Wednesday, June 6, 2012

N5S Impressions - Nintendo E3 Conference 2012

With a 3DS conference on the way this evening, it's a good time to take a moment and reflect on yesterday's Nintendo conference. While it was a decent show yesterday we still had our qualms about the games Nintendo showcased. Here's our impressions:

"This year I was not as hyped as I should be for Nintendo's e3 presentation, since I was not that interested in Wii-U, but I gotta say that now, after seeing the conference I'm getting more and more interested in it. Definitely not as much as I was for the 3DS, and I definitely won't get the Wii-U on launch or even a year after its launch but still, my hype meter has risen.

So anyway the conference began with Pikmin and Shigsy was as awesome as ever. I've never played Pikmin (I've always wanted to though) but the trailer was pretty exciting. Then when Reggie came on stage and announced that there were 23 games for the Wii U I was really impressed, and I hope that this means the Wii U will have a much stronger launch than the 3DS. The New Super Mario Brothers U looks really good and I'm loving the art design. I loved how unexpectedly they went from Mario to Harley Quinn and for a moment I thought they would announce a WiiU exclusive batman title but no it was Arkham City (which I already own) so I was kind of dissapointed. Scribblenauts Ultimate looks much better than the DS versions and the fact that you can add your own words and that there is a story mode is a huge plus for me. Most of the other 3rd party games announced were ports from the PC, XBOX360 and PS3 and I've already played most of them and I was kind of hoping for more exclusive and new games. Of the 3DS games shown nothing was new but still the new Paper Mario and Luigy's Mansion trailers were pretty cool. NSMB2's artsyle looks bland I hope I'm proven wrong. I can't wait for the 3DS exclusive conference tomorrow. Lego City looked like GTA and L.A. Noire with Legos and ZombiU's fluidity and real time menus positively surprised me. Rayman Legends looks awesome. The most boring part of the conference was NintendoLand which doesn't really look like something special in my opinion. I think it will be included with the console similarly to how Wii Sports was distributed along with the Wii.

Anyway this year's e3 was pretty average, the beginning was exciting, the ending was dull and the lack of Smash Bros info and more 1st party Nintendo games was disappointing. The Wii U looks good but I have yet to see a game that will make me really really want it."
-TheFreakyManga, N5S Forum Mod. 
"Great entrance from Miyamoto-san. Pikmin 3 looks beautiful, although dated. Why is Reggie's monologue longer than the entire Pikmin demo when he said this show would be all about games? Why is Reggie talking so much about Miiverse when they had a pre-show to get it out of the way? Redundancy at its finest. New Super Mario bros. U? YES, doomed Nintendo is the best Nintendo. The third party sizzle reel just showed the exact same games as last year. Come on now, is this the best they could do? Why are they dedicating so much time to Arkham City, a port of a game that is not only available on other platforms, but has been for almost a year? A bit embarrassing. Why are they dedicating to much time to Sing? Why are they dedicating so much time to Just Dance 4? The usage of the Wii U game pad screen is very disappointing so far; Mario and Pikmin will hardly use it. Why are they wasting so much time on 3DS coverage when they announced a second conference just to cover it? Where is the graphical showcase exclusive to sell Wii U to the hardcore? Where are games like Alien: Colonial Marines showing off some cool controller usages? Why are they taking so long to show Nintendo Land? The guy is struggling to explain how it works, and I'm itching to see something exciting. Will there be a surprise at the end to woo the hardcore gamer, much like Metroid Other: M? Nope, more Nintendo Land footage. If I buy a Wii U at launch, what games can I get in the months ahead? Nintendo is in big trouble. They lack direction and strong leadership." -toadster101, N5S Admin and a Nintendo fanboy for life.

"Nintendo's E3 Press Conference this year was overall good but could have been better. At the beginning Nintendo had a strong start with Pikmin 3 which got everyone's bodies ready, but things got a little weak during the finish with NintendoLand." -CRAZ1ah, N5S Forum Mod and Unofficial Jesus. 

"I came in this E3 in open arms. I know it was dumb, but somethign told me deep inside that this was going to be the greatest E3 ever. Last year's E3 conference was lackluster and barren, but it was hard to be disappointed when they promised so much for this year. They promised us a new Smash Bros. for both Wii-U and 3DS. They promised that the Wii-U would not be a repeat like the 3DS's ho-hum launch line-up. They promised us games. So we waited 365 days - and E3 finally came. With each so-so conference coming and going and the countdown to Nintendo's conference ticking I thought to myself 'There is NO WAY they can screw up, it's impossible." And then Miyamoto came on the stage. My heart was racing. They showed Pikmin 3. 'Okay', I shrugged, 'Everyone expected that anyway.' Then Regiie came on the show and announced 23 games they were going to show on the floor. It was all about the games. His words made me shiver with anticipation. This. Is. IT. And then he talked...and talked...about Miiverse. But I told myself to be patient, wait for the good stuff, it will come. They WB Games showed a port of Batman Arkham Asylum, a new LEGO game, and another Scribblenauts. But I was only interested in the firs-party games, and at this point I was crawling out of my skin. Then finally they showed NSMBU. 'Great', I thought, 'slow start but now we're picking up steam now!' And then came the 3DS games...every single one we all knew about...and NSMB2, which to me looked horrendous. At this point I was beginning to sag into my seat. Reggie talked about Wii Fit U, ZOMIU, Sing, and Just Dance 4. Then came the finale...I tightened my wrists...took a few breaths...braced for it...Nintendoland. 'But that's...that's okay!' I assured myself, 'They'll be showing a teaser for something else I know i-' It ended. 

That was Nintendo E3 Conference  2012. This is what I hyped over for a year. Nintendo didn't bring out the big guns... they brought out their little water squirters and called them real guns...and were confident about it. Is this the future of video games? Nintendo will definitely cover for this of course, but to make me feel great about being a Nintendo gamer...this wasn't it." -EggBeatr8, Co-writer for N5S blog. 

"Nintendo's conference....the first ten minutes was a really exciting time with the reveal of Pikmin 3 and all, and despite my apathy towards the New Super Mario Bros. aesthetic style I actually cheered and clapped for the Wii U version because it actually looked sufficiently different from the other NSMB games. Also, as Reggie said 'What's a new Nintendo console release without a Mario game?'.

It's either that or Zelda, so I don't understand the people who got over-excited about the Zelda HD tech demo as if it was an indicator of the second coming. It is, after all, still just a tech demo. I'd wait until next year or so for a Zelda game; the brand is going into fatigue after the massive 25th Anniversary celebration last year which saw four Zelda games being released in close proximity to one another.

Following that were the 3rd party Wii U games, and although they're prettied-up ports of PS3/X360 games with screen controls shoehorned in, they're fine by me since I've never got a chance to play them. I'm sure a lot of others have though. There were a few unexpected surprises in there, like Mass Effect 3 being ported and Tank Tank Tank from Namco Bandai finally making it to home console (it was an arcade game, an excellent and underrated one at that). Scribblenauts Unlimited also made me really happy, I'm a big fan of the series and they actually made Maxwell more adorable that he already was in the DS versions!

But the greatest 3rd party offerings of all were from Ubisoft, which showed off ZombiU and Rayman Legends. Ironically, Ubisoft's two big hitter games for Wii U made full usage of the screen controller even before Nintendo did. They're way more enthusiastic about this than anyone else, which is both good and bad. Good because a 3rd party is actually making an effort to innovate and use the screen, bad because it shows a lack of interest on even Nintendo's part. Where's your usual cleverness, Nintendo?

Now, one 2D Mario game was fine for me. Two in one go is overkill. As soon as the conference moved into 3DS territory I groaned as New Super Mario Bros 2 came on the screen. Literally, I groaned. It looks nothing like its big brother on Wii U and almost like the DS game's forgotten twin, they were so freaking alike. The new emphasis on coins don't help its cause. Luigi's Mansion and Paper Mario 2 were most welcome, however.

The hate showered upon the casual territory, while understandable, is rather unjustified; we've already got our own heavy-hitters a the beginning of the show, it's time for Nintendo to show the rest of their stuff to the newbie gamers and their own investors. It's not like we never got to see anything we wanted to see. Wii Fit U and Just Dance 4 look like high-quality pieces of kit, though I can't say the same for Sing. Karaoke games on a console has always been a terrible idea to me.

The absentees: Kirby's 20th Anniversary and all the other rumored games. They managed to make a whole hoo-ha over Zelda's 25th Anniversary last year, so what happened to Kirby? Is he going to be celebrating his birthday in Dream Land by himself? Or maybe he just wasn't the type of character to show on the conference; I don't recall any Kirby game being shown on the screen other than Epic Yarn. Who knows? There was some consolation for the cute pink ball though, because news going around E3 is that Kirby's Wii compilation is still on the way, slated to release this September.

As for the rest? Frankly I could care less about all the bovine excrement that was spewed out over the past few months. Rumors of Metroid Prime 4? New Zelda for 3DS and Wii U? New Starfox crossover with F-Zero or what have you? New Smash Bros? Okay maybe the last one could have had more confirmation after the statement made last year but still, there's no evidence that any of these are being worked on to be shown off at E3. It's 2010 all over again; gamers making unrealistic expectations of Nintendo to show off everything they want to see even though all they've been hearing is bullsh*t in and bullsh*t out. I shut my ears off to all Wii U related nonsensical rumors from a few months back, including all developer quotes and talk about tech specs and potential games, because there were so many of them and all of them conflicting with one another that I just didn't care anymore. Overhype kills.

It was a strong start and weak finish for Nintendo's conference, with good first-party titles and 3rd party titles revealed in the first half and casual stuff for the latter half ending with Nintendoland, another minigame compilation which most people would just yawn off unless it was a pack-in with the console or with another screen controller.

Unlike last year, I came in to this conference with low expectations. All I wanted to see was the Wii U itself and maybe a couple of games. The only thing I didn't get to hear were pricing and release date of the new console, but other than that I'm satisfied as a whole. Of course, it could still have been done better, but at least it wasn't as bad as the confusing train-wreck Nintendo did last year. I'm fine with it." -
pikaby, N5S Admin and writer for N5S blog. 

So there you have it, folks. Thanks to all the mods/admins for their contributions!

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