So it's come and gone. Every year, this giant news source drops a boatload of content onto fans' shoulders, and leaves us to sort through the mess. In the coming weeks, we're going to take a look at some of the things that might have been overshadowed by the major console news.
For now, here's a quick recap of the biggest stuff with Microsoft and Sony, in case you missed it!
Microsoft did not address any of the fears that have been generated over the past few weeks in the wake of their announcement that their new console will need to be online at least once every 24 hours, that used games are barely supported, and that you can't really share your games with friends. They did, however, announce a few nice exclusives like Quantum Break (a TV show/game hybrid from the Alan Wake devs), Killer Instinct (free to play fighter where you buy additional characters), Ryse: Son of Rome (character action with some element of tactical battle decisions), a new Halo, and some others, I guess. Titanfall from Respawn (the new company founded by the Call of Duty creators), could be a strong contender down the line, but it's also available on Windows for anyone looking to avoid getting an Xbox One. Another game also going to windows is Project Spark, a fun little game making game similar in some ways to LittleBigPlanet.
Ultimately, Microsoft failed to impress, even though they probably had the strongest game lineup of the show. The majority of their potential user base is still concerned with their online policies, and that issue somehow has remained in spite of their nice offering. Their announcing a $499 price point didn't really help their messaging, either.
Sony's press conference came along and completely knocked Microsoft out of the water, in terms of the hearts and minds of the people. Beat after beat, Sony addressed each and every concern people have had for this new console generation. Yes, you can share your games. Yes you can sell your games. No, you don't have to be online. And guess what, we're selling it for $399! Their conference was meticulously designed to excite Sony fans, and did so very well. By the end of their presentation, it was tempting to go off and reserve a PS4 immediately, without even stopping to remember their lineup of exclusives was paltry. Infamous: Second Son looks good. So does Killzone: Shadowfall. Knack, The Order: 1886 (a new IP featuring steampunk and monsters), DriveClub, Deep Down… none of these appear to be system sellers, and it's uncertain which will be available at launch.
Sony did do more than uppercut Microsoft to turn the narrative their way. They announced Kingdom Hearts 3 and re-announced Final Fantasy Versus XIII, now FFXV. Those are multi-platform, but indeed excited. FFXV, particularly looks interesting as a mainline Final Fantasy that focuses on character action for combat.
Oh yeah, and they showed the box. It's smaller than the Xbox One.
Nintendo rounded out the major news sources with a short Nintendo Direct and various announcements throughout Tuesday. Smash Bros is coming next year to Wii U and 3DS, and will introduce Megaman, Animal Crossing's Villager, and the Wii Fit Trainer girl (which is hilarious). Super Mario 3D World for Wii U is the new 3D Mario game, unique in that it features a playable Princess Peach. Pokémon X/Y still looks fun — you can pet your Pokémon for the first time. Wonderful 101 and Pikmin 3 are coming soon, and Bayonetta 2 is still out there. Wind Waker HD will have faster sailing (it comes out in October), and the Link to the Past sequel is now called A Link Between Worlds, available in November.
It's probably for the better that Nintendo toned down its presence this year. They didn't have a whole lot to show.
EA & Ubisoft
EA showed a new Mirror's Edge and Battlefield 4. Also, there's going to be a hybrid tower defense third person shooter in the Plants vs Zombies setting called Garden Warfare. Dragon Age: Inquisition is now a 2014 game. A new Star Wars: Battlefront game exists.
Ubisoft didn't have much new to show. There was Assassin's Creed 4 and Watch_Dogs. South Park: Stick of Truth made a brief appearance. Tom Clancy's The Division looks interesting. That one's an open world RPG with some shooting and tactical elements.
My favorite game of the show is probably Bungie's new online multiplayer game Destiny. I'll report more on that later! For now, check out the gameplay they showed during Sony's press conference here: Youtube!