a hard time getting excited about it because I'm reminded of the Wii…except that it's black and has a glowing ball at the top.
Tom Mc Shea, Associate EditorSony had a strange press conference. It didn't have many major announcements, but everything it showed at least looked fun, if not particularly innovated. Killzone 3 is one of the few shooters I've seen at this year's E3 that actually made me excited, probably because of the variety included in the demo. Standard rifle shooting, jetpacks, and even a helicopter turret mission looked like KZ3 would mix things up, which is always a good thing. Portal 2 was the biggest surprise to me. Given Valve's history with the PlayStation 3, I didn't expect the game to even hit the system, let alone have all the cool updates the Steam version will be lucky enough to get. inFamous 2, not surprisingly, looks incredible, and the graphics technology looks a lot more impressive this time around. I'm excited for Twisted Metal, though it will be interesting to see how car combat works in this era. I loved the first two Twisted Metal games and even bought Critical Depth and Rogue Trip: Vacation 2012, but it may be hard for this to stand out in the modern era.
I'm glad Sony pretty much ignored casual Move games, since that's what derailed Microsoft's conference. Heroes on the Move and Sorcery don't look particularly imaginative, but it could be at least fun to wield a wand or team Ratchet with Sly for an epic battle. It's just a shame nothing was mentioned from Team Ico. Where's the Ico/Colossus collection that's been rumored? Or The Last Guardian? Otherwise, a good show that didn't exactly blow me away.
Kevin VanOrd, EditorI have a secret to tell: I wasn't able to see Sony's press conference in its entirety. Not only did I have an appointment that occurred in the middle of it, but I haven't even seen all of it as of this writing. So be forewarned: These are incomplete impressions, so no score from me. I did see the first half-hour though, and I wanted to mention the obvious: Killzone 3 looks awesome. Now I love a good sci-fi shooter, and what Guerrilla showed of Killzone 3 really hits that special spot. And the jump pack seriously looks like it will add some great variety. Plus, I love the Helghast all decked out in those things, looking like weird sci-fi demons from the future. The future--in hell.
As for the rest, I will allow my colleagues to chime in. I will say this, however: The press conference seemed…dry, maybe? I saw people talk about loving games, but I didn't sense it. Nintendo didn't need to tell me they loved games today: I could just tell. And this is a case where actions speak louder than words.
Guy Cocker, Editor | GameSpot UKSony had a great E3 press conference. It was confident and entertaining--unafraid of acknowledging the competition and even explicitly mocking it in Kevin Butler's hilarious monologue. It had some great surprises, most notably Gabe Newell's appearance and the claim that the PS3 will be home to "the best console version of Portal 2." And, on a purely selfish note, I love that Europe was addressed throughout--the Move will even premiere in the territory.
Sony also displayed quite the jump in quality when it came to Move titles--the E3 demos were markedly better than the ones unveiled at GDC in February. Sorcery was a Harry Potter game in all but name--it looked genuinely good and should be a hit with teenagers. I played the Move-enabled version of Resident Evil 5 just after the conference and really enjoyed the addition of motion controls. It even seems as if the very promising Killzone 3 will be using the technology. Sony also announced a very reasonable $50 price point and a firm November worldwide release date for Move, highlighting Microsoft's vagueness when it comes to pricing Kinect.
I'm not so sure about the company's 3D push, though--it could be an issue of timing, but I think Nintendo's 3DS took the headlines in this area. I'm also not sold on the idea of a premium PSN service, although thankfully I'll still be able to play online multiplayer for free. Also, the lack of any new info on The Last Guardian or the much-rumored Ico Collection disappointed many GameSpot editors I spoke to.
Justin Calvert, Senior EditorGiven the pretty impressive list of games that was shown at Sony's press conference this morning I should have come away from it feeling really impressed. But, after watching Nintendo's excellent event beforehand, I found Sony's to be a little disappointing. At Nintendo, I got the impression that the guys onstage are passionate about games. At Sony, I got the impression that the guys onstage are passionate about sales figures. That's not a criticism, given that the audience undoubtedly included plenty of figures-folk, but after the enthusiasm and joy of Nintendo's presentation, Sony's previews of upcoming marketing campaigns and attempts to mock their competitors just didn't do anything for me, and neither did the 3D portion of the presentation.
The games, on the other hand, got me pretty excited for the good times I'll be having with my PS3 and PSP in the months ahead. Killzone 3 looked great, LittleBigPlanet 2 is undoubtedly a game that I'll sink dozens of hours into, and it goes without saying that I can't wait to get my hands on Patapon 3. Perhaps the biggest and best surprise for me was that, after watching the demo at the end of the conference, I now care about the existence of Twisted Metal. I never cared for the PlayStation and PS2 games, but I think the extra vehicle types are going to make things much more interesting.
Laura Parker, Features Editor | GameSpot AUSony managed to impress me, but try as it might, it could not win my heart (Nintendo claimed it early this morning with its super-rad lineup). Still, let's focus on the good bits shall we? Firstly, to nobody's surprise, David Jaffe finally made Twisted Metal for the PS3 a reality, announcing the title for 2011. What got me more excited, though, was the news that Portal 2 is going to be on the PS3, which means that I will be getting reacquainted with my companion cube very soon (well, obviously not before Portal 2 is released. But you know what I mean.) It was also good to hear that Gran Turismo 5 finally has a release date and that it's not sometime in 2020.
On the hardware front, Sony seems to be going in the right direction to address slow PSP sales in territories outside Japan, promising 70 titles before the end of this year, which will include crowd pleasers God of War: Ghost of Sparta, Parasite Eve 3rd Birthday (yay!), and a PSP version of EyePet.
And finally we can't ignore the PlayStation Move, which, for the most part, is looking a lot more promising than Kinect. I'm still not sold on the pricing and the bundles, but I guess the software will dictate whether it's worth it or not.
Chris Watters, Associate EditorWhile much of Sony's press conference was spent talking about things that alert GameSpot readers already knew about, I for one was unprepared to see a beat-up old ice-cream truck with a flaming clown head roll out onto the stage. Having cut my car combat teeth on past games in the Twisted Metal series, I was excited to see old Sweet Tooth rear his ugly head, but it wasn't until they showed off Nuke mode that I started to get really intrigued. While Deathmatch mode seemed to be fun yet familiar, the huge scale and multistage objective-based matches of Nuke mode seem like something new in the world of car combat. I watched with morbid delight as the clown team frantically held off a doll onslaught while dragging a hostage behind them that they were waiting to sacrifice into the gaping, grinding, flaming maw of a truck-mounted missile launcher. It was great to see some ingenuity applied to resurrecting old classics, and though there was no shortage of games on display during the conference, only one made me crack a twisted smile of delight.
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