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So far at QuakeCon we have had the opportunity to play an almost limitless supply of games, and what does my group decide. We played Warcraft tower defense till 4am, I was greatly disappointed with my friends as I walked back to my car to get some shut-eye. That’s right my fair readers, your intrepid blogger had his plans to sleep in a nice bed dashed by a friend who decided not to show.

So the rundown goes:

10:30pm-arrive at quake-con

Midnight- gain entrance to the BYOC (bring your own computer)

1:30am- finish setting up my stuff.

4am- leave to go to sleep

8:30am- alarm fails to go off…

12:30pm- wake up

1pm-go to the Brink show…

So I arrive at the brink show feeling a little groggy and in need of a shower, but the guys at Splash Damage managed to wake me up with an impressive display of their game. I love the class based structure of Enemy Territory: Quake Wars, and brink uses that general structure and throws in customization elements to make you feel like your character is an individual fighting a guerrilla war in the future. The mission objective system looked dynamic pulling you from place to place by enticing you to help your team. While it was a pre-alpha build many parts looked polished. The only thing I want to see more of is the Mirror’s Edge style free-running button that allows you to traverse obstacles with ease, if the level design works with this feature it could be the first time that the nimble infiltrator class actually gets to be nimble.

Keep posted as we continue to muse about whatever the hell it is we are doing here at quake-con, I’m going to find a real place to sleep for the night.

Hello from Quakecon. I hope all of you are ready for HARDCORE BLOGGING!!!!! (guitar wail).

Thats right, your friends at the Other Castle are here live at the Gaylord hotel in Dallas Texas ready to soak up all the super-LAN goodness. We just got set up and yours truly just finished with a very successful round of Team Fortress 2, and while a wait for a few files to finish downloading I’m going to run into a Left 4 Dead game.

Keep up with us for any col updates we can think of and random musings about the biggest LAN from the biggest contiguous state (Alaska shouldn’t count anyway).

Continuing on with the E3 round up, we find our way to Nintendo, who, despite putting up record numbers in console and game sales, came into E3 with something to prove. Accused with having a drought of quality games for the Wii, Nintendo has long had a history of tension with the 20-something gamers who say that they are “too old” for their games, but now even their loyal fans might have found their Wii unused for a few months this past year. Nintendo needed to prove that they still knew how to make the games that made them big, which was the focus of their show.

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The week is ending, and we gamers are in our post-E3 phase, which of course requires that we all rate the three console-makers on their various line-ups. The practice has often been decried as pointless; that there is no way to provide empirical evidence that one company had a better press conference, and that our opinions are quite simply that: opinion. However, if you are here reading this, you must be looking for what (I hope) you believe to be an educated opinion, so here we go.

I’ll talk about the conferences in reverse order cause I’m feeling cheeky, which starts us with Sony. Sony had the best conference of the show; it was paced well, had lots of information, showed lots of games (including exclusives), and seemed to act somewhat naturally the whole time. First off, the pacing was great; every announcement was quick, concise, and well put. I never felt like anyone onstage droned on about any particular subject, which made the information presented seem that much more exciting. Sony’s info was spot on too, they showed us games we wanted to see. Almost all of the games they talked about had game footage too, which is much nicer than a few pictures or a short video. I was going crazy seeing Uncharted 2, Assassin’s Creed 2, and God of War 3 all in action. ModNation Racers looks great for the kart racing gamer (which I am).  The exclusives really sold me: so many games were only appearing on their systems. I don’t like it when I’m told how great a year a console is going to have when all that’s shown is multi-platform releases. I also loved their motion controller demo; I want to see some full games for it, but it looks like it will support a wide variety of games. There are still questions to be answered, but the gameplay that was on display shows much promise.  Sony showed why you should buy their systems and not the competition’s, and in the end that’s what they want to do.

It wasn’t all good in Sony-land though: they did have some snafus. The main one in my mind was the PSP Go. Sony seemed so obsessed with saying that the old PSP would still be a viable platform, and that it was going to be getting most of the same bonuses that the PSP Go will. I don’t get what the big advantage is going to be to getting this new $250 system (that price is also going to hurt sales in my mind).  I’m interested in a full digital distribution system, but the PSP Go doesn’t seem to have that much more than just a new way to buy  games.

All in all, I thought the Sony conference was far superior to the other two console-makers, but both Nintendo and Microsoft did things that were right and wrong in their conferences.  However I do need to eat,  so check back later for thoughts about Nintendo’s trials and triumphs.

About

The Other Castle is a blog by video games, for video games. Wait, let me try that again. The Other Castle is a blog by a few nerd friends, about video games. As long as we're entertaining ourselves, there's a good chance somewhere out there, you might be getting a little kick out of reading this, too!

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