E3: Sony’s Press Conference

June 7, 2011


This was awesome. Simply awesome. Over the last few years I have always eagerly watched the different press conferences over the internet and get all giddy when new games are announced and cry when press conferences muck up. Without further ado here is a list of my highlights and lowlights of the press conference.

What I did like

Uncharted 3
What a way to kick off the press conference! Sony unveiled a new level of Uncharted 3 which saw our plucky hero Nathan Drake making his way through a large boat. Seemingly a cross between a small cruise ship and a cargo ship, Nathan stealthily made his way to the cargo hold of the boat while sneaking up on guards and breaking their necks. Very tense. When he reached his destination he gets caught in a trap. How does he escape? Throw a grenade, in a hull. BOOM. Water starts flooding ing and this really impressed me. The water level slowly risen as a friefight took place, the ship preceding to capsize as this happens. After a while the boat lands 90 degrees on its side. All of a sudden its The Posiedon Adventure, with Nathan attempting to escape without drowning. A whole feat of fantastic platforming took place before the demo ended.

PS Vita details
Finally, we no longer have to refer to the PSP’s successor as NGP. IT HAS A NAME. Albeit, not an amazing name but it will do. The Wii is a terrible name but that caught on. Also pricing was announced. The Wi-fi only model will retail at $250 while the Wifi and 3G model will retail at $300. No news on UK pricing but we’ll more than likely get the bad end of the bargains like always.

A diablo style RPG for the PS Vita which has taken modern day technology to a whole new level. Although I’m not too fussed about these type of things, I cannot argue that this looks impressive. What we saw was a character making his way through a friend’s lair (I’ll get back to that) fighting off hoarde’s of enemies. Unlike old-school RPGs where you would select a command then the player would then charge and use the move, combat is now instant and tied to buttons on your controller in a similar fashion to God of War gameplay. Ruin is strongly promoting social interaction. This game will have strong ties to social media such as facebook and twitter. Also it will make use of Vita’s “near” system which allows you to game with random people who are close to you in real life and add them as friends, socialise etc. You can team up with friends, hinder them, or kill them. This demo saw you invading a friend’s lair, hopefully I will be able to steal all of my friend’s treasures. Here’s where it gets cool. You can save your game file to the Sony Cloud (saving on the internet as opposed to saving on your console) and then resuming from exactly where you are in the game on the PS3. Now I’m not sure if you will have to buy another copy of this game for your PS3 (I really doubt it) or if in buying the game on PSV will entitle you to a download code to download the game on to your PS3 free of charge (much more practical) but I am excited at this process which has been dubbed “transfarring” (yes, that is how you spell it).

Sony’s Push for 3D
It’s understandable, normal consumers cannot afford 3D TVs at this current economic climate. Sony are releasing a special Playstation branded 24″ monitor, seperate from the Sony Bravia label, specifically designed with 3D in mind. Shipping along with a copy of Resistance 3 and 2 3D glasses this will cost a staggeringly cheap $500 (approx £300). Sony will have over 100 titles by the end of the year which support 3D. Now the next bit is not too clear, so take what I say with a grain of salt. Sony mentioned they have developed a way to have splitscreen multiplayer in 3D but instead of splitting the screen in half, each person can only see their “screen” through their glasses but at full screen. It boggles my mind how 2 people can see 2 seperate things across a single screen, but it will finally destroy all screen watching which I totally overdid in games such as Goldeneye. It is not clear if all games will support this and whether this will only work on the new Playstation monitor but I’m sure Sony will update with new details soon.

Littlebigplanet and Modnation Racers on PS Vita
Play Create Share has strongly been pushed over the last few years to support user generated content and make games which never end. The touchscreens on the Vita allow for such greater creation tools. Modnation Racers showed how they made a working race circuit in about 3 minutes. They just drew a squiggle on the blank canvas and a track was formed. They could then use the new touch screen interface for track editing such as making jumps and laying down props. I loved how pressing down on the touchscreen would lower the ground to make lakes as if you were physically pushing the ground, and then pressing on the rear touchpad you could force mountains to grow out of the ground.
Littlebigplanet demonstrated all new ways to play the new iteration to this established franchise, allowing you to play many games in an ipod style (flinging slingshots, drawing new paths) making use of all the new elements available exclusively on the Vita. Unfortunately level editor was not shown off here, but in due time it will be.

Sly 4 announced
Although just an artsy cartoon video to build up hype for the game, it worked. I cant wait.

What I didn’t like

PS Vita’s network carrier
Making a push to become an all integral machine, the Vita will work best when supported with 3G. Who did Sony choose to partner with? AT&T. Yep. Urgh. Hopefully us brits will have a much nicer partner and we’ll be able to game without an issue.

Resistance 3
The demo shown off found you fighting for your life in the middle of Manhatan against swarms of Chimera. Although demonstrating a lot of the weapons you’ll use, I found this lackluster demo unoriginal. The second half of the demo just had us watching Joseph Capelli, the new protaganist of the series, walk through destroyed buildings holding an ‘energy core’. Maybe this game will impress me in the future but at the moment it just seems too much of the same thing seen before.

As a whole I found this to be a very impressive press conference, and personally as this was the first time I was live watching the press conference I found the whole experience to be overwhelming. After the actual conference finished, the curtains behind the stage opened to show 120 different gaming kiosks, people dancing, musicians playing, a crazy dj along with a LOT of free food and drink. Shame I couldn’t make the most of the free alcohol, bloody US age restrictions. Also, later on in the evening they had Jane’s Addiction playing live which was pretty fucking awesome if I do say so myself.

Watch this space as I update about the 5 games I got my hands on while at the Press Conference! 😀




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