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E3 Press Conference Discussion Thread


J-Stop

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With Sony's conference starting in 10 hours from this post, figure we need a thread to keep all of todays talk in.

Gamespot is the only site (so far) that i've found allowing live viewing for free members tonight. IGN could be doing it, but all I get is advisements all around.

So, what's everyone's predictions for tonight?

EDIT: I'll post mine.

- Kaz Hirai talks for a good amount of time about how the PS2 is the top selling console system at the moment.

- More PS3 footage that's probably all CGI footage again.

- New PS3 controller shown.

- Discussing PSP's new accessories and/or unveiling more.

- New PSP games, or just trailers to the ones already announced.

- God of War: Expansion Pack Volume 1 God of War II trailer shown, followed by Jaffe coming out talking about something he googled the night before.

- [EA representative] comes out talking about how "awesome" their sports games will be on the PS3.

- More talk of the PS3 followed by talk of the online service.

- Trailers for the Final Fantasy VII spin off games shown. Probably a Crisis Core with real footage this time. Possibly more FFVII games.

- Kingdom Hearts spin off game unveiled.

- Final Fantasy XIII teaser. (?)

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I think we will be seeing more footage of the PS3, real footage or atleast proof of it's real capabilities. The new controller design will hopefully meet my personal standards.

A FFXIII teaser sounds quite awesome, as just recently its been cited that the character designer from FFVII and FFVIII is working on FFXIII, although it wasn't said what he was doing.

More information would be great!

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I think we will be seeing more footage of the PS3, real footage or atleast proof of it's real capabilities. The new controller design will hopefully meet my personal standards.

A FFXIII teaser sounds quite awesome, as just recently its been cited that the character designer from FFVII and FFVIII is working on FFXIII, although it wasn't said what he was doing.

More information would be great!

It's going to be a toss up of which game will be shown last, either one of Square's new games or Metal Gear Solid 4.

Then again Sony isn't really known for saving the best things for last, so, the last thing at the show could just be a release date or pricing announced for the PS3.

Oh, and I completely forgot, there will be a new MGS4 trailer shown at some point in the evening. A 15 second sound clip from the trailer has been "leaked" with Snake and Campbell talking to eachother.

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Square-Enix's confrence is going on now, Gamespot has the current news in their blog.

LOS ANGELES--Kicking off a week of potentially explosive gaming announcements is Square Enix's annual pre-E3 press conference, being held this morning at LA's Palladium event venue. With new consoles due out this fall from Sony and Nintendo (and the Xbox 360 already plowing ahead at full steam), excitement here is understandably high about new products the titanic Japanese publisher may announce for next-generation platforms.

A throng of eager journalists assembled outside the Palladium prior to the event. Surprisingly, Metal Gear Solid designer Hideo Kojima made an appearance, eschewing the spotlight and sitting among the regular audience.

The Square Enix press conference.

Following a brief delay, the audience was herded into a fashionably decorated auditorium where the company's most closely held secrets will be revealed. Banners displaying existing properties--from Final Fantasy XII to Dirge of Cerberus--draped the walls, display cases full of statuettes bearing familiar likenesses greeted attendees at the entrance, and a rousing score from many of the company's most popular games.

But even minutes before the show began, no hint of Square Enix's new, next-generation games was yet in evidence.

1:02 pm The conference is starting with a cavalcade of announced products on video--Dawn of Mana, Final Fantasy V and VI for GBA, Rocket Slime (!), some mobile stuff. President Yoichi Wada's now taking the stage, wasting no time talking about the promise of next-gen and telling us they've got some hot secrets for us today. So let's have 'em already!

1:06 COO Daishiro Okada is now on stage discussing the upcoming lineup. Final Fantasy XII will be out October of this year. Finally. Also some mobile stuff. Space Invaders? Elevator Action? Dirge of Cerberus: Lost Episodes also on mobile this summer.

1:10 Now we're getting into the meat with a long trailer for Final Fantasy XII, all in English. Sounds like they're sparing no expense on the voice acting for this one--it's all appropriately haughty, in line with the tone of the story.

1:18 More trailers for announced, current-gen stuff like Valkyrie Profile: Lenneth and the latest FFXI expansion. Now it's Final Fantasy on mobile--I knew my nerd sense was tingling for a reason.

1:24 Looks like their mobile strategy rages unabated--Dirge is the standout since it's all in 3D. Now we've got Final Fantasy III for DS, billed as "the only Final Fantasy never to reach Western shores." They're urging us to "complete the fantasy" with this 3D remake--fine by me since it looks like the best DS RPG yet.

1:28 Final Fantasies V and VI for GBA--not the biggest news, but near and dear to many hearts for sure. Promised to have new surprises. Now it's Mana time, starting off with the sorta middling Children of. But what's this? Ten years before Children of Mana, a 3D game: Dawn of Mana, of course. More CG than gameplay, but it looks pretty good.

1:32 Once upon a slime! It's Dragon Quest Heroes: Rocket Slime, which is the most bafflingly adorable name I've ever heard. Apparently, "it's payback slime." So cute, I'm sold. Now Shinji Hashimoto is taking the stage to talk about the utterly unsurprising massive success of the many Final Fantasy VII projects, from Advent Children to Dirge and the mobile games. Hey, and a US date for Dirge: August 22, with new features included.

1:43 Still showing off the Compilation of FFVII stuff, all of which is out here or in Japan. Bring on the next-gen games!

1:49 I spoke too soon: Here's our first real footage of FFVII Crisis Core for the PSP. Stars Zack of Soldier fame, apparently, and there's a ton of Sephiroth in here (down, boys 'n girls). No gameplay footage, only real-time cutscenes, but it looks amazing for a PSP game.

1:51 Here we go--Dragon Quest is coming to the Wii. Some dude is fighting a stone golem in a forest. Dragon Quest Swords: The Masked Queen and the Tower of Mirrors. Launch title for the Wii! No real footage of the game, but still, big news.

More to come.

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Another update, news on DS and Wii games.

1:54 The hits keep on coming--now we have Akitoshi Kawazu, exec. producer of Crystal Chronicles. Two new games from that series: one DS, one Wii. DS game is Ring of Fates, and will have wi-fi multiplayer (duh). Looks a bit more whimsical than the Cube version, same basic sense of style though. They're showing four players at once, like you'd expect. Yay DS!
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Predictions:

*Bullshit about how Blu-Ray will be the standard home-entertainment format.

*Bullshit about how 1080p TVs are going to be in every room of every household.

*Bullshit about how high-def graphics will be the most important aspect of gaming in this generation.

Yeah, that's what I expect. Of course, Sony may take me off guard and show us footage from a game I actually care about, like Gradius VI. But that's highly doubtful.

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Another update on Gamespot's blog.

1:58 And here comes the Wii title. That Final Fantasy theme still makes me all misty-eyed. Wow, these visuals are nice--random shots of CC-style little dudes fighting bombs and other monsters. If any of that was real-time footage of the game, the Wii graphics ought to do us just fine. Hard to say if it was just CG, though. Code name: Chrystal Chronicles: The Crystal Bearers. No major details on the game available yet though.

2:02 Final announcement! For PS3! E3 is so damn exciting sometimes. What is it?!

FINAL FANTASY XIII. FINAL FANTASY XIII. They pulled a serious bait-and-switch on us. Sword-and-gun-wielding heroine who looks like Yuna, flipping her way around a high-tech, futuristic world. No idea what it was until the end when that NAME popped up. Yoshinori Kitase directing! This is the guy behind all the best ones--VI, VIII, VIII, X. Be still my heart.

2:08 Sorry, I jumped the gun--Mr. Kitase was merely presenting. Motomu Toriyama will direct the game. And apparently FFXIII isn't the only game coming out of this universe--there's a, uh, mobile game too. Oh. It's Final Fantasy Agito XIII.

Now it's Fabula Nova Crystallis--"the new tale of the crystal" in Latin. They're big on the Latin today. Whoa, wait, another new game? Another PS3 game?! Final Fantasy Versus XIII? They're emphasizing that in Latin, versus means "to change direction." This is a Tetsuya Nomura game, and he's taking the stage now.

2:17 Nomura is providing more details. The CG movie we just saw, featuring a spiky-haired character (natch) squaring off against machine gun-wielding soldiers, was created by the Advent Children team, but the game itself will be made by the Kingdom Hearts team, and will feature "extreme action elements." He says "bonding" will be the primary theme of the game.

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2:20 The conference draws to a close with a comment from Hashimoto that this should demonstrate Square Enix's commitment to next-generation gaming, but that it's "only the beginning." A final movie showcases the name Final Fantasy XIII, as if each new installment in this mega-enormous series is now a franchise unto itself.

Finally, Mr. Wada has retaken the stage. "How did that grab you?" Laughter and applause. Some more commentary on SE's commitment to supporting the next gen. Speaks more about the "synergy between products" being a proven formula with Compilation of FFVII. Looks like they're taking the same tack with FFXIII.

Some more info on FFXIII (can't type fast enough!): The game was begun by the FFX team for PS2, but the team was then derailed to make last year's FFVIII PS3 tech demo. They were so happy with the hardware, they decided to then shift development to the new platform. Apparently the game will run on the "White Engine" and will feature the most technologically advanced civilization ever featured in a Final Fantasy. The storyline will center on "those who resist the world." Yeah, okay.

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The conference is now over, Gamespot posted it's final update for the time being.

2:27 The conference is officially over. I'm gonna go change my drawers. Stay tuned for screens of all this FFXIII madness, and a lot more. And to think, E3's still two days away.

Here's a list of all the major announcements.

- Final Fantasy XII will be released in October this year.

- New mobile game, Dirge of Cerberus: Lost Episode, is announced.

- Valkyrie Profile: Lenneth and Valkyrie Profile 2 are US bound.

- Ports of FFVI and FFV are shown, SE promises "new suprises"

- Dawn of Mana, a prequel to Children of Mana, is announced for PS2.

- Dragon Quest Heroes: Rocket Slime trailer shown.

- FFVII: Dirge of Cerberus release date is announced, August 22. New stuff will be added to the US release.

- "Real" trailer of Crisis Core is shown.

- Dragon Quest Swords: The Masked Queen is announced for Wii.

- New WiFi DS game announced, Ring of Fates.

- Chrystal Chronicles: The Crystal Bearers for Wii announced.

- Final Fantasy Agito XIII, for mobile, is announced.

- Fabula Nova Crystallis is announced.

- Tetsuya Nomura announces a new game by the Kingdom Hearts team, a CGI trailer with a spiky haired guy facing off against machine gun soldiers is shown.

- Final Fantasy XIII is announced with it's logo shown and some footage.

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Meh, I can't say I'm liking what I'm hearing about FFXIII. Sounds like more of the same stuff that drove me away from the series in the first place. But then again, this is no surprise to me.

I'd like to know more about this Dragon Quest game for Wii though. The title makes it sound like it'll have emphasis on sword fighting. I also hope that Wii Crystal Chronicles teaser surfaces on the internet soon enough.

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FFCC WII SHOTS NOW. NOW. NOW. AND FFCC DS SHOTS NOW. FFCC IS MY FAVOURITE RPG OF THE LAST THREE YEARS.

Gamespot is probably making pages for them at the moment, just wait a bit longer.

New Wii and LoZ: TP info from GAF/EGM.

Posted by Ron Kimberly at 06:13:40 PM EST on 5.8.2006.

The lastest issue of Electronic Gaming Monthly has an in-depth look at Nintendo's Wii and The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess. Got it? Good, let's get to the info. First we'll do a little summary, because you know you want to know everything right now, then go over some implications of these new developments.

Wii:

- Embracing their new love of online gaming, the Wii will be ALWAYS online, even when turned off (sleep mode?).

- The Wii controller will feature an onboard speaker.

- A $250 price tag is mentioned, but likely just another estimation. Do not regard this as fact.

- Virtual Console games will not be improved graphically.

- The TurboGrafx-16 library at launch will consist solely of first party titles; third party titles will be added later as demand increases.

- The article says that there is greater third party support for the Wii than there is/was for GameCube.

- Metroid Prime 3 will not be a launch title, as it will be released some time in 2007 (bummer).

- A new Godzilla (Atari) game and a Snoopy vs. the Red Baron (Namco) game have been announced for the Wii.

- A new Mario has been confirmed for fall 2006 (launch?!) and Super Smash Bros. has been confirmed (again).

The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess:

- Game is STILL not complete. Roughly 80% at this time.

- Wii controller WILL NOT be used for sword fighting. Why? You'd get tired too quickly (makes sense).

- Sound will come from the controller.

- Some sort of online interaction is planned.

- Widescreen view will only be available on Wii.

- Amount of dungeons and items greater than Ocarina of Time (had been mentioned previously).

Okay, let's go over all this before we get to the Zelda stuff. Why will the Wii always be online? There's lots of nifty stuff you could do with it. Could constantly download data, communicate between systems, perform painless updates, etc. Perhaps Nintendo could even surprise you with free Virtual Console titles from time to time just for being online. Who knows?

Then we have the speaker on the controller. Wow. A small addition, but potentially a very powerful one. Just think of hearing all the action at your hands. Not quite surround sound, but the things you could do with it are very intriguing. Outside of gaming, it could also be used for a number of alerts or messages you could receive from your always-online console without having to actually stay at the Wii's interface screen. Throw a microphone on there somewhere, and well, you can see where that would go.

The Virtual Console news is a bit underwhelming, but it's nothing really negative. You can't really expect them to go all-out releasing their massive NES/SNES/N64 library with updated graphics or features. And as much as I'd LOVE to talk about Mario, well...there's nothing to talk about. It's just there. If that's true, it will certainly be talked about during Nintendo's conference tomorrow.

Then we have Zelda. The possible online features are really intriguing. Hopefully they will be revealed at tomorrow's conference. Versus battle? Fishing competition? Horse races? Archery contests? Plenty of possibilities. Really nothing absolutely ground-breaking outside of that. Only 80% done? Hopefully there will be no more delays. The Wii controller not being used for sword fighting is a surprise, considering all the hints dropped about it up until now. Plus, the writer of the recent Time article mentioned using the controller in sword-fights. Hopefully Nintendo will set the record straight tomorrow.

That's all for now. This may ruin some of Nintendo's thunder during tomorrow's conference, but surely this can't be it? Tune in for GAF's live blogging and we'll find out.

Source: Electronic Gaming Monthly

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FFXIII at least sounds interesting. I dunno about the battle system, but that really seems like something I'd have to try before I could knock. Biggest problem I have with is the graphics. I had the same problem with the overly femme characters of Advent Children. Then again I guess that's standard fare for FF games.

Looks pretty but I dunno If I'm sold on a PS3 because of it.

Edit: Hmm, after re-reading the post by J-Stop it appears my problem with the graphics is mostly with the FFXIII: Versus game. The FFXIII screens look nice. And considering that it says right in the announcement that the CG was done by the team who did Advent children but the game will be done by the Kingdom Hearts team... Well I may not have the same reservations about versus when in game screens surface. We'll see.

At least I'm a little more excited now.

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