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It's time for another round of awards, this time based on my experiences from day 2. Once again, these are based solely on my opinion and are for fun only. But, they are also meant to allow you to gain a better insight into the trade show happenings. Without further ado, let's begin.
The biggest fail award goes to WeMade Entertainment. I got quite the chuckle out of this marketing mess-up, almost as much as Intel's "Actual Size" 2-foot Atom processor mess-up. This time, WeMade was showing off the "World's largest iPhone." What it should have said was "World's largest iPad." Take a look for yourself:
Nintendo wins a couple of awards. First, I'm giving them the award for most booth babes. I swear there was one at every single demo station, of which there were quite a few. More importantly, I am awarding Nintendo with the honor of having the best way to get people to go through their booth. In this case, they gave you a pin for the different attractions you went to in Nintendoland.
Qualcomm Atheros, who I got a chance to speak with at Alienware's booth, wins best gaming networking device. There will be a post dedicated to this technology, but it is enough to say that this is an online gaming game changer. Basically, it allows for packet prioritization and yields lower latency for game packets.
Tomorrow is the last day of E3, so I will close it out with a best-of-show post. Until then, look for more detailed posts about the products and games shown.
I got a chance to check out some new technology by ViviTouch. This new vibrator technology has no moving parts yet provides firm and varying vibration. As opposed to traditional vibrators, the technology demonstrated by ViviTouch allows for directional vibrations which improves the feel of the game's vibrations.
ViviTouch installed the technology into an Xbox 360 controller and I got a chance to play with it for a little while. Let's put it this way: I tried to steal it. Not literally, of course, but I did ask them where I could buy one almost immediately after picking it up. Currently, there is no solution on the market.
In addition to the Xbox controller, they had installed the technology into a pair of headphones. The technology, which was turned off by pressing a button on the side, seemed to increase the quality of the sound. Human hearing is done by vibrations, so having the headphones vibrate puts those vibrations directly into the bones of the ear.
ViviTouch is hoping to get Microsoft and others to implement the technology in their products, so hopefully we will see it on the market soon. Until then, we will have to rely on the old, traditional vibration technology. Shame.
Nintendo is really pushing the whole WiiU thing at this E3. Their massive booth is almost entirely dedicated to the WiiU with many different demo stations demoing many different games. They had an interesting way of getting people to try out all 5 different "attractions" in Nintendoland: They gave a pin after you played the attraction hands-on.
I've spent a good hour with the WiiU now and can give you some idea of how it is. The tablet controller works much better than I previously thought it would. Players really only need to watch the tablet controller's screen in most instances. The TV provides a different view for those watching the game.
Since the tablet can display a completely different screen than the TV, it allows some forms of competitive play that would not be possible without it. For instance, in Luigi's Ghost Mansion, the player with the tablet plays as the ghost, and the rest of the players use a regular Wii controller to walk around hunting the ghost. You can see the obvious issues if everyone were watching the same screen.
I asked one of the demo people to hold up the tablet for a picture and they asked that the actual console be present in the picture of the tablet controller, but they didn't specify that it had to take up a large portion of the picture.
Some Australians have developed a gun controller that is compatible with the Xbox 360, PS3, and PC and doesn't rely on a sensor bar. The device keeps all of the buttons present on the Xbox/PS3 controller, just in a somewhat different layout. The right half of the controller moves to the back as the gun grip, and the left half moves to the front as a foregrip.
The only button, or rather stick, missing is the one typical for looking. Instead, that motion is done by physically moving the gun around. It comes with a bit of a learning curve (trust me, I tried!), but I believe it could make shooters easier in the long run. It definitely makes them more fun to watch.
A few of the buttons' placements seems a bit odd, but I'm sure with a little getting used to, that feeling would go away. Pricing in the US is said to $149 when it launches.
A new game from Boldai aims to make game programming accessible to everyone by allowing users to design and program games without any sort of technical knowledge. Blocksworld allows players to drag and drop blocks and then program them to do things through a drag-and-drop interface. The graphics are simple and so is what you can do, but I imagine the game could be fun.
There are currently 938 open free beta slots, so if you would like to check it out, sign up on Blockworld's website. The game features 4 main parts: build, play, share, and remix. First, players build an object, or anything really, by dragging different LEGO-like blocks into place. Once the blocks are in place, colors, textures, and custom behaviors can be added.
Once a player is content with the design, they then press play and watch the object or simulation come alive. The creations are basically endless in variety. Once happy with a design, the user can share it on Blocksworld.com, Facebook, Twitter, and other social networks so that everyone can marvel at your creativity.
Finally, the game features something called Remix. This feature allows users to download other people's creations and "trash it, tweak it, improve it and share your remix." The cool part is that the system keeps track of the remix history. I haven't gotten a chance to play with it aside from a 5 minute demo at E3, but I will be signing up for the beta. Check out the trailer below.
Sitting in the media lounge on an unreliable internet connection, I managed to catch bits and pieces of Nintendo's press conference. What I gathered is that Nintendo is really relying on the new WiiU to make a resurgence into the market. But, from what I saw, the WiiU isn't shaping up to be a system for hardcore gamers.
I know that Nintendo has never targeted the hardcore gamer market and I think that is why they are faltering. True, the new tablet controller offers interesting uses that will be able to find a niche market like the original Wii did, but I'm not quite sure how easy it will be to manipulate the controller and pay attention to two screens will be.
Additionally, the press conference seemed staged. I realize that almost all conferences are planned in advance, but that doesn't mean they have to seem like it. I was disappointed with the portions I managed to catch. Furthermore, there were no really interesting pieces of news, other than the WiiU. I will be going hands on the WiiU tomorrow once the show floor opens again.
I'm going to hand out some awards that are based solely on my opinion from what I have seen over the show. Some of them will be serious, some not so much, so without further ado, I shall begin.
I have to give Ubisoft the award for best press kit. No, it wasn't some amazing game or flash drive. Instead, it was a just a plain old business card with information on where to download it from. Well, why does it win? Because it is hilarious. Take a look for yourself:
Crysis 3 undoubtedly wins best game of E3 Day 1. Even in pre-alpha stage, the game has a polished look that we have come to love from Crytek. I was not allowed any pictures or videos of the game, but did post my hands-on thoughts already. I may be partial to the Crysis series, but if you had played the demo, I'm sure you would agree with me.
Activision has won the my award for most annoying booth. Don't get me wrong, the booth was awesome, but they had the music up just a wee bit too much out front. The Activision booth had a massive display across its entirety which had to be worth a few million. Underneath, they had alcoves in which visitors could walk into to view and demo games.
These are just a few awards for day one and a way for you to gain some insight into the trade show world. I'll be back tomorrow with another awards post that
I got a chance to play Trion and Crytek's new game Warface. Warface is a new, online, free FPS that uses CryEngine3. The pitch from the creators is that Warface is all about bringing down barriers to Crytek games. The cost, often a major barrier, has been dropped to $0 which will allow almost anyone to play.
Additionally, the controls are intuitive and easy to use and the graphics, stunning. The game has already launched in Russia and China to wide acclaim. Crytek has already seen 50,000 simultaneous users and have over 1.5 million registered. The game, currently in closed beta, should be coming to the United States soon.
The game is said to run on hardware as old as the 8600GT which means another barrier has been removed. Most everyone in the world has a graphics card that is as capable as the 8600GT was, so it shouldn't require upgrades like Crysis 3 will. It also has a nice system of introducing players to the game so they aren't losing right off the bat. This prevents users from raging and not coming back to the game.
The game features two modes: a co-op PvE and a free-for-all PvP. In PvE, teams compete against AI and work together to a common goal. This feature allows users to get used to the game before going into the more hardcore PvP. In PvP, players play against each other and this is where seasoned vets can show their ability.
Check out TweakTown's Facebook page for a trailer.
Words will not do the new Crysis 3 game justice, but they will have to suffice as I was unable to take pictures or video of the demo that I was able to play. As previously reported, the game returns to the jungle by turning New York City into a jungle. The graphics, as we have come to expect from Crysis games, are stunning.
Electronic Arts demoed what they were calling "pre-alpha code" but you couldn't tell that by looking at it, save for the message telling you such. Game play was absolutely fabulous except that I was used to Call of Duty. Once I returned to the PC-style gaming, the controls became intuitive and easy-to-use.
I did manage to break the game, however, and I was the first person at E3 to do so. I'm a bit proud of that achievement because it means I played the game in a different way then everybody else. That's the beauty of this upcoming Crysis: the world is incredibly open and the route to objectives is not nearly as defined as in other first-person shooters.
For those of you who enjoyed the original Crysis for the jungle scenery, the new jungle scenery present in New York City is sure to not disappoint. If you preferred the city landscape of Crysis 2, you will not be disappointed as their is still city landscape present in the new Crysis 3. The launch date for Crysis 3 is set to be sometime in February 2013.
It looks like it's going to be a good year for gaming fans! As I walked into the entrance of the Los Angeles Convention Center, I saw games being advertised everywhere. I'm not talking a small poster here or there; I'm talking massive banners draped from the the ceilings and clung to every surface.
There's some big money being spent here and some big name titles coming out. The show doesn't start for another 3 hours, but I've already managed to catch glimpses of Nintendo's booth babes who just happen to be wearing WiiU shirts. You can be sure of where I am heading first when the doors open!
Make sure that you are following TweakTown on Facebook, as I will likely be putting up pictures on there from the show floor and only writing these during down time. That's enough for now, time for me to go hunt down some exclusives!