Thursday, July 12, 2007

The Holy Three (Microsoft Press Confrence)

Well E3 has finished, so far I have watched both the Microsoft and Nintendo conferences. I will write about Nintendo's tomorrow, but today I will be writing about Microsoft's press conference. Microsoft's focus of its conference was centred firmly on up and coming games. They in fact only featured one game that wasn't coming out this year.

They opened the event up saying that the sales figures were greater than the Wii and PS3 combined since last November. This is a fairly impressive statistic, as the 360 has been out longer, however, it has had time to get some good games, something the Wii and PS3 haven't done yet. None the less, the 360 is doing very well.

However, the facts made up a very small portion of the show, with most of the show being devoted to the games. One game was Rock Band. This is shaping up to look like a lot of fun. The addition of both singing a drums will surly make a positive difference. However, the game only looks like fun if you have a sound proof living room, because you are going to want to properly sing, and 4 friends who enjoy music to play with. This should be minimalised with the ability to form online bands. Hopefully they will include a Composer so that people can make and share their own tunes.

A predictable sequel is Piñata Party Animals. Piñata was the surprise success of the 360 for last year and I must admit I never got to play it. This title looks similar but not very interesting. The advert was done in the style of a mildly amusing but very family friendly Disney film that you take your younger brother to because the film you wanted to see had a too high rating.

One title that I wasn't aware of is a title called Mass Effect. It looked surprisingly like Halo, and as it comes from a Microsoft studio, they are probably trying to make some more intellectual property for when Halo dies. Apparently, it is an RPG which should be interesting. Also interesting is it is coming out around the same time as Halo. Won't they just eat in to each others sales. Sorry, won't Halo eat in to its sales.

Now this thought has come to me before, but when I saw the new controller and the game, I knew I was right. The 360 is the new PS2. I had been thinking this for some time, as the console is focused more and more on 3rd party games, is releasing anything, sold a lot, and is a well rounded console. However this clinched me. You know the rubbish DVD games you get, well they are coming to the 360 with this controller:

Look at it, it is the most stupid thing I have ever seen, and also almost identical to the PS2 controller for Buzz:

Microsoft went in to great lengths on how Live for Windows will revolutionise PC gaming and how it will bring standards to the online world. It will also allow further integration between PC and 360. On the topic of PC, Gears of War is coming to PC with 6 new chapters in which one you get to fight this evil creature that in the 360 version you just ran away from. It will feature a map editor too. Looks just as good as the 360 version.

They also showcased the new Call of Duty, called Modern Warfare. Now I have always been a fan of the Call series, thinking it the best WW2 shooter. Modern Warfare looks to carry on this domination, and it looks amazing. They showed us the first level. I was on the edge of my seat. The game has you creeping around this terrorist base at night. The game looks like it will be focused on avoiding combat, but still providing intense fight scenes. Coming on nicely.

Among the highlights was of course Halo 3. Shapping up to look really good, but the singe player does look very simmilar to Halo 2. However, even I noticed it looked a lot more intense. The video had you driving in the back of a warhog with a rocket launcher and running around with an uprooted turret. I think this will be the final fight as the trailer they showed had many Spartans equipping. I think the final level is going to be a really big battle with hundereds of people shooting. Maybe even on the scale of D-Day.

I could not talk about the show with out mentioning the band who played at the start. They played an amazing arrangement of the Halo theme tune which really got every excited. Well done.

Nintendo and Sony PC Analysis to come
Microsoft, Nintendo and Sony game summaries to come
E3 Conclusion to come
Sorry for the lack of posts, had a lot of coursework, but school is now finished so expect more posts again.

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