Tagged: E310

And THAT was E3 2010

I know I’ve spent the last two weeks recapping my impressions from E3 but I’m kind of doing it again right now only all in one post because I like to see how much was said.

Yeah, it’s not as heavy as years past but I think I covered all the stuff I was interested in and that’s what I set out to do. What’d you think of E3 this year? Let’s put these fancy Disqus comments to use!

E3 Stragglers: Rock of Ages (Download)

What more can I possibly write that isn’t immediately awesome from watching this video? It, kinda reminds me of the madness of Odama but that’s only because of the giant ball. It’s like Marble Madness meets Tower Defense meets Tony Hawk’s Downhill Jam… but with art. Did you see the giant boulder and the physics when it smashes through stuff? Gah! You’re so hard to please!

Oh yeah, they haven’t confirmed if it’s PlayStation Network, Xbox Live Arcade, or PC (or any combination of the three) so that’s why it’s tagged with all.

E3 Stragglers: TV Superstars (PlayStation Move)

Seeing screenshots of this I was way more interested in TV Superstars but after watching a few videos, I just don’t know. It’s little more than a minigame collection that uses the PlayStation Move controller to do some very basic Wii-like stuff but its presentation cracks me up. You snap and map pictures of you and your friends onto the in-game characters which then take part in five games based on popular TV. There’s one like Wipeout where you navigate obstacles and fling yourself from a giant slingshot, an America’s Top Model styled runway walk-off, a home improvement game, a series of commercial parodies, and a hip hop infused cooking show like… umm, let’s say Throwdown with Bobby Flay.

All the characters have exaggerated heads, there seem to be ragdoll physics involved, you get to play an in-depth game of dress up,  and the head chef, Big Chili D, cracks me up. It seems like stupid fun and it looks pretty clever in its parody of Pop TV but every time the video cuts to the people playing I get a little sick. TV Superstars is exactly a minigame collection from the Wii’s well trodden track. I can’t imagine it lasts very long or invites you back to play (especially by yourself) but I’d nevertheless love to try it out. And unlike most of Sony’s own Move games, TV Superstars at least has some personality. Another video after the [FLAIL ARM AS IF CUTTING]

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E3 Stragglers: El Shaddai (PS3, Xbox 360)

From the same Shane Bettenhausen that brought Deadly Premonition to the english speaking world  comes the most Japanese-ass Japanese game from E3; El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron. From the title alone you know this is going to be weird and, surely enough, I can’t make sense of the story in the teaser trailer above which is said to be based on a deleted segment from the Judeo-Christian bible. But basically pretty man/lady, Enoch, is tasked by God (a big stone hand) to collect the souls of some fallen angels (read: J-pop pretty boys) or the almighty will have to eradicate Earth to make sure they don’t escape.

There’s gonna be plenty of long-winded dialog scenes full of philosophy and oddly-translated drama but the art style and gameplay just might carry me through. Headed up by former Clover art director, Sawaki Takeyasu, this preview from Edge-Online sums it up best by saying it combines the gameplay of Devil May Cry with the cel shaded visuals of Okami. Only this time there’s more color and variety over Okami’s washed out watercolor look and there’s a little more strategy to the Dante-inspired gameplay. Wearing down enemy armor with combo attacks weakens them to the point where you can steal their bizarre harp/chainsaw weapons and beautify them with the power of righteousness. Then the fight shifts from defensive blocks and carefully timed attacks to an all-out ass kicking. More weapons are promised in the full game as well as plenty of exploration and even some side-on platforming.

I don’t know if I’ll get into the story or even the combat mechanics as things progress but I’ll stick with it just to look at these surreal visuals. I mean, have you loaded up that video yet!? I’d try to describe it but there aren’t buttons on my keyboard that can produce words that would do it justice!

E3 2010: The Third Parties – Ubisoft

I caught most all of the Electronic Arts, Konami and Ubisoft press conferences from E3, and in a timely manner no less, so here’s a little two-post roundup thing.

Joel McHale was the best non-gamer MC in press conference history! A little shaky at times with the jokes, he nailed most of it and called out all the stuff the audience was probably thinking. As for the games, Driver: San Francisco is surprisingly on my radar now that Tanner is in a coma and can possess cars at will. For once taking a stupid blind turn into a wall doesn’t mean frustrating restarts, you can just jump out of that car and into another. There’s a lot of potential for this mechanic but the story conceits to get there are admittedly pretty silly.

Your Shape: Fitness Evolved and Innergy have been well documented here so I’ll mention Ubi’s other physically fit product: Battle Tag. I was just as perplexed as everyone when the models and dev team came running through the audience playing laser tag but by the end of the demo I at least appreciated what they were doing. Sort of augmented reality laser tag, several markers and ammo/health clips can be placed wherever you like and tracked through a PC application for stats, scores and online sharing. I don’t think I’d ever buy it, but I like it.

Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood looked fantastic as the Villa from AC2 came under attack in the single player campaign but with a focus on multiplayer I’m not sure how much I’d get out of this. Definitely a rental once it’s out! I’ve already mentioned Rabbids Travel in Time, I Am Alive, Project Dust and Child of Eden here. Shaun White Skateboarding surprised me because 1) I didn’t know he was a legit pro skater and 2) it looks like a perfect mix of Tony Hawk and SKATE. Not too crazy and not too sim-y with a subtle and pretty art style. Finally, they showed Rayman Origins which isn’t the Michel Ancel IP I was hoping to see but still impressed. The Ubiart platform could be the next LittleBigPlanet but as far as the game they’re making for us it’s a 2D side-scrolling work(s) of art. I don’t know how all the various artistic visions play into Rayman necessarily (does Rayman Origins act as an Ubiart hub?) but they all had style for days and I’d love to just spend time in their dazzling worlds.