Sony’s history of taking care of the attendees with food continues, as food trucks were awaiting us as we arrived at the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena. I went with “Tato Tots” and “Cheezy Mac”, as I realised that I hadn’t eaten anything all day. Inside the press conference area there were several games being played on the main stage to help pass the time. Then, suddenly! It was all on with a montage.
Jack Tretton took the stage. His introduction seemed a bit like a sports pep talk to begin with, then he name drops Nathan Drake, Cole McGrath, and Solid Snake, followed by the rock star thing of thanking the fans. He ironically states how his job is pressure-free around E3, and as if to back this up, some of his words seem slurred or mumbled. He didn’t let it phase him though, and introduced David Cage, of Quantic Dream.
David announces “Beyond: Two Souls” and the audience takes a collective breath (or maybe it was just me). The protagonist, Jodie Holmes, is some kind of ghost whisperer, and the game will follow her through some fifteen odd years. She will be played by Academy Award winner Ellen Paige. Shows an early scene in the game, and assures everyone that it’s in-engine. Jodie Holmes is being interviewed by a police officer, though she’s not saying anything. For a character with a high-calibre actor that just got name dropped, she’s being completely silent. The cop notices a scar on her head, and when he goes in for a closer look, his cup of coffee flies of the desk and hits the wall, amid bass-y spectral sounds and jittering camera shots. Unnerved, he leaves the room. She still hasn’t said anything. After he leaves, she says “I know, they’re coming.” Suddenly a SWAT team is raiding the office. Just as the cop leads them to her, the clip cuts to black and a montage plays. We’re left with Ellen’s character standing over the leader of the swat team, saying to someone else (a ghost, I guess) “I think they get the message”.
Little BIG Planet 2 cross controller DLC, enabling Vita as a controller for LBP2. Wait, Jack still calls it PSN; wasn’t there a name change to SEN? What on earth happened to that? I feel like I’m on crazy pills.
The “Michael” marketing campaign gets brought up. And rightfully, so, it was damn good. This leads directly into Playstation All Stars Battle Royale, as various characters featuring raising a glass to Michael are featured, and can brawl it out. Six people come out onto the stage. four with coloured t-shirts, presumably to play. The two other dudes in shirts do the talking. The first thing they do is confirm cross play with the Vita, and indeed, two of the four are using Vita’s to play. Kratos, Sweet tooth, Sly Cooper, and Fat Princess are in play. It looks quite a bit like Smash brothers. The hydra from God Of War appears in the background and can attack the players. The key seems to be building up a meter and then launching a super attack to practically instant-kill enemies. Fat Princess wins the match, with Sweet Tooth a close second (the other two appeared to be in negatives). They go on to confirm a rumour regarding two characters they’ve added to the roster: Nathan Drake shows up on the screen and the iconic music plays. Bioshock images show with some audio of a little sister talking to “Mr Bubbles” (as they do)..Big Daddy and Nathan Drake confirmed for PS All Stars Battle Royale.
PlayStation Plus is to have free games available on the service, including Infamous 2, LBP2, and Saints Row 2. VF5 is shown on one of the side panels that naturally draws my eye (though given that VF5: Final Showdown is practically out now, free is probably not cheap enough somehow. Titles will be rotated as they do. Oh, and here’s PS+ one year subscription free for attendees. Nothing like a freebie to get the audience behind you, Oprah style.
A bunch of PS One classics are coming to the system. Tomb Raider, Final Fantasy Seven.., Wild Arms? I dunno if I’d have called that a classic, but I guess I played after its time. Entertainment apps! MLB, NHL, it’s like the Microsoft conference, but they’re giving this stuff the appropriate amount of weight (which is to say, not as much). YoubTube coming to Vita. Also Crackle, which I’m sure is great if you’re in America.
Call Of Duty is coming to PS Vita. “For the first time ever, a AAA shooter on the Vita” (Sorry, Burning Skies). Call Of Duty Black Ops: Declassified.
Assassins Creed 3: Liberation, trailer plays: it’s on a Vita screen. Female protagonist. Cross goods between AC3 on PS3 and AC3:L. October 30th. Vita bundle announced, Vita crystal white wifi model. with 4GB card and and, of course, the game. But now it’s time to talk about AC3 legit.
Alex Hutchinson, and cohort step onto the stage to talk about Assassins Creed. “The revolution was not just fought on land but also at sea”. The gameplay footage takes place on the Caribbean 1778… From the deck of a ship… the player takes the wheel of the ship and steers it through a pass. They have full control of the ship including the canons. An enemy ship appears on the other side of the pass, the cannons tear it up. It looks awesome but it looks like the gameplay might actually be quite shallow. Out on the open ocean, the player steers around and systematically destroys all but one ship, which he lines up next to and boards, cut to white, logo, October 30.
Assassins Creed 3 PS3 bundle! And on to Far Cry 3. This man has a very deep voice. They claim they built two games in Far Cry 3. I guess four player coop is considered a separate game. I know some studios farm out the multiplayer, but that doesn’t mean you get double the credit for a single game if you decide not to! It looks like coop shooters generally do. Which isn’t a bad thing. They work together to blow up a bridge. Mission accomplished. My god this mans voice is deep. Oh, it’ll have a map editor, cool. DLC exclusive?
Time to talk about PlayStation Move. “Okay guys, the reason it hasn’t really come up with a tonne of new titles is that it’s an additive experience!” Sounds like an excuse to me. Andrew House comes on to the stage. Thanks the fans. Transformative experiences and other buzz wods. The book… one of the oldest forms of interaction. He announces “Wonderbook”. It’s extremely reminiscent of EyePet but with a book instead of cards. Moonbot Studios is working on a story Diggs Nightcrawler, which has some noir aesthetic going on. Huge name bomb is just dropped. JK Rowling. Naturally this is about Harry Potter, and the product is called Book Of Spells, and is the first Wonderbook title. It allows you can cast spells using the Move controller is as a wand.. Apparently the wand doesn’t choose the wizard, they just sync it to their Playstation 3. A dragon comes out of the book on the fire making spell.. The history of discovery/origins of spells will be featured in a whimsical manner. Oh, excellent, a live demo of using alohamora to open gates. Apparently it’s hard because it’s not happening. Remember, it’s a live demo folks, and this is what you get for not fooling us with smoke and mirrors!.
PlayStation Suite is talked about to expand their current PlayStation family onto Android.
God Of War Ascension; the crowd is already drowning Jack out with cheers before he’s even finished introducing it. Kratos encounters bad dudes with goat heads. He’s pretty happy to separate the goat from the human via… QTE kills!. He rewinds time. Tentacles come lashing out of the ocean! With barbs!. A living statue dude with a flaming hammer! An elephant man!. Kratos splits open a skull, doesn’t bother harvesting the ivory. March 12 2013.
The Last Of Us… We only guess it’s playing, but there’s no real way of knowing. The screens are dark, there’s soothing sounds. Then dramatic noises. It might have been a technical issue that we couldn’t see anything, because suddenly it all comes on. Ellie points out a Dawn Of Wolf poster and it appears to highlight when the player looks at it, so apparently they’re a thing. Some banter between the characters… For obvious reasons, it’s very visually reminiscent of Naughty Dog’s Uncharted games. The kid seems like she could be acted by a young Ellen Paige, or perhaps Ellen Paige acting young. They navigate through ruins of cool urban areas. Human enemies talk in the distance. The protagonists hide from them and evade. The weapon UI pops up and reinforces the Uncharted deja vu. A stealth kill, Uncharted-esque. It looks like the gun play is aimed at being more real than Uncharted, as enemies take much fewer bullets, but recoil is SAVAGE. Melee, again, Uncharted deja vu. A hostage is taken by the player. Using him as a human shield, he takes out the last enemy and bludgeons his hostage. But then he’s flanked by someone out of nowhere. He goes to fire, but finds he has no ammo. The enemy recognises the clicking gun noise and begins to approach. The girl distracts the enemy by beaning him in the head with a rock, The player rushes him and melees him to death. Combat in general looks intense, particularly against enemies armed with shotguns. It finishes, the crowd loves it. They’re still cheering when Jack comes back on the stage and starts talking. He thanks everyone for coming, and we leave, generally appreciative but grumbling silently about the lack of The Last Guardian being shown.