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July 11, 2007
E3 News- Nintendo Press Conference

Like Microsoft's before it, Nintendo held their E3 press conference this morning at 11am CST (9am PST), and for those who did not see it, the following is a run down of much of the discussion that took place within their little over an hour presentation. (Note, yet again, times are being handled in CST)

Wii Zapper
To kick off the show, Reggie stated plainly, "My name, is Reggie. And I am happy." Then, followed up not long later with the announcement and confirmation of the suspected "Wii Zapper" peripheral.

Reggie concluded that the device would come packaged with select software, as well as separately at an MSRP of $19.99.

Super Smash Bros. Brawl
Brawl's announcement was quite slim, other than a bit of jargon, with the important conclusion of a 12/3/07 release date.

Metroid Prime 3: Corruption
Improving on pre-existing set ups and including new functionality as well, Metroid Prime 3 was explained to have complex yet accessible controls, and utilized the minus button on the Wiimote to change visor views, as well as the return of the morph ball.

Further inclusions are: 'free aim', allows the player the ability to aim anywhere on the screen even after an enemy has been locked on, and a new "Hyper Mode." The hyper mode is explained as an increase in power through the use of energy tanks in Samus' P.E.D. suit; but this comes with a price, being that over prolonged use of the mode, will result in the corruption of Samus.

Super Mario Galaxy
Yet another short set, but one that had a great pay off. Super Mario Galaxy is explained as a worthy successor in the series, which sets a new gold standard for a player interface in any game. Reggie continued to say that the game requires skill and luck to finish, but that it is supposed to be easily accessible to players who are not experienced and accomplished players; and finally concluded that it would see release 11/12/07.

My opinion:
In between the suitably less obvious self-congratulations that Nintendo had gotten into over the course of the conference, there was some actual stuff accomplished, for the most part. Like Microsoft's conference, everything was as short as possible, but during that I had only felt disappointed by Phantom Hourglass's explanations, which seemed overly short, and almost wasted. On the whole, though, Nintendo's turned out to be a lot more satisfying than Microsoft's.

First to touch on, is the Wii Zapper. It's great to have another Zapper in the Nintendo family, but I can't help but think that the finesse they built with the wiimote and nunchuk go to waste in what is, really, a very ugly little device. I am honestly not impressed by its appearance; operation, sure, but elegance this is not.

Next up, Super Smash Bros. Brawl. The big thing I came to see this morning, and Nintendo did not disappoint in this area; a little longer wait than I would have liked, but that's the way of things, and Nintendo will release a game like that when it can assure the largest sales figures. It's unlikely they would need to wait until Christmas, for it to be an assured seller, but that doesn't take the possibility of it spectacularly failing anyway.

Continuing on, Metroid Prime 3. I've never really followed the Prime series, so, just as personal opinion, it sounds interesting enough, but it doesn't quite strike me just yet. For fans of the series, however, it's looking to be yet another excellent installation in the series.

Now, as for Nintendo's online presence, they really try to give an impression that they're spearheading the operation for peak interest, but really, who's kidding whom on this one? Those of us who own a Wii already know that playing the damn thing is difficult, and Reggie, bless his heart, has the outright nerve to pull on Pokemon Battle Revolution as evidence that they are doing things in a manner befitting the operation; which is silly at best. Now, I am not really that big of a supporter of online play, and could care less if I am playing a solo game or an online game by my very nature, but even at that, I can still tell when there's a bluff a-foot.

At the end of the day, this set was a giant bluff, and lacking the substance, thus far, to support their statements; especially when the biggest issues involving online has been and continues to be the wii code system, which is broken.

In conclusion, here's the question this time, am I the only one who was bored out of my mind by Iwata's and Miyamoto's sets? It's common knowledge that Iwata likes to hear himself talking, but, as much as I wanted to, I just could not get interested in what either had to say; in the midst of delving into the attraction and appreciation as well as Wii Fit, respectively, it was like over-kill of irrelevant shit. I am sure they are both very proud of the statements they had made, but there were bigger fish to fry than personal opinion and a non-game game, such as a sadly unrecognized Wii storage capacity discussion and considerations; we really need that to expand, because the current size of flash memory just isn't doing the job, and in the midst of this need... well, came ignorance to even so much as touch upon it.

At the end of the day, this conference was good. We had some important items discussed, and with that important information in hand, we can feel satisfied that it was addressed at all, let alone given release dates; and, more yet, good to their word, thus far those titles which Nintendo was adamant for a 2007 release, are looking to still stay that way. On top of that we got a little rub about Phantom Hourglass.

This is a list covering a lot of the mornings discussions as they had occurred.

11:05AM (CST) - "My name, is Reggie. And I am happy."
11:07AM (CST) - Reggie explaining the growth of interest and other avenues, and general back-slapping over sales.

11:19AM (CST) - Introducing the Wii "Zapper". Wii remote and nunchuck housing. Package Wii Zapper with software. Available at $19.99.

11:24AM (CST) - Super Smash Bros. Brawl launching on 12/3/07.
11:26AM (CST) - Mike and Bill Trinnen introduction, for Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass.
11:27AM (CST) - The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass; utilizes the touch screen for many tasks, and make gameplay 'fresh'.

11:30AM (CST) - Metroid Prime 3: Coruption; Holding down the minus button and gesturing to change visor views. Morph ball returns. Lock on 'free aiming'. While being locked on, the ability to aim anywhere on screen is available. Hyper Mode with energy tank in P.E.D suit to give her more power. If used too long, however, Samus will become corrupt ed.

11:33AM (CST) - Serious online strategy discussion. Quoted 5m players on DS wifi connections. Humbling statements about playing online. "Wiiware" - unique stand-alone content to be downloaded to the Wii, beginning next year. "Check Mii Out!" vote and find Mii's. Contests, promotions, and creating Mii's based on certain 'real-life' celebrities. Will Nintendo ever get serious about 'real' online gaming? Pokemon online, apparently is 'serious'.

Players will be competing online with the world's most hyper-active soccer title, Super Mario Strikers.

Dragon Quest Monsters - Joker, 'a monster catching adventure', battling online.
Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock, including a wireless Les Paul controller.

Apparently this is all serious online.

Mario Kart for Wii, online, in the first quarter of next year. Not your father's Mario Kart. Racing against rivals around the world, in REAL TIME. Online multi-player battle mode. More racers = more fun? First timer's can immediately stay bumper-to-bumper with a kart veteran. Custom 'wii wheel', debut with Mario Kart for Wii. Custom steering wheel offers potential to level the track for new players. Wii Wheel will come packaged with Mario Kart software.

"All this makes games feel fresh again, no matter how long you've been playing."

11:43AM (CST) - Mass market what's next. Satoru Iwata introduction. New proposals in games and appreciation. Player attraction and paradigm shifts taking place in his own home. DS Cook book software enthuses Iwata. Fear that Nintendo has lost its passion. Hopes that this is not the case. Ask the veterans to remember their very first day as gamers, and if they are like him, it was an exciting time in life, and maybe a little intimidating due to others being more competent, as well as annoying, because of being accused of wasting your life. He had parents too.

The next step is too destroy the psychological barrier between novice players and accomplished players. And to stop narrow labeling. Accept that games are for everyone. Everyone can develop a taste for videogames.

11:53AM (CST) - Brain Age success. Release 8/20/07.
11:53AM (CST) - Super Mario Galaxy: Worthy successor. Sets a new gold standard for player interface, for any game. Requires skill and luck to finish, but also accessible to people without experience. Release 11/12/07.

11:55AM (CST) - We're just getting started: Picross DS, with hundreds of picture puzzles to create and share, and download new ones. EA's My Sims; immediately approachable. Highschool Musical, waste. Ubisoft's Rayman Raving Rabbids 2. Among other titles.

12:01AM (CST) - Shigeru Miyamoto introduction. Wii Fitness being a primary interest. Usage demonstrations. Battles against Reggie, loses.

Game List:
Brain Age (Nintendo),
Dragon Quest Monsters - Joker (Square Enix),
Dragon Quest Swords (Square Enix),
Highschool Musical: Sing It! (Disney),
Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass, The (Nintendo),
Mario Kart (Nintendo),
Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games (Sega),
Metroid Prime 3: Corruption (Nintendo),
My Sims (Electronic Arts),
Picross DS (Nintendo),
Rayman Raving Rabbids 2 (Ubisoft),
Super Mario Galaxy (Nintendo),
Super Smash Bros. Brawl (Nintendo),
WWE SmackDown! vs. Raw 2008 (THQ),

-- lost in thought

Tags: News, E3, Nintendo, Press Conference

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