Few individuals will go through the trouble of making their own E3 predictions, and I can see why people have that viewpoint. Speculation can lead to inflated hopes and subsequently, crushing disappointment. For an industry event that is almost always responded to with negativity, I can see why people would rather not let themselves get too high up, lest they come crashing down.
With this year’s E3, even realistic expectations may have been a bit too much. History tells us that companies always thrive on software, and despite that fact, there are differing opinions about which of the “big three’s” showing was the most underwhelming with regard to software. Sony had a really big exclusive with The Last of Us, a particularly sleek Naughty Dog IP that provides the horror of a post-apocalyptic world with the attachment sentiment of Ico.
Despite Sony nailing a big time exclusive with Last of Us, their upcoming Wonder Book project may be a big time flop. I am unfortunately one of the blasphemers that has never touched a Harry Potter book or film, but J.K. Rowling associating herself with this niche PlayStation Move product is met with a resounding “meh”. Despite my interest in the application of augmented reality, Sony’s Leapfrog does little to to entice me to pick up a Move.
Lastly with regard to Sony, the upcoming PS One classics library and the integration of Cross Play make the Vita something that I may actually find myself playing a lot. The upcoming Assassin’s Creed: Liberation bundle paired with an awesome classic library and the ability to take my PS3 titles with me is a combination that I couldn’t throw my money at fast enough.
The subtle back and forth between Microsoft and Nintendo is a little hilarious to me. The WiiU Pro controller’s design strikes me as familiar, and my brain can’t help but laugh and say “they took Microsoft’s controller, so Microsoft took their whole platform”. I may be in the minority here, but Microsoft’s conference managed to excite me most of the way through.
If you went in expecting Microsoft to play up the 360 as an entertainment dynamo, then they delivered. Over the last two years, the 360 has grown from just something to play games with to a convenience center for all types of media. A recent study showed that a third of the time being spent on the 360 was on Netflix, it wasn’t remotely surprising that they were going to run with that idea. Media consumption is an omnipresent reality, and making video games a part of that meal is a huge step in the right direction.
I won’t mince words – Smartglass is an incredible prospect to me. The idea that my console will provide optional enhancements through the use of smartphone and tablet syncing at no extra cost to me is a dream come true. People may just want the whole package by buying a WiiU and game pad, it’s enticing to think that any of my personal items can be a viable system peripheral.
Unfortunately, Nintendo managed to disappoint me. I expected more from Nintendo on the software front. I get that they are kind of hurting on 3DS sales, but I wanted to know more about why I should shell out for their next console, and first-party titles are the only way I find myself compelled to give Nintendo my money in the first place.
WiiU being the first step to the next generation of gaming strikes me as a fallacy. It seems that they struck gold with their Wii but unfortunately lost almost all of their third-party support. Now, in an attempt to play catch-up, they invested all the money that the Wii printed into making a console that can play the hits of just last year.
What did we actually get? An expensive controller that provides none of the out-of-the-house utility that Sony’s Crossplay does? If I had 400+ dollars to spare, it doesn’t seem pragmatic to spend it on a WiiU when I could have put that money toward a a Vita or any tablet whatsoever. I also rather dislike the prospect of spending that much money on yet another Smash-box. For those who are just getting into the gaming scene, I can see how the WiiU provides an dynamic entry point to gaming. As a seasoned gamer, there’s a lot to be desired.
Overall, I find the future of gaming to be promising. The future is here and all we need now is for our every day lives to acknowledge it. I think that the big three are doing their best to do that, and I welcome every advent that is approaching.