2 – The 3DS is very impressive
Not being at E3 personally, I have no idea what the 3D effect on Nintendo’s new handheld is like. Early buzz, however, says that it works very well. If you’re somehow unaware of what I’m talking about (hi, grandma!), here’s the scoop:
The 3DS will be a folding, dual-screen handheld just like its predecessor, but that’s pretty much where the similarities end. Graphically it’s a gigantic step up from the DS and it’s N64-like graphics — early screenshots suggest that it at least the PSP’s equal. The top screen is now widescreen and is apparently where the 3D effect takes place, evidenced by the 3D slider next to it that literally lets you turn the effect up, down, or off. The control layout is almost identical, only now there is an analog nub where the D-pad used to be, with the D-pad underneath it much like an Xbox 360 controller. There are cameras placed inside and outside the unit much like the DSi, but an additional outer camera allows you to take 3D pictures.
Most importantly, of course, are the games. At Ninty’s conference, they unveiled a new Kid Icarus game to a frenzied crowd, a game that barely looked sub-Wii graphically. Afterwards, though, Nintendo absolutely threw the hammer down with a ton of first- and third-party games, many displayed on the show floor. Admittedly, the lineup is very port- and remake-heavy, but it’s hard to deny the pull of classic games such as The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Starfox 64, Pilotwings, and Metal Gear Solid 3.
Let’s hope Sony are playing close attention, because the inevitable PSP2 is going to have to be absolutely stellar to weaken Nintendo’s sales stranglehold on the handheld market even a tiny bit.
1 – Gabe Newell reveals Portal 2 for PS3
Hands down, this was the most surprising thing to come out of anyone’s conference. Nintendo laying the retro hammer down was great, as was Twisted Metal, but those things were bound to happen eventually — we were just ecstatic to see them.
After everything Newell had been spewing about the PS3 over this console cycle, he’s the last person you would ever expect to see on Sony’s stage for anything at all. But to reveal that Portal 2, previously only confirmed for PC and Xbox 360, was coming to PS3 as the best console version? That’s pretty intense stuff.
What makes it the better than the 360 version? The introduction of Steamworks, which allows for a number of great things. First is cross-platform multiplayer, originally allowing Mac and PC gamers to play together. Presumably this will allow you to try out Portal 2′s new co-op mode with a buddy on your PS3 as they’re playing on their computer. Second is Steam Cloud, which allows you to put your save file on Valve’s servers. This way you can access your game progress and settings no matter what machine you play on. Finally, Valve will be able to update the game when it sees fit and deliver said updates with minimal effort, something it was unable to do for its less-than-stellar console port of Team Fortress 2 that shipped with The Orange Box.
I’m making a note here: HUGE SUCCESS.
So that’s pretty much that. At this point we just sit back and see first impressions of what was discussed above. So what were your favorite E3 moments? Let us know below, or come hang out in the forums.