With the hectic E3 Week over, it’s time to look back on back on what’s happened, and how it’s going to change everything (or maybe not) moving forward. But first, GR has a list of the confirmed characters for the recently announce WiiU version of Super Smash Bros (which is super awesome).
The list of series-staples like Mario, Pikachu, DK, etc are all there. The big new ones to note are Mega Man (FINALLY), The Wii Fit Trainer (…odd choice, but alright, I can get behind that…figuratively, of course), Kid Icarus (it was inevitable, let’s be honest), and The Animal Crossing Villager (ready to ride the hype train off of New Leaf’s release, what perfect timing). It’s a pretty stable early roster, and one that has some interesting new entries. The non-violent Villager and Wii Fit Trainer are certainly curious; but like the Ice Climbers before them, relatively non-violent characters aren’t especially hard to transition to the SSB series. I forsee kung-fu-like yoga moves, lots of acrobatics, and maybe some Villager tools. Almost makes me think of Pocket Fighters on the PSX. Almost. Also on the list is a bunch of “we want [insert name]”, as chosen by GR and their readers. Some really good and smart choices, like Bomberman.
“Uh oh,” you think, realizing what’s about to come. “More craziness about the Xboner and PS4. Or maybe he’s a part of the #PCMASTERRACE?”. Don’t fear, I’ve already had to deal with that drama among my gaming friends (I came out the loser, but ah well). I will say this: the GR article about the 6 things you’ve heard about next-gen (that aren’t true) is heavily XBO-based; the cries of the NSA haunting your every move and the Xboner being a non-gamer machine will hopefully be laid to rest (because I hate trolls, and so do you, don’t lie). Microsoft has decided to give in to the outcry of used-game-love (which I think is utterly stupid – the used game thing – but that’s for another time and place), among other changes. Which leaves cost (ps4 over XBO of course) and exclusives being the only REAL deciding factors as to which console is best/you will buy.
Personally, as a game designer myself, I found the idea of always-online to be super cool. The use of it was shown in titles like Forza, Drive Club, Need For Speed: Rivals, and The Division. Seamless integration of Single- and Multi-play is really awesome, as is the ability to keep your game challenging by having the AI constantly learning and updating itself in real-time. With the big changes from MS, developers have a lot less incentive to develop cool stuff like that; why waste resources on a feature (as amazing as it might be) if it means alienating potential sales from Singleplayer-only gamers? For sure, MS presented everything in the most troll-bait manner possible (I thought they had a better overall E3 conference though), but I though that the tech innovations were awesome. Steam-like library management on a console? Fantastic. Steam-like easy, digital access to your library at any time? Amazing. This is all stuff that would have pushed console gaming in the same direction as PC gaming, and let’s be honest: the #PCMASTERRACE nonsense actually has a kernel of truth to it, because services like Steam are infinitely better than anything console gamers have. I really feel like console gamers shafted themselves this time; it seemed to be a knee-jerk reaction to all of the proposed limitations and handcuffing that was apparently happening. But, now it’s all gone, and the only REAL differences (as mentioned above) are price and exclusives. Which, for me, means XBO is the top of the list; almost all of the games I’m excited for are multiplatform or XBO exclusives; I have a gut feeling that FF15 will be on the XBO.
Don’t get me wrong though; I fully intend (as I did last gen) to get every console, and develop for as many as I can. With that in mind, I wish you good gaming, and enjoy your weekend!