Exciting E3

Left 4 Dead 2? Super Mario Galaxy 2? Halo: Reach?

Drop any bombshells like that a few weeks ago and you’d be subjected to the sound of silence. And laughter. Lots of laughter, lots of scoffs, and probably a few insults for good measure — until now. That’s the magic of the Electronic Entertainment Expo, a massive games-oriented convention rocking Los Angeles as we speak. To say that E3 is kind of a big deal for gamers all across the globe would be a little bit like saying that Nintendo has done fairly well for itself since it released the Wii.

But don’t fret if you missed any of the big keynotes from yesterday or today. The beauty of the internet means nearly everything unveiled at E3 so far is available for your perusal, though I’m going to take it one step further and distill it all down to the really exciting stuff. Those three titles at the beginning of this column? Yeah, those are real.

For the sake of organization, let’s break this down by the three major consoles:

Super Mario Galaxy 2 looks fantastic. Reports indicate that it’s nearly 90% new content, which is pretty remarkable given the concern that it would just be a rehash of the first game.

Metroid: Other M is kinda odd. A Metroid game developed by Team Ninja, the guys behind the infamously difficult Ninja Gaiden series? It’ll be a slick, polished adventure if nothing else, though it’s a definite departure fOR the series after the Metroid Prime trilogy.

New Super Mario Bros. Wii should be a blast. The original New Super Mario Bros. for the Nintendo DS was well-received, so I doubt this expansion/continuation onto a home console will be any different.

Wii Fit Plus interests me only in that I’m curious to see if consumers will rush out to buy it. The original Wii Fit was a smashing success, much like the rest of Nintendo’s lineup, but I can’t help but wonder if they can strike gold twice.

Left 4 Dead 2. Strange name, and even stranger that a sequel should come out less than a year after the original debuted, though all reports indicate that this is the game Left 4 Dead should have been. The original gameplay has been enhanced in a number of ways to introduce new content (weapons, zombies, etc.), so I suspect this will do pretty well whenever it drops in November.

Halo 3: ODST and Halo: Reach — two big new games from Bungie, both of which are bound to be huge successes when they debut. The latter was only just revealed at E3, so details are scarce at the moment, though ODST received a pretty decent amount of coverage.

Alan Wake’s in-game narration didn’t impress me much, which has me worried for the storyline, though the actual gameplay footage looks great. It’s been a long time coming, but the developers of Max Payne look to have nailed the survival horror genre pretty successfully.

Splinter Cell: Conviction has fantastic visuals. Beyond that, I’m a little clueless, as I’ve never played a Splinter Cell game in my life. It does seem like it’ll be a great title, though, based on the trailer alone.

Crackdown 2 and Modern Warfare 2 will be great sequels whenever they see release. The former was actually a pretty big surprise given the secrecy surrounding its development, though getting another opportunity to run around an open-world city as a super-cop should be a blast.

Uncharted 2: Among Thieves
brought easily the most astonishing gameplay demo I’ve ever seen. The original Uncharted still stands as a pretty compelling reason to own a Playstation 3, though the sequel looks to have improved upon it in every possible way. Gorgeous graphics, incredibly fluid gameplay, and so many other things add up to make this one of the most exciting games of the year. Seriously. Watch the demo, ladies and gents, and you’ll see what I mean.

God of War 3 looks to be similarly impressive, though the five-minute demo debuted at E3 didn’t come across as particularly interesting. It’ll be an excellent game, I’m sure, and a fantastically brutal continuation of the series, though the little they showed didn’t really reach out and grab me. Keep an eye on it, regardless, as it’ll be a huge hit whenever it debuts.

Final Fantasy…14? In the definition of a bombshell announcement, FF14 was announced for release in 2010. It came with a pretty nonsensical trailer that had every member of the audience probably scratching their heads until the very last second of the cinematic revealed the game’s subtitle: Online. The hype came crashing down (for me, at least, though the audience didn’t seem particularly impressed either). The last time the Final Fantasy series ventured online was for the oft-ignored Final Fantasy 11, so who knows how the ‘sequel’ will fare?

ModNation Racers is, for lack of a better description, Little Big Planet with karts. The big appeal of the game will be the ability to create your own vehicles, your own driver, and even your own tracks, the last of which was given a quick hands-on demo in front of the crowd. It looks surprisingly easy to work with, which is a pleasant surprise, and ties in pretty well with the community creation angle Sony is working.

Rockstar’s new series Agent was also introduced, though little details are known beyond the fact that it’s exclusive to the PS3. Still, the guys and gals behind the Grand Theft Auto series generally put out a quality product, so I can’t imagine Agent being any different.

In Glorious Summation

It’s been an E3 of sequels, if the sheer number of 2s and 3s are any indication. Still, all of them look like fantastic games, though the excitement fades a little when you consider only a few will see release in 2009.

You could also call it an E3 of motion control, as both Microsoft and Sony debuted motion control technology for their respective consoles. Of the two, Microsoft’s Natal tech is definitely the more interesting, though look for more discussion on that next week.

E3 still has a number of tricks up it sleeves, however, since it doesn’t wrap things up until June 4th. I’m pretty excited to see what else will make an appearance. Thoughts on this year’s Expo? All things considered, I’m pretty impressed.

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No Comments on "Exciting E3"

  1. Brian
    06/06/2009 at 2:12 am Permalink

    I’m sad that you ignored PC and mobile titles, unless they’re coming in a later post. What about APB, Scribblenauts, Homefront, Just Cause 2, SW:TOR, M&B, etc etc etc? You absolutely MUST give love where it’s due.

    Also: nice post.

  2. Used SNES Games
    18/06/2009 at 8:15 pm Permalink

    I can’t believe Left 4 Dead 2 is coming out. When I bought L4D, I thought I was getting the Valve bonus content that they release for their games regularly. Well, I’m not buying L4D2, because if I would have known they were going to ruin the L4D community like this I wish I wouldn’t have even bought the first one.

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