E3 – Day Two – Sony

Here’s the big one for me, I’ve really made no secret of my love for that giant black console and all of its ancestors. I might not be a die hard Sony fanboy, but I do love that console and all the fun it holds. Baring that in mind, I do try to be objective.


As have all the Sony press events from the last 3 years that I can remember, this one started of with a music video montage of game footage, some Kevin Butler clips, and all the glitz that accompanies these opening. I personally love them, sure it could just be Sony showing off it’s financial power or what not to producing, but I love the mood they set for the whole event, and typically, Sony does seem to have one of the more fun and well staged presentations. Starting off Jack Trenton came out, along with a quick shot at the Natal/Kinect poncho cult thing as well as a mention to Kevin Butler, to bad he couldn’t be the MC for the event. While he really has a great presentation ability, it doesn’t help the traditional charts and graphs talk without the charts and graphs. I wish they had made some with Little Big Planet 2 like they did last year. Kazuo Hirai came out next and spoke to the innovations with 3D as well as mentioning a Wipe Out HD 3D and many others. There’s a lot of 3D down the pipe line and Sony is obviously pushing it; looking at it as a big step into the future of gaming. Following that came Killzone 3 complete with 3D demo. Killzone 3 has been made with full 3D integration from the ground up and has been made with it in mind, so there’s no tacking on of the 3D just to push the product, and by all accounts it’s actually quite good. 3D aside, the graphics look absolutely gorgeous, even by PS3 standards, and it’s promised that there will be more variation of environments shown of by the engine, such as the wintry arctic level shown of here or a mention alien jungle. The gameplay is intense and fast, and the jump pack sections look like a joy. To cap it all off, Killzone 3 will be fully Move compatible, instantly ending my worry that this motion controller fad was going to be casual market only and that Sony is keeping hardcore gamers in mind – whether or not they can physically last a long play session with it. Kaz Hirai came back out to push 3D some more throwing out that Motorstorm Apocalypse, the Sly Collection, and Gran Turismo 5 will be completely 3D ready as well and continuing into more Move capable titles. The second music video of the event came show casing the combination of Move and 3D would be the future of immersive gaming and with Trenton calling it a “more immersive realistic gaming environment” and it does sound like a compelling idea. We got a shot video giving a developer’s standing on the Move, talking about the immersion and precision of the controller, along with a few bits from Kevin Butler for good measure. Then Sorcery came out showing what a Move title would be like and honestly I like what I see. It’s a third person game utilizing a flick of the Move to fire bolts of magic. It shows off what the Move can achieve and in a way I can see everyone playing. Controlling movement with the sub-controller looks relatively smooth, but still the big thing is the Move. The ball changing color relecting what is going on in the player’s hand, like picking up a green potion turning the ball green. It needs to be said, while I am talking a lot about the controls and Move, the game itself looks pretty solid. Some cool spells and cool interactions between them. Whether this will be the must have title for the Move or the one that, well, moves the hardware is yet to be seen, but it’s a solid game and I really can’t criticize it to much. Next came sports games, and though these are my cup of tea, the Tiger Woods PGA Tour demo did show of no just the one to one movement but also a little of the feedback of the swing like a slight buzz when hitting a ball from the rumble, a nice touch indeed. But, it is motion golfing, and we’ve seen this from the Wii in some shape or form. After was a trailer for Heroes on the Move (a very working title) combining Sly Cooper and Bentley, Jak and Daxter, and Rachet and Clank, into a move driven platformer. A lot of flagship characters all coming together, but ultimately it will be the gameplay. Back came Trenton to show a new ad campaign with Coke complete with the ability to win a PS3 or Move. Then, part way through, out comes Kevin Butler (carrying a Coke no less, and I do love Coke). Honestly, I’d nearly say Kevin stole the show. Complete with some Natal/Kinect event shots, some pop culture references and capping it off with a final speech to the gamers. There’s tons of videos of the bit on youtube and I encourage you going out and watching. This guy’s a great ad campaign and will probably be remember as an icon for a while – or at least I hope so. Once Trenton took the stage back we got more info on the Move, as well as pricing and bundles. While not the cheapest thing to get, a Move controller alone will be about $50, which isn’t bad, but you’ll need the PS3 Eye to use it, so there’s another $50. There will be a $400 all in one bundle of a PS3, Move and Eye, but it all seems like a tad steep entrance ramp, but the software looks like it could be there so I could just be being pessimistic. Afterward was a THIRD music video, this time for the Move exclusively. Sure I like these, and it wasn’t bad, but this might be getting to be a bit much? Or at least wear out the special fun the open vids can have. Next came the next push for the PSP, starring Kevin Butler’s new side kick Marcus Rivers. Looks like it will have all the tongue-in-check mock-seriousness that made the Kevin Butler ads so great, complete with some healthy one liners (KB: “Favorite snack?” MR: “I consume a healthy amount of suckers online every day” KB “Daaaaah…Like that answer”). The PSP line up looks like it will be strong with God of War: Ghost of Sparta, and while Invisimals isn’t my thing, it still looks cool. However, this does bring up something I was curious to hear news about, the PSPGo and PSP 4000. Now, it’s been hinted and rumored that Sony was working on a new PSP version but nothing was shown so I doubt we’ll see anything this year, even come the Tokyo Gamin Show. The PSPGo seems to have been all but swept under the rug; it was in some of the PSP images but ultimately it was not even specifically mentioned. I really love the form of the PSPGo and every time I see a used one sitting in Gamestop (Yes! They have them here) for $169, I almost have to bite. It was a serious misstep for Sony sure, but I hate seeing such a nice device full of potential being nearly forgotten. Sure it was probably marketed poorly and could have done with being the PSP2 to help differentiate itself from the PSP, but I hope that Sony hasn’t forgotten it entirely. There was a rumor about images of what looked like PSPGo parts but with a UMD space. If that’s true, I can’t wait. Now I might an outlier, sure I love the style, shape, and potential of the PSP but all I have for my 1000 is Hellboy, House of Flying Daggers, Hero, and a single game, Untold Legends, so the jump to a download only PSPGo wouldn’t hurt me as much, but there is something about physical media that I just like. This will be an article later on but I wanted to throw it out there. Moving right along, there does look to be a good line up coming down the pipe line with games like Kingdom Hearts and the 3rd Birthday. And comes a fourth music video, this one for the PSP, one of these days, this might start to get old, but luckily they are all different enough not to get annoying and I guess they make a nice segue point. All of this PSP is making me want to hunt down the charger and start looking into some of the $10 classics, so I guess all of this is doing its job. We then got some PSN talk. Showing off how connective the PS3 is. Now, here is the big kicker that I love, utilizing Playstation Home, the complete Sony E3 booth is recreated there along with digital swag for everyone to visit and enjoy. This is not just genius, but shows off what Home can do that few other things can. Media Molecule followed with Little Big Planet 2 in tow. I loved Little Big Planet, though I haven’t gotten a chance to really pick around and build stuff with it, but it’ll be the first thing I get my grubby hands on when I decide to stop mooching off friends’ PS3. LBP2 seems to not just be following suit but going above and beyond offering more tools than ever before for players to build their own stages. After showing off some fun stages and the breath of amount of game types, they showed some footage of games made by some of the designers at Media Molecule given only 24 hours, LBP2 and the simple instructions of make a game. LBP2 looks to be building and expanding on what LBP started and doing it quite well. Only other thing I can say is this: The creatornator, hat-o-doom. Following that we got a look at PlayStation Plus, the new PSN subscription service. I honestly don’t know what to make of this; I understand the desire to compete with Xbox live, but they are essentially charging us for free stuff, like demos and early beta access. It’s on Sony’s shoulders to convince us that we need this service without pissing of current PSN users or taking away features. Next came the EA portion of the show, along with the teased conclusion to the Dead Space 2 demo started yesterday. All I can say is that I echo what I already said in my EA blurb, Dead Space 2 looks great, scary, and beautiful and a much anticipated sequel. We also got more Medal of Honor which was just more of the same really – but that 24 person live demo was done on PS3s… just saying. As the event keeps rolling, we get our second big event…show?… GLADoS takes over the event. Out walks Gabe Newell to announce not only Portal 2 with Steamworks support on the PS3, but that it will be the best version of the game. A big announcement to say the least, coupled with Gabe’s previous comments against the PS3 and Sony, makes this even bigger for Sony. The bit itself was well done too, I suggest everyone looking for it on youtube. After Portal, Final Fantasy 14 was shown with some game play shots intermingled in the trailer. The game looks to be coming along nicely but nothing to report on yet really. Another showing of Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood can next along with the announcement that the beta for it will be PS3 exclusive on the PSN. At this point, it seems like Sony is holding a lot at their booth, which I hope means lots of playable games. There is yet another music video, making 4 thus far, showing off simply PS3 games. Now comes the Gran Turismo 5 trailer, presumably with game play in it, along with a long, LONG, awaited release date of November 2. This game has been shown since the PS3 debut, so either the game is going to be amazing, or there are going to be some very disappointed fanboys… but considering who we’re talking about, it will probably look and play amazingly. After GT5, is Infamous 2. There looks to be a lot of changes from the last game like environment and the look of our lighting throwing protagonist. Coupled with the fact he’s wielding what looks like a cattle prod on super steroids and that it’s hinted that there might be new ice oriented powers, make it look like a must buy for fans of the original. To cap off the show we get a trailer, heralding the return of Twisted Metal. Out comes David Jaffe accompanied by a Sweet Tooth driving his demonic looking ice cream truck. Not only do we get live game play, but there is game play available on the floor. The game truly looks like nothing we’ve seen this generation which shows all kinds of vehicular combat, including helicopters and flaming-chain-saw wielding bikers, and I think I saw a Sweet Tooth mech. If there was a way for Sony to close a show, Twisted Metal was it.

I have mixed feelings about the Sony event. It’s hard to argue that Sony didn’t have the best staged show, like with Kevin Butler, and Jack Trenton has some very good stage presence and presentation ability. There were some great announcements too: Portal 2 and Twisted Metal. But from all the glitz and glam, the show felt a little empty and shallow. Maybe I’m a little upset by the lack of any more infromation of the Last Guardian or that the PSPGo has been all but swept under the rug. All and all, though, it ranks a solid 2nd of the press events and gains extra points against Microsoft for actually having some hard core support in their motion controller.


One Response to “E3 – Day Two – Sony”

  1. Im calling it now, however, that this is going to be a Sony Christmas after all. Sony Playstation 2

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