SPECIAL: ANTICIPATING E3 2011
BY TARA BABCOCK
The Electronic Entertainment Expo, or E3, is the biggest, most
prestigious gaming convention in the United States and perhaps one of
the most influential conferences of the industry in the world. Since
1995, E3 has brought us the latest in gaming from the Ultra 64, more
commonly known as the Nintendo 64, to last year's unveiling of the Xbox
360 S model, the Kinect and the Playstation Move. Everyone who is anyone
will be in attendance and anyone who is no one in the industry will have
to watch on TV or stream it live from their computers- the Electronic
Entertainment Expo is not open to the general public. Nintendo, Sony,
Microsoft and many more well-known names frequent the event yearly,
displaying their million-dollar marketing set-ups and revealing next
generation news. This year, there are a few juicy topics I am really
looking forward to learning more about from the expo; from games to new
consoles, upgrades to booth babes, here's my list of anticipation for
this year's event!
NINTENDO'S NEW GROUND-BREAKING
CONSOLE AND THE 3DS
First on my super awesome list of uber-coolness and excitement, as I
affectionately call it, is the rumor that Nintendo will (finally) be
releasing a home gaming console that will compete, if not exceed, the
power of the Xbox and Playstation. We are all aware that the Wii's
graphics and game selection is desperately trying to keep up with- and
failing to do so- the other current-generation consoles on the market.
Despite the innovative functionality of the motion controller-based play
and the wide audience that it appeals to, critics were extremely
disappointed in the graphics engine. Another issue surrounding the Wii
and the Nintendo handhelds is their monopolization of game developers.
Few other names produce great games for Nintendo systems, so the genres
are very limited.
Along with the new console, I am interested in hearing how the issues
with the 3DS portable device will be dealt with. Although I found the
glassesless 3D experience to be impressive I, as well as many others
apparently, suffer from dizziness and headaches after playing for too
long. This can place a big damper on the mini-console's usefulness and
All of that being said, the company still maintains a level of
awesomeness (and Mario-ness and Donkey Kong-ness) that keeps them at the
top of my list of favorite consoles, handhelds and games. I absolutely
cannot wait to hear what they have in store for us in 2012. I am looking
forward to a plethora of HD, multi-platform goodness coming from
Nintendo in the near future that will rock my world as well as fans and
the gaming market. Long live Nintendo-zilla!
NEW GAMES AND UPDATES TO KEEP
AN EYE OUT FOR
Obviously every year of E3 is jam-packed with new gaming titles and
updates from the leading developers including Activision, Electronic
Arts, Sony, Square Enix, Namco Bandai and numerous others. If it's
coming out in the next year or two, or is a pioneering idea, it will be
saved for announcement at E3. The following is a comprehensive list of
the names I'm personally recommending to look out for this June 5th in
Los Angeles, along with commentary as to why it rocks:
Assassin's Creed Revelations -
Creed is one of my favorite titles (save Desmond and his ancestors all
resembling Adam Sandler) and I am excited to know more of Ezio and
Though I am not
usually a fan of first person shooters, this one is among my favorites.
Love the creepiness, yet cute factor, pretty intense, deep and unique.
DC Universe Online-
played this, but I love DC and their heroes and I'm interested to see if
they'll add something that will entice me enough to finally play it!
Duke Nukem Forever-
Epic! A new
installment to the classic! I loved the trailer.
Gears of War 3-
Hmm, what do
the different editions (Limited and Epic) entail?
I adore Hitman!
My kind of game! The movie wasn't bad either. You're seldom let down by
a Square Enix game!
The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword-
Madden NFL 12-
I know far too
many guys who play this as their sole gaming outlet so I am looking to
see how they are going to keep everyone interested, still, with the
Mass Effect 3-
I hear gay
relationships will be allowed this time around. Thatís enough to keep me
Need for Speed: The Run-
Need for Speed
has always been a great racing franchise. I played my first one on the
Ninja Gaiden III-
Ryu persists in
game 3! Yay! Hopefully itís a bit easier this time around, though!
The first one
was cool, the main character is really awesome!
classic; his origin should be interesting! I've been playing Rayman
games a good portion of my life, so it's a sentimental game for me.
I've noticed a
lot of people leaving World of Warcraft for this game, I'm interested to
hear about updates, but I've never been a fan of their envious-sounding
reference to WoW, "We're not in Azeroth anymore."
The Sims 3: Generations-
I have a soft
spot for Sims games. I've spent way too many hours trying to teach those
people how to act and live. Probably more than I should have.
YES, OMG YES!
Super Mario 3DS-
I love any and
all Super Mario games. I'll endure the nauseating 3DS for this one!
approve of this because of the phonetic similarity to my name, and
hearing that it's an MMORPG thatís supposed to be more realistic because
you "don't have to target enemies" grabs my interest. Plus the female
characters are really hot!
Always was a
huge fan of this demented, vehicularly homicidal silliness!
THE PLAYSTATION NETWORK OUTAGE
UPDATES AND THE NGP
I think all Playstation 3
owners have become aware of the three month long outage of the
Playstation Network, due to some high-profile and elaborate attacks on
customer information databases involving credit card information.
Although we have been given some updates on the matter, and limited
usage of the network has been restored for parts of the world, I would
like to hear clarifications and further details. It is rumored that Sony
will be addressing several issues, including the in-depth details of the
Customer Appreciation Program for all regions and the new safety
measures, such as identity theft protection. The objective, and hopeful
outcome, is to encourage the fans to begin to trust their information to
the network again. Although gameplay on the Playstation Network,
Netflix, and Qriocity are back up and running for the most part, access
to the Playstation Store and other features requiring payment or code
retrieval are still "undergoing maintenance". As for myself, I am
extremely annoyed that I cannot buy clothing for my PSN character,
redeem my Jade and Scorpion retro costumes for Mortal Kombat, and
download new demos, etcetera. I can't even fathom how much of an uproar
itís caused for developers of games like SOCOM 4, who released primarily
online games during the outage! Let's all root for a swift, full return
of the network with minimal pain and suffering to Sony's sales and
devoted fans such as myself.
Playstation is also soon
releasing a new and better version of their portable gaming device, the
PSP. Since news of the release of the next-generation Playstation
Portable, or NGP as it was codenamed, surfaced, the reactions and
expectations seem to be mixed. The NGP definitely has its share of
negative critics, as well as many enthusiastic fans. Among the already
announced new features, I am most excited about the dual analog sticks,
touchpad and touchscreen. However, I am not sure how well it will bode
with fans that we are moving further away from game hard copies, as it
is reported that many games wonít make it beyond online download for the
NGP. E3 should definitely prove interesting for Sony and Playstation
this year. I hope to gain more knowledge about the exact release date of
the NGP and any new perceived features that may not have yet been
G4'S BOOTH BABE CONTEST WINNER
Playmate of the Year, Sara Jean Underwood on G4TV's Attack of the Show,
where I once was featured as #1 on Women of the Web!
Although not directly related to the gaming world, I had to add a little
booth babe-ness to my E3 anticipation report. A huge portion of the
event is the models and hotties hired to represent each company as
"booth babes". This year the gaming channel, G4, held an online video
contest to determine who would be working the booth with past Playboy
Playmate, Sara Jean Underwood. Every working model knows that it is not
professional to enter online contests, but still, I was tempted. Was I
not already out of town during the expo I may have let it get the best
of me! I guess it would have been an unfair competition had I entered;
after all I am the perfect candidate for an E3 super-babe! In any case,
I am excited to see which sexy gamer won the contest and I look forward
to seeing all of the other tantalizing booth cuties clad in nerd-gear
this year! I am sure they will not disappoint! Stay tuned and enjoy the
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