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E3 2012 Predictions

I love, love, love E3 and I can’t help but spout some predictions.

I’m most interested in the three major players and their press conferences.  Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft.  Each planning some big announcements and future plans.  Here’s what I think each major player will have to say.

Nintendo

My biggest interest for E3 2012 is Nintendo’s Wii U console?  Wii sales are essentially dead, 3DS not doing so well…  Can Wii U breath life back or will it show us something we didn’t know we wanted?   Can it show something beyond the Nintendo typical cutsie?   I expect that in typical Nintendo fashion, the Wii U will not focus on tech and be underpowered.  Also, the 3DS needs some life but I’m really meh about it so I don’t care much other that to see what they say about hardware.

Sony

I don’t follow Sony very much, but  I think Sony is in a tight spot and needs to react and show what they have to offer.  They have a lot of games to talk about and I expect a lot of Vita Vita Vita talk.   Sony could announce a price drop on the console, in reaction to the $99 Xbox console deal (rip off tactic).  I’ve heard some news about a cloud service, which could be streaming games like OnLive, but I doubt it.

I’m curious what Sony will say about the Move.  Remember the Move?  Will they give it more promotion or is it a dead peripherial?

Although unlikely, its possible Sony might hint at the PS4 in vague ways to let us know they are thinking of the future. I’ve been really adamant that Nintendo’s Wii U would steal the show and the other players would want to evaluate what Nintendo’s up to and how they fair, but Sony could see it as an opportunity.

Microsoft

There will be no new console announcement from Microsoft in my opinion.  They won’t want to take attention from the Kinect, and I suspect they will be very interested in how the Wii U goes.  Expect more dashboard/software announcements, Live crap, Windowz Phone blah, Windows App Store, meh.  I expect Microsoft to suck it this year as they try to further embrace casual.  I think they are going to approach this from a different angle, laying the groundwork for a Windows Phone, Windows 8, and Xbox 720 future.

I am very interested to see if their presentation makes them appear as if they are getting out of the games business.  On the other hand, Microsoft could have some awesome sh!t happening if they can really integrate the next console with Windows 8 and Windows Phone in a non-sucky/typical Microsoft way.  And maybe Zune has a future!

All in all, what they present should be telling for what could be their path for the next console.  Oh, and probably something about Halo.

Summary

I think Nintendo and the Wii U will steal the show and give us lots to talk about.  I think Sony will be on the offensive and will really pump some fun at us, showcasing the fun gaming “experience”, as well as promote the Vita in a way to make us want to get it.  I think Microsoft is going to be a flop, focusing on other casual crap we won’t really care about while missing the gamer audience.

Call of Duty Black Ops Takes 8 Lives in One Day

Eight lifetimes were spent playing Call of Duty Black Ops on XBOX Live by then end of launch day on November 9th.  Sensational, I know, but let me explain.

I’ve always found this math concept interesting, where you compare lifetimes to an event, especially if you equate it to big events like the Super Bowl.  Basicaly any event where they brag about the number of viewers, or hours spent, or time committed to something means that lifetimes were used up.  Major Nelsons recent tweet about Call of Duty Black Ops having 5.9 million hours played in the first day reminded me of this strange thought, so I had to find out.  How many lifetimes were used playing Call of Duty on that first day?

Major Nelson’s tweet from Nov. 19th, 2010

The math is easy, so let me walk through it.

First off, what is the life expectancy of the average person?  I decided to use the US average, since its probably the majority of players and is also fairly high.  According to the CIA, the average life expectancy of a US citizen in 2010 is approximately 78 years.

1 lifetime = 78 years

Second is determining how many years 5.9 million hours is.  5,900,000 hours is 245833 days (5900000 hrs / 24 hrs/day) which is 673 years (245833 days / 365 days/year).

5,900,000 hours = 673 years

The rest is simple.  If a lifetime is 78 years, and 673 years were spent playing, that means that 8.6 lifetimes (673 years / 78 years/lifetime) were spent.

673 years = 8.6 lifetimes

What does this mean?  Well, nothing really.  It’s just an interesting number related to life.  It doesn’t mean lives were wasted, because many many more are spent in more mundane things every day (such as traffic).  It’s just interesting to see how we spend our time.

First 1000 Gamerscore

I achieved my first 1000 gamerscore tonight, some accomplishment.  I’ve been keeping Borderlands on the back burner, intending to get that last achievement someday.  I had to reach level 50, which given their level balancing and the level cap for enemies, is tough.

Your Controls a-Splode


Splosion Man, a XBox Live Arcade game that is pretty fun (especially according to my 6 year old) has a lot of humor. For instance, this menu allows you to remap the button controls. However, your choices are limited to the following: SPLODE. As you can see, I’ve remapped each of the buttons to the available options.

This is just the trail version, so perhaps they actually do do more, but this made me laugh non the less.

E3 Day 1, Microsoft

I just watched G4’s coverage of the Microsoft Press event and the most pressing question I have is what can Nintendo and Sony do to top it, if even match it? It reminded me of last years event but with less stuff I could care little about (You’re in The Movies, Lips) or feel remotely embarrassment for the presenters.

Of course the games are a big deal. The Left 4 Dead sequel, Modern Warfare 2, Splinter Cell and Final Fantasy XIII interested me the most, but it was Project Natal that had me really thinking. I’ve been predicting to friends, family, co-workers and even in my classes, that the next big thing will be no controller. I even mentioned today the idea of being able to drive without a controller by just by holding your hands in the air.


I also realize that the internets are going to be very skeptical about this too. They will undoubtedly say Microsoft is copying the Wii, but I honestly think its the next step. One that Nintendo could hardly make (with their lackluster system IMO and lack of real Online capabilities, etc.)

As I was watching Peter Molyneux present Milo I got excited thinking of the game possibilities. Seriously, here’s the perfect interface for an honest to goodness story based game, a mystery exploration game, the next evolution of text based adventure into a fully imagined, 3D world. Granted, its about the programming and the AI, but with the loss of a controller it becomes something so much more.

Back in the Box

My 360 is home now. It came back on Friday, but I had lent all my games and controllers to a co-worker since I wasn’t going to get much use out of them. Thus, I wasn’t able to play again until today.

The system is working well it seems, though my licensed downloads are acting funny. Braid for instance lost its saved games. Haven’t tested much else. Far Cry 2 works and now that I’ve tasted of it again, its difficult to shelve it until after finals and my iPhone work is done.

I’m going to take my final in GSP-280 now, should be a breeze. I’m at 101%, so the 200 point final should be easy to blow through.

XBox Repaired

Now it just has to come home.

XBOX Box

Red Rings of Death means the warranty kicks in. I reported the problem and Microsoft sends you a box to ship your XBox in.

I have more free time now.

The Beginning of The End


So it began.

I’ve now submitted it to the online repair at XBox. I’ll probably be posting more now since I can’t play Far Cry 2.

XBox Experience

I got the New XBox Experience tonight. I was excited for some reason and started downloading as soon as I got home from work. I thought it would be pretty cool, but sadly I’m not impressed. Perhaps its better than the blades (and in some ways it is for sure), but my initial impressions are ho-hum.

I’m disappointed with the character creator. I really like the look of the characters, but its too limiting for body part selections. It feels very Mii-like, especially the eyes, eyebrows and mouths. I had a hard time making one look like me. Hopefully, unlike the Mii, they’ll expand the selections in the future.

360 Hoy!


I couldn’t stop thinking about it so I finally broke down… I own a 360 now and GTAIV! Look at me, I’m out bowling on a date. What game is this again?

W00t!