Jun 07 2011

E3 2011: Nintendo Press Conference

Good morning I hope you got plenty of sleep after yesterday’s cavalcade of news because we still have Nintendo to deal with. Nintendo had one of the best conferences last year with the 3DS official announcement and it seems they’re going to try to duplicate that success here with whatever the hell “Project Cafe” turns out to be. The question is after the underwhelming performance of the 3DS is another Nintendo console really going to be what gets us excited? Sit back, get cozy, and let’s find out.

8:32 Good morning everyone, the conference is at 9am so I’ll see you all then, now if you excuse me I need to go find some coffee.

8:54 Alright I have my coffee and it looks like we should be starting fairly soon. For some reason Nintendo has trivia on-screen while we wait, what is this a weekday matinee at the Odeon?

9:05 Ok we’re starting and it looks like we’re kicking off with an orchestral performance of Zelda music. Always lead with Zelda seems to be the strategy of late for Nintendo.

9:08 There is a great montage of Zelda footage up on screen to go along with the music, right now they’re showing footage from what looks like the new 3DS version of Ocarina and then some Skyward Sword.

9:09 Ah, that explains it, it’s totally the 25th anniversary of Zelda also Shigeru is up on stage now.

9:11 Shigeru and his translator are stepping all over each others words and it’s really hard to follow. Basically they’re just saying how important music is to Zelda.

9:12 The Orchestra is now playing select Zelda sound bytes, they’re the most expensive sound board ever.

9:14 Announced today Link’s Awakening available today for 3DS e-Shop, damn good GBC game.

9:15 Ocaraina comes out for 3DS next week but we knew that, no real new info given on that.

9:16 Legend of Zelda: Four Swords will be given away free on the DSi later in the year.

9:16 And last but not least Skyward Sword is coming out Holiday for the Wii. There will also be a special gold Wiimote you can get in celebration.

9:18 Nintendo will be holding LoZ 25th Anniversary Concerts in every region this year, so you can go out and hear some live music or get some CDs Nintendo is preparing.

9:20 Ok this is just turning into the Zelda awards show now.

9:21 Nintendo thanks you for loving the shit out Zelda.

9:22 Satoru Iwata is up now to really kick things off.

9:22 He’s pretty much just talking about how games have become ubiquitous and how “console” is becoming hard to define.

9:23 New platform time, the console will be “deeper” and “wider”, providing deeper gaming experiences and wider appeal according to Iwata.

9:24 Full details to come later in the conference. Goal to “serve every player”

9:25 New console coming out next year, so not a holiday release on that one like was rumored then.

9:26 Reggie is up now, also known as the king of fucking video games.

9:27 Reggie again reiterating the whole “we want to please everyone” thing.

9:28 There are 5 big 3DS games on display today.

9:29 First off is Mario Kart 3DS, hey coins are back on the track.

9:29 There is also hang gliders attached to the carts and underwater tracks. Oh and kart customization.

9:30 So uh yeah Mario Kart, also coming out this Holiday.

9:31 Starfox 3DS time, confirmed Buttons and motion controls as play options for Starfox.

9:31 Also you can replace Slippy’s face and voice with your friends annoying faces and voices, oh and it’ll be out September.

9:32 Super Mario 3DS up now.

9:33 Weird the game has a odd mix of 3D and 2.5D gameplay, also Racoon Suit is back.

9:34 Looks awesome and actually like some innovation on the series, it’ll be out before the year is over.

9:34 Kid Icarus is on now, gameplay is on screen and it weirdly reminds me of Kingdom Hearts.

9:35 Also multi player battle mode confirmed, like Team Deathmatch and stuff.

9:36 AR cards will be coming for it as well, so like Kid Icarus mixed with Yu-Gi-Oh.

9:36 Coming out later this year.

9:37 New Announcement, Luigi Mansion 2, a game literally only I am excited for.

9:38 Looks like I have to get a 3DS now, even if it’s only to support Luigi, if anyone needs that support it’s him.

9:38 Apparently it’ll feature several mansions, not just one.

9:39 Third party 3DS stuff now, wide array of stuff though most of it is stuff that’s already been announced.

9:40 Oh what really? Tekken 3DS?

9:40 e-Shop time, let’s hear about My Notebook 3D!

9:41 It’ll offer demos, trailers, and of course a virtual console.

9:41 For a limited time Exitebike (3D Classics version) is free to download.

9:42 The 3DS has an enhanced Pokedex, you’ll fill out the ‘dex by using spot pass, AR markers, and other stuff.

9:43 Also you can put Pokemon into pictures via the 3DS.

9:44 The ‘dex will only be available via the 3DS e-Shop and is free and I think available now.

9:44 New console time, they’re name describing right now.

9:45 The new name is… Wii U, uggh I don’t like that name one bit.

9:46 The controller looks like an iPad with buttons.

9:46 But it’s at least closer to a real controller then the Wiimote was.

9:47 Crazy the game can switch from your TV to your controller.

9:47 Also touch screen and motion stuff still, as well as compatibility with old Wii stuff like the balance board and Wiimote.

9:48 Wow, they Macguyver-ed a Super Scope out of a Wiimote, Nunchuk, Zapper, and Wii U controller.

9:49 Menus in the controller seem super useful, also it’s coming 2012.

9:50 Cool as it looks I still hate that name.

9:50 Iwata is back up now, clarifying things, screen on the controller is 6.2 inchs and the system is fully backwards compatible.

9:51 Wii fit can now be done without a TV meaning your true fatness can be hidden.

9:52 This thing has a ton of buttons, a mic, motion controls, gyroscopes, circle pads, and other stuff I missed.

9:53 Images will be wirelessly transferred from console without latency issues and is confirmed in HD.

9:53 Many games won’t require a TV at all.

9:54 Nintendo is claiming a strong bond between it’s game and the internet, I’ll believe that one when I see it.

9:57 New Smash Bros for both 3DS and Wii U and it sounds like they will work with each other.

9:58 No details on new Smash Bros but Reggie is up now to talk about Wii U software that actually exists right now.

9:58 Scratch that everything on display is test case stuff, not actual games.

10:00 The new system can put out some very nice looking graphics, the device will use AR to take the game into the world around you, that’s kind of cool.

10:02 A lot of concept prototype games just shown, the first actual game announced though is Lego City Stories by Telltale Games, seems like a fitting first game for the Wii U.

10:03 It’s exclusive to Nintendo platforms and is open world.

10:03 Developer montage now of games makers talking about cool the Wii U is, Nintendo is just doing the same thing they did last year when they announced the 3DS.

10:04 Darksiders 2, Batman Arkham City, Assassin’s Creed, Ghost Recon, and other stuff will be on the Wii U.

10:05 Sound like this console will actually have video games on it.

10:06 Dirt, Aliens: Colonial Marines, Ghost Recon Online, Metro Last Light, Tekken, and Ninja Gaiden 3 will be coming to Wii U.

10:08 Nintendo I may hate it’s name but the Wii U is pretty damn cool, as long as the price is right I’m sold.

10:09 Ricatello is on stage now to announce something big.

10:11 Nevermind he was just saying how he and EA totally like Nintendo now.

10:12 Reggie is back up to close things out, bottom line Nintendo does innovation.

10:15 That’s the end, all in all a good showing from Nintendo maybe not as mind blowing as last year but good.

Well that’s the end of the E3 press conferences and while it was overall a more mellow year than the last some big stuff came out of it. Obviously this new system from Nintendo is a huge deal as it represents them getting back in the hardcore space which is of course a more than welcome thing. So who won the year? Personally I would say it’s a draw between Sony and Nintendo both had fantastic looking new systems and both had some really cool games on display; the only real lesson I take from all this, I still hate the Kinect.

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