E3 2006 Coverage

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E3 2006 Video Game Coverage

E3 2006: Sony Press Conference

Monday May 8, 2006 - 3:35 PM - CCC is live at the E3 Sony Press Conference in Los Angeles, CA. We're here and we're all on the list. That NEVER happens. Usually there is some massive screwover which involves me having to sleep with the head of Sony to get in. I'm hoping the head of Sony is a chick this year....

4:00 PM - The show isn't starting. I've been told that it's because all of the other gaming websites are causing trouble. Just another reason why you shouldn't visit any other websites. They're all ignorant animals and surprise, surprise.... They're all morbidly obese. How about getting outside every so often, fellas? Ew. Even the media gaming chicks are vile. I've never seen a larger collection of goatees and half beards in my life...and those are just the gaming media chicks. Crash Boom! They should institute a 100 Push Up rule to get in here.

4:47 PM - Currently the show is running behind schedule. We'll have info as soon as we can get it to you. It's currently 4:47 PM PST. The delay is due to people still waiting outside to get into the show. Once everyone is seated, we've been assured the show will start.
4:52 PM - Kaz Hirai takes the stage and apologizes for the delay. He then opens with the following statement: "PS3 is the most ambitious project SCE has ever undertaken. It requires a huge investment from the entire Sony Group. We're not interested in gimmicks, rhetoric..." Couldn't catch the rest. I raise my hand to ask him to talk slower as my typing speed isn't up to snuff, but he pretends not to see me. Typical.
4:55 PM - Sony PS2: 1.03 million PS2 units sold worldwide, 1.047 billion PS2 games sold. Sony will support the hardware and software for many years to come. 216 new PS2 titles before the end of 2006.
4:58 PM - Sony PSP: PSP is an unrivalled entertainment device. PSP is the fastest selling platform in Sony's history. 17 million units shipped - almost 1 million units each month with no signs of slowing down. Software sales have been just as impressive. 155 new titles to come this year. Kaz shows video of new PSP titles - PlanetPSP, Ape Escape: , Loco Roco, Syphon Filter: Dark Mirror, World Tour Soccer 2, Gangs of London etc. PSP Greatest Hits coming: 5 titles including: ATV Offroad Fury, Twisted Metal: Head On, Ape Escape and WipeOut Pure (250,000 units sold to quality for Greatest Hits).
5:05 PM - Video Showing: Talking to gamers around the world regarding the PlayStation systems in New York, London, Sydney (Australia), Cape Town, Tokyo, Mexico. It's a big commercial to tell us what we already know - Lots of people own Sony game systems! Duh!

5:07 PM - The PS3 - the Big Kahuna: PS3 is powered by Cell / IBM and Toshiba. Super computer terminolgy is tossed around...again. Giganet Ethernet port / Removable HD. PS3 will support true HD 1080p and Dolby surround sound. We are giving the content creators unprecedented power. Backwards compatibility is featured - PS3 will support PS3 and Blu-Ray and all other formats. PSP will interact wirelessly with the PS3. "True HD gaming is the way of the future." 25% of US households will own an HD display by the end of 2006. PS3 will have a HD built right into the box. Users will be able to download content, improve game performance through caching for optimum load times. Simultaneous launch in November.

The PS3 WILL be on the show floor. Contrary to what you have heard, we will be showing playable game titles which you can enjoy at our booth, " said Hirai.


5:15 PM - Phil Harrison takes the stage. Kazunori Yamauchi of Gran Turismo fame takes the stage. "Today we would like to show you a Gran Turismo prototype called Gran Turismo HD. The game has been taken from PS2 and booted up to PS3. The game will run at a resolution of 1920 x 1080p at 60 FPS." Demoing the Tokyo track... (CCC): The game looks good but not unlike anything seen on the X360 at this point.

Then they show a retrospective of GT games starting back at the original GT. Seems a little strange to go backwards. The PS3 game sounds more impressive than it looks - although it does look good. Now they're showing a track from the Grand Canyon. Extremely impressive crowd AI and visuals. The Canyon looks amazing.

We would like to stress at this point that is only the starting point for the next GT. (CCC): So, what have they been doing since showing Vision GT last year?

The world of GT will not expand, but explode. The wait for GT3 on the PS2 was a year and a half, this time we hope to release the new GT not long after the launch of the PS3.


5:31 PM - Phil Harrison takes the stage. Traditional card based battle game combined with the power of PS3. Richard Marx the creator of Eye Toy. Eye of Judgement. Places cards onto the table, the eye toy then tracks his hand on the table and changes into monsters. Harrison puts the Boss card down and it changes into the "duck" from previous PlayStation demos and fries the monsters that formed onscreen. Haha. Cute. How about some cool info?


5:35 PM - Kaz talks online plan. Online will become a standard feature, like air conditioning in a car. The basic plan will be free of charge.


5:39 PM - Kaz talks E-Distribution on the PSP. Ridge Racer 1 for the PS is downloaded onto the PSP's memory stick. The game is letterboxed, but can be played fullscreen. Nice.

5:41 PM - Kaz talks microtransactions. Cards can be purchased in advance and there will be a variety of payment options so people without credit cards can download items.
5:44 PM - MySingStar PS3: Hundreds of tunes can be stored thanks to the Blu-ray discs. Loading time seems very fast. Addition content is purchased which is the foundation of the online model. If you want more songs, levels, characters etc. you can pay for them. <sarcasm>Yay! What used to be free is now costing me money! I love that! </sarcasm>
5:47 PM - Genji 2 (Dynasty Warriors wannabe), Formula 1 and Heavenly Sword are shown. Genji 2 looks okay, Formula 1 uses the PSP as a sidemirror as a cool gimmick when used in tandem with the PS3. Heavenly Sword looks very impressive and will be playable on the show floor. At long last, something that shows the visual potential of the PS3. It's worth noting that at this point the crowd pipes up and makes some noise, which has long been absent in what should have been an action packed press conference.
5:55 PM - Demo reel of games not yet ready in playable form for E3. The Getaway is shown, Hot Shots Golf, Afrika, Lair (riding dragon fantasy game), Monster Kingdom. All games look good, but I'm not really blown away by anything as much as I really want to be or expected to be.
6:01 PM - Aha. Phil Harrison returns to unveil World Premiere Games! Maybe that's why no one's been particularly impressed up until now. Better blow the doors off fellas. Eight Days is first out of the starting gate and it hits with a KABOOM. Gas tanker goes BOOM and causes all kinds of great realtime damage. Naughty Dog's next game is shown and it's NOT a Jak & Daxter game. Takes place in a realistic looking forest...so I'm thinking maybe a real world version of Crash Bandicoot....NOPE. Thank god. The main character is a handsome looking dude in jeans and a t-shirt who is shooting it out with mercs. I didn't catch a name of the game. Resistance: Fall of Man is shown by Insomniac president Ted Price. It's a foreboding game which plays with the history of our world's timeline. WWII never happened, but instead aliens invaded Earth. At first it looks like you're usual run of the mill WWII FPS with the regular assortment of old weapons, but as the demo goes on, more interesting weapons and aliens appear - with loads of carnage. Looks to be very intense. Online multiplayer with up to 32 players. So far, so good.

6:13 PM - Kaz is back and showing demo reels from third party companies.

  • Assassin's Creed - Shorter version of the trailer. Looks very nice.
  • Gundam - It looks realtime and everything is nice and shiny. I don't like mech games though.
  • Coded Arms Assault - The PSP franchise comes to the PS3.
  • Ridge Racer 7 - Cool new style only hinted at in screenshots. Lots of blurring and effects, but will it get in the way of driving sideways for the whole track?
  • Brothers In Arms: Hell's Highway - A tank lays waste to a car....and that was about it.
  • Tekken 6 - Some fighting and not very impressive looking at that.
  • Sonic The Hedgehog - Typical Sonic but with more stuff going on. Surprise! Shadow's in the game.
  • Virtua Tennis 3 - Looks good, but tennis bores the crap out of me already.
  • Virtua Fighter 5 - Very hot! VF fans are going to squeal like schoolgirls....even moreso than usual.
  • John Woo Presents Stranglehold - No evidence of Tequila time. Damn. But John Woo shot some stuff.
  • Fatal Inertia - Racing. Looks alright.
  • Bladestorm: The 100 Years War
  • Armored Core 4 - Another fine mech. Haha.
Well, that was not as exciting as I was hoping. I'm getting a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach. I think it's the cries of Xbox 360 fanboys laughing their asses off somewhere in the distance. Maybe the inevitable Metal Gear Solid 4 demo will shut them up. It's got to be shown soon, right?
6:21 PM - Ah. Electronic Arts has arrived. Let me guess....all of their same games that you played on the Genesis will be now available on the PS3. Don't laugh, you know I'm right. Larry Probst from EA demonstrates the difference between AI in NBA Live 07, by comparing a PS3 player to a PS2 player. This looks to be a good time to go and take a leak. Sorry. Not interested much. EA is working on 10 games, all of which you know and expect except maybe Need For Speed Carbon, Army of Two and Metal Of Honor: Airborne which gets my "Ooh Ahh" award.

6:26 PM - Here's the MGS4 demo! It'll tell us what to do! Wow. It's incredibly emotional. Snake is downright old and depressed, not to mention old. Did I mention how old he looks? Even older than what we've seen. The roster of returning MGS characters are here: Meryl, Naomi Hunter, Roy Campbell, Otacon, Liquid Snake, Ocelot and even Raiden shows up, looking pretty cool. Then Snake puts a loaded gun in his mouth. Yikes! The worst part though was when we were told we'd have to wait for 2007 to find out what happens. Guess MGS4 ain't a launch title.


6:32 PM - Now Ken Kutaragi makes his appearance and announces free PS3's for everyone in the audience!! Just kidding. Too bad Oprah wasn't hosting this bloody thing....Next in line is the "Final secret" which is the controller. After some visual shenanigans with breaking open a crate onscreen with a silver colored Dualshock, the PS3 controller is unveiled! And it looks identical to the Dualshock 2, except it has more functionality than ever before! Hey, if it ain't broke, don't fix it! The controller will be wireless, weigh less than the regular Dualshock 2 and has 6 degrees of motion-sensing movement! Move it up, down, use pitch and yaw, roll....and it won't even puke!


6:38 PM - The controller's new abilities are demonstrated to great form with a playable version of Warhawk which was shown at last years E3. This guy has complete control over the Warhawk ship, yanking that controller all over the place. You look like a spazmodic doing it, but gamers don't have any friends (offline anyway) so no one will be around to make fun of you geeking out.


6:40 PM - Now the price gouging begins. What is this thing going to do to my wallet? If your wallet is sitting near by, hide its leathery little eyes. It ain't going to be pretty. The PS3 will be sold in two packages: $499 for the 20 GB package, $599 for the 60GB package. More if you live in Canada (but not that much more thanks to the CDN dollar). Still it's darn pricey and no sir, I don't like it.


6:42 PM - A list of third party publishers rolls on, like the opening credits of the first Superman movie. Yes, we get it. There is lots of support for this system. When it's finished, Kaz tells everyone that the PS3 will be playable on the show floor and that they're even available to play after the conference.

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