It’s hard to tell which genre of games I like. People would say RPGs but I’d rather call them story-driven games. I mostly enjoy JRPG games like Final Fantasy X but I also like WRPGs like Elder Scrolls or Mass Effect. Next to RPGs there are adventure/point and click games ranging from Uncharted to Hotel Dusk and Phoenix Wright. I don’t really like shooter or strategy games, mainly because I can’t see anything interesting/exciting in them (killing people with guns never interested me -_-)
I’m expecting a lot of E3 this time. Some developers seem to create more action-oriented games for multiple consoles that all look the same, others create a mass of mobile games (iPhone) or small budget titles for PSN or XBL. There are few developers that dare to create big new IPs which are unique, fresh and original. I think, with 2 possible new consoles (N3DS and PSP2), the possibility exists that a lot of new IPs will be announced at the upcoming event, maybe even some new RPGs? I’m hoping for it! I understand that creating FPS and action games is money making but some developers need to have the guts to do something original. As far as I know, all those unique titles were received greatly by gaming media.
Besides new (RPG) IPs, are there any specific games I’m looking forward to? Yes, next to Uncharted 3, Mass Effect 3 and some others I can’t remember right now, there are some very specific games I’d like to see at this E3:
I never was really sure which RPG was the best RPG I’ve ever played. The guess was between Final Fantasy X and Baten Kaitos. After seemingly years of debate, I made up my mind. Baten Kaitos on Nintendo GameCube is the best RPG I’ve ever played. While it was confusing for some, BK had the best battle system I’ve ever seen in any game. The game featured great character designs, an interesting story, awesome music by Sakuraba and stunning, breathing environments that I will never forget. I was disappointed that BK2 never reached Europe but apparently the game sold badly in US. Nevertheless, I would love to see a new Baten Kaitos title, or even a remake of the original. I’m pretty sure it would be received a lot better in times were JRPGs are slowly dying. I can’t express how I feel about this game, but Namco created a gem that I will never forget. I wonder if this gem will finally appear once more at E3…
Lost Odyssey was a strange game, it didn’t have some sort of character growth system, neither a truly interesting battle system or menu interface. The story, with exception of Kaim’s memories in “A Thousand Years of Dreams”, wasn’t all too exciting either. Despite all this, I loved Lost Odyssey and many will agree that this is one of the best Xbox 360 RPGs. It is thus far the only game that I really see as a JRPG similar to Final Fantasy X and countless PS2 JRPGs, in the current generation of consoles. I’d love to see a sequel in some way, though I don’t think that’ll happen anytime soon.
I love open world gameplay and games that never really end. That’s mainly the reason why I’m so excited for FFXIV, to know that it’ll never end and there will be always something to do. Elder Scrolls IV was such a game, it simply hit me, it hit me hard with a breathing world, lore and so much things to do. I’d love to see a sequel, that’s all.
I love Capcom’s Ace Attorney games. They were one of the few portable titles that got me hooked and were I actually cared about the characters and story. Ace Attorney is classified as an Adventure game however for me it is a completely new genre of games. The creator of these games is working on a completely new game called Ghost Trick which, similar to Ace Attorney, will feature unique gameplay and story. At E3, I’d like to see more of this game and maybe something else Capcom’s been working on. Devil May Cry 5, perhaps?
We haven’t heard anything about Golden Sun since the original announcement at E309. If you’ve never played Golden Sun and looked at the GBA games, you might not like them. I, however, played the second game and absolutely loved it so I’m looking forward to hear more about this title. I think it’s strange we haven’t seen anything about this title for such a long time so maybe they’re porting it to the 3DS?
You might have noticed how Square Enix localizes their titles faster with smaller gaps between the Japanese, North American and European release. I would not be surprised if the next FF Versus trailer features English voices and an English UI. As many of you, I’d love to see Versus at E3 however they’ve basically denied it in the recent Kingdom Hearts interview. Final Fantasy Versus XIII is in development for a long time already, however the development team also assisted with the development of many other titles so my guess is that Versus’s development won’t reach completion soon.
I believe that Square Enix won’t show Versus, but rather Agito XIII at this year’s E3 conference, since the game has already a release date pinned down (my guess is Winter 2010). Only god knows…Versus or Agito? Both? No one? Or will Square Enix opt for a reveal of the 4th Fabula Nova Crystallis title? The myth of the patented Haeresis? Some say Haeresis was originally FFXIV, others say it was simply patented for development at a later time. A few years back, I thought it was the codename for a Final Fantasy X movie, today I think it’s a project lead by Yasumi Mitsuda (Square Enix Production Team 4, known for the Ivalice Alliance games including FFXII)
Besides all of this, I’d like to see some kick-ass trailers for games like Final Fantasy XIV, the Last Story and the Last Guardian (many more that I can’t remember right now. Write “games” on a scrap of paper, think and yes, those games!)
I’m looking forward to announcements about the Nintendo 3Ds and the rumored PSP2 but I hope the other consoles will stick to Natal and Move for a while. The full potential of consoles like PS3, Xbox 360, and even Wii still hasn’t been discovered yet. For some odd reason I don’t have 3D vision but I’m afraid Nintendo will use their 3D chip as an excuse to push the price high and make the console as bulky as the original Nintendo DS. A long time ago, there were rumors about Nintendo working on a Wii HD console that would be free for everyone who own a Wii already. It would go on sale only a month after E3. I don’t believe the last part, Nintendo would never do something like that, however I’d like to see a Wii HD. Some people try games like Super Mario Galaxy on a Wii HD emulator and they look very nice with upscaled graphics. I’d also like to see a big PS3 firmware with enhanced support for PlayStation 2 titles. There were rumors about Sony working on a PlayStation 2 emulator and I’m sure a lot of fans would like to see that. That big firmware update should also include a PS video store for European countries. Unfortunately, if there was going to be a firmware update, it would probably be to include a Premium PSN service. I’m fine with that, however they shouldn’t let you pay a monthly subscription to play online games like Microsoft does. Speaking of updates, the Nintendo Wii should also get a major update. I’m beginning to feel that the user interface is outdated a bit and would like to see some new features such as a demo service, custom backgrounds, some new cool channels and the ability to read DVDs.
Alongside with new hardware there should also be some new games. 3DS with tilt sensor should open up many opportunities for developers to create a new form of games and to port iPhone games to 3DS. I’m not a fan of motion controls because people think your strange when your playing such a game in a public place. If the 3DS is as powerful as the GameCube, expect to see lots of GameCube games ported to the device *coughbatenkaitoscough*. With 2 screens, updated graphics, new controls and an analog stick, the 3DS seems like the perfect console for RPGs.
Microsoft and Windows Phone 7
To finish this thing off, let’s talk about Microsoft. It’s obvious that they’ll be introducing an Xbox Slim and maybe a price drop. I’m looking forward to see more from Natal since it didn’t seem all too responsive at last year’s E3 conference. I also love gadgets and phones so I’ll keep an eye out on Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7, a major update to their mobile operating system which is scheduled to launch this winter. Besides a complete make-over of their outdated OS, the phones will also be centered around games. You can connect your Gamertag to your phone to play, buy, or even try games from a sweet looking Marketplace. Furthermore, WP7 is the first portable device that supports achievements. I think Microsoft is able to transform their phones into true gaming consoles on par with DS/PSP since the devices have been met with an enormous praise saying that it’s the first device that will be able to beat the iPhone. Another reason could be the ability to easily port iPhone games to WP7, games that are seamlessly compatible with WP7, PCs and Xbox 360 or the high-end developer environment for developing games and applications using Silverlight and XNA Game Studio. I wonder if Microsoft will debut these devices as actual gaming consoles at E3, it seems likely!
I’m keeping me eyes on the big guns I’m interested in like Nintendo, Sony, Microsoft, Capcom, Namco, Bethesda and of course Square Enix! Many great announcements were made but there’ll sure be so much other ones! Whatever you’re interested in, keep a close eye on your favorite video game sites (including this one!) because it’s going to be an event of a lifetime!
P.S.: Last year live streams were pretty horrible. I hope this year’s streams will be better. Technology is advanced enough to make HQ streams or even HD streams possible. This year Nintendo will stream their own conference and IGN is partnering with YouTube to provide the live streams so there is hope! Great announcements need great quality footage!
What are your E3 expectations, dreams and wishes? Let us know!
Nick, June 13 2010