Games E3 Lite, Day Two
posted by July 15 at 15:08 PMon
Nintendo didn’t trot out any tired, rehash games at their Electronic Entertainment Expo press conference today. That should be good news — enough of the old Mario/Zelda/Donkey Kong guard. Let’s try something new with the Wii already. But then this happened:
Thanks to screwattack.com for the video, titled on their site “The Worst Moment in Nintendo History.” And sure enough, Wii Music’s public debut landed this morning with a poopy squish. Wii Music is described as a music game designed for people who don’t like challenge. Sounds like a decent idea in theory, compared to the sometimes-intimidating play of Guitar Hero. But from the look of this game, people are tapping a single button and moving their arms to the rhythm to play dinky-sounding MIDI tracks. If you’re under five, this could somehow be awesome. Then again, if you’re under five, you like The Wiggles and climbing into boxes.
Seriously, look at those dorks swaying in the video! And Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto’s on the right, too, hopping around and reinforcing all stereotypes about Asians and their rhythm. Damned shame.
The little bit of good news: There’s another Wii Sports game coming next year, this time with a “summer resort” theme. It’ll be powered with that WiiMotion dongle announced yesterday, meaning the game will recognize many more realistic gestures—wasn’t that the point of the Wii in the first place?—but Nintendo was mum on most of the game’s content (though it will have sword fights, so if this Christmas’ Star Wars light saber game sucks, there’s still hope for nerds). Grand Theft Auto will come out on the DS “this winter” (read: probably March 2009) with a “Chinatown Wars” theme. And Rayman Raving Rabbids TV Party is a rare high point for the Wii, mixing the Wii Fit balance board with a bunch of silly mini-games.
Otherwise, there’s a ton of crappy family games coming, just like last Christmas. The “new” Animal Crossing game (think The Sims gone cute) doesn’t look any more interesting than the DS version from a few years ago. Unless Nintendo’s hiding a whopper of an announcement, they’re putting all their chips on Wii Music until the end of this year. Considering that the music game genre is already flooded with fare for both adults and kids, Nintendo better hope their brand name is enough to sell this mess of a title.
Sony coasted through their conference with few big surprises (but nothing as bad as Nintendo, either). This fall’s Resistance 2 looks like a fine first-person shooter, and it’ll probably sell well, but that doesn’t make it seem like a worthwhile break from decades of the same kind of shooting game. And other than Little Big Planet, which has been showcased for nearly two years now, I wasn’t thrilled by any of their showcased stuff—even their media center announcements paled compared to the Xbox/Netflix deal from yesterday. A lot of the titles announced won’t be out for at least a year, so it’s hard to get stoked for those (though Infamous looks like an even crazier version of the Xbox 360’s Crackdown, and that kind of open-world game always catches my eye). Price drop coming in a few months, though. Those are always fun.