Sony’s E3 2012 Conference
Is it this year’s Coke or Pepsi?
by Chris Fox
©2012 Chris Fox
Jack Tretton took to the stage with microphone issues to confirm that the sizzle reel got everyone’s heart pumping, so he says.
And he was right.
But what was to follow was nothing surprising.
We saw The Last of Us, God of War Ascension and Playstation All-Stars Battle Royale to name a few.
Tretton, after name dropping the names of the likes of Drake and Snake for cheap pops, encouraged the gamers out there to “Never Stop Playing”.
Sounds fair enough to me. I wasn’t going to stop anyway.
First off, David Cage (one of those geniuses at Quantic Dream) debuted Beyond: Two Souls.
Beyond tells the story of lead protagonist Jody Holmes over fifteen years of her life… and beyond.
The actress who plays Jody is Ellen Page. So that definitely isn’t her in The Last Of Us, then. The real time demo began with even more incredible facial animations than Heavy Rain or even LA Noire.
Ellen Page is incredibly recreated in the game and all of what we were shown was in real time. And what we were shown was stunning.
With such good voice acting this time around, however, will we ever get another ‘Jason’? I hope so. Stay tuned to Beyond as Quantic Dream look set to smash down genre and convention all over again.
“If you make the right decisions, you may find out what lies ‘Beyond’”. Nice pay off.
Tretton reminded us of that Michael trailer. Rightly so, it was a good trailer.
Smash Bros. killer?
This lead neatly into a trailer and live demo for Playstation All-Stars Battle Royale. Vita version was confirmed as well as PS3 cross play. There appeared to be no latency issues between the PS3 and two Vitas. The graphics in PABR still, sadly, underwhelm.
Also, rather unfortunately, it doesn’t appear that PABR does anything better than Smash Bros. does.
Time will tell of course, but as of now PABR is the no-name cola to Smash Bros’ Coke.
Nathan Drake and Big Daddy were confirmed as new characters to conclude the presentation for what amounted to ‘Super Playstation All Smash Stars Bros. Battle Royale Melee Brawl‘.
From little things, big things grow
Little Big Planet Vita was revealed to have cross play functionality with LittleBig Planet 2 on PS3.
In case you were wondering, the word of the day here at E3 has been ‘INTEGRATION’.
Playstation Plus will be getting ‘amplified’.
Games like Infamous 2, LBP 2 and Saint’s Row 2 will be free to Plus members tomorrow.
Sony then gifted everyone in the audience a free year of Playstation Plus.
PSOne classics are coming to Vita. At f***ing last.
Tretton then continued more themes of the day by revealing several video streaming services (YouTube, Hulu Plus and Crackle) are coming to PS3 and Vita.
Call of Duty/ Assassin’s Creed
Call of Duty Black Ops: Declassified was confirmed for Vita later this year.
Ubisoft’s Assasin’s Creed III: Liberation is also making it’s way to Sony’s handheld. Liberation is just like AC3, except you play a female assassin who feels liberated, presumably.
A crystal white AC3:L Vita bundle was next, along with plenty of whoops for the new colour of Vita.
As well as this, an AC3 PS3 bundle was confirmed.
Exclusive footage of AC at sea was shown, showing just how varied and exciting the new game will be.
Cannons were fired between ships in a caribbean setting. Without a doubt, this is the one to get me back into the series.
Although I’d be happier if a complete lack of Desmond had been announced.
A Far Cry from the norm?
Next, Dan Hay, who’s got one hell of a voice, took to the stage and showed FarCry 3 (again from Ubisoft).
It’s set to bring a ‘new kind of insanity’ in the guise of four player co-op.
The live demo ended in an explosion, naturally.
The game contains a ‘monster’ single player, the aforementioned four player co-op, versus multiplayer and a map editor.
But is this really a new kind of insanity or more of the regular kind?
Move over Kinect?
It was then time for the obligatory Playstation Move push, Kinect’s less successful cousin.
Andrew House thanked us all again. You’re welcome Andrew House.
Sony then announced ‘WonderBook’ for PS3. WonderBook is a psychical book that interacts with the Playstation Eye.
MoonBot studios confirmed to be working on “Diggs Nightcrawler” for WonderBook, as was J.K Rowling’s ‘Book of Spells‘, the first release for WonderBook.
It allows you to cast spells using your magic wand, the Playstation Move.
Words appear on the book through the screen using AR functionality. Kids will love it. I do not.
Sony claimed that WonderBook re-imagines the book. It’s what we’ve all been asking for, isn’t it? No.
When it ain’t broke, don’t reinvent the wheel.
Playstation SmartGlass Mobile U
So, like the Nintendo Network and SmartGlass, Playstation Suite will be available on everything you own in our increasingly interconnected world.
It seems that corporate espionage is alive and well…all 3 of the big boys want to use pads on your TV.
Also, Playstation Suite was renamed ‘Playstation Mobile’. Keep up!
Other than that, not much new about it.
God of Games
The live demo featured our plucky anti-hero tearing apart some foes at some docks with a huge jagged sword.
But what’s this? Kratos then used an item to actually rebuild something instead of destroy it?
Who says there would be no surprises at this year’s E3?
All the standard visceral violence of GOW is present and we wouldn’t have it any other way.
Kratos fought a slew of incredibly varies enemies in a short space of time including hammer wielding knights and elephant men. Careful Kratos, those elephants won’t forget that ass kicking too quickly.
Ascension hits shelves on March 12th 2015. And that thing Kratos does best is killing, by the way.
The Last is the Last of Us
This was the first glimpse of actual gameplay. The game looked top notch, as we’ve come to expect from Naughty Dog.
The same can be said about the patter between main characters Ellie and Joel.
The post apocalyptic environments in TLOU are highly detailed, dilapidated and overgrown with vegetation as well as being incredibly reactive to Joel’s movement.
An applause was a raised after an unsuspecting enemy’s head was slammed into a chest of drawers. Bravo that man.
With gun play flowing satisfyingly between melee attacks and hiding, TLOU has been another highlight of this year’s E3 without a doubt.
Jack Tretton signed off by reminding us to ‘Never Stop Playing’ and with games like Beyond and The Last Of US it’s going to be damn hard not to.
Sony’s big difference was the number of quality new exclusive IPs. Whether this makes it this year’s Coke console, or that ‘other’ brand is up to you.
©2012 Chris Fox
Filed under: E3 2012, Events, Gaming Videos, Handhelds, PS3 News Tagged: | Assassin's Creed 3: Liberation, Assassin's Creed Vita, Beyond, Beyond Two Souls, Book of Spells, Call of Duty Black Ops: Declassified, David Cage, Diggs Nightcrawler, e3 2012, e3 2012 announcements, Far Cry 3, God of War Ascension, Jack Tretton, Kratos, Little Big Planet Vita, LittleBigPlanet 2, Playstation, Playstation All-Stars Battle Royale, Playstation Mobile, PlayStation Move, Playstation Plus, Quantic Dream, Sony, Sony Wonderbook, The Last Of Us, Vita, Wonderbook