E3 2010: The Nintendo Stuff

Trying to wrap some of the little chunks of games and things that looked interesting from E3 into fewer, larger posts here’s a rundown on as much Nintendo stuff as I can cobble together. Microsoft, Sony and Third Parties to follow.

The Press Conference
Like all the conferences at E3, I didn’t get to see Nintendo’s in its entirety or live as it was happening. I don’t get the same “Nintendo Won” vibe from it as everyone who was there so I’m probably missing something and will just stick to the games. I do think the intro with Miyamoto was interesting, him busting out of a screen in a very “3D” manner. I’m sure we’ll see more stuff like that as Nintendo ramps up the 3DS marketing. Also, Reggie is so angry all the time, I wonder if he ever loosens up. And that hitchy Skyward Sword demo? Eh, let it go fanboys and haters, everyone had demo troubles at one point or another during the show.

The 3DS
Having not been able to see the 3D part of the 3D for myself I can’t comment but it definitely sounds like the unanimous consensus was positive, to say the very least. I do have to wonder how much of that will wear off after we’ve played a dozen 3D games but the graphic hardware, the gyroscopes and all the cameras should allow developers plenty of room to express their creativity. It’s these games, stuff like Hidden 3D Image, that has me more excited than playing Star Fox 64… again… but in 3D.

More? Pilotwings Resort seems like an exploration-centric diversion and I really hope the Face Ace demo gets turned into something real. I’m uncertain if a Metal Gear Solid game would be any less awkward than on the PSP. Dead or Alive, Resident Evil, Super Street Fighter IV, Kid Icarus, and Kingdom Hearts all look great but I have no desire to ever play them. Animal Crossing and Nintendogs+Cats need to pack in way more than they look to offer right now. And maybe the greatest news is that you can turn the 3D stuff off and still be looking at a fantastic handheld game or just stick in one of the hundreds of classic DS games.

I don’t want to focus too much on the hardware since it’s not final and there’s no price or date announced but I’d pin my tail on a $200 donkey coming sometime in early-to-mid 2011.

The Wii
If you haven’t heard yet let me make this crystal clear: I am sick and tired of the flaky, uncomfortable and annoying Wii remote/Nunchuk Combo of Pain. Yes, I realize Kinect and Move are only higher fidelity versions of this but they are new and improved so I can guarantee them a pass for at least three years like I did with the Wii. So, no, I am not at all interested in another Zelda game where you have to awkwardly point at the screen or whip your arm around every time you attack. Nor am I interested in any form of minigame collection like Wii Party (or Mario Sports Mix) and Kirby’s Epic Yarn only looks great in art and design; it’s not something I ever intend to play myself.

What amI looking forward to? Metroid Other M might still be fun, Disney Epic Mickey will hopefully be so jampacked with self referential stuff that I won’t notice I’m playing another platformer (Asterix & Obelix syndrome), Just Dance 2 and Dance on Broadway will be stupid fun as long as they get here before Dance Central, Raving Rabbids Travel in Time will probably be worth struggling over the Wii Remote to play, and Lost in Shadow looks like Echochrome meets ICO. These are all games I’m willing to deal with the lonely, low-res Wii in order to play.

The Regular Old DS
I don’t know if I love or hate Nintendo for announcing the 3DS so soon after the DSi XL’s release. I was all set to enjoy a more comfortable, big-screen DS experience but put it off once the new hardware sounded more legit.  I guess the 3DS does have larger screens (and ya know, all that 3D tomfoolery) so that’s probably where I’ll end up spending most of my time with these games.

Super Scribblenauts is a no-brainer; I hear the control is better and using adjectives provides so many more opportunities for improvised madness. I’m still not sure if I’m sold on the adventure/puzzling in Ghost Trick but the idea of possessing objects to influence, save or destroy characters in order to unravel the mystery surrounding your own murder warrants at least one playthrough. I’m also uncertain on Gabrielle’s Ghostly Groove which looks like a mashup between WarioWare’s Ashley and Ouendan. The only hitch is that it’s not being made by iNiS but rather the team behind Cheer We Go, a cheerleading game that also riffed on Ouendan. I’m a helluva lot more interested in Gabrielle’s than Cheer We Go but a lot depends on how snappy the gameplay is and how good the soundtrack turns out to be.

In Closing…
…having not seen or touched the 3DS in person and being extremely tired of the Wii format and all its shortcomings, Nintendo has the most to prove to me. A few DS games and a couple Wii titles are all I’m really anticipating and that’s sure to be put aside for the new hotness on my favored platform, the Xbox 360.

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