Gamers are really demanding! This is not really something we just learned. But it’s getting worse with time, as gamers become more critical, more experienced, and harder to please. While it is difficult to imagine a more exciting renewal of the current generation, as we turn to E3 2013 for the moment, we all remain cautious and reserved.
Neither Sony nor Microsoft, announcing their PS4 and Xbox One, have truly made an unanimous effort to do an impactful reveal, as if we players and fans follow their banners blindly, as I explain the trend in The Console War: Just Stop It Already, when in reality we have a lot to learn or see.
But how can we blame the gamers? Nothing seems perfectly clear, between the release time, change of habits, new technology and permanent connections… Apart from Nintendo, which always seems to stay one foot in the past in comparison to the other two manufacturers?
The power of the upcoming events which will be played this week in Los Angeles, will be crucial for the industry.
Nevertheless, make no mistake as to the power of the upcoming events which will be played this week in Los Angeles, will be crucial for the industry. Behind the games, machines, announcements, beyond projectors, appealing booth, entertainment, ensures the future of an industry that is in trouble, and that more than ever, tries to fight a trapped and stagnant market. Our guesses and fear that this generation of consoles could be the last “traditional” one are truer by the day, and the big three – Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo – will have to overcome great difficulties, if not move mountains. Here’s my thoughts and advices for each of them, for a successful E3.
Sony: Be more concrete, specific, and join forces
By starting the next-gen invasion, Sony finally took the lead and passed a good position – retrospectively. But the PlayStation party was very careful to say just enough. At E3 this year, it will have to give us the reality of its vision, and obviously show us the console, which the Xbox One had the lead. But in terms of attitude and announcements, Sony has well led this boat, and all that remains to do is to consolidate its position, giving us what he wants the most: a concrete perspective.
It should therefore show live presentations of how the new PlayStation 4 features, from the share button, to the social media use as well as emphasizing on Gaikai’s functionality, topped by announced licenses that ought to surprise, capitalizing the excellent position adopted towards the indie developers, which have been heavily courted during the last GDC, while Microsoft seems to have simply forgotten them.
If they can keep the image of a consistent variety, with a console design showing more personality than the Xbox One, and managing to spend the right amount of time for the Vita and the PlayStation 3, we can probably consider that Sony have successfully nailed E3 2013.
Microsoft: Do not miss the second show, and pull out the games
It is customary to say that there is usually no second chance to make a good first impression. This is undoubtedly true, and Microsoft has not really succeeded at first, on May 21st (read more about it in Xbox One: Microsoft’s Next Frontier), whether it was to impress gamers, or dealing with their monumental PR fiasco, encrypted with contradictory statements, giving us a badly managed after the conference, or just that the Xbox team was not ready for this. But you can also forget a first impression, especially if the second is extremely convincing.
For once, the more humble position that Sony adopted is easier to defend
Some games and upcoming titles have already announced during the May 21st reveal, such Forza Motorsports 5, Quantum Break … but it will take more, undoubtedly, even if we know that Crytek’s Ryse joined the cast of Xbox One exclusivity, the American giant cannot function without a myriad of other attractive games.
For E3 2013, Microsoft, who can hardly back down to take a different stance, will have to clear as spring water, and reassure issues surrounding its previous statements. Usually succeeding in this particular position, Redmond’s firm must also stun his gaming audience, while forgetting its TV implementations, and live entertainment business.
It is not enough to say that Microsoft should act as a leader, to make this work, and must demonstrate its power beyond a shadow of a doubt. For once, the more humble position that Sony adopted is easier to defend… While Microsoft, for its part, does not really have anything but a single machine to push for, the Xbox One, where Sony cannot afford to overlook the PlayStation Vita in one hand, and to a console that still is significant for our age, with the PlayStation 3.
Nintendo: Bring on the heavy weight, comfort, and be the popular kid
The Wii U is on the shelves. Nintendo has already announced that they are not doing their big yearly conference at E3 2013. But that does it means they cannot hold their own fort? To achieve this, while all the attention may be diverted to the next-gen, Nintendo will remind the world what it is: one of the best first party game developers in the world, who holds the world’s most acclaimed, most popular franchises, since it cannot play the technology card.
Nintendo is always the accessible, reassuring familiar: but it is time to get heavy weight gloves, or else the Wii U is going to die out of starvation. By choosing to hold an event to only the press, and another for consumers outside the lounge, Nintendo has the means to deliver a vital message: our consoles and games are here, and they are easily accessible. After all, the economic crisis is a fact for the vast majority of the world, and the quality and price ratio is a critical point, and in this respect, Nintendo has the means to seduce, like it did with the 3DS, with a combination of price drop console bundled popular games.
And, despite shattering announcements from Microsoft and Sony, which even if they could announce affordable prices for their monsters, are all impossible to match the Wii U’s $299.99 SRP Value. The battle of the next-gen that makes us dream because of its technology is losing without fighting.
But in the meantime as we await the prices and games for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, Nintendo must make use of its affordability with the Wii U and, to a lesser extent, the 3DS. In fact, it would suffice to have perhaps one “killer title”, a game that would unanimously be close to what Super Mario Galaxy was able to do with the Wii, something in short, that everyone will want to play, like I’ve explained in the Wii U-Turn feature.
In the end, gamers unanimously expect this E3 2013 to make the dream come true, more than any other for years, one that will blow our mind. But it is quite possible that E3 2013 will disappoint us once again: the way I see, we will not see may new original titles, or licenses, which is not the next-gen that we hoped. This E3 Expo is anticipated to be a mega-slap in the face instead of a mega-announcement.
This E3 Expo is anticipated to be a mega-slap in the face instead of a mega-announcement.
In the meantime, the PC platform will continue to watch it all happen, comfortably alone on the bench facing the ring, not worried at all, as consoles simply play their future, both collectively and against each other. Such is the life in the land of videogames… but for how long?