Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Liveblogging: Nintendo E3 Press Conference!

Regardless of how "used to it" we may all be by now, Wii is still a pretty stupid name, but as I said, I'm still almost certainly going to buy one, so as you may guess, I'm pretty interested in what Nintendo has to say today. Today is their big press conference at the Electronics Entertainment Exposition in Los Angeles. In fact, it starts just 20 minutes from now as I write these words.

I know full well that anyone else who is really interested in what's going on down there today is either watching the live internet broadcast themselves or getting their news from more reputable sources. However, those same reasons didn't stop me from liveblogging the shuttle liftoff, so why should they stop me now? Also, I may be at work, and headphones may be against the rules, but when have I let little things like corporate policy get in the way of a good blog post? Never, that's when. So, here we go.

All times in Pacific Time Zone
9:10 AM - Getting the live broadcast set up now. Scooting my PC closer to me so my secret headphone cord can reach.
9:15 AM - Better go use the bathroom. I expect this to be some pretty exciting news, and I wouldn't want to... um... wii my pants or anything. Childish I know, but I just couldn't resist.
9:20 AM - Ow! My headphones just zapped me in the ear!
9:27 AM - They're playing some kind of BT remix on the live broadcast while we wait for the actual event to begin. It's pretty cool actually.
9:29 AM - Any minute now it's going to start! Heck yeah!
9:33 AM - Still waiting...
9:38 AM - Oh yeah, here we go. Sweet. Starting off with Miyamoto standing on the stage conducting an imaginary orchestra (on the screen behind him) with the Wii controller.
9:39 AM - Now he's playing some kind of racing game, now a fighting game with swords and stuff. He's dressed in a suit, not exactly my idea of ideal game-playing attire.
9:40 AM - Reggie: "What you'll see from Nintendo is not just next, instead it's what's absolutely new... Playing is no longer just about looks, it's about the feel... it's about everyone... Most of all the next leap is not just about what you see, because what you see is not always what you get. The next leap is about playing, because playing is believing."
9:42 AM - Video of various people playing Wii games, interspersed with the playful i's from the Wii name.
9:43 AM - Holy crap! There's going to be a Mario game on this thing! Who knew?
9:44 AM - ...and wait a minute... that's Metroid and WarioWare! Shocking!
9:47 AM - Video's over, back to Reggie...
9:47 AM - "Today, you will see, and tomorrow, you'll start to feel... We have answers to some questions, but deliberately not to all."
9:49 AM - So he's going to tell us how much it will cost and when we'll get it, and he also says he's going to explain what kind of drugs they were on when they chose that name. (My money's on the magic mushrooms.)
9:51 AM - Date and price: "We believe it's in our best interests to keep the details private for just a little while longer." Curses! You bum!
9:52 AM - "We want to thank everyone who wrote good things [about the name] on the first day you heard of it... Both of you."
9:53 AM - Another video, Metroid Prime 3... DragonBall Z...Disaster, Day of Crisis...SpongeBob...Super Mario Galaxy (which looks freakin sweet, btw)...Red Steel...Rayman4 (hey there's that kid with the ridiculous hair!)...Sonic...Madden...Final Fantasy...
9:56 AM - Talking about Zelda... "best Zelda, most beautiful" available on launch day.
9:57 AM - Two guys going to demo how to play Zelda on the Wii.
9:58 AM - Wii version of Twilight Princess has a fairy. A fairy!
9:59 AM - Built into the Wii remote is a speaker (sorry guys, read that two days ago, not surprised), provides "depth of sound." Controller has built-in rumble, too.
10:00 AM - Dude playing the game is getting wasted by baddies shooting arrows, other guy: "Nate, you're the only person in America who's played this game, and you still can't take this guy out?"
10:03 AM - Reggie again, man he comes across as really serious, almost angry. Lighten up Reggie, we're talking about video games here! VIDEO GAMES!
10:04 AM - Talking about Metroid Prime 3: Corruption... "the most intuitive first person shooter, ever.
10:05 AM - Super Mario Galaxy, sweet new moves...
10:06 AM - New franchises... Excite Truck, offroad racing game... Project H.A.M.M.E.R.... Disaster, Day of Crisis...
10: AM - Third party games: Sonic, Final Fantasy, Madden, Tony Hawk, Rayman...
10:08 AM - 27 different Wii games playable at E3. Twenty-seven!
10:09 AM - Couple of Frenchies demonstrating Red Steel. They are "Wiily wery excited to be here today."
10:12 AM - Aside from the fact that I'm really not that excited about this Red Steel game, I can barely understand this French guy. I think he's speaking English, but I just can't be sure. This webcast should have captions or something.
10:14 AM - Killing henchmen, now the boss is submitting to you. Oh, we just killed him. Too bad.
10:16 AM - Reggie: Time to talk about the Nintendo DS.
10:17 AM - Soft-talking George is laying the smack down on the PSP. "It's a matter of games." "Only the DS delivered." DS has sold more than 16 million units, PSP has sold millions less—millions less. Boom! Take that, Sony!
10:19 AM - Fancy new logo for a series of games called "Touch Generations." DS Lite comes to the US soon... New Mario comes soon...
10:21 AM - I'm excited about the DS and all, but George isn't telling me anything that I don't already know... 100 new DS games before the end of the year, etc., etc...
10:22 AM - Now playing: DS promo video. Lots of happy pretty people playing DS Lites... Yoshi's Island 2, that looks cool.
10:23 AM - Way more shots in this video of people playing the DS than of the DS games themselves...
10:24 AM - Satoru Iwata, Nintendo President: We want to expand the number of people that play games.
10:26 AM - He's giving a brief history of the DS. I'm a gaming freak, Mr. Iwata, I already know the history of the DS.
10:27 AM - Come on... I know you've got something else up your sleeve man, you're killing me here! Out with it!
10:28 AM - Lamenting the long delay between powering on the console and the game play actually beginning... I'm lamenting the long delay between the beginning of this conference and the real meat!
10:29 AM - Wii will boot up super fast, just a few seconds.
10:30 AM - The Wii will do stuff when it's "off." "Wii will become the system that never sleeps." "WiiConnect24" Uses the same power as a miniature light bulb... Constantly connected to the net so you can get game add-ons while you sleep.
10:31 AM - WiiConnect24 lets people visit your Animal Crossing town when you're not around. Now that's what I'm talking about. Here comes Skor the AC vandal!
10:33 AM - WiiSports: Available on launch day. Basically cheesy cartoon characters playing tennis.
10:34 AM - Back to serious Reggie: "3,000 watching in the audience, a lot more online."
10:35 AM - Miyamoto comes on stage to announce the winner of the sweepstakes to be the first to play the Wii up on stage. But first he's explaining how to use the Wii controller.
10:37 AM - The winner is... Scott Dier! Iwata comes out to play tennis vs. the winner. Two on two match, Miyamoto & the winner vs Iwata & Reggie. Miyamoto & Dier win easily. Time for a rematch, cause Nintendo executives are poor losers, apparently.
10:40 AM - Miyamoto & Dier win again.
10:41 AM - Reggie one more time... "What's hot is the feel of the game, the look is secondary."
10:42 AM - Man, he still looks really angry! And he's closing it up... Last word: "Playing is believing."
10:43 AM - So that's it, the feed is now dead. Conveniently my boss has been missing in action this entire time.

Final thoughts: Surprisingly there wasn't anything really shocking revealed today. Just a strong emphasis on actually playing the Wii. Well duh guys, I already know I want to play it! They won't even tell us when it is coming and for how much! I don't really know anything that I didn't know before the conference. I basically just spent an hour being reminded of the fact that I'm stuck at work in Seattle while the sweet sweet video games are all down in LA. Argh!

Perhaps if I start an internet chant, Nintendo will let me have a Wii. So here we go, We want Wii! We want Wii! We want Wii! We want Wii! We want Wii!
Categories: Sci/Tech


Anonymous Dan said...

Perhaps your boss was watching the feed as well? ;) I watched it as well! I'll take you on at Tennis when it comes out!

1:51 PM, May 09, 2006  

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