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E3: The Full Gamasutra Report

As the dust settles behind E3, Gamasutra presents a full breakdown of the eventful week, including all the interviews, all the press conferences (and our analysis thereof) - all the highlights and lowlights from Microsoft to Nintendo to Sony and beyond.

July 18, 2008

7 Min Read

Author: by Staff

As the dust settles behind E3, Gamasutra presents a full breakdown of the eventful week, including all the interviews, all the press conferences (and our analysis thereof) - all the highlights and lowlights from the week that saw a drastically new look for the Xbox 360, a price drop for the PlayStation 3, and a very 'musical' Nintendo. The Interviews - Jeffery: Sega Not Trying To Be 'A Japanese Company In The West' Talking to Gamasutra at E3, Sega of America president Simon Jeffery has been rejecting the traditional Japanese reliance on "a small number of huge games", suggesting: "We're trying to make sure that we don't make the mistake of being yet another Japanese company trying to be a Japanese company in the West." - Halo Wars' Rouse: Age Of Mythology Console-Controller Prototype Informed Game's Genesis "Speaking with Gamasutra about its upcoming Xbox 360 RTS title Halo Wars, Ensemble's Justin Rouse revealed that the firm experimented with an Xbox controller-using version of Age Of Mythology before deciding to "build this thing from the ground up" and start on Halo Wars." - Sony's Tretton Talks Sony Home Vs. Microsoft's Avatars "At Sony's E3 roundtable, SCEA exec Jack Tretton has suggested that there was "a lot of learning... and a little naivete" in the construction of the Home online world for PlayStation 3, but that the "worst thing" Sony could do was look at Microsoft's new Xbox 360 avatars and try to react based on them." - Square Enix: Final Fantasy XIII Going Multi-Platform Is Game Changer For Biz "Talking to Gamasutra, Square Enix SVP Shinji Hashimoto has been discussing the fact that Final Fantasy XIII will go multi-platform in more detail, commenting that "more than a turning point... perhaps this is a change in trends for the game industry as a whole."" - Gearbox's Hurley on Borderlands Vs. RAGE "Speaking with Gamasutra at E3 about multiplatform shooter/racing-combat hybrid Borderlands, Gearbox Software producer Simon Hurley joked about the "convergent evolution" that led to Id Software announcing RAGE, also a shooter/racing-combat hybrid, less than two weeks before Borderlands went public." - Nintendo's Miyamoto: 'We're Making Pikmin' "Talking during a Nintendo developer Q&A, legendary creator Shigeru Miyamoto has confirmed in response to a Gamasutra question that a new title in his unique Pikmin franchise is currently in development, simply stating: "We're making Pikmin."" - Sony's Tretton: 'Disappointed' In Multiplatform FFXIII Through MS' 'Currying Favor' "Speaking at a roundtable Q&A attended by Gamasutra, Sony's Jack Tretton has been discussing Final Fantasy XIII's move from a PlayStation 3 exclusive to a multiplatform title, suggesting "I guess disappointed is clearly an appropriate term", and suggesting Microsoft has spent most of their money "trying to curry favor with third parties"." - High Voltage's Corso: Wii Deserves Better Games Than It's Getting "Talking to Gamasutra during E3, High Voltage creative director Matt Corso has been discussing the developer's just-announced Wii FPS The Conduit, suggesting that, for the core gamer, "The Wii is a really cool game system... it's worth better games than it's getting right now."" - Sony's Jack Tretton: The Full E3 Roundtable Report "Gamasutra brings you a full account of Sony CEO and president Jack Tretton's wide-ranging roundtable discussion that covered everything from platform exclusivity, the state and future of Home, PSP piracy, and Sony's desire to bring a PlayStation 2 to "every last consumer on earth."" Day One: Microsoft, EA, Square Enix Monday at E3 provided the first of three hardware provider press events, with Microsoft showcasing its Xbox 360 strategy for the rest of the year and beyond - while other notables such as Electronic Arts and Square Enix also discussed their slate for 2008. - First for the day, Microsoft's E3 press event had a host of new announcements, from avatars through karaoke game Lips to its biggest surprise - Final Fantasy XIII coming to the Xbox 360 in the West day and date with the PS3 version. - Gamasutra's Chris Remo followed up with an analysis of the Microsoft event, adding color and noting overall: "Seemingly satisfied it has already demonstrated a broad, inclusive library for its Xbox 360, Microsoft mainly focused on value added propositions such as online offerings, video services, and exclusive downloadable content for high-profile titles." - Square Enix conducted a press conference immediately following the Microsoft one. Justification for FFXIII coming to Xbox? Simply enough: "We considered the situation of the hardware, and that we would like to provide FFXIII to as many fans as possible in the world." - The final major event of the day was the Electronic Arts press conference, which revealed the SimAnimals franchise, had Napster founder Shawn Fanning onstage talking about his Rupture gaming social network site, and demonstrated a lot of upcoming EA titles. - The big reveal for EA, however, was the deal with id Software for RAGE, which Gamasutra has followed up with a chat to id's John Carmack about just how it happened. Day Two: Nintendo, Sony, Ubisoft Tuesday at E3 was dominated by the press conference from hardware giants Nintendo and Sony - while Ubisoft also showed off its line of titles and announcements from publishers such as Disney also debuted. - First up was the Nintendo press event, and Gamasutra's bulleted announcement guide explained the major reveals, from from Animal Crossing: City Folk through the WiiSpeak microphone, GTA: Chinatown Wars, the 2009 debut of Wii Sports Resort and its bundled MotionPlus accessory, and even Wii Music. - Our own Brandon Sheffield then analyzed Nintendo's announcements, concluding of the incrementally innovative new products shown: "It’s perfectly acceptable to go with what works for some time – after all, that’s what everyone else is doing, by and large. Small innovations work well. Large disruptions can only come every once so often." - Next was Sony's press conference, and again, we boiled down the major announcements into a simple document, from the company's new $399 80GB PS3, the launch of its video download service, new PSP titles Resistance: Retribution and Valkyria Chronicles, and Zipper's MAG (Massive Action Game) for PS3. - Gamasutra's Christian Nutt then took a closer look at the action, suggesting, somewhat concerningly, that "While SCEA president and CEO Jack Tretton promised "a lineup that features the biggest exclusives in the industry"... his promise that "we've just begun to scratch the surface on what we intend to deliver to consumers in the years ahead" was probably the most important message at the conference." - In addition, Ubisoft's E3 press conference revealed a new 'survival adventure' title, I Am Alive, from French studio Darkworks, as well as new ranges of casual games, from Monkeyz through the Ener-G girl-targeted DS game series. - Elsewhere at the Summit, a number of other smaller announcements, including Disney's announcement of its line-up and - particularly interesting for developers - AiLive's debuting of its LiveMove 2 tool for the Wii's MotionPlus add-on - also debuted. Days Three and Four: Konami, Take-Two, ESA - Publisher and developer Konami announced its fall 2008 lineup, including its Elebits sequel for the Nintendo DS and multiplatform singing game Karaoke Revolution Presents: American Idol Encore 2. - In addition to revealing that heavy metal band Metallica will be debuting its new Death Magnetic album in Guitar Hero III this September, Activision detailed several of its upcoming titles, including Geometry Wars 2, Wolfenstein, and Guitar Hero World Tour. - Following those announcements, Gamasutra's Christian Nutt commented on the publisher's line-up franchise titles and licensed games like Wolfenstein and Bond titles, seeing a steady glow, but few 'sparks.' - There were few new revelations - least of all Rockstar's just announced DS Grand Theft Auto- at Take-Two's E3 conference, said Gamasutra's Chris Remo, but it did see a publisher looking deliberately self-sufficient during its ongoing EA hostile takeover, and was highlighted by Gearbox's shooter Borderlands. - As the Entertainment Software Association released a new survey revealing that 40% of all gamers are women, the organization's Michael Gallagher spent his E3 keynote discussing a new "golden age" of gaming - for both consumers and developers.

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